Despite common misconception, Europe isn’t home to the only mystical places on earth. The United States is a melting pot of cultures, offering places of great beauty and sacred energy where people can feel that undeniable connection to a greater power. Some of these incredible vacation destinations may even be in your own backyard. Drawing energy from the earth and offering incomparable spirituality, here are the top ten vacation spots for spiritual retreats.
1. Cahokia Mounds – St. Louis, Missouri
Over a thousand years ago, Cahokia was a burgeoning city, perhaps the largest in the world at the time. Cahokia was ruled by a High Priest from Monk’s Mound, as it was later known. Aligned with the stars, this impressive site features a circle of wooden poles once used as a solar calendar, as well as dozens of earthen mounds once used for ceremonies, burials, and sacrifices. Those who visit this spot say they can still feel the energy of the ancient spirits who roam here.
2. Crater Lake – Medford, Oregon
At nearly 2,000 feet deep, Crater Lake is the deepest in the country and one of the top ten in the world. The Klamath Nation regards it as a sacred site where there was once a battle between the Chiefs of the Above and the Below Worlds, which destroyed the mountain that once stood. Today, Crater Lake is a stunning shade of blue, welcoming visitors to a site that New Age spiritual believers herald as a major vortex and source of positive energy.
3. Mount Shasta – Mt. Shasta, California
Towering 14,000 feet above the flatlands below, Mount Shasta was once part of the notorious Pacific Ring of Fire. Though it’s now extinct, Mt. Shasta plays a central role in the creation story for local Native Americans. Buddhists, too, built a monastery there, believing that Mt. Shasta is one of the Seven Sacred Mountains of the world. Many spiritualists believe it’s a vortex, which emits the earth’s energy. Whatever your beliefs may be, the presence and spirit here are simply undeniable.
4. New Orleans, Louisiana
The whole city just breathes energy. New Orleans’ most renowned psychic once said, “There’s something here in New Orleans…why else would people build something on a swamp?” In all truth though, the city has withstood some of the worst hurricanes, fires, deadly epidemics, and more, but nothing stops it from coming back stronger each time. Believers roam freely here, as do the spirits, some say. Stop by the infamous Bourbon Street and discover it for yourself.
5. Ringing Rocks State Park – Upper Black Eddy, Pennsylvania
This seven-acre field full of rocks is open to visitors from around the country – and beyond – to experience the famous ringing rocks. The interesting element here is that only about a third of the rocks in the park “ring” when struck with a hammer. Those that do are heralded as “live” rocks, while the others are known as “dead” rocks. Scientists still don’t know why these rocks ring when struck with a hammer, but some visitors swear they have experienced the inexplicable while listening to the vibrations.
6. Asheville – North Carolina
Asheville has long been touted as one of the most mystical places in the United States with 24 unique power points. Many believe that the vortexes are linked to the Blue Ridge Mountains’ incredible quantities of crystal-quartz, which act as a psychic magnet. Many visitors continue to flock to the Grove Park Inn Resort to indulge in the subterranean spa, which is a renowned healing spot where guests can enjoy an aura-imaging session to see the color of their aura.
7. Taos, New Mexico
A mysterious low-frequency sound was first reported in this small town in New Mexico in 1991. Known as the “Taos hum,” only about two percent of residents say they’ve heard it, but others have described it more as a whirring sound, or a deep rumble. Though scientific researchers say it could be coming from normal sources, those with auditory sensitivity swear it continues to this day. According to folklore, the hum is Mother Nature singing in Taos to restore balance and harmony.
8. America’s Stonehenge – Salem, New Hampshire
No one knows for sure who created America’s Stonehenge. This maze of man-made chambers, walls, and seemingly-ceremonial sites scattered around 30 acres. Whether built by a Native American culture or migrant European settlers, America’s Stonehenge was built by those well-versed in astronomy, as it’s been determined to be an accurate astronomical calendar that can determine both solar and lunar events. Many visitors here feel an overwhelming sense of peace.
9. Devils Tower – Crook County, Wyoming
Devil’s Tower has been a sacred place for many Native American cultures since prehistoric times. Many legends surround it including one where a grizzly bear was pursuing a group of seven girls. They jumped upon a low rock and prayed to the Great Spirit to save them. The rock began to grow upwards and, though the bear continued to jump and claw down the sides, the tower soared upwards to the sky where the girls became the seven stars of Pleiades. It remains a place of great energy, and visitors have reported seeing strange lights and UFOs around the summit.
10. White Sands – Tularosa Basin, New Mexico
Just west of Alamogordo is an area of about 230 square miles of brilliant white sand dunes known as White Sands. It is the world’s largest fields of rare gypsum sand – pure white and shimmering. Tourists visit the place to spend hours walking across the soft sand, which doesn’t convert the sun’s energy into heat like other sands. Visitors say they sense a feeling of intense calm and childlike peace here, and the dunes are a famed site for Native American vision quests.