Wellness travel is big business, with $494 billion in revenues in 2013, and that number is steadily growing. This relatively new travel niche allows travelers to focus on health and relaxation, rather than packing every moment with activities and attractions. These vacationers travel to beautiful locations to sit back, relax, and rejuvenate. Vacation activities may include:
- yoga classes, spa treatments, and communing with nature.
- a spiritual element, with healing rituals or meditation worked into the program.
- wholesome, whole foods — often organic and locally-grown — to nourish the body.
The end goal is to leave the traveler feeling rejuvenated, healthy, and ready to address the realities of the busy modern life.
Benefits of Wellness Travel
It’s easy to imagine the effects of unplugging from the outside world and turning your focus inward. Wellness travel allows the traveler to take time to really relax, to step away from the demands of modern life and slow down for a while. Wellness travelers return from their trip reporting lowered stress levels, a more positive mood and a feeling of being rested. According to Spafinder 365’s survey, as many as 35 percent of wellness travelers experience weight loss and positive fitness changes on their trip, and some report that a wellness travel experience helps kickstart a healthier lifestyle. New eating habits, yoga routines, and meditation practices can be integrated into a new lifestyle with a stronger focus on wellness.
Where to Find Wellness Travel
Analysts expect wellness travel to be a major factor in 2016. One reason could be that it comes in many different shapes and sizes to fit nearly any type of traveler. For instance, a family can visit a kid-focused resort for a spa and wellness retreat that embraces all ages, with kid-friendly yoga and spa treatments available and organic food prep that the children will enjoy.
Wellness cruises, which focus on encouraging healthy living on board ship through natural food and ample exercise opportunities, combine wellness travel with the chance to see exotic sites. On these cruises, on-deck sunrise yoga sessions are commonplace.
International travel has taken on a wellness look, as well. International travelers not only find exotic retreats to support their wellness goals, but also they enjoy the chance to embrace new cultures and perhaps new meditation practices during their journey. Popular locations for this type of spiritual wellness include Thailand, Bali, and India. Oceanside locations, such as islands in the tropics, and mountaintop experiences are equally popular with wellness travelers.
If your goals for 2016 include getting healthy, consider a wellness travel experience to jump-start your new healthy goals.
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