Travel

Cool Airbnbs Near DC To Book This Winter

A beachside retreat, weekend of wine, or a treetop cabin.

The Perch at Persimmon Hill
The Perch at Persimmon Hill | Photo Courtesy of Airbnb
The Perch at Persimmon Hill | Photo Courtesy of Airbnb

Tranquility seems like such a fleeting concept right now. And if 2021 has you dreaming of travel, then an Airbnb adventure to a quiet and quaint escape might be the easiest and safest way to get away from it all. Whether you’re looking for a beachside retreat, a weekend of wine, an overnight inside a lighthouse, or a treetop cabin with an epic sunrise, there are plenty of stays that feel a world apart from our current situation. Getting there takes only an hour or two, and each check-in is contactless, for safe social distancing. Here are seven Airbnbs with unique appeal and stunning surprises by design.

Photo Courtesy of Airbnb

Animal Adventures in Shenandoah

Sperryville, Virginia
4 guests, $750 per night
Distance from DC: One hour, 30 minutes
Emerald Acres is a working farm that’s more than a stay—it’s also a healthy dose of animal therapy. This 44-acre property has chickens, cows, ducks, and pigs, and you’re free to roam the barnyard and be one with nature. There’s also a river for skipping stones, and the cottage has a fireplace fully stocked with timber. Best of all, your fridge comes fully-loaded with farm-to-table freshness, including eggs from the chicken coop. Sperryville is also close by to outdoor breweries, like Pen Druid Brewing and Hopkins Ordinary. Plus, there’s some epic hiking, including Old Rag and Little Devils Stairs.

Photo Courtesy of Airbnb

Wine Country Retreat

Paris, Virginia
2 guests, $275 per night 
Distance from DC: 1 hour
It’s c’est la vie in Paris, Virginia. And we can’t think of a better place to socially distance than at this country cottage nestled in Virginia Piedmont’s wine country. This trip comes with 360-degree views of Ashby’s Gap, and the house has a vintage flair. There are also several vineyards within a 15-minute drive in Middleburg and Upperville, Virginia. Plus, you’re also a half-mile from the Appalachian Trail if you want to stay active. But you can also have a lazy weekend reading a book in an Adirondack chair with a view.

Photo Courtesy of Airbnb

Lounge Around a Lighthouse

Lusby, Maryland
8 Guests, $221 per night
Distance from DC: One hour, 30 minutes
For a quintessential Chesapeake Bay experience, it doesn’t get any better than an overnight stay at the Cove Point Lighthouse, registered on the National Register of Historic Places, and a site that includes a lighthouse keeper’s quarters that dates back to the 19th century. Alongside the house, there’s a private beach, where you can go searching for shark’s teeth, and you don’t want to miss stargazing at night, alongside the lighthouse’s beacon which reflects across the water. Every inch of this property has been lovingly restored, and your proceeds from your trip support the Calvert Marine Museum’s endowment.

Photo Courtesy of Airbnb

Massanutten Rustic Cabin 

Luray, Virginia
8 Guests, $171 per night
Distance from DC: Two hours
Need to disconnect? This mountain lodge advertises no Wi-Fi or TVs to truly make you one with your treetop surrounding in Luray, Virginia. The cabin overlooks the Shenandoah River, and it’s just a short 30-minute drive to the Massanutten Resort for skiing and snowboarding. Meanwhile, Luray Caverns are just 10-minutes away, and there are several trailheads within minutes of the property. However, the best part of this mountain retreat is the sunrise. You can sit out on the porch, sip on a coffee, and watch the sun come up and over Massanutten Mountain.

Photo Courtesy of Airbnb

Tiny House By the Slopes

Wellsville, Pennsylvania
2 guests, $150 per night
Distance from DC: Two hours
Tiny Houses typically mean tiny spaces, but this well-appointed mountain retreat feels so spacious thanks to its light and bright aesthetic and close attention to detail, like a vaulted loft-style bed and sliding barn doors made from reclaimed wood. This location is also prime for its access to the slopes. Ski Roundtop is located just five minutes away. And for more outdoor adventure, why not take a stroll around Pinchot State Park, which has a massive lake for fishing and skipping stones.

Photo Courtesy of Airbnb

Vintage 1929 Rehoboth Beach House

Rehoboth, Delaware
10 guests, $350 per night
Distance from DC: Two hours, 30 minutes
Going to the beach during the off-season is a tranquil and traffic-free experience. Plus, you might also run into president-elect Joe Biden, who owns property in this family-friendly beach town. One of the best ways to kick back and relax at the shore might be at this vintage, 1929 property in South Rehoboth. It requires a four-night stay in the offseason, but it’s worth it for the oversized value and size of the screened-in, wrap-around porch, perfect for reading, puzzling, or simply napping the day away.

Photo Courtesy of Airbnb

Condo Houseboat

Annapolis, Maryland
4 guests, $389 per night
Distance from DC: 30 minutes
You can literally go with the flow with this vacation rental in Maryland’s state capital. This Annapolis houseboat is anchored at the mouth of Back Creek, and unlike other nautical digs, this houseboat is enormous and brand new—with two bedrooms, a kitchen-island combo, and a living room that overlooks a private balcony with views of the Chesapeake Bay. Above the living quarters is a roof deck for happy hour drinks, and you’re docked in a harbor that’s just a short walk to Eastport’s best restaurants and bars, including Davis’s Pub, the Boatyard Bar & Grill, and Bakers & Co.

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Tim Ebner is a food and travel writer based in Washington, D.C. and writes for Eater, Edible, Washington City Paper, and Forbes Travel, among others. He's from Maryland and has a weakness for Old Bay seasoning. Follow him on Twitter and Instagram.