Last summer saw most of the restriction lifting — and travellers have been doing their thing once again: TRAVELLING. And planning to do it even more in 2023, so check out these top trends that seem to be shaping what has become the year to "get back out there."
You may not have all your travel plans locked in just yet, but many travellers have their upcoming journeys on the books. Here are the trends we are seeing so far for the next year on tour:
Photo: Bird Watching
Experience the Great Outdoors:
Travellers booked trips in droves that got them outdoors last year, and that trend is continuing in 2023. Collette travellers have really taken to our tours to Hawaii, a sun-drenched journey to paradise year-round. Costa Rica remains a trending destination for lovers of the outdoors as well; our Costa Rica: A World of Nature tour will take you on a small group adventure from the top of the rainforest to white sandy beaches, lush jungles, and beyond.
For those looking to take in the sun and spend time outdoors in Europe, consider this trending tour: Greece Island Hopper. With three days each in Athens, Mykonos, and Santorini, travellers can get the best of age-old legends and monuments combined with warm sunshine and island-style living in one tour.
Experiences that Go Beyond the Destination:
Collette travellers value an itinerary that includes connection, and fascinating activities that they wouldn’t have found on their own. Immersive experiences and the chance to get to know the people that make up the rich tapestry of a destination are key drivers in what brings these tours onto our trending list for 2023.
Many, many Collette tours bring you to the must-sees and then a step further, but here are some of my favorites among this year's trending tours:
- A Taste of the Balkans really lives up to its name and this is my favorite inclusion: Join a third-generation family of truffle hunters on their forested property and search for the coveted tasty tubers alongside them and their friendly dogs. This is followed up with a truffle-inspired lunch!
- Our Japan Past & Present tour has some totally off the beaten path moments you wouldn’t find if you were exploring the country on your own. I simply cannot pick one favorite unique experience from this tour.
- Our France Magnifique tour includes some magnifique inclusions, like an exclusive look at the Palace of Versailles. The iconic Hall of Mirrors and the lavish State Apartments are must-sees, of course. The gardens? Gotta check it out. But travellers on this tour? They get to tour the Private Apartments of King Louis XIV, which are not open to the general public. How’s that for a little royal treatment?
Photo: Japan tour
Make Yourself at Home:
Collette travellers value diving deep into their surroundings and get to know one, or a few select destinations well versus trying to get a very small sample of many places. We’ve minimized one-night stays on our tours and put a real focus on the pacing of our tours so travellers can slow down and take destinations in, not rush from place to place. In 2023, many of our travellers are turning to destination Spotlights tours to achieve this.
These tours allow travellers to unpack once at a centrally located hotel during a getaway less than 10 days long. Spotlights travellers get the perks of itineraries with expertly planned inclusions, plenty of free time to explore how they want, and the support of a Tour Manager to show them the ropes and tell them all the cool spots that only the locals would know.Some trending Spotlights for your 2023 consideration:
- Spotlight on Santa Fe
- Spotlight on Boston
- Spotlight on Paris
Small Group Explorations
Our small group Explorations tours continue to grow in popularity year over year. The camaraderie and nimbleness of a smaller group, the meaningful experiences that give back to a destination included in each itinerary, and authentic local experiences are all driving factors in this tour style’s increasing popularity. We’re already seeing a ton of travellers on the books for their next small group adventure. There have been a number of small group tours sprinkled throughout this blog outside of this category, but I have a few more up my sleeve …
Our Italy’s Treasures tour will whisk you to Northern Italy with time in The Lake Region, the Italian Riviera, Tuscany, Florence, and Venice. You’ll get to meet locals like the owner of an award-winning gelateria, learn to make some traditional cuisine during a cooking class at a family-owned Tuscan villa, and take “going off the beaten path” to a new level when you go off-roading in a marble quarry.
If you’re looking for a small group tour in a winter wonderland, you may consider our Northern Lights of Finland tour. With the holidays approaching, this trending tour is striking a chord with me more than ever. A trip to the magical Finnish Lapland to go on a reindeer safari and visit Santa’s house, an overnight in a glass igloo, and multiple opportunities to hunt for the elusive northern lights? It’s a holly jolly thumbs up from me.
Last, and definitely not least, is a small group tour that offers a different perspective on the African safari experience. Our Wilderness of Southern Africa tour offers your traditional game drives across the grasslands, but also some safari experiences on the water. travellers on this tour get to spend 3 nights on Lake Kariba during a private cruise of waters frequented by hippos and crocodiles.