Listen: I’ve never been the biggest fan of camping.
Ultimately, I think my problems stem from when I was a Girl Scout back in the day. When I was in elementary school, I found out that I was sick enough to get my spleen removed (that’s another story for another day). However, for the longest time, I wasn’t aware that I was that sick, and I went on camping trips left and right as a Girl Scout and had to leave almost all of them early because my immune system couldn’t handle it at the time.
Fast forward to 2017. Yup, I’m still a little scarred from my experiences back in 1998. However, I’m a relatively healthy adult. When Getaway House invited me to try out their new space in D.C., I figured I’d finally try out “camping” yet again.
What Is It?
Getaway House is incredible because it’s a small house/tiny cabin in the woods that’s around 1-1.5 hours outside of a major city. They have them in NYC and Boston, and they recently expanded to D.C. The whole gist of it? Unplug, destress, and enjoy a serene environment. As someone who does social media for their job, the idea of disconnecting made me pretty nervous. However, I ended up loving it — my boyfriend and I played board games, I caught up on some books, and we even managed to make some s’mores on their outdoor grill.
How to Get There
The D.C. Getaway House is about a 1.5-hour drive from the District in the Shenandoah Park in Virginia. It was super easy to drive down I-66/Route 29 to get there. However, you also have the option to take Amtrak to Charlottesville, and then take the Greene County Transit to get you the rest of the way. Getaway House will reveal the exact address of your house plus a keycode to get inside a few days before your stay is scheduled to begin.
The cabin is amazing because it really has everything you need. It has a generator, so you’ve got electricity, running water, a stovetop, mini fridge, and a shower/toilet. You can also adjust the temperature in the cabin as well: it was a little on the chilly side when we visited, so we cranked up the heat at night. There’s also a grill and Adirondack chairs in the front of the cabin if you want to make dinner outside. It’s a great way to enjoy nature, but not have to “rough it.”
I would recommend packing food to bring with you, but just in case you need anything, you do have the option to purchase a variety of snacks that are available in your cabin!
Full disclaimer: there are no mirrors in the house. I ended up not putting on makeup or contacts because of this, but it was super relaxing!
Getaway House: Why It’s Worth It
Have you ever sat with a loved one in the same room and stared at your phone rather than having a conversation with them? Yup, guilty. The Getaway House is equipped with a cell phone lockbox, which is totally optional, but we decided to use it for parts of our stay so we could reconnect with one another. Also, the idea of not bringing my laptop and not checking any work email for 2 days seemed crazy at first, but this workaholic very much so needed it!
I also fell back in love with nature. Yes, I’m still low key traumatized by my camping experiences as a child with getting sick and all, but this was an awesome way for me to explore the Shenandoah National Park without getting super sick.
Don’t Worry, It’s Near Civilization
Just in case you need a slight break from nature…the D.C. Getaway House is only a 12-minute drive from Early Mountain Vineyards. We popped over to that winery for lunch one day while we were visiting!