The new year is here and what better time to start thinking of new adventures for 2016! Luxury trend-setting travel clients are always keen to discover interesting or new and up and coming destinations. There are plenty of great destinations to visit but here are our top three recommendations:
We’re noticing that the popularity of food and wine gourmet experiences are driving travel trends as people use that as a reason to explore a new destination - for this alone South Africa has to be on top of the list. A visit to the Winelands and the regions of Paarl, Stellenbosch and Franschhoek offer the backdrop of expansive mountain ranges and winding valleys which inside nestle in a colourful world of wineries all brimming with character and flavour. Take a wine tour which are delightfully informal yet educational but most importantly very delicious!! The great aspect of this region is that along with great wine comes discerning palettes which mean the food in the region is equally mouth-watering. With fresh produce and inventive creative flair the food found in hotels or restaurants can be assured of the finest standards.
This beautiful region is becoming a great alternative to the more popular and busy regions of Tuscany or the Amalfi Coast. Its natural evolution is starting to garner some well-deserved attention which is indicative of the quality hotels which have opened recently. Masseria Trapana, Puglia’s newest boutique hotel and one of the leading design led properties which recently opened in late 2015. This completely renovated 16th century country farmhouse, complete with its original frescoes, offers nine elegant and stylish suites, each with its own four poster bed. Offering a wonderful luxury escape set amongst 60 hectares of citrus and olive groves and the privacy within its six walled gardens.
Growing even more in popularity through strong media attention, word of mouth and social media, Sri Lanka continues to promise itself as an amazing destination having been overlooked for so long. Culturally rich Sri Lanka offers many gems for explorers including no less than eight Unesco World Heritage Sites packed into this tight destination, along with ruins and temples spanning over its 2000 year history. Its rain forested peaks are cradled by the stunning white beaches suitable for surfing and diving. Nature lovers will enjoy the safari tours or the sight of hundreds of elephants gathering in the afternoon sunshine. With direct flights there is a wonderful range of luxury properties available for the more adventurous discerning traveller including small, privately owned, super-stylish boutique hotels gently away from the main areas for a more calming experience. We would certainly take the opportunity to discover this gem before its popularity hits the tipping point – with some notable new opening slated for 2016, this is definitely one to watch.
Diana Cherry is Director of Operations at Oxford Private Travel.