Time Warp Vacations
Want to take a trip in a time machine? At these vacations spots you won't have to step into Doc's DeLorean for a glimpse at how folks vacationed and lived throughout the centuries. Enjoy a weekend on a Victorian island where you'll travel by horse and buggy or head to a Turkish city with hotels housed in caves. Or spend the night in an original miner's cabin or a tent on a Civil War battlefield. So put the smartphone away and take a trip back in time.
Nevada Tumbleweed, Flickr
A Victorian Escape on Mackinac Island, Michigan
Hop on a horse and buggy and travel around this car-less Michigan Island, a 2,400-acre island that is home to just 500 people. Visit Fort Mackinac, one of the only completely original Revolutionary War forts or spend the day relaxing on the 660-foot porch of the historic Grand Hotel. Explore the historic Mackinac Park that houses five buildings from the original downtown. Take a carriage tour of the island and hear about its history, while taking in the stunning views of nature and the quaint Victorian architecture.
Head Back to Medieval Times in Camlann Village, Washington
Feel as if you're back in 14th-century England at this living history museum located 45 minutes from Seattle. Indulge in a medieval banquet or just stroll through the village with costumed guides speaking as if it is 1376. The buildings are built to look like an authentic village as well, including the newly designed medieval forge and wood shed.
This cavernous Turkish town formed by volcanic eruptions seems untouched by time, and you'll also feel like you're in the backdrop of a Dr. Seuss book with oddly shaped buildings carved out of these volcanic formations. Explore the Göreme Open Air Museum, which houses cave churches and monasteries from the 10th, 11th and 12th centuries or visit the Zelve Open Air Museum, which feels like a cave ghost town. To get a feel for cave living, stay in one of the many cave hotels in Cappadocia like the Yunak Evelri, where the 30 rooms are located in six cave houses.
Stay in a Ghost Town in Gold Point, Nevada
Time travel is cheap in this authentic ghost town: stays in an old miner's cabin start at $99 a night. Tour the town, which has a population of five, and hear stories about this once vibrant mining town or look through their collection of thousands of photos of ghost towns and mining camps. The nightlife takes place at the saloon, where you can feel like you're in the Old West shooting a game of pool on a 1909 Brunswick pool table or play some table shuffleboard.
Pitch a Tent at a Civil War Adventure Camp
To find out what it was like to fight in the Civil War, sign up for this 18-hour experience at Virginia's Pamplin Historical Park (site of an epic 1865 battle). Upon arrival, you're issued a uniform coat (your choice if you are fighting for the Union or the Confederacy) and a commanding officer. Learn how the soldiers fought, ate and the many challenges they experienced during the time period. Firearm drills are carried out with reproduction rifles (loaded with blanks) and the night is spent in a historically accurate tent or bunkhouse.
See 19th-Century Sweden at Skansen Open-Air Museum
See Sweden in the 1800s at this noted open-air museum, which itself as the world's oldest open-air museum. Explore the stunning historic buildings in the Countryside and Town Quarter sections, from farmsteads and cottages to a goldsmith and an ornate mansion. Folks can explore the area and see how agricultural life and other industries were run during the 19th century in Sweden. Skansen hosts events throughout the year, including the Midsummer celebration where visitors help make garlands of flowers for the maypole.
Feel Like an Original Settler in Williamsburg, Virginia
Probably the most famous time warp in the U.S., you can feel like an early settler with a stay at one of the twenty-six Colonial Houses in Williamsburg, Virginia. From a tavern room to a two-bedroom home, these homes are scattered throughout the historic area. A walking tour of the area offers visits to the blacksmith, the saddle maker, the wigmaker, and the apothecary. You may also run into historical characters like a Founding Father or Martha Washington. Once you've worked up an appetite, stop in the 18th-century tavern for a dinner of Eastern shore clam stew and grilled tenderloin.
Spend a Retro 50s Weekend at Wildwood, New Jersey
You'll be humming "Beach Blanket Bingo" in Wildwood, which has almost four dozen retro Doo Wop motels like the Lollipop Motel and the Caribbean Motel. With an over-the-top boardwalk with taffy shops, Ferris wheels, and Skee-ball plus a long beach for setting out that blanket.
Step Back into Architectural History at a Frank Lloyd Wright House
With original mid-century modern furniture and appliances, staying the night at Frank Lloyd Wright's Duncan House is like sleeping in a time capsule. The three-bedroom house was originally built in Illinois in 1957 but was disassembled and moved to this Pennsylvania location in 2002. It is one of the few of the architect's houses where you can spend the night (and seems like a steal at $325 a night for up to three people). The Polymath Park property also houses two homes designed by apprentices of Wright's. If you want to pack even more of the master's architecture into your trip, Wright's Fallingwater and Kentuck Knob are both are a short drive away.