Whether or not you’re a fan of the show Parks and Recreation, you’ve probably heard Donna and Tom’s lighthearted advice to “Treat Yo Self”. While many of us have adopted the phrase to use as an excuse to buy that pricey pair of shoes, many of us don’t take into account how important the actual concept of treating yourself actually is. The idea here is self-care, which is much more than an impulse purchase of some new kicks. A lot of us are too busy taking care of others, are drowned with work, or feel selfish even thinking about taking time for ourselves. The fact of the matter is, your physical, mental, and emotional health affects everyone around you - especially the ones you love. So maybe, just maybe, it’s time to consider a few places to treat yourself. Below are a few of the top spots in the Fayetteville area where you can do just that! But first, just in case you needed to hear it again…

Inspired now? Great! Let's begin...

The Cave Spa

After recently opening just earlier this year, this place has already made its mark both locally and on a national scale. Named as one of 10 Black-owned Spas to Bliss Out In (TripAdvisor), The Cave specializes in Halo-therapy (salt therapy) as it provides many benefits to detoxify and hydrate the whole body. As the name would imply, it features Cumberland County’s first and only salt cave! Another unique feature they offer is monthly membership packages so you can make self-care a part of your routine. One of those packages includes unlimited detox baths, which if you haven’t experienced, you’re missing out. Ironically, with the relaxation it provides, you’re sure to feel far less *ahem*… “salty” after leaving.


Axes and Armor Hatchet House

Let’s throw a curveball here…or better yet, an ax! No, seriously. It’s no wonder the art of hatchet throwing has gained a ton of traction lately. First and foremost, it’s just downright fun, and it actually has some positive health benefits as well. Not only does it work several of your muscle groups at the same time, but it’s a therapeutic stress reliever like no other. Axes and Armor provides a place to do just that, both in Fayetteville and a brand new location in Spring Lake. Lessons are offered, but really it’s as simple as making a reservation, grabbing a beer from their bar, and chucking those hatchets! For some additional stress relief, be sure to bring a photo of your boss to put over the bullseye. (Kidding, kind of.)


John E. Pechmann Fishing Education Center

Tucked away across from Lake Rim lies the only fishing education center of its kind in North Carolina. I know what you’re thinking - “This place doesn’t sound very therapeutic…” but with all of the amenities to enjoy here, the John. E. Pechmann Fishing Education Center offers a boatload of ways to treat yourself. The building itself is almost 5K square feet, complete with a wrap-around porch on both floors with plenty of rocking chairs to enjoy the view. Multiple fishing instruction courses are available that include fly fishing, lure making, and rod building. If you’re the type who finds serenity in the great outdoors and therapy in crafting your own tools to do so, this is your spot. For those Parks and Recreation fans still reading, this would be Ron Swanson’s paradise.


Shanti Wellness - Fayetteville Wellness Center

Formerly known as “The Floating Shanti”, both the name and the location have been updated to reflect the multiple therapeutic avenues it offers. However, the floating tank remains its mainstay. “Floating” is a practice where you enter a sensory deprivation tank filled with water and enough Epsom salts to make your body float effortlessly. It’s certainly a unique form of therapy but sworn by many to improve mental and physical well-being. In fact, a lot of those positive experiences and testimonials come from Fayetteville’s very own active military and veterans. If trying unique means of therapy sounds enticing, you should try their cupping therapy too. I mean…if it worked for Michael Phelps, it could work for you! (Note: cupping doesn’t guarantee you’ll win 23 Olympic gold medals, but it’s worth a shot, right?)


Spring Lake Outpost

If you find tranquility in the whole floating thing but prefer to do so outdoors, here’s your place. Spring Lake Outpost offers a quaint spot to cruise down the Little River by kayak or canoe. It’s perfect for those who may only need a couple of hours of relaxation or those who prefer an all-day excursion. Whichever you choose, they offer a convenient shuttle pick-up to take you and your river cruiser back at the end of the adventure. It truly is a peaceful, yet adventurous experience with a surprising amount of wildlife and nature to take in. The best part is that you won’t find any big boats or jet skis killing your vibes since the Little River is undisturbed. Which, if you’re familiar with most North Carolina inlets, is pretty hard to come by.