The New Year is upon us and with it comes the resolution by many to travel more or take a trip somewhere they’ve never been before. With hundreds of destinations to choose from, here are some places that we expect will be popular this year for a variety of different reasons.
An annual favourite for Canadians already, London benefitted from a blockbuster year with the Royal Wedding last April and is following it up in 2012 as host city for the Summer Olympics (July 27 – August 12).
While space is scarce during this two-week period particularly for accommodation, there is certain to be an extra buzz in the air and lots of events leading up to the Games as tourists head there to bask in the Olympic spirit. This is also a heads up to those NOT wanting to be there during what is sure to be a busy time so if you’d normally travel via London to get to other parts of Europe, consider Amsterdam or Frankfurt as less busy alternate hubs.
HALIFAX, NOVA SCOTIA
April 15, 2012 marks the 100th anniversary of the sinking of the Titanic. Concerts, wakes, a film festival and more will commemorate this historic date and it is expected to be a huge draw not only by Canadians but from tourists from all over the world.
Where? Not Barcelona, Not Madrid, but Cadiz has been named the Latin American Cultural Capital for 2012—a first for any European city. Known for its beautiful beaches and its world renown Carnival, Cadiz is also planning a year-long celebration of Spain’s 1812 Constitution. Needless to say, it won’t be a challenge finding a place to have fun.
THAILAND & JAPAN
Between the floods that hit Thailand and the earthquake that devastated Japan last year, both countries are looking to entice tourists back and show they’re open for business. Expect to see exceptional value deals to both of these amazing places.
A country hit hard by a financial crisis last year, this is another destination to watch offering excellent value in 2012. Early Booking Bonuses are out so if you plan to visit Greece or any other European city this Spring or Summer, book now and take advantage!
Still considered a “hidden gem”, Croatia won’t stay that way for long as it’s one of our fastest growing European destinations in terms of popularity. Having visited there myself in 2011, I can attest to the fact it truly has it all—an incredible history & culture, stunning beaches, not to mention the amazing city of Dubrovnik which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. I highly recommend a visit, you won’t be disappointed.
While there has always been steady interest in discovering the beauty of Burma, a tourism boycott made it a difficult ethical choice for many as to whether to travel there or not. Years later and on the heels of Aung San Suu Kyi’s release, the boycott has been lifted and tourist numbers are growing quickly. The political situation is stable but it is still recommended that travellers heed warnings & advisories to ensure their personal safety.
Home to Mount Kilimanjaro and the Ngorongoro crater, Tanzania is one of the most popular countries in Africa particularly for adventure and safaris. They are investing heavily into this market again in 2012 and while costly to get there for Canadians overall, they are offering some of the best value-for-money packages we’ve seen in a long time. Combine that with a strong Canadian dollar and it makes this bucket list item more possible than ever.
Where do you want to go? Let us know in the comment section below!