‘Tis the time of year for predictions so we’ve recruited the all-knowing powers of our Magic 8-Ball (and the brains of our research department) in order to bring you your 2017 travel forecast. One read of this and you’ll know everything worth knowing about travel for the next 12 months, including which destinations you’ll be visiting.
Oh clever Magic-8 Ball, are there travel trends afoot this coming year?
It is certain.
There is one very prominent trend in fact – that of authentic travel. You may have already heard of this one, given its slow climb to prominence over recent years, but 2017 will see it come into full force as travellers across the globe ditch big tourist attractions in favour of more local experiences. Climb the Eiffel Tower? No thank you, way too cliché. We’ll wander Marché Bastille in search of artisan cheeses and fresh-from-the-farm berries instead. Not that there’s anything wrong with the Eiffel Tower of course, it’s just that it’s near impossible these days to have a new experience at big attractions like this. Chances are 20 of your friends have already climbed it, posted about it on Insta, and subjected you to long stories about it over dinner. You would’ve also seen in on the news more times than you can count and read about the experience of climbing it on approximately 1000 travel blogs, thus leaving little to the imagination. And, because part of the allure of travel is the process of discovery, the collective consciousness is turning elsewhere to satisfy this thirst.
Well then, wise plastic bringer of truth, will this trend affect the trips we’ll take in 2017?
Without a doubt.
This push for authentic travel will see you book more holidays in the world’s B-List cities. While the phrase B-List is often associated with celebrities with an unfortunate lack of talent and/or a penchant for the adult entertainment industry, the connotations in city terms are far more favourable. A B-List city is one which makes up for a lack of iconic landmarks and shiny-for-the-tourists-glamour with smaller crowds, cheaper prices, and a much more genuine experience. These are places you know little about and therefore have no expectations of, leaving plenty of room to be pleasantly surprised and even more room for glorious discoveries. Indeed, travelling to these wonderful destinations will make you feel like a pioneer among your friends and also get you more social media cred as you give your followers something unique to look at. Did someone say trendsetter?
Wonderful contraption of profound reliability, can you suggest some such destinations?
Instead of Paris, try Lyon. It’s utterly charming, very French and has the most fantastic food. Heading to China? Avoid Beijing and give Zhangjiajie a go. As the inspiration for Avatar’s Pandora, it’s insanely beautiful, has a very distinct culture, and the locals are incredibly friendly. Here in Australia, give the east coast giants of Sydney and Melbourne a miss in favour of smaller cities Hobart and Adelaide. We reckon both of these are hugely underrated and you’ll wonder why you hadn’t gone sooner. Of course you can also chase down authentic experiences in the bigger cities, you’ll just need to be prepared to go digging.
Most spherical of oracles, is it true you will fund this year’s holidays for all human kind?
Don’t count on it.
Well, we tried.