Where We’re Going in 2019: Great Travel Destinations & More
GeoEx staffers are passionate about planning extraordinary adventures—for themselves as well as for their clients. So I decided to ask them where they’re excited about going in 2019. Here’s a sampling of their globe-girdling responses of where to visit in the upcoming year.
Corinne Edwards, Destination Expert
I’ll finally be making it to Pakistan! I’m beyond excited to experience the Hunza Valley—to take in the stunning scenery, as well as to explore the charming small villages along the way. If I’m really lucky next year, I’ll also be able to visit Colombia and Cuba, two other places high on my travel list. Nothing excites me more than being able to learn about a new place, especially while dancing in tropical weather!
Jessica Silber, Destination Expert
For our honeymoon, my fiancé and I will be heading to the beach—the beaches of ALASKA! It will be summer, but we’re imagining cozy cabins, campfires, misty forests, and ice-blue glaciers. And bears, bald eagles, and whales if we are lucky! Originally, we were trying to cram in way too much in too little time, but thanks to some expert guidance from Jennine, we’ve completely narrowed our focus to the Kenai Peninsula. The final flourish will be a stay at Tutka Bay Lodge. I am deliriously excited about it, but can’t identify if I’m more excited for kayaking, eating, bear-viewing, or just sitting in the oceanfront hot tub. I’ll report back.
I’m also pretty stoked to be going to India on a GeoEx research trip. I’ve never been, and seeing tigers in the wild has been a lifelong dream. (For my eighth-grade career day I went as a tiger biologist.) But beyond that, it’s all about the cultures and people. I know so many travelers who have been completely bewitched by India so I am really looking forward to going.
Danielle Garland, Operations Specialist
The list of places I’d like to go in 2019 is rather long, though I have my sights set on Panama for late spring, and possibly Cuba later in the year. Panama has a lot to offer, from beaches to cities to rain forest, and it’s not terribly far away as an international destination. Cuba is changing by the moment with the back-and-forth political issues affecting the country, so I’m eager to get there to see all Cuba holds in its present form.
Sara Barbieri, Product Development Specialist
An idea has been percolating in the sunlit corners of the GeoEx offices for some time regarding a three-country escapade in South America, linking northern Chile with some less-visited areas in northwest Argentina and Bolivia, not necessarily in that order. I am honored to be scouting options and opportunities in these regions, on behalf of all those who have been intrigued by such an adventure for so long. Bolivia especially, as the diamond in the rough, begs to be demystified.
However, I left a not insignificant piece of my heart in Tanzania this year, and plan to return, by hook or by crook, to further immerse in the slow reveal, where every encounter insists you use most, if not all, of your senses and every preconception is tested. Leaving you with this quote from Pico Iyer: “A person susceptible to ‘wanderlust’ is not so much addicted to movement as committed to transformation.”
Jennine Cohen, Destination Expert
Antarctica! To say I’m worried about climate change is an understatement. I want to see this place in its icy glory (with its penguins and seals and whales) while I still can.
Scott Montgomery, COO
Eritrea and Djibouti. I have been hearing about the amazing Italian and art-deco architecture in Asmara for a while, and with the recent peace agreement between Eritrea and Ethiopia, now seems like the time to visit a country that has seen only a handful of visitors over the past years.
Djibouti seems like a perfect add-on and appears to be a fascinating small country that includes a huge variety of landscapes. Its setting, across from Yemen on the Gulf of Aden at the entrance to the Red Sea has meant it has seen a variety of influences over the years, and I am very curious to see what it is like today.
Tina Liadis, Destination Expert
I’m excited to travel to Saudi Arabia for the first time! I look forward to visiting myriad ancient sites and interacting with a culture that is distinctly different from my own. I’m especially thrilled by the opportunity to see art, both old and new, at such places as ancient rock art sites and contemporary art galleries. And I’m looking forward to searching for treasures in Saudi Arabia’s legendary souks!
Additionally,I’ll be traveling by train from Singapore to Melaka to Ipoh to Penang. I’ll explore historic towns of the Straits Settlements, with their unique Peranakan culture (a blend of the local Malay with foreign influences, mainly Chinese, but also Indian, Arab, and Dutch). I will also include a stop in the Cameron Highlands to stroll the trails and sample the tea. Along the way I look forward to tasting local specialties (this region is renowned for its cuisine) and perusing the vibrant street art scene in Penang.
Amanda McKee, Marketing Specialist
I’ve always wanted to trek with gorillas, so I am thrilled to be going to Uganda next year for a research trip. It’s one of the few places in the world you can find endangered mountain gorillas in their natural habitat. But I’ve also learned from my Africa-expert colleagues that there is much more to Uganda than gorillas. You can do more traditional safaris—even see tree-climbing lions in Queen Elizabeth National Park—and there is the Nile, plus the savannahs of Kidepo National Park. The landscapes are supposed to be stunning and the people wonderfully warm.
I’m also hoping to swing an adventure to Morocco and Spain. There’s so much great architecture to see and amazing food to be had in both places. And wouldn’t it be extraordinary to ride a camel in the dunes of the Sahara?
Errin Mixon, Destination Expert
I’m so excited that GeoEx has been operating more and more in Europe. Next year I’m going to Norway for majestic scenery and Viking folklore. I love how our trips focus on off-the-radar areas and offer so much outdoor activity, from kayaking to biking to glacier-walking—and I can tailor it to my mood on any given day.I’d also love to see Scotland and Iceland—maybe on my way home? They look so close on the map.
Sabrina Middleton, Destination Expert
Next year I’m very excited to be heading to Madagascar to scout opportunities for GeoEx travelers! Madagascar has wildlife found nowhere else on earth, and I’m particularly excited to see the lemurs. I’m a tree-hugger, so I must embrace an ancient baobab tree, too.
Where will your dream adventure take you in 2019?
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For more great travel destinations and inspirations, browse the globetrotting tales and insights on GeoEx’s blog,Wanderlust.
To learn more about our destination experts, visit GeoEx’s Meet the Team web page.