After the past 18 months dealing with COVID-19, a lot of people are feeling due for a vacation. Furthermore, the vacations that people are planning are massive, life-changing bucket list adventures. And with all the money they saved up during quarantine, work from home, etc. they are planning to do it up in style in 2021 and beyond. For those with an incurable case of wanderlust, the world seems to be closing in every year, surfacing the eternal question “Where to next?”. Lucky for you, we’ve got your back and we put together a list of the best luxury vacations of a lifetime.
Amalfi Coast, Italy
An exemplary Mediterranean landscape, Amalfi Coast is a small town in southern Italy that stretches for 50km along the coastline. Here, the rugged shoreline is dotted with beautiful beaches. The precipitous crags are studded with pastel color houses that add a pop of colors to the stunning scenery. Its steep hills make the region one of Italy’s best hiking spots. The enigmatic sea and cinematic piazzas aside, Amalfi houses some of Italy’s best restaurants and several sumptuous cliff-clinging resorts for those seeking luxury trips of a lifetime.
Blue Lagoon, Iceland
Residing in the heart of a volcanic landscape, Iceland’s Blue Lagoon is the world’s largest geothermal pool and a name found in almost all luxury bucket list vacations. The warm water makes it a popular spa destination. Visitors can dive and swim nonchalantly while admiring the picturesque view about them. A rather gorgeous way to rejuvenate the soul and skin! The Retreat Spa at Blue Lagoon offers private changing rooms, slippers, bathrobes, skincare amenities, and a drink of choice to make the day special. Massages and other wellness treatments are also made available. It is a 4-hour exclusive entry which only means a day well spent.
An arty and bohemian city in Emerald Isle, Galway boasts picturesque tangled lanes full of busking musicians. Vibrant and bolstering with energy, the city is in true sense the Cultural Heart of Ireland. It’s a great destination for audiophiles who will enjoy unique tunes featuring just any combination of instruments, including bodhrán. The city also celebrates other art forms including poetry, prose, art, films, and gastronomy. Anyone with a creative streak will easily immerse into the effervescent vibe of Galway. Nestled near historic gems like Kylemore Abbey and landscapes like Cliffs of Moher, Galway also allows adventurous day trips.
Montepulciano, Tuscany, Italy
Perched quietly atop a narrow ridge of volcanic rock, Montepulciano is a medieval town known for its delicious Vino Nobile red wine and heritage buildings. Surrounded by lush vineyards, the town’s enigmatic charm is accented by its Renaissance palaces, ancient churches, cinematic alleys, and panoramic vistas of Val di Chiana and Val d’Orcia valleys. Its strategic location allows easy trips to Pienza, Bagno Vignoni, and Montalcino. The town gained popularity after the filming of a scene in Twilight’s New Moon sequel. With its growing fame, many 5-star hotels and restaurants have sprouted up in the town to add a pinch of luxury to its visitor’s vacations.
Ever contemplated to go on a vacation in a fairytale village because that is exactly what Colmar in Alsace is. Evidently, Colmar is the inspiration behind the little and quiet village from Beauty and the Beast. The lanes of this gorgeous 9th-century hideaway are studded with fascinating medieval, gothic, and early Renaissance buildings. Architectural gems aside, the village is also famous for its local vineyards specializing in Riesling and Gewürztraminer wines. Its cobblestone streets, enchanting Route des Vins, and antiquated heritage hotels have the power to transport anyone to 15th century.
Belmond Afloat in France
Experience the panache of a lifetime and explore L’Hexagon on a private deluxe cruise that helms along the rivers and canals of southern France. The Belmond Afloat barges coast their passengers through Canal du Midi, Burgundy, Provence and Champagne. All the shore excursions are tailor-made to suit their voyagers’ taste. Every barge has its own personal guide to narrate the highlights of a region. Master of hospitality, Belmond has designed its 5 cruises with pools, large picture windows, sun deck with sunbeds, well-stocked bars, and even bicycles in case anyone wants to ride along the canal. Now that’s a once in a lifetime luxury vacation!
Regent Seven Seas World Cruise
Take wanderlust a notch up with seaborne sojourns. Coast across 7 seas and 6 continents and enjoy the vacation like its meant to be – lounging in fresh air while admiring the infinite seascapes. Luxury doesn’t get better than this. Options are a galore! One could set sail for a luxurious 131-night tour with a Regent World Cruise or explore the uncharted world with Silversea’s 167-night expedition. With more than 100 countries and 300 seashores listed in the comprehensive itineraries of these world cruises, one could easily come home satisfied to have traveled the entire world. All bucket list vacations of a lifetime in one!
Volcanoes National Park, Hawaii
An excursionist who is so well-traveled that no place anymore is unique enough to jitter the faintest spark of enthusiasm will find this destination intriguing. Here, one gets the luxury to enjoy the first-hand experience of lava flowing from the barren mountains into the ocean. Available in this national park is a well-maintained lodge called the Volcano House. With its onolicious food, mind-blowing views, and adrenaline-surging outdoor activities, this old-fashioned hotel will make the stay in Hawaii’s most popular national park unforgettable.
Galápagos Islands, Ecuador
Indulge in an extraordinary swimming experience alongside penguins and spend the day snapping pictures of giant tortoises, sea iguanas, playing seals, and white-tipped sharks. It was the awe-inspiring diversity of this archipelago that inspired Charles Darwin to formulate one of the world’s most discussed theory. There are numerous species of birds, animals, and other creatures here that are not found elsewhere in the world. Calling Galápagos Islands exotic would be an understatement. It is a world within a world.
Shipwreck Lodge, Skeleton Coast, Namibia
Skeleton Coast is yet another destination whose idiosyncrasy might not be everyone’s cup of tea. Nonetheless, it is an exciting destination for an intrepid globetrotter. As the name suggests, this coast is littered with a variety of skeletons, including those of humans. Every now and then the rough surf settles to reveal a graveyard of sunken ships and remains of their crewmen. One of the prominent shipwrecks witnessed by this barren coastline is that of the Dunedin Star in the 1940’s. Sprawling for 500km, it is actually a nature park and home to an entire colony of Cape fur seals that tread a certain area of the coast. Animals like elephants, lions, hyena, and giraffes can also be spotted. Despite being synonymous with wasteland, the coast houses a luxurious Shipwreck Lodge to spend a sojourn like no other.