We are cheering on the underdogs in 2023. While there are many well-known destinations to see and experience in the world, we also love traveling to the less-visited countries because that’s what living up to the YPA ethos of ‘making travel to Africa and afar feel less intimating’ is all about.
Here are the top 5 places that are on our radar this year:
- Zimbabwe. Having recently revisited Zimbabwe (see below), we are re-invigorated by the destination and looking forward to matchmaking clients to the various experiences on offer.
- Uganda. We love gorilla and chimp trekking, and our clients do too! We’re looking forward to getting up close to primates once again this year.
- Iceland. We are planning a trip to Iceland for a group of 15 travelers in September next year. Whether it’s a short layover or a full itinerary, we can assist.
- Belize. It’s a great destination for adventurous families, and we’re excited to be arranging a trip there for clients in April. Highlights include snorkeling on the reefs, taking a scenic helicopter flight, and visiting the Caracol, Rio Frio Cave and more. This destination has also shown up in our well-loved ‘Pyramids of the World’ itinerary.
- French Polynesia. We have clients going on a 10-day honeymoon to Tahiti in May, and Ashley’s brother got engaged on a trip here in December. Overwater bungalows are always a favorite, and there’s a lot to explore.
If an African destination is calling you, our YPA founders, Nick and Ashley, have just returned from a 3-month trip to Africa and here’s what they had to say about Zimbabwe:
Visit Zimbabwe in the green season
“We’ve just visited Zimbabwe, with our 8-month-old baby, and it was pure magic. The green season has so much to offer, and the bush is alive and thriving. Yes, there can be rain showers, but the trade-off is fewer tourists and availability at our favorite (often fully-booked) properties.”
“Zimbabwean hospitality is one of the best and there is a range of accommodation on offer. In January we visited two top properties, Singita Pamushana Lodge and Matetsi Victoria Falls. Both are family-friendly, but also cater to couples, friends and single travelers. We were impressed by not only the lodging but also the vast wilderness areas that these properties are dedicated to conserving. The animals are abundant, and the mix of land and water activities at both properties allows you to explore the area in a variety of fun ways.”
Go ape in Uganda
“The next African destination we’ll be traveling to this year is Uganda. Next door to Rwanda, Uganda’s gorilla trekking permits are half the cost of Rwanda’s, which draws many travelers. The destination is less refined than Rwanda, and the majority of accommodation is 3-4 star, but there are hidden gems throughout the country.”
“Another plus is the fact that Uganda is larger than Rwanda and there’s a lot to explore. We’ve had clients spend 10-14 days exclusively in Uganda. You can gorilla trek and chimpanzee trek, and combine this with driving, walking and boating safaris for a great variety of land and water activities.”
And in other news, we’re spreading our wings…
The recent launch of our brand, Wingspan, has requests coming in for Mexico, Central and South America, Europe and North America. For now, we have moved our YPA office ‘south of the border’ to Nuevo Vallarta, Mexico, where we will be until the end of April.
We are planning some shorter trips while we are here and will keep you posted. Watch this space!