The need to relax and reset has perhaps never been greater. The latest industry research reveals that 33% of American travelers are dreaming the most about ‘ultimate relaxation’ trips in 2022 with a further third of respondents (29%) dreaming of ‘wellness holidays.’
When asked what would be top of the agenda for travel in 2022, 27% of respondents said that relaxation was key, followed by food (18%) and cultural exploration (21%).
Over two thirds of Americans (68%) use holidays to disconnect from day-to-day life.
The art of travelling mindfully
The pandemic has made us all want to be better tourists with 88% of Americans agreeing that travel broadens our understanding of other cultures and demographics. Travel also brings a host of wellbeing benefits with 24% of Americans sharing that travel has a positive impact on both their mental and emotional wellbeing.
Rest and relaxation begin before take-off!
Getting to the airport can feel stressful. But R&R doesn’t have to wait until you get to your destination as more and more airports around the world are helping travelers find their zen before even departing. Changi Airport is home to an indoor rainforest, with rooftop pool and jacuzzi, Amsterdam’s Schiphol airport has a green oasis with loungers to chill and read a book, and San Francisco International has a calm yoga center terminal side, not to mention their very own therapy pig Lilou to keep you stress-free!
Trending wellbeing destinations
Research reveals the most relaxing destinations trending above pre-pandemic levels:
Costa Rica – up by 12 places
For a taste of the ‘pura vida’, Costa Rica offers stunning natural landscapes: rainforests, beaches and river valleys, filled with incredible wildlife. For pure relaxation, enjoy one of Costa Rica’s many geothermal pools or learn about cacao through traditional ceremonies.
Athens, Greece + 15 places
The jumping-off point for Greece’s many islands and regions, which house a wealth of wellness and restorative travel options. Greece boasts crystal-clear water, understated luxury and natural beauty, as well as ancient history and philosophy. A perfect place to enjoy world-class wellness resorts and relaxation.
- Santa Barbara: +186 places
- Santa Monica: +454 places
A byword for wellness – California is arguably the birthplace of “restorative travel” as we know it. The rise in interest for 2022 has undoubtedly been a combination of the prevalence of domestic hotspots in 2022 travel but is also driven by a need to disconnect from the stress of everyday life.
Sedona, AZ +11 places
A new addition to the US domestic wellness travel scene, Sedona hosts some of the most breath-taking and serene landscapes in the US, as well as some of the most high-end resorts for relaxation. It’s a hotspot for new age wellness and spirituality retreats, with many offering to improve spiritual, physical and mental wellbeing.
Taking relaxation to a new level
It’s clear that the pandemic, and its associated lockdowns, continue to have a ripple effect on how travelers want to spend their holidays with relaxation the activity highest on the agenda for 33% of American travelers.
The holistic benefits of travel are well documented with 36% of American respondents sharing that travel had a positive impact on both their mental and emotional wellbeing. The destinations trending for American travelers in 2022, the likes of Costa Rica, Greece and domestic wellness hotspots California and Arizona, reflect that heightened demand for destinations with relaxation at heart.
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