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Urban Wellness

Urban Wellness: Seeking Self-Care In The World’s Cities

If you’re feeling burned out from the pressures of daily life, a great way to reset and rejuvenate is with a “city break.” There’s no shortage of exciting urban retreats around the globe. Sometimes, it takes a crowded place to uncrowd the mind — you just need to know where to look. So whether you’d like to hit the beach, enjoy a museum, or plan ahead and score some Astros tickets, there are plenty of options out there! Today, William Lynes has some tips to help you avoid burnout while basking in some of the world’s most vibrant cities.


Italy’s former kingdom capital and the birthplace of the Renaissance art movement, Florence epitomizes the ‘city break’ and is a must-visit for anyone with a predilection for art, architecture, and artisan wines. You’ll find no shortage of beauty in this walkabout city’s cobblestone streets, traditional restaurants, and beautiful surrounding countryside. If you’re planning a long stay, consider renting a Vespa and driving out to visit one of the many local vineyards for authentic tastes drawn immediately from the source.


Japan’s ultramodern capital city attracts over 31.9 million tourists annually and for good reason — if you’re not savoring street food, exploring night markets, or cheering on sumo matches, you might instead be relaxing in one of the city’s many public gardens or ancient temples. This megacity’s key draw is its sheer eclecticity — you’ll never run out of things to do, places to see and with almost-non-existent crime rates, you can explore these without fear for your safety.


With direct flight links between Toronto and Canada, a trip to the UK capital can be both a convenient and rewarding excursion. As one of the world’s foremost international cities, you’ll find people from all walks of life rubbing shoulders and this is reflected in the eclectic cuisines, fashion styles, accents, and leisurely activities. If you’re interested in history, just step into the city center where you’ll find a unique blend of medieval, Tudor, and modern architecture. In the summer, the city’s many large parks provide a welcome respite from the metropolitan madness. For many locals, it’s almost tradition to grab a book, an iced coffee, and find a good patch of shade to zone out from life’s stresses.


Tucked away on India’s tropical southwest coast, Goa has long been enjoyed as a tourism hotspot and the state’s largest city shows why. Expect palm trees, fresh fish, multi-colored villas, and a relaxed, welcoming local populace. Those with spiritual interests will also enjoy the varied religious sites, churches, and temples. Goa is also renowned as a world-class yoga and meditation retreat; if you’re looking to re-center, make sure you pack a mat and some incense.


Canada’s western seaport metropolis is among the most densely populated and ethnically diverse places you can visit. It’s also a stunning travel destination, surrounded by serene lakes, mountains, and an almost infinite number of outdoor activities. Recent studies show that tourism accounts for $20.5 billion of the city’s annual revenue and, for this reason, it has come to represent a prime real estate location.

Purchase a Vacation Home

As you travel, you might be interested in purchasing a vacation home, and who can blame you? Just remember that in the U.S., down payments for a second property are substantial at over 20%. If you can’t afford this initial cost, you may need to take out a second mortgage on your existing home or use a home equity loan.

Keep in mind that you can recoup a lot of your expenses by renting out your home when you’re not there. If you plan on renting out your home, consider operating under an LLC. Registering as an LLC can protect your personal assets, and it’ll be easy to track revenue and expenses.

When we think about recharging our bodies and minds, we usually think about beaches, forests, or mountains but the truth is that a city can provide all the change of pace and new experiences you need to kickstart your confidence and reframe your state of mind. As you enjoy your travels, you may even want to purchase a vacation home in one of these locations.

William Lynes is a retired Stanford trained physician, urologist, award winning author, advocate and speaker on physician burnout and suicide. If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to reach out!

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