It’s probably safe to assume that there was never a year that so many people were ecstatic to see end. 2020 was a year that took the most familiar parts of everyday life away from us – from sports and concerts to classrooms and boardrooms from birthday parties and weddings to gyms and yoga classes – and of course, travel. It also caused a lot of stress, anxiety and sleepless nights – especially if you were a front-line worker or first responder, you suddenly had to homeschool your children or were worried about your elderly parents’ health. It’s really no wonder 2020 saw so many of us googling mental health for what may have been the first time in our lives.
Maybe 2021 didn’t arrive, waving its magic wand and putting life back to normal. It has, however, come with a renewed sense of hope that we’re making headway – slowly but surely – towards regaining some sense of normalcy. And now that we’re in a new year with new promise, there’s a new word that is trending – actually two words – wellness travel. And there’s no better time to treat yourself to what has become one of the biggest buzzwords in travel the past few years – with 2020 really catapulting its popularity.
What is Wellness Travel?
Simply put it’s a trip, vacation or journey that involves activities that are beneficial to the mind, body and spirit. And that can take on many different forms – from relaxing in a hot spring to farm-to-table dining to unplugging for a weekend getaway. Now, perhaps the title of this blog seems contradictory to you because when you think of New York City you think of crowded sidewalks, honking horns and towering skyscrapers. And yes – those things exist in the city but so do acres of spacious parks, biking and walking paths and world-class spas. In fact, you may be surprised at just how many activities there are in the Big Apple that will recharge, rejuvenate and refresh you. To give you an idea – here are just five of the opportunities available for wellness travel in NYC.
Invigorating Ice Skating
How about an activity that gets you out in the brisk winter air and counts as a workout? One where you can pretend, you’re training for a spot on the Olympic team or simply get lost in the sensation of gliding smoothly across the ice. Whatever you decide to daydream about while you’re ice skating there’s no doubt it’s good for your mental and physical health. And with so many ice skating rinks to choose from you certainly won’t have a problem finding a place to lace up in any of the five boroughs!
Beautiful Bike Tours of Central Park
Feel more comfortable on two wheels than you do on two blades? No problem! Bicycling also counts as a wellness activity and exercise. And what better place to pedal through than Central Park on a bicycle tour? Offering fresh air, wide-open spaces and an absence of traffic – biking within this 843-acre sanctuary makes for a stress-free way to spend a morning, afternoon or early evening.
Sensory Speed Walking at the High Line Park
Prefer to ditch any kind of equipment and just depend on your own two legs? Head to NYC’s most unique park – it’s actually an old, elevated rail line that was reimagined into a 1.45 pathway on the west side. Enter the High Line off of 34th Street (near the Javits Center) and pump your arms and legs all the way down to Gansevoort Street in the Meatpacking District. Along the way, you’ll take in calming views not only of the Hudson, but of the flowers, plants and artwork that are sprinkled throughout. Now that’s what I call wellness walking!
Yoga at Inviting Iconic NYC Parks
Maybe your idea of wellness is something at a slower pace? If so, doing some downward dog poses in the middle of one of the numerous NYC iconic parks is the way to go. We already talked about Central Park – but that is just one of 1700 that exist in the Big Apple. Nope – that’s not a typo – 1700! Among the more popular ones are Battery Park in Manhattan, Prospect Park in Brooklyn, Pelham Bay Park in the Bronx, Silver Lake Park in Staten Island and Flushing Meadows Corona Park in Queens.
Luxury Spa Treatment at the Exceptional Equinox
Want to spend a few days relaxing AND getting pampered? Beyond Times Square has the perfect wellness package for you! Featuring a three-night stay at one of the city’s newest hotels – the Equinox at Hudson Yards – where you’ll be treated to a techno-therapy spa treatment – including a cryotherapy treatment and a wavetable experience. Trust us – this hotel truly embodies wellness.
So, you see – wellness travel does exist in New York City and is waiting for you to take advantage of it for a healthier, happier 2021!