Travel insights from Taylor Coulson, contributing editor of The Compass

This Just In: Travel Trends for 2020

Just like in 2019, Europe is still #trending for 2020. Looking for more travel inspiration? Pinterest released their 2020 trends based on the platform’s search results and Forbes did their research, too. It’s the start of a new decade and 2020 is already dubbed “the year of perfect vision,” so it makes sense why we want to see the following destinations as clear as possible – with a sprinkle of sustainability behind every trip.

1. Train travel in Europe

Starting this year, travelers are expected to turn to trains instead of planes. Swedes even created new words for eco-friendly travel habits: Flyskam is “flying shame,” and tagskryt is “train bragging.” Traveling by train is like taking a road trip, minus having to plan ahead for which exits have the best snacks and scenery to stretch the legs. But where are the best train tracks to ride along according to Pinterest? Sri Lanka for its natural beauty found in Saraii Village, less frequented national parks like Wilpattu or Gal Oya and 98 Acres Resort & Spa in Ella.

2. Vegan and vegetarian hotels in Europe

In Scotland, vegan tourism extends beyond the plate at Saorsa 1875, a 19th-century Victorian mansion. Its 11 rooms are vegan and organically furnished; from furnishings and toiletries to the cleaning products, all are considered vegan in addition to their food and beverage menu. The hotel has its own vegetable patch garden but also partners with vegan chefs and local suppliers. Plus, the hotel welcomes your four-legged friends! Other hotels in Europe with vegan amenities are the Hilton Bankside in London, England; Hotel Valsana in Arosa, Switzerland with beds made from coconut and coir fiber; and Borgo Pignano in Tuscany, Italy that has its own forest and retaining rainwater in the estate.

3. “Staycations” across the U.S.

Pinterest says one of the best ways for travelers to help save the planet is to stick close to home on a “staycation”. Park City, Utah was the bonus destination in our list of domestic ski towns and it’s back again for travelers who want to take tiny trips due to limited time off or the desire to see as many places as possible over the year. Another domestic destination perfect for a weekend getaway is Milwaukee, Wisconsin, according to Forbes. It’s where the 2020 Democratic National Convention (DNC) will take place in July 2020, so spending a summer weekend on Lake Michigan’s shore during Summerfest and other festivals will keep visitors busy during a short trip.

4. Beyond the 2020 Olympics in Japan

Surfing’s Olympic debut takes place during Tokyo 2020 from July 26 to Aug. 2. So with that said, checking out American Wave Machines’ (AWM) surf lagoon in Shizunami, Japan is high on everyone’s wish list. Escaping Tokyo 2020’s crowds is done easiest by train, two hours north in Nikko. Lake Chuzenji, hot springs and hiking trails are nearby and plenty of temples are too, since this was one of the earliest places Buddhism was established. Otherwise, checking out Mt. Hiei by cable car in the Kyoto resort area is a must.

5. See where luxury meets the future in the United Arab Emirates

Forbes says 2020 is a special time to visit the UAE because it’s where  the first World Expo in the Middle East will be held. The theme of this year’s event is “Connecting Minds, Creating the Future,” with more than 130 countries participating. When visiting the UAE, travelers must make time to see the world’s tallest building, the Burj Khalifa in Dubai, and also tour the world’s largest artificial islands, the Palm Islands. Also be sure not to miss the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque, too, in UAE’s capital city of Abu Dhabi.

6. Imaginative travel in Croatia

Virtuoso named Croatia the top emerging destination for the decade due to its Game-of-Thrones-effect, dramatic landscapes and sustainable proximity to other European destinations. This is the ideal place to visit for Instagram lovers, imaginative travelers and really anyone looking for ancient, glowing walls close to the beach to wander around. Split is a Mediterranean coastal city that combines modernity and ancient history year-round. Dubrovnik, another renowned city in Croatia, is an ancient gem of extravagant architecture and cobblestone streets under the Dalmatian Mountains.

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January 2020 Editor’s Note

Happy New Year, agents! I know you’re not supposed to dwell in the past, but we published some really cool articles in December that you may have missed if you, like me, took an extended holiday vacation. Check these out: 4 Unmissable Lord of the Rings Filming Locations – Live like a hobbit, even i


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Jan. 16, 2020
Tags: 2020 , trending