Shutterstock/ Andrew Repp

Are you ready to finally stop hibernating and reconnect with nature? Are you itching to get out of the house already?

Science says you should because even a mere walk in the park can calm the mind while changing the way the brain works to improve mental healthStudies have shown that people who spend time in nature cope better with stress, feel happier and have more self-esteem.

Do more than spend a few hours in your favorite park in the city; take a week-long vacation, set up a tent in the wilderness and spend your time relaxing, swimming in lakes and listening to birds singing.

The places on the following list, in no particular order, made the cut because of their majestic views, crowds, proximity to populated areas, endless activities, and peace and quiet.