The Best Places in Pennsylvania to Clear Your Mind and Recharge

Written By: Jennifer Scott (

Sometimes the best way to improve mental health is to get away. Whether you have anxiety or depression or everyday stress is simply piling up and keeping you from living your best life, getting away can be what you need to leave it all behind and reset. Pennsylvania has some of the best spots to do just that. From stepping back to a quieter time to relaxing by the water, Pennsylvania has the best mix of beautiful countryside and historic towns for your ultimate relaxing getaway.

Step Back in Time

People are more stressed than ever these days, and a lot of that comes from our fast-paced lives. The easiest way to let go of all those worries is to travel somewhere historic and revisit a time when life was simpler.

Visit a Historic Site

To truly immerse yourself in another time, visit Eckley Miners’ Village, a museum that preserves a “village frozen in time.” In the 19th century, mining companies built towns around the coal fields of northeastern Pennsylvania where families could live and work. Often called “patch towns,” these communities were built to provide basic needs all in one place as a way to attract miners and their families. The miners’ lives may have been simple, but they weren’t always easy. Visiting Eckley lets you experience these families’ everyday lives, both the joys and the hardships, giving you a whole new perspective on life in another time.

Dutch country

Visiting Dutch country gives you a new perspective in a different way, by visiting Amish country where modern families still live a simpler life today. Vacation Rentals lists Pennsylvania Dutch country as the #3 place to rent a cabin, with good reason. If you’re looking to escape from everyday life to a place that is as beautiful as the pace is slow and relaxing, Dutch country is the way to go. This area harkens back to a time before the constant connectedness of the 21st century, so it’s the perfect place to live like the locals and disconnect from technology to reconnect with yourself. To get an even richer experience, check out the Huffington Post’s top offbeat sites to visit in Dutch country.

Explore the Outdoors

Another great way to break from the stress of daily life is to get outdoors and experience the serenity of nature. Add in some outdoor adventure, and you’ll get an extra mental health boost from being active.

Lake Erie

To experience the soothing effects of being near water, rent a cabin for a relaxing retreat on Lake Erie, where nature is at your doorstep, and outdoor adventure opportunities abound. Lake Erie’s Presque Isle State park was ranked as the #1 freshwater beach in North America, making it a nature lover’s dream escape for relaxation. Rent a boat to explore the water, and don’t miss the many migrating birds that can be seen in the area. Once you’re back on land, hit the hiking trails to get your heartrate up while getting back to nature.

Pocono Mountains

The Pocono mountains are another ideal spot to rent a cabin retreat and enjoy the beauty of the natural surroundings. In the Pocono mountains, you can go hiking and see beautiful waterfalls, like the popular Bushkill Falls. Seeking to improve your mental health doesn’t always have to be relaxing, though. Outdoor adventures that give you a rush of adrenaline, like rafting and mountain biking, can be just as therapeutic as meditating by a waterfall. Whether you seek calm or adventure, or a little of both, at the end of the day, you can go “home” to your relaxing cabin retreat and unwind.

Taking a vacation is about so much more than having a fun experience. Travel is one of the best ways to improve mental health because sometimes you need to physically remove yourself from daily life in order to let go mentally. Taking a step back in time and connecting with nature in these beautiful Pennsylvania spots will give you a fresh perspective and clear your head so you can return to “real” life healthier and happier.


Photo credit: Pixabay

The Arts and Leadership - WHY?

A great leader learns from many different fields literature, art, music, history geography etc. By acquiring knowledge from these fields a great leader gains the creativity and innovation, necessary for creating a successful business environment, and to develop into someone who is more aware and ready to face the business world's fast - changing dynamic environment. The arts break ground and bring human consciousness to a new level. It opens doors to thought, invention and communication.

In an excerpt from her "Untitled: Art & Leadership" (Kinneret-Zmora-Dvir Publishing, 2014, translated from the original Hebrew by Seree Zohar), Iris Lavy looks at the ways art can inform leadership.

It is commonly accepted that art represents the world of the spiritual, while business represents that of the material. But they can be more similar than not. Indeed, at a time of constant change and turmoil in so many industries, the business leader can learn much from the artist.

Changes in markets, technology and competition require organizations to switch from managerial modes of running the business to leadership models in which organizations act boldly with vision, imagination, enthusiasm and creativity. These traits can be borrowed – even inspired – from the world of art and artists. Like the artist, the leader must draw on her or his unique personality, values and vision. As with art, business leadership must arouse creative energy, provide inspiration and promote self-expression and out-of-the-box-thinking.


Love after Love

In his poem entitled, "Love after Love," Caribbean poet and Nobel Prize winner, Derek Walcott, addresses and illuminates the feelings related to loving ourselves.


The time will come

when, with elation

you will greet yourself arriving

at your own door, in your own mirror

and each will smile at the other's welcome,

and say, sit here.


You will love again the stranger who was your self.

Give wine. Give bread. Give back your heart

to itself, to the stranger who has loved you

all your life, whom you ignored

for another, who knows you by heart.

Take down the love letters from the bookshelf,

the photographs, the desperate notes,

peel your own image from the mirror. 


Feast on your life.