Making Your 2020 Travel Plans? Here Are 8 Exquisite Travel Options You Shouldn't Miss!

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Generally
speaking, those who love boutique travel are seeking to escape the crowds, identical
hotel rooms and nose-to-tail tourist attractions. They are looking for low key
and authentic.

If
this describes you, you are a traveler, not a tourist. Get yourself off the
tourism rollercoaster and experience a world of adventure, sights, and events
on the slow road.

Off the Beaten Path

Italy
is one of the busiest tourist destinations in the world. If visiting Rome,
Florence, Venice or Milan, opt to stay at hidden 4-star gems, villas or private
homes.

They
can be less expensive and far more personable. Once your attraction checklist
is complete, hit the road to explore the rest of this spectacular country.

The North Parts of Italy

In Northern Italy,
the Province of Trentino is an art lover’s dream come true and a playground of bygone
nobles with its gorgeous lakes and spas.

Enjoy
world class skiing or hiking in the magnificent Dolomites, part of the Alps. While
in Piedmont, also known as the Tuscany of the North, discover the capital city Turin’s
coffee culture in the historic cafes.

The Southern Provinces

If
heading to Southern
Italy, here’s an idea! Why not rent a yacht
in Naples, sail down the magnificent Amalfi Coast, and spend the night in
Maratea before setting sail for spectacular Sicily!

Then
turn your yacht toward the quaint island nation of Malta. It consists of three tiny
islands with the majority of the population speaking English.

Wellness or Active and Adventure

If truth
be told, many of us lead sedentary lifestyles, either sitting on the couch or
in front of our computer screens (guilty!).

When
you hear the term “wellness travel” your mind may automatically turn to expensive
spas, yoga, and exclusive clinics. But if that’s not your speed (or budget),
how about just being active?

Get
your cardio on in Portugal! Each year, AmaWaterways and Backroads
partner to create relaxing river cruises down Portugal’s Douro River combined
with biking on first-rate bikes and motor-assisted bikes to help you up those
hills.

Instead
of a round trip to Alaska via cruise ship, book one-way on the smallest cruise
ships in North America, courtesy of Uncruise,
and stay awhile in one of Alaska’s many luxury lodges for a week full of spectacular
adventure: bear viewing, northern lights or calving glaciers.

Authentic Travel

Boutique
travelers question why anyone would stay at an all-inclusive resort when there
is so much more just beyond the gates: experience of local cuisine, culture,
landscapes, and interacting with the residents.

Unique
experiences await those that explore. The Caribbean island of Anguilla
prides itself on offering no all-inclusives so visitors will support local
businesses.

Cruise
fjords and mountains with small ship Hurtigruten
in Norway. Witness the Midnight Sun and the Northern Lights, dock in small
ports along the way to drop off local travelers, supplies, and mail. What a
spectacular and authentic way to experience the coastline of Norway!

Multigenerational Travel

With
families being pulled in so many different directions, bonding has risen to an
important position in our lives. Journeys such as safaris, customized family-oriented
touring, small ship or land adventures in the Galapagos, and South Pacific cruising
are just the ticket.

Boutique
ship Paul
Gauguin’s Moana Explorer Program, in
partnership with the South Pacific marine education and conservation
foundation, offers an exciting new program for children and teens, ages 7–15,
to discover the value of the natural wonders of this breathtaking part of the
world through hands-on, interactive learning.

The Hoedspruit Endangered
Species Centre in South Africa is a unique
wildlife facility focusing on conservation and the sustainability of rare and
threatened species. The Centre features a variety of projects and programmes geared
towards families, teens, and children.

Cruising Differently

Virgin
Voyages’ Scarlet
Lady will be celebrating its inaugural
season commencing 2020. This mega-yacht is designed exclusively for adults. If
you like ultra-luxury with high energy, coupled with relaxation and rejuvenation,
this is for you!

Azamara Club Cruises
is known to get into small ports and stick around. Each year, Azamara partners
with PerryGolf in putting together some amazing packages. They started out in the
British Isles but were so successful, the program is now offered worldwide.

Discover
Australia’s best kept secrets. Head to Western Australia and cruise with Silversea Cruises
or Abercrombie
& Kent into the magnificent Kimberleys
and witness the stunning King George Falls. From there, sail to Darwin or continue
your journey onto Singapore! Wow!

Expedition
cruising is all the rage. I would highly recommend Quark Expeditions
to plan your holiday. Specializing in the Polar Regions only, they have ships
and journeys designed for experiential travelers.

Train Travel

There
is nothing on earth as relaxing as train travel, especially Journeys
of Tranquility and Romance. Things to consider:
Do you have your own bathroom? Does your converted sleep compartment travel
through the night or pull off to side tracks, or are you transferred to luxury hotels?

You
can try these trains:

  • Mexico’s Copper Canyon train
    (rustic and adventurous)
  • Western Canada’s Rocky
    Mountaineer
  • The Ghan and Indian Pacific,
    Australia
  • Andrean Explorer and the
    Hiram, Peru
  • Ireland’s Grand Hibernian
  • South Africa’s ultra-luxury
    Rovos Rail and Blue Train
  • British Pullman
  • Royal Scotsman
  • Orient Express (bring your tux)

Solo Travel

Solo
travel has never been more popular – especially for women who are no longer
afraid to leave their significant other behind.

From
3- to 5-star, roommate matching, and single occupancy rooms, you meet and make lifelong
friends from all over the world! Traveling to destinations that may intimidate
you is a snap with professional planning and knowledgeable hosts.

Here’s
one of my personal favourites – Canada’s Pacific Northwest. A mere 30 minute’s
flight from the vibrant City of Vancouver, you will find yourself in nature at
its most spectacular.

Vancouver
Island is the home of the magnificent garden and yachting City of Victoria,
championship golf courses, world class salmon fishing, abundant wildlife, and
no better place on earth for storm and whale watching. Lots of quaint
properties in all price ranges.

I
have merely scratched the surface. It would be easier for me to list all the global
destinations you shouldn’t travel to than the innumerable places you should!

If
you would like to keep abreast of all that the world of boutique travel has to
offer, what destinations combine the best, and the Virtuoso benefits I offer,
please feel free to sign up for my newsletter.

Have
you found some hidden gems you’d like to share with us? Which kind of travel
suits you best? Is solo travel on your bucket list? Let’s have a conversation.

Let\’s Have a Conversation!

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