Carrier: Top travel destinations of 2019

Carrier, the luxury travel specialists and one of Walpole’s most recent new members, share their top travel destinations of 2019: “We are seeing more of our luxury clients travelling to experience more than just a fly and flop style holiday; it’s about emotion, fulfilment and reward.”

We are seeing more of our luxury clients travelling to experience more than just a fly and flop style holiday; it’s about emotion, fulfilment and reward. Whilst we know that experiential travel is not a new thing, experiences are now beginning to shape the way in which our clients travel. They are looking for unique experiences, authentic encounters and enviable moments rather than just the destination itself or the five-star hotel in which they are staying – though this is of course still important. Looking at 2019, here’s what is coming out on top for Carrier:

South Africa
We’re seeing tremendous growth for clients wanting to travel to South Africa and it’s easy to see why. It’s a great destination for couples and families alike as there’s something for everyone including vibrant city culture, stunning winelands and of course, an abundance of wildlife; it’s a destination that really stirs the senses. There’s plenty of iconic tourist spots to explore such as Table Mountain and Lion’s Head in Cape Town, but Carrier can also help you go off the beaten path visiting places such Tswalu Private Game Reserve. This is a truly unique safari destination set against the backdrop of the Korannaberg mountains and has two camps, one especially for families (perfect for multi-generational holidays) and the other designed with couples in mind.

We have seen Anguilla flourish despite the devastation caused by Hurricane Irma in 2017. It’s just a small island measuring just 35 square miles, but it’s the friendly vibes, pristine beaches and  superb cuisine that make this a destination people want to keep returning to. The food really is impressive, from dining at renowned beach shacks such as Blanchard’s or at luxury resorts such as the legendary Belmond Cap Juluca which reopened last year, and Malliouhana, An Auberge Resort which has also been completely reinvented after a multi-million dollar renovation.

While single centre trips to Morocco remain popular, this year we have seen increased demand for itineraries that include experiences from foodie orientated tours to desert treks. A popular option includes stays in Marrakech where clients are enjoying personalised experiences like a bespoke sidecar tour, where a dedicated insider will drive you around the beautiful medina, the ancient French neighbourhood and the mythical Palm Grove. Then, they might explore a different area of the country and go off the beaten path with a trip to the Atlas Mountains.

It has been an exciting year for the Maldives. In October 2018, Conrad Maldives opened Muraka, a 3-bedroom above and below water villa giving lucky guests the opportunity to experience sleeping underwater. For the eco-conscious traveller, Joali which opened at the end of 2018 is an art-immersive island retreat which embodies a new era of refined luxury sustainability. Sitting in one of the deepest atolls in the archipelago, we love it because it is plastic free and has been sympathetically constructed, leaving the island’s pristine white-sand beaches and coconut palms untouched – it’s proudly mindful of the delicate eco-system in which it sits.

Touring destinations in Asia like Thailand, Vietnam and Bali are very popular with our luxury clients, the main appeal being activities that immerse guests in the local culture, traditions and adventure. We have arranged itineraries to Vietnam that included exploring the best culinary hot spots in Hanoi with a food blogger and taking city tours of historic Hue, and experiences in Bali such as a cooking class centred around ‘a day in the life of a Balinese lady’ which included making tasty Balinese dishes as well as taking trips to local produce markets, salt farms and making cocktails from cashew nut wine.