The 10 Coziest Mountain Lodges in the U.S.
These rustic retreats offer the best of both worlds: outdoor adventures and luxurious amenities.
Picture this: You wake up to the sight of rugged peaks outside your window and the fresh scent of mountain air, with picture-perfect waterfalls and endless hiking trails right within steps of your door. If that sounds like heaven, you're in desperate need of a mountain getaway—and luckily, you don't even have to leave the country to stay at one of these alpine escapes.
From the vibrant and distinctive Blue Ridge Mountains to the expansive Rockies and the river-studded Adirondacks, the U.S. is home to some of the most stunning mountain ranges in the world. The only question is: where to stay?
Standout properties fuse outdoor recreation with luxury amenities. More importantly, they offer that sought-after vibe that's ideal for sipping hot cocoa by a fireplace after a long day of exploring. With that in mind, here are some rustic retreats that are perfect for a high-altitude vacation any time of year.
READ THIS NEXT: 10 Small Towns in the U.S. That Feel Like the Wild West.
The Best Mountain Lodges in the U.S.
1. Skyline Lodge – Highlands, North Carolina
Originally built in 1929, this chic-yet-cozy boutique property went through a massive renovation in the summer of 2021—the facelift feels modern while still paying homage to the original designer, a student of Frank Lloyd Wright.
Upon arrival, grab a latte from the reception area or a cocktail from the on-site bar and take a seat in the charming communal courtyard, which features lounge seating, fire pits, lawn games, and string lights.
Without a doubt, one of the highlights of Skyline Lodge is its location: nestled atop a 3,700-ft. high mountain, and surrounded by 50 acres of old-growth conifers and hardwood trees, it truly feels like an escape from the hustle and bustle of the outside world. The high altitude offers a perfect respite from the summer heat, but there's no bad time to visit here: Travelers also appreciate the colorful foliage in the fall, blossoming flora in the spring, and snowy peaks in the winter. Highlands happens to be home to the Nantahala National Forest and is brimming with pristine woodlands, waterfalls, and navigable rivers.
After a full day of tubing, zip lining, and hiking, unwind at the Skyline Lodge's on-site restaurant, the swanky Oak Steakhouse, which is known for its perfectly prepared certified Angus steaks, impressive wine list, and sweeping mountain views.
2. The Ranch at Rock Creek – Philipsburg, Montana
"Tucked away in the mountains of Philipsburg, Montana, this luxury guest ranch offers visitors a true taste of the American West," says Andrei Alexandru Cornici, founder of the travel blog Lovely Terra. "From horseback riding and fly fishing to hiking and archery, there is something for everyone to enjoy here."
Situated on more than 10 square miles of lush meadows and rolling foothills, this property offers the classic ranch experience, but with all the upscale amenities you could hope for. But according to Cornici, what makes The Ranch at Rock Creek truly special is its commitment to providing each and every guest with a one-of-a-kind experience. If you're an outdoor enthusiast, you can spend your time horseback riding, fly fishing, hiking, or mountain biking. Or, if you're looking for a more relaxing getaway, can take advantage of the day spa, pool, and hot tub. You can also unwind in the saloon, complete with a game room.
"After a long day of exploring or enjoying ranch activities, you'll want a comfortable place to rest your head," says Cornici. "Luckily, The Ranch at Rock Creek has no shortage of luxurious accommodations to choose from. Whether you stay in one of the secluded log cabins or opt for a room in the historic Granite Lodge, you'll be surrounded by comfort and western elegance."
3. Timberline Lodge – Mt. Hood, Oregon
"The top-notch dining at the lodge includes Ram's Head Bar, which serves the most delicious hot chocolate I have ever tasted," adds Bryn Culbert, budget travel expert at Wanderu. "Pools, a sauna, free coffee, a game room, and resident St. Bernards round out some of the lodge's other cozy amenities."
According to Lewis, it's the craftsmanship that makes this lodge so unique. Guest rooms feature hand-carved wooden furnishings, and Pendleton blankets—and many even have their own fireplaces and jaw-dropping views of the Cascade Mountains. Even the pool and hot tub offer mountain views.
"Perched 6,000 feet up on Mt. Hood, the lodge draws guests all year," Lewis adds. "In the winter months, they show up for skiing and snowboarding. In the summer, hiking and biking are the main attractions. And Timberline boasts the longest ski-season in North America, operating nearly year-round."
Whether you're staying here to ski, snowboard, snowshoe, mountain bike, or just enjoy a hot toddy by the fireplace, you're bound to have a memorable stay. Did we mention that Timberline Lodge offers ski-to-door access?
For more travel advice delivered straight to your inbox, sign up for our daily newsletter.
4. Salish Lodge – Snoqualmie, Washington
Nestled in the foothills of the Cascade Mountains, overlooking the 268-foot Snoqualmie Falls, Salish Lodge is just 30 minutes east of Seattle.
"It's easily accessible but also feels like a total escape," says Dan Bagby, cofounder of Honeymoon Always. "The Lodge's award-winning spa has treatments using Pacific Northwest ingredients. Besides the location of the lodge, the on site restaurant is the main attraction. While dining there is an amazing view of the Snoqualmie Falls—you may even spot a rainbow."
All rooms boast large jacuzzi tubs and wood-burning fireplaces, and many rooms have balconies as well as views of the Snoqualmie River. In addition to the spectacular scenery, the property's rustic-luxe style includes stone fireplaces, stacked firewood, earth-toned cashmere throws, and bookcases galore. Don't miss the famous four-course breakfast before heading out for a day of outdoor activities—Bagby highly recommends booking the Honey from Heaven service, during which honey from the on-site hives is poured onto buttery house-made biscuits.
5. Lake Crescent Lodge – Port Angeles, Washington
Built in 1915, this historic lodge is conveniently located right on the sparkling, pine tree-lined Lake Crescent in Washington state's Olympic National Park. That makes it an ideal home base when you're seeking to take advantage of the many recreational activities at the park, or simply take in the stunning scenery.
Curl up around the enormous stone fireplace in the main lodge and take in the sensational mountain views with your morning cup of java, or cozy up on the popular wraparound porch in the evenings to watch the awe-inspiring sunsets over the glacier-capped peaks.
"For ultimate cozy vibes, stay in the Roosevelt Fireplace Cabins, which are listed on the National Register of Historic Places," says Jessica Schmit, founder of the blog Uprooted Traveler. "Light up your very own fireplace, curl up, and gaze out at the spectacular surrounding alpine views."
Whether you stay in the ever-popular Roosevelt Fireplace Cabins right on the shores of Lake Cresent, the secluded Singer Tavern Cottages, or the tranquil Pyramid Mountain Rooms tucked within the trees, you'll feel like you took a step back in time here, thanks to the antique furnishings and other charming touches from yesteryear.
And you'll have plenty of amenities and activities to keep you busy—including boat tours of Lake Crescent, hiking the trails around the park, and fishing—followed by a hearty feast at the on-site dining room, of course.
6. Sundance Mountain Resort – Sundance, Utah
This award-winning boutique resort, which was founded in 1969 by legendary actor Robert Redford, bills itself as a "careful balance of art, nature, and community."
Tucked away on 6,000 acres of wilderness near the base of the 12,000-foot Mount Timpanogos, Sundance Mountain Resort has a little something for everyone—from skiing, hiking, and ziplining to horseback riding and candle making. The first-class accommodations, which are set in the pristine mountains, include 100 different intimate yet elegant suites, cottages, and homes. And the five-star farm-to-table dining doesn't hurt, either.
These are just a few reasons why Larry Snider, VP of Operations at Casago Vacation Rentals, calls it his favorite mountain lodge in the U.S.
"This picturesque resort offers a spa, nature views from every suite, and plentiful ski amenities, he says.
According to Snyder, one of the highlights is the art studio located on the foot of the mountain, where guests can participate in pottery classes, jewelry-making classes, soap-making classes, painting classes, and much more. "It's a beautiful retreat that I look forward to visiting every chance I get," Snider adds.
7. Teton Mountain Lodge and Spa – Teton Village, Wyoming
Cozy-chic accommodations and ample activities draw travelers of all kinds to this upscale ski-in resort, which happens to be located just 2 miles from Grand Teton National Park—and close to some of the best hiking trails and ski slopes in North America.
During the winter, guests at the Teton Mountain Lodge and Spa can use the ski storage space and a ski pass sales point—and during summer, the surrounding area features horseback riding and golfing. Expansive rooms feature mountain or valley views, homey yet modern furnishings, and in some cases, whirlpool tubs. Thanks to the swanky cocktail lounge and on-site restaurant with a terrace, you never really have to leave.
Abby Price, co-founder of the Trekking Price's blog, gushes about her memorable honeymoon here.
"You cannot beat their unbelievable spa," she says. "There is nothing more relaxing than finishing a day on the slopes or out on the town and soaking in the rooftop hot tub and taking in the views. The lodge is sure to make for a memorable mountain experience with its pristine western decor, optimal location, and exceptional customer service and amenities."
8. The Omni Homestead Resort – Hot Springs, Virginia
Ever since it first opened its doors in 1786 (yes, you read that right), this resort has been a popular destination for ski bunnies and adventurers of all kinds.
"With 22 trails and a 700-foot vertical drop, there's something for skiers of all levels to enjoy," says Cornici. "And if you need a break from skiing, you can always warm up with a cup of hot cocoa by one of the fire pits located around the resort."
After a long day on the slopes, there's no better way to recharge than at the resort's world-class spa. "With over 50 treatments to choose from, you can customize your experience to suit your needs," Cornici adds. "From massages and facials to hydrotherapy and body wraps, the professional staff at The Omni Homestead Resort will make sure you leave feeling relaxed and refreshed."
And when you're feeling hungry, there is a restaurant to suit any craving—from fine dining at Jefferson's Restaurant to more casual fare at Sam Snead's Tavern and healthy on-the-go fare from one of the resort's five cafes.
9. Whiteface Lodge – Lake Placid, New York
Set right in the heart of the Adirondacks within the woodlands surrounding Lake Placid, this upscale all-suite resort is just a short drive from the renowned Whiteface Mountain slopes.
Cozy suites feature handcrafted wooden furniture—and some have whirlpool tubs and fireplaces. And the amenities are impressive: In addition to tennis courts, a movie theater, and a skating ring, the lodge also offers a shuttle to the private beach club and a complimentary full breakfast.
"It has all the classic aesthetics of a good lodge—large wood beams, a roaring fire, old antlers, and historical memorabilia—making it the perfect spot to spend a few cozy winter nights in the Northeast," says Skylar Renslow, owner of the blog The Daily Grog.
Renslow notes that year-round swimming pools, saunas, and hot tubs definitely come in handy after a long day on the slopes. And for a little aprés ski fun, he recommends heading to the lively pubs and breweries in Lake Placid, just 2 miles away.
10. Rush Creek Lodge and Spa – Groveland, California
The first thing to know about this laidback wilderness resort is that it borders Yosemite National Park. But that's not all it has to offer—it also boasts recreational guide service, a spa, an outdoor swimming pool, hot tubs, a playground, a stellar on-site casual restaurant and tavern with beautiful terraces, and so much more.
"It's the perfect balance of sophisticated and cabin cozy, and the rooms are spacious," she says. "There are fun daily activities for both adults and children. You'll find a bunch of games like bocce ball, corn hole, ping pong, shuffleboard, foosball, kid zip lines, and a kid playroom. Every night they have bonfires with s'mores. They also offer fitness classes and various seasonal activities."
Watkins says a visit to the Rush Creek spa is a must after a long day of hiking the local trails. "It features incredible indoor and outdoor spa elements inspired by the natural beauty
of Yosemite National Park," she explains. "They have an aromatherapy steam room, Himalayan salt block sauna, a cool mist room, sensory room, and warm river rock beds."