It’s almost January and that only means one thing; it’s time to start planning our unique holidays, travels and adventures for the upcoming year! If you’re looking for some inspiration for your next adventure then you’ve come to the right place because I’ve got 8 unique unique experiences to try in 2019.
I’m looking at things a bit differently today. I’d usually be sharing a list of specific destinations I recommend visiting but today it’s all about the experience over the city or country. If often doesn’t really matter where you are in the world, it’s more about how you’re travelling and the things you’re doing that make it such a unique and memorable trip.
Here are some of my favourite unique travel experiences for your next holiday….
1. WowTrip: The surprise/mystery holiday
Have you heard about WowTrip? WowTrip is a company who arrange ‘surprise holidays’. You basically pay them a small fee and they arrange a holiday for you!
You select your travel dates, your departure airport and you have the option to dismiss a few destinations and then they arrange the rest for you. They send you a weather report and some packing guidelines a few days before your trip so you know what to take with you. They’ll tell you what time to get to the airport and when you arrived you can download your boarding pass and a detailed travel guide which reveals where you’re going!
I took two WowTrips last year and I LOVED them. Both of them were large group trips and it took away the stress of arranging a group holiday and added an extra element of excitement because we didn’t know where we were going. It also took away a lot of the stress and pressure of researching and arranging the perfect weekend away. When you don’t know where you’re going you can’t plan anything so it really is a spontaneous and exciting weekend away where you’ll spend your time exploring in ‘real-life’ rather than exploring on the internet before you arrive so you know everything about the city before you even get there!
^In Bruges during my first WowTrip
I am a massive fan of glamping for unique holidays and affordable breaks, especially with children or for a romantic trip.
Glamping is so much better than camping because you have the luxuries of hot water, heat, comfy beds and a place to cook and relax but you’re still close to nature and get that ‘back to basics’ feeling.
Glamping is also really memorable. I stayed in a treehouse in 2015 and I remember everything about that weekend, but I also stayed in a lot of budget hotels that year and I don’t remember a single one. It also doesn’t have to be expensive. I’ve got my eye on a shepherd hut just a few miles from my house and it costs £40 a night which has got to be the cheapest weekend break possible!
Read more: Where to find the best glamping UK holidays
3. The cheapest flight from your local airport
One of my favourite games is to use the Skyscanner app and search for flights to ‘Everywhere’. Take a look, honestly it’s so much fun!
I’ll pick a date and look at all the departure flights from my two local airports (Manchester and Liverpool for me) and see which ones are the cheapest.
I did this last year and found really cheap flights to Warsaw. Warsaw was a city I’d never thought of visiting before but the flights were so cheap I couldn’t say no and, thankfully, it turned out to be a great place for a festive weekend break.
This can be a great way to find really affordable unique holidays to places you’d never considered visiting before.
4. A winter activity break
When I say ‘winter activity break’ I’m sure you’ll immediately think of skiing or snowboarding but there are so many other things you can do. I went to Norway earlier this year and it was incredible. We did go skiing but we also did a lot of other cool stuff like ice hole swimming, ice karting and reindeer rides. There’s lots of hiking to be done or snowmobiling or visiting ice villages too.
Iceland is another great place for unique holidays in the winter. I went in October and we went glacier hiking, we went snorkelling between the tectonic plates in icy cold water and swimming in geothermal pools.
^Hiking in Iceland
5. A microadventure
You don’t need to travel for weeks or months to have an adventure, sometimes you can take a mini adventure for just a day or two.
One of the most adventurous and unique holidays I’ve ever taken was to Iceland for just 36 hours. It involved helicopter rides over the incredible, volcanic land as well as staying in a lighthouse, drinking champagne in a cave on a black sand beach, visiting a natural swimming pool carved into the side of a mountain and finding hidden waterfalls.
Microadventures are so much fun, they just take a lot of planning and preparation to make sure you get the most out of your short time away.
6. A staycation
You don’t need to travel far and wide for an incredible adventure; a unique holiday on your doorstep can be just as much fun. No matter where you live, I’m sure there’s somewhere incredible less than an hour from home.
I live on the border of North Wales so I’m really lucky to have so many cool places nearby and we regularly take weekends away just a short drive away. Once you get over the mindset that you need to go a long way for a holiday you’ll open up to a lot of possibilities.
Read more: A spontaneous weekend in Aberdaron, Wales
7. A learning holiday
Don’t worry, this won’t be like a boring school trip, this is a holiday where you learn to do something fun. Maybe you’d like to go to Italy and learn how to make pasta or go to India and finally learn how to do the pigeon pose at a yoga retreat. Or maybe you want to learn how to paint or fish or skydive or scuba dive?
I’m a big fan of a learning holiday because you come home feeling like you’ve really accomplished something!
Read more: Top tips for learning to scuba dive
8. The ‘just for me’ holiday
Everyone needs a ‘just for me’ holiday!
For the past few years I’ve been going on yoga retreats and it’s honestly the best break I could possibly wish for. I come home feeling so good! I have two little boys aged 2 and 3 so going on holiday with them is a lot of fun but it’s anything but relaxing so having this week to myself is the best and I encourage Sam to do the same so have a bit of ‘me time’.
Read more: Azul Fit Yoga and Pilates Retreat
9. The festival holiday
There are so many festivals to choose from these days and the bar has been seriously raised over the past few years. Festivals are more than drinking warm beer in a muddy field while listening to a band no one has ever heard of! Festivals can be for anything and you’ll find there’s much more of a focus on cultural attractions, arts, shows, experiences and food than just music and beer (although music and beer is good too!)
10. A tour holiday
I feel like tours have a bad rep and they’re something people often turn their nose up at, especially if you’ve ever spotted one of those huge group tours where 100 people follow a leader with a big red flag like sheep. Yea, I’m not talking about that kind of tour!
There are so many small and unique tours available that take the hassle out of unique holidays. I often take tours if I’m short on time as the leader of a tour helps you get everywhere quickly and efficiently without wasting any time getting lost.
I took a 2-week tour in India and it simplified the whole holiday as we had so many incredible experiences that would have been so difficult to arrange in such a short space of time. I’m also doing a tour in Romania in January to stay in an Ice Hotel and visit Dracula’s Castle because it worked out a bit cheaper than arranging everything myself!
Tours are also really good if you’re travelling by yourself as many of the other participants will be solo travellers so it’s a great chance to make friends and ensure you won’t be along for the whole trip.
Read more: Taking an organised tour in India
These are just some of my favourite unique holiday experiences. If you’ve got any more do add them to the comments below!
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