Kiwis are such prolific travellers, the pressure is always on to find the next ‘hot’ destination, the new horizon. Based on enquiries for travel in 2019, here are our predictions for destinations emerging at the top of the nation’s travel desires.
Don’t leave it for your retirement! There is so much more to Alaska than big ship cruises. Head for the Interior with its towering peaks, expansive tundra, and Denali National Park. Even on the highway from Anchorage to Fairbanks you need to lookout for wildlife! Go fishing, dog sledding, kayaking or rafting, or travel in April for the best northern lights viewing! For the ultimate in bear viewing head for Kodiak in the southwest.
Take the engineering feat of the Panama Canal, add in lush jungles teeming with wildlife, endless tropical beaches, a lively culture and the best coffee in the world, and there’s no wonder Panama is in demand! Spanish colonial architecture, pirate history and the epic Panama Canal story add to the diversity of this tiny nation lying between the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans. Often combined with eco-tourism-friendly Costa Rica, this is Central America at its best.
Okay, so you can get exceptional wildlife in Botswana, and gorgeous winelands in South Africa, but nowhere else offers Namibia’s unique flavour. From the vast towering dunes of Sossusvlei, to the rare desert-adapted wildlife of Damaraland, the Germanic architecture of coastal Swakopmund and the staunchly traditional Himba tribes, this is a land of survival in harsh yet breathtakingly beautiful landscapes. Prepare to fall in love with Namibia and its people.
The charm of Japan should never be underestimated—prepare to be surprised! A highlight for many is the food—fresh, delicious and revered, and for others it’s the people—unfailingly polite and friendly. Amidst the hustle of Tokyo you’ll find an orderly metro system, and beautiful gardens hidden amongst the skyscrapers. Outside the cities you’ll find forests and mountains, macaque monkeys soaking in natural hot springs, and traditional thatched houses that wouldn’t look out of place in the Swiss Alps. Go in spring for the cherry blossom season, or go for the rugby next year and catch the autumn foliage of Hokkaido.
You don’t need Irish heritage to visit the Emerald Isle, your Kiwi accent is enough to ensure a warm welcome and a healthy dash of humour. Dublin, Blarney Castle and Waterford Crystal are all well and good, but we recommend hiring a car and travelling the countryside south of Dublin, dotted with beautiful villages, lakes and castle ruins. Stop in at the village of Cobh from where the Titanic last set sail, and allow time to take some walks in Killarney National Park. Staying in stately country house hotels and manors will give you a taste of the old Ireland, and a truly local atmosphere.
Where will your new horizon be in 2019? Check out our new World Collection 2019 brochures and see where they take you.