The normalizing constant plays an important role in Bayesian computation, and there is a large literature on methods for computing or approximating normalizing constants that cannot be evaluated in closed form. When the normalizing constant varies by orders of magnitude, methods based on importance sampling can require many rounds of tuning. We present an improved approach using adaptive path sampling, iteratively reducing gaps between the base and target. Using this adaptive strategy, we develop two metastable sampling schemes. They are automated in Stan and require little tuning. For a multimodal posterior density, we equip simulated tempering with a continuous temperature. For a funnel-shaped entropic barrier, we adaptively increase mass in bottleneck regions to form an implicit divide-and-conquer. Both approaches empirically perform better than existing methods for sampling from metastable distributions, including higher accuracy and computation efficiency.