Six fly-in resorts you should visit

Sometimes holidays can feel like you haven’t left home as you encounter traffic jams on the road and crowds at the attractions you want to visit.

Many fly-in resorts seek to put more space between their guests and the stresses of everyday life with activities and experiences ranging from hiking, horseback riding and skeet shooting to golf, massage and baths in hot springs.

The idea of ​​a one-stop-style vacation is appealing because you don’t have to worry about getting around once you reach your destination. All the things you want to do are there, or at most a shuttle.

Perhaps the best part is that by flying in your own plane and with favorable weather, you can finally realize the old maxim; “Getting there is half the fun.” Here are six resorts tailored to the needs of travelers.

Minam River Lodge

Minam Lodge Airport (7OR0), Creek, Oregon

There really is no room for cars at the lodge. Indeed, owners’ information on “getting here” includes three options: hike, horse and plane. The hike should take around four hours if you are in “reasonable shape”. You can hire an outfitter to take you on horseback. If you ride your own horse, the lodge has a communal pasture where your mount can stay. Flying is not for rusty pilots.

“We strongly recommend that you have some backcountry experience before flying to Minam River Lodge,” the website advises at the start of a long series of detailed instructions for aerial operations in the area. It’s time to brush up on the mountain flight in time for the special series of Winemakers’ Dinners, when winemakers from area vineyards work with the lodge to present menus ideal for wine pairings. The series runs from June to September.

[Courtesy: Eagle Port Lodge]

Eagle Harbor Lodge

Seeley Lake Airport (23S), Lindey’s Landing West Seaplane Base (M35), Lake Seeley, Montana

A 4,575-foot strip of public grass greets pilots arriving for a stay at the nearby lodge. You can forget the ties as there is a hangar for guests, just take a taxi. Guests can stay at the main lodge near the airport or in lakeside cabins. There is a seaplane base by the lake.

Wildlife enthusiasts can spot a range of birds and other species, including bats, beavers and otters. Lodge guidelines encourage “sharing these habitats with our wild friends” and remind guests that many local animals are curious about humans. “We recommend that you keep all doors closed and do not open windows that do not have screens.”

[Courtesy: Nemacolin]


Nemacolin Airport (PA88), Farmington, Pennsylvania

Formerly known as Nemacolin Woodlands Resort, this 2,000-acre, year-round destination is geared towards families and offers a variety of accommodation styles, from the European-inspired castle to Falling Rock, a resort that s inspired by the architecture of Frank Lloyd Wright. For larger groups, individual houses and estates are available.

Activities include skiing and winter sports, dog sledding, hunting, skeet shooting, etc. Heated pools, swim-up bars, hot tubs, and fire pits help keep the festivities outdoors going all winter long. A 3,845-foot paved runway serves private planes and charter flights.

[Courtesy: Lajitas Golf Resort and Spa]

Lajitas Golf Resort and Spa

Lajitas International Airport (T89), Terlingua, TX

Located in the Big Bend area of ​​West Texas, Lajitas is known for its golf course and a long list of activities including mountain biking, horseback riding, zip lines and shooting sports. It’s also known for its cuisine, which ranges from fajitas to rib eye at Candelilla Cafe. More casual and take-out options are available at the Boardwalk Bakery and Pizzeria and the General Store.

This station has the longest runway of this group at 6,501 feet, which opens the door to a wide range of aircraft, including jets. Due to the mountainous terrain, Lajitas is a daytime VFR only airport with public access. Contact the resort 24 hours in advance to arrange arrival and ground transportation.

[Courtesy: Grand Geneva Resort and Spa]

Grand Geneva Resort and Spa

Grand Geneva Resort Airport (C02), Lake Geneva, Wisconsin

You can swap your wings for two wheels with the resort’s scooter rentals and explore the greater Lake Geneva basin on your own or sign up for a guided tour. The resort is dog friendly so if you are traveling with Fido this might be a good option. Stay in the lodge or, for more privacy, in one of the villas.

The resort is open year-round, with activities including golf, skiing, ziplines, fitness classes, spa treatments, and an interactive escape room. A range of boat tours available on the lake include historical tours, dinner excursions and a social ice cruise.

[Courtesy: Chena Hot Springs Resort]

Chena Spa

Chena Hot Springs Airport (AK13), Fairbanks, Alaska

Where else can you easily go from piloting an airplane to being pulled through snow by a dog team? Dog sledding tours are among the activities available on a day tour, but if you’ve traveled far to Alaska, you might want to stay longer.

Multi-day packages include a variety of romantic getaways and adventures that focus on a hot spring-fed lake and frequent opportunities to see the aurora. Resort staff take guests by dog-drawn coach to the best viewing areas. The private gravel airstrip is 3,000 feet long.

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