If you’re feeling a bit flat coming back from the holiday break, you’re not alone. Post holiday blues is not only a commonly recognised phenomenon, but one that strikes particularly hard after a few weeks spent eating, drinking and being merry.
January is one of our busiest months at Luxury Escapes, and for good reason – there’s no better time to book a holiday than when you’re facing the back to work blues. Here’s my advice on where to go and what to know about travel in 2020.
1. Top destinations for Aussie travellers
After surveying close to 20,000 Australians for our recent Travel 2020 report, we found Canada topped Australians must-visit list, with 21% of Aussies hoping to travel there in the next few years. Other top destinations included the USA, Italy, England, Greece, The Maldives and Japan.
When it comes to Aussies’ favourite places to return to, however, Japan topped the list, followed by New Zealand and the UK, with unique destinations like Cyprus and Israel also featured.
2. Lesser-known locations to consider
Thanks to social media and increasingly cheap international flights, once untouched destinations are now packed with tourists – so if you’re keen to travel back to a favourite destination but want to skip the crowds, consider some off the beaten track alternatives.
If you love Italy, why not consider lesser-known locations like Puglia, Umbria, Sardinia – or hop over to nearby Malta, which offers picturesque beaches and towns without the Amalfi Coast crowds. Japanophiles could consider South Korea, Jordan offers historic sites to rival Egypt and Nusa Lembongan makes a great alternative to Bali.
3. Touring is on the rise
Whether you’re travelling with the family in tow or simply pushed for time to plan, tours can offer an immersive way to take a fully-organised trip without compromising on the type of experiences you want to have.
Destinations like Africa, Morocco, India and Italy have all been increasingly popular touring destinations, where small group travel – sometimes just a family of four – is arranged with the safety, security and local knowledge of trusted local guides. A good tour should really allow you to soak up a few key destinations and live like a local.
4. Experiential travel is everywhere
While Australians are still happy to travel for weddings, birthdays and music festivals, holiday ‘themes’ are increasingly influencing where we go and what we do on our holidays. Our research showed food is the top theme Australians will travel for, with close to 60% of Aussies choosing their holiday spots based on this theme. Other key themes include local culture, history, walking/trekking and wineries, distilleries and breweries.
Beyond the destination you plan to visit, you might consider what sort of day trips you’ll do, restaurant reservations to make in advance or itineraries to follow. Many travel providers, including Luxury Escapes, now offer Experiences as a bookable addition to trips – so you can find and book activities based on your interests, from luxury car tours to whisky tasting.
5. Prioritise a local getaway
With the bushfires taking a toll on our local tourism economy over what is usually the busiest period of the year, it’s important we support Australian destinations and accommodation providers.
We have so many incredible local destinations that whatever your ideal holiday includes (white sandy beaches, ancient rainforests and rugged mountain ranges) can likely be found right here in Australia.