If you've ever been to a meditation or yoga class or to any type of New Age gathering, you might have heard about energetic or spiritual vortexes. Unlike the vortexes you learned about in physics class, these spiritual vortexes can't be measured scientifically, as they allegedly don't exist in the physical realm. Rather, they are purported to be "swirling centers of spiritual energy" that promote healing, positive emotions, and creativity. Often, people report feeling energized and peaceful when visiting a vortex. Plus, many vortexes are located in places of great natural beauty, and some of these locales also feature excellent cultural and recreational opportunities. All of them are fascinating destinations to explore.
Sedona, Arizona, is arguably America's best-known vortex site. The Sedona area boasts four different vortexes, although all of Sedona is reputed to be imbued with uplifting energy. Set in a stunning landscape of red-rock desert, Sedona draws spiritual seekers from all over the world. The town has become a sort of New Age Disneyland, with a full roster of holistic health practitioners, shamans, and "energy workers," along with metaphysical stores, spiritual retreat centers, and spas galore. Many local tour companies offer guided excursions to Sedona's vortexes. But, since the vortexes are located in areas that are open to the public, you can also visit them on your own. Maps to Sedona's vortexes are widely available online.
This volcano in northern California occupies a central place in the legends of local Native Americans, who consider the mountain to be a sacred entity with mystical powers. Many other people have also sensed something special about Shasta beyond its pristine natural beauty and the excellent setting it provides for outdoor activities. In New Age circles, Mount Shasta is considered to be one of the most powerful vortex locations in the United States, if not the entire world. Theories have sprouted, connecting Shasta to Atlantis and extraterrestrial beings. A local tour company, Shasta Vortex Adventures, leads "vision quest" excursions to the Shasta vortex.
Set in a picturesque valley filled with citrus and olive groves, the small southern California town of Ojai has long attracted hippies, celebrities, and refugees from urban life. Ojai is home to seven energy vortexes, which might contribute to its laid-back atmosphere. Some people also attribute Ojai's special ambiance to the valley's east-to-west orientation, which results in spectacular sunsets that feature a uniquely local phenomenon: "the pink moment." This is a brief time in the evening when the mountains that surround the valley are flushed pink by the setting sun. Adding to Ojai's appeal are charming boutique hotels and farm-to-table restaurants featuring fresh, locally grown food. Visitors to Ojai should consult local sources for more information about the precise locations of the vortexes.
Eureka Springs has long been a special place. In the Victorian era, this small town in the Ozark Mountains of northern Arkansas flourished as a popular resort. The waters from its many springs reputedly imbued with healing properties were incorporated into spa treatments. Today, Eureka Springs is still a popular destination. With bountiful natural beauty, a well-preserved historic downtown, and a solid reputation as a healing center and open-minded community, Eureka Springs draws alternative health practitioners, tourists, artists, and quirky characters. Brimming with festivals and offbeat attractions, the town offers "something for everyone," according to the locals. So, perhaps it's only natural that Eureka Springs would have a vortex, as well. It's not as widely publicized as some of the more famous vortexes in other places, but the staff at Eureka's visitor centers might be able to help point the curious in the right direction.
More roadside attraction than a spiritual hub, the Oregon Vortex might not actually qualify as a real vortex. On its website, it's described as a "sphere of energy" rather than a "swirling center of energy," which is how spiritual vortexes are usually defined. Or, perhaps the Oregon Vortex is an example of what some people deem a "negative vortex," which is a place full of negative energy. Negative vortexes are reputed to cause feelings of depression, anxiety, and illness in some who visit them. In fact, the local Native Americans referred to the area of the Oregon Vortex as "Forbidden Ground." Today, the Oregon Vortex, near the city of Medford, is run as a tourist attraction. Admission includes a guided tour with demonstrations of the strange natural phenomena that supposedly occur in the vortex, such as brooms balancing upright on slanted floors and balls rolling uphill.
The highest mountain on the Hawaiian island of Maui, Haleakala, is the "house of the sun" in the Hawaiian language, sacred to Native Hawaiians and considered to be a center of spiritual energy. The top of Haleakala is where people have reported feeling this energy at its strongest. Watching the sunrise or sunset from Haleakala's peak can be an especially powerful experience. You can visit Haleakala on a guided tour or on your own. There is no public transportation to the summit of the mountain, so if you make a solo journey, you'll need a car. Because of its high elevation, at more than 10,000 feet, visitors to Haleakala might experience altitude sickness.
In eastern Pennsylvania's Buck County, there is a large, open field of rocks and boulders of all sizes. The rocks ring when struck with a hammer or tire iron, and sometimes different tones can be produced by striking different parts of the same rock. Scientists don't know why the rocks ring or how the field of rocks even came to exist. One theory is that they were scattered across the landscape by glaciers during the last Ice Age. The rocks are located in a park, so the public is welcome to come and strike them to experience the effect for themselves. Reportedly, the field of rocks is also an energy vortex where no vegetation will grow, and allegedly birds don't fly over the rocks, either.
These are just a handful of the reported vortexes in the world. The locations offer a multitude of attractions, and visiting them can be inspiring and enriching on many levels.