After nearly two years of travel plans being disrupted, the most popular answer to "Where to Go in 2022?" might be "Anywhere!" During this hiatus, several new trends have begun to emerge that are changing the way people think about how they want to explore the world.
"After months of lockdown, our clients are focused on where they want to go next. They've used this pause to realise personal passions, which has, in turn, inspired their travel choices," explains Geoffrey Kent, founder and CEO of luxury travel company Abercrombie & Kent. "One of the main motivators for travel post-pandemic is spending quality time with family and friends. We saw a similar reaction after 9/11 when travellers began to value life experiences over luxury purchases, and I think we are going to see that again after this crisis."
The effects of climate change have been evident this year with record-breaking heatwaves and flooding, but nowhere on earth are they more keenly felt than in the Polar regions, where rising sea levels and water temperatures have an immediate impact on the ecosystem. The rapid changes are inspiring a desire to see these remote landscapes and the wildlife that depends on sea ice.
During the pandemic, we had plenty of leisure time to discover new hobbies and took advantage of instant access to experts in all fields via online classes and webinars. Now travellers are ready to take to the road and experience that same rich education but in real life and do the things they've always wanted to do.
The Next Frontiers
As travel ramps up to return with a vengeance in 2022, many travellers are looking to experience the unexpected and go where not many have gone before.
A mysterious desert kingdom closed to much of the outside world until recently, Saudi Arabia is the next go-to destination for pioneering adventure travellers, with a slew of archaeological wonders, like Al Ula, an archaeological treasure poised to become the next Petra. On Saudi Arabia: Desert Kingdoms (8 days from £7,355pp), discover the many hidden delights of this uncharted territory, from the capital's bustling centre to a traditional mud-brick village, galleries of ancient rock art and modern museums.
More people have climbed Mount Everest than have ever been in the South Pole. It's the last true wilderness on our planet and the final place where a traveller can feel like their footprint may be the only footfall. On Emperors & the South Pole (Dec 11-22, 2022; 12 days from £187,970pp), travel on a 12-day adventure into the heart of the White Continent to meet a colony of 6,000 emperor penguins, walk through a natural ice tunnel, ascend a never-before-climbed summit (earning the right to name the peak) and stand at the lowest point on earth — the South Pole, where only a very few are privileged to go.
In recent years, wellness travel has evolved towards the transformative, emphasising the 'we' in wellness. There has been a shift increasingly towards holidays that explore a meaningful two-way dialogue between the traveller and the destination. And as such, those seeking a mindful, change-making experience are looking to experts like A&K to create the ultimate wellness retreats.
A&K has joined forces with wellness guru Ross Campbell to offer you the ultimate well-being travel experience. Acting as your wellness super guide, Campbell will support you in your metaphysical journey, while A&K seamlessly handles your physical trip to your choice of destination.
The Japanese Art of Wellness
Japan is a land of rich heritage, where cypress forests meet holy rivers, rapid change vies with a deep sense of continuity, and tradition harmonises with innovation. This 10-night luxurious but meaningful experience explores all that the archipelago has to offer in terms of well-being. The country's wellness concepts have been framing how we strive to improve our mental and physical health for years. One idea that has spread to our shores from Japan is our internal rewilding, a return to nature called forest bathing (shinrin-yoku) that combats the wave of global urbanisation.
Wellness within Sri Lanka
Salute the Sri Lankan sun at incredible locations, learning yoga postures and meditation techniques in your journey across Paradise Island. From day one guests will be introduced to wellness practices that will calm body, mind, and spirit. Each day will build upon knowledge and meet experts in their field. From creating a personalised meal plan, learning the medicinal benefits of plants, and tasting the organic herbal teas that the island has indulged in for centuries.