Where to Go in 2022: Our Expert Picks
Looking ahead to 2022, the range of options for where to travel next year has increased dramatically. Not only have borders opened, calling back long-absent adventurers, but within those borders there are new delights to discover. While travel was paused, plans were set into motion for some splendid lodges and camps, which are now opening their doors to their first guests (will one of them be you?). New access to remote regions and off-limits archaeological sites is inspiring enticing itineraries for those wondering where to go now.
GeoEx is celebrating its 40th anniversary, making 2022 a very special year for us. In addition to using our extensive experience to guide travelers to the best destinations and experiences across the planet, we’ll be launching a series of new Giving Back trips that access highly anticipated locations and authentic adventures while focusing on sustainability and support for local populations and ecosystems.
Here are our experts’ top destinations for travel in 2022.
A stunning conservation success story is unfolding through resurging populations of elephant, lion, wild dog, and more on the now-protected rich floodplains and forests of Gorongosa National Park. A new minimal-footprint luxury camp offers well-appointed private tents overlooking the Mussicadzi River; your stay here supports the park and surrounding communities. GeoEx will be launching our first group trip to Mozambique later this year, which will include the now-flourishing ecosystems of Gorongosa as well as marine biodiversity at Bazaruto Archipelago National Park.
“Long in the shadow of neighboring titans South Africa and Tanzania, Mozambique has become a multi-faceted destination in its own right. With unspoiled beaches of sparkling white sand, world-class reefs, and starry nights, Mozambique was once primarily a beach destination. Now it is emerging as a safari and cultural experience with the revitalization of Gorongosa National Park.”
—Jesse Knight, Trip Designer
Marrying the comforts of a European destination with the thrill of extraordinary landscapes, strong cultural traditions, and fascinating history, Scotland is an ideal choice for an effortless adventure in 2022. Traveling the GeoEx way, you might hike mountain trails through wild fields of heather watching for wildlife, unravel bronze age mysteries at circular stone burial cairns, or explore urban life and street art with a local expert. We can craft an authentic custom experience that introduces you to the people and shows you a different side of Scotland, or you can wait to join our upcoming group trip, launching soon.
“Scotland has the happy luck to contain its fair share of enigmas, remote landscapes, complex thought-provoking histories, and traditions and yet, conversely, is a relatively easy place to reach, a comfortable place to travel in uncertain times, no primer needed. I’m excited to reveal our thoughtfully fashioned group trip itinerary, which takes you on an unusual path, choosing a southern loop through Scotland.”
—Sara Barbieri, Product Development Team
After laying virtually undisturbed for 2,000 years, Hegra (also called Mada’in Saleh or al-Hijr) is now open to the public. The UNESCO-listed second city of the Nabataen kingdom includes over 100 monumental tombs carved into the rock face. With the opening of the archaeological site comes the launch of several enticing new lodging options, notably a luxury tented resort and a collection of sustainably built villas, both located amidst the sandstone cliffs of Ashar Valley. GeoEx has been traveling to Saudi Arabia for over a decade and is experienced arranging group and private trips there.
“Having traveled to Saudi Arabia myself, I’m excited to share this amazing destination with our travelers! I loved the architecture in old Jeddah, as well as the forts and traditional villages. The beautiful desert landscapes with their rock formations, petroglyphs, and the ancient Nabatean site at Mada’in Saleh are also major highlights. I enjoyed cosmopolitan Riyadh, with its old souk as well as contemporary art galleries, plus the heritage center and national museum. A particularly fun experience was the camel market at Buraidah!”
—Tina Liadis, Trip Designer
Once inaccessible to foreign visitors, Mustang is an isolated stronghold of traditional Tibetan culture where the crimson and cobalt of recently restored monasteries is complemented by the soaring ochre cliffs of the dramatic high desert. Homeland of the Sherpa people, remote Solu Khumbu descends from the icy peak of Everest into misty rhododendron forests and welcoming small villages. Both are difficult to access on your own, but GeoEx can take you there.
“2022 is our 40th anniversary year and we’re revisiting our roots in the Himalaya! Our new Giving Back trip is my top pick because it includes our friend Ang Tshering Lama’s Happy House project, which is an immersive, personal, experiential, unique, and spiritual experience. In fact, all of that could be said of other aspects of this special trip and our time in Nepal. The entire journey is based on connection and compassion—a perfect counterbalance to the isolation of the pandemic.”
—Kristina Tuohey, Product Development Team
You can now cruise the Galápagos Islands on a sleek superyacht, luxuriating in some seriously spacious cabins along with other top-notch amenities when you’re not out snorkeling with sea lions, observing blue-footed boobies, or pondering massive tortoises. Of course, if you prefer to sleep on land, we have enticing options there too. Either way, the Galápagos appeal to today’s travelers with outdoor activities, high vaccination rates, and low visitor counts.
“Yo amo Galápagos! In the hands of experienced and passionate naturalists, you’re always learning as the Galápagos are an incredible outdoor classroom. You’re bound to have a great time experiencing amazing wildlife! For 2022 travel, it’s very appealing with extended biosecurity regulations and screening in place protecting the UNESCO World Heritage site, small groups with each guide, and a variety of outdoor land-based and aquatic activities.”
—Linda De La Torre, Trip Designer
After creating and launching an alluring new trip to Algeria in 2020, we will finally have the opportunity to send out our inaugural trip in 2022 after more than a year of closed borders. Our seasoned trip leader Bill Jones is currently blazing trails in-country, doing an initial run of the itinerary, ensuring that things will go flawlessly, and perhaps mapping out a few special surprises for our travelers. His reports are getting us very excited for the lucky guests who will travel on the first departures.
“It’s certainly been great being on the road again here in Algeria. I visited today one of the most spectacular Roman sites I’ve ever seen. Djemila in Arabic means ‘the beautiful one’—it was founded in the 1st century CE and abandoned in the 6th century CE. Algeria has so much to discover!”
–Bill Jones, Trip Leader
There has never been a better time for Kenya. Open to travelers since 2020, Kenya understands how to safari safely, and offers myriad ways to spend your days outdoors in magical landscapes. While many have traveled to Kenya through the pages of Karen Blixen’s Out of Africa, nothing compares to breathing in the smell of the grass, gazing out across the golden-hued savannah as lion, elephant, giraffe, zebra, and other creatures appear before you. The time is right to connect with the wild.
“The Mara is a superb place to witness to the annual phenomenon of hundreds of thousands of migrating wildebeest and zebra as they move across the plains and through the rivers; dancing out of reach of the snapping jaws of giant crocodiles, dodging a lioness; eluding packs of wild dogs and hyenas snapping at their heels. It is a treacherous journey followed by the predators of the wild that delivers heart-stopping moments for those who make the trip.”
—Gayle Lehmann, Trip Designer
Synonymous with outdoor adventure, Patagonia is the fitting prize for all those who have been walking the same neighborhood for months and are beyond ready for wild spaces with majestic mountains and enticing trails to explore by foot or horseback. Two much-anticipated conservation-focused lodges will make 2022 trips exceptional: one within El Chaten’s Los Huemules Conservation Reserve affording jaw-dropping views of Andean peaks; the other in Patagonia National Park’s picturesque Chacabuco Valley.
“Starting January 1st, the land borders are beginning to open so that you can cross between Chile and Argentina, which is huge news! Finally, travelers can experience both countries again, and everyone deserves a Patagonian day hike and a glass of wine after the last year and a half!”
—Natalie Crow, Trip Designer
Newly opened to travel, the crowds have not yet returned to the ancient cities and towering temples of Angkor, or the lush jungles beyond. Fascinating cultural experiences, spectacular scenery, tantalizing cuisine, and indulgent wellness programs make this destination an irresistible place to recharge and reconnect with the spirit of adventure.
“I can’t wait to get back to Cambodia! Come to see Angkor Wat and its impressive temple complex. Stay to explore the countryside. From its rich national parks to quiet coastal beaches, you’ll be treated to the kindest smiles, flawless hospitality, and so much more. A standout in this wonderous world.”
—Kate Doty, Trip Designer, Premier Access
If spending a week floating above turquoise waters aboard a gulet feels like a good way to feel gratitude for the world’s natural and cultural beauty after an incredibly stressful year, you will love Turkey. Nonstop flights from many US cities, rave reviews from our guests who have traveled there recently, and ample opportunity to get off the beaten path outdoors might make you think everyone is going there, yet the number of visitors is still low.
“You know how people always say they want to get ‘off the beaten path’? In Turkey you can pursue multiple paths that are all off the tourist trail, and each will take you somewhere stunning. One of our guests just visited the ruins of Ani, a UNESCO World Heritage site, and was the only visitor at the site, taking in the call to prayer echoing across the windswept plains at sunset!”
—Jessica Silber, Trip Designer
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Still wondering where to go in 2022? To start planning your adventure to these top 10 travel destinations in 2022 or any of GeoEx’s other far-flung locales, give us a call at 888-570-7108.