On lush pastures and sprawling fields across the country, rescued sheep, pigs, goats, and chickens are getting a new lease on life as residents of farm animal sanctuaries. But they're not the only ones soaking up the serenity of their surroundings. "We like to say that our farm isn't just a sanctuary for animals, but for people too," says Jenny Brown, cofounder and director of Woodstock Farm Animal Sanctuary in New York. So, for a summer getaway, why not visit a sanctuary, or volunteer for a few hours? Just check visitor/volunteer policies in advance, and give the staff a few days' notice before stopping by. Find sanctuaries nationwide at farmanimalshelters.org or consult our coast-to-coast guide.
Farm Sanctuary, Watkins Glen, N.Y., and Orland, Calif.
One of the oldest farm animal protection programs in the country runs two sanctuaries, each outfitted with an educational visitor center and quaint B&B. Guests are treated to a vegan breakfast and tour of the farm.
Kindred Spirits Sanctuary, Ocala, Fla.
At this 36-acre family-run refuge, volunteers might clean stalls and groom the residents in between giving them belly rubs and back scratches.
Peaceful Prairie Sanctuary, Deer Trail, Colo.
Take a weekend tour or donate time at this haven. You might just find a goat nibbling at your shorts while you're painting a barn.
SASHA Farm, Manchester, Mich.
Meet the sanctuary's whimsically named residents—including a sheep called Bette (after the actress Bette Davis)—or maybe help out with one of the pedicure parties held for the goats a few times a year.
Woodstock Farm Animal Sanctuary, Woodstock, N.Y.
Visitors enjoy an educational tour and plenty of time with the residents. Consider signing up for one of the sanctuary's monthly farm project days that conclude with a vegan potluck.