The buzz word this summer was overtourism — article upon article and social posts bemoaned the crowds in Rome, Paris and even Ireland, leaving us frequent travelers on a quest to find a unique experience away from the crowds. Exploring new cities in the shoulder seasons (October–November, February–April) is the easiest advice. I have seen a growing trend among our readers to turn to bespoke tour operators to find their next trip.
Luxury tours are not new, but companies offering truly customized, unique and off-the-beaten-path full-service options are certainly the new trend. A good example I have come across is start-up BlueWander. It is the evolution of the trend: starting with destinations they personally know, like India, and connecting travelers with once-in-a-lifetime trips and experiences while still offering luxury, white-glove service. By working directly with local guides, they provide 100 percent authentic trips but also cut out any middle men to give rates well below market value.
I have perused the site often and added to my bucket-list experiences, starting with the Exotic Culinary & Wellness Journey Through South India, a 10-day trip with your own yogi and chances to fish and farm with the locals.
These trips are not your shopping-through-Paris experiences, but they are memorable moments to share with family and friends — the best-growing trend I have seen in quite some time!
— Carly Allen, executive vice president/associate publisher
In May this year, Taiwan became the first Asian country to legalize same-sex marriage. In celebration, Taipei’s annual Pride Parade was especially festive, with 170,000–250,000 people in attendance — a record number for what was already the biggest pride parade in Asia.
The city took its name from Athena, goddess of wisdom, strategy and war, and protector of the city. The financial, political and administrative center of the country and an all-powerful city-state in antiquity, Athens is a major center of culture. A visit to the first-ever museum dedicated to Byzantium, a stroll around the National Garden and a trip to the Olympeion archaeological site will take you back through time.
Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts plans to open a new hotel and private residences in New Orleans in late 2020. The first Four Seasons property in New Orleans is slated to open inside the World Trade Center, adjacent to Ernest N. Memorial Convention Center. The World Trade Center is currently undergoing renovations, with plans including a new podium and public spaces. The hotel plans feature four food and beverage outlets, retail space, a spa, rooftop pool and meeting and event spaces.
Since 1970, Goway Travel has been committed to providing customized travel experiences for world travelers. Few things are better evidence of this commitment than being awarded the 2019 Trazees award for Favorite Tour Operator. Goway Travel heartily thanks the readers of Trazee Travel for this honor and for their confidence in Goway’s work in creating travel memories that’ll last a lifetime.
InterContinental Yokohama Pier 8 opened as the second InterContinental property in Yokohama earlier this fall. The property, with its 173 guestrooms and suites, provides a relaxing atmosphere away from the hubbub of the city with views of the waterfront.
American Airlines now provides a passport-scanning feature on its mobile app. American Airlines is the first airline to offer a service of this kind. The passport chip-scanning feature transmits passport information to the airline, so passengers do not need a customer service agent to recheck their passports when arriving at the airport for international flights.
Looking for a truly unique travel experience and considering a new vehicle? The Volvo Overseas Delivery Program is the perfect solution to create your own adventure of a lifetime. Volvo allows you to custom order your new automobile tailored to fit your needs and desires. They will fly you to Sweden to pick up your Volvo so you can drive and explore Scandinavia and Europe on your terms for up to two weeks.