White-sand beaches at sunset and cool mountain breezes…this is Travel Therapy.

The latest giveaway from Matador Goods was all about therapy. We’re not talking shrinks, pills, and office visits — no, the name of the game is Travel Therapy, as explained by author Karen Schaler.

Up for grabs was a copy of the book, which offers tips on how to “change your attitude by changing your environment.” Several readers entered the giveaway contest, commenting with descriptions and photos of their favorite travel therapy destinations.

Here are the spots recommended as particularly therapeutic, including the one nominated by the winner of Travel Therapy!


On the beach at Koh Lipe

1. "While traveling South East Asia things can get pretty hectic. Touts will hassle you, the traffic will test your nerves and the noise can drive you crazy. In Thailand's far south on the Malaysian border the small island of Ko Lipe will take you away from it all, where you can relax on the beach and enjoy the serenity." - Dave Bouskill


Lazing on the beach in Costa Rica

2. "The beaches inside Manuel Antonio National Park in Costa Rica. You have to pay to enter the park, so it stays much cleaner than the public beaches in Manuel Antonio. The day I was there, it was closed when I arrived in the morning, but by the afternoon they had opened it with free entry, but by that time people had left, so the park was really empty and it was like our own private beach!" - Powered by Tofu Photographer: thombo2


Ross Lake from Desolation Peak

3. "I would have to say this photo captures my idea of travel therapy. This was on a hike that I’d wanted to do for a few years but could never work out the logistics to do it. It required 20 miles of kayaking on two different lakes, a 2 mile land portage and a 5 mile hike with 4,000 feet of elevation gain. I eventually found someone crazy enough to do it with me and the weather turned out to be absolutely amazing. Ross Lake is one of the most beautiful places I’ve seen and the view from Desolation Peak is worth every sweat drop of effort getting there." - Asa


Feet in the sand on a Bulgarian beach

4. "The most perfect day I’ve ever had was in Bourgas, Bulgaria, and I spent a large portion of the day at the beach there…good food, gorgeous day, just wonderful." - Emilie S Photographer: Boby Dimitrov


The beach in Nungwi, Zanzibar

5. "After cycling 4000 km and climbing Mount Kilimanjaro there is no better place to relax than Nungwi, Zanzibar. Turquoise waters, fresh seafood and sandy beaches that reach far out to sea at low tide will wash your blues away and rejuvenate you for the road ahead. Here is my photo of zen." - Dave and Deb


Mountain cabin in Almütte, Austria

6. "I want to escape somewhere where there is nothing to do but look at the sky, the water, and sleep. A beach is great, but being in the mountains in a cabin with a breeze and a beautiful sunset would be awesome too." - MRS.MOMMYY Photographer: annia316


7. "I find Bali very therapeutic. It can be very hectic & the traffic is sometimes horrendous (especially around the main tourist areas) but there’s something about the charm and grace of the Balinese, the enchanting scenery and temples, and the amazing spas (the concept was probably invented there!) that I find absolutely soothing. Sinking my feet into the cool sand of Jimbaran or Seminyak with a cold beer and a lobster platter while watching the sunset is my idea of bliss!" - Keith Jenkins