Wellness Travel Trends For 2016

Have you ever felt that you need a holiday to recover from your recent vacation? We’ve all had that mad vacation where mornings start with beer and evenings end with endless champagne. When all we do is binge eat, binge drink and binge sleep. And we come back with sappy, red eyes and joint aches!

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This new travel trend is set to change all that. Wellness travel is bigger now than it ever was and given its popularity, it’s here to stay. It is basically when travel is combined with spiritually enhancing experiences that promote over all well-being and good health. Wellness travel is about connecting with nature and your true self. It has moved ahead of being merely limited to medical tourism and has evolved into a lifestyle enhancing experience that is sought by many.

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Here are the top trends for wellness travel in 2016:

1. Companies across the globe are encouraging wellness in employees

Gone are the times when a firm’s only job was to make profit. Enterprises have come to realize that in order for productivity to increase, employees must be happy and have a healthy emotional IQ too. In lieu of this, many companies are encouraging their workforce to travel and have new experiences besides altering their daily lifestyle to accommodate physical activity and meditation. In Japan, Shinrin-yoku is a concept introduced to make sure that people are exposed to the outdoors and connect with nature. Shinrin-yoku or ‘forest bathing’ is basically about spending time hiking in Japan’s gorgeous forests and enjoying the sounds and smells of nature.

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2. No-phone holidays

Social media might have encouraged us to click more selfies and capture moments electronically rather than in the mind but wellness travel enthusiasts are ditching this trend and are daring to go bare-deviced on holidays. A number of spa resorts and wellness retreats are offering rooms that have no electronic device or wifi to distract their guests. What do you do with all the free time and mind space? Read, relax and rejuvenate.

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3. Wellness Rooms in big hotel chains

Big hotel chains have made sure they have a piece of the wellness tourism pie. Increasingly, we see big names like Westin, Intercontinental and MGM transforming part of their hotels into wellness rooms. From vitamin C infused showers to living walls, these international chains are leaving no stone unturned to ensure that their guests are pampered the natural way. They are also introducing programs targeted to handle stress and optimize wellness.

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4. Wellness offerings on airports

Airports aren’t very far behind too. Big airports like San Francisco International, Dallas Fort Worth and Dubai International have recognized the growing need of wellness centric areas at airports and have rushed to accommodate these needs in their premises. It is not uncommon to see yoga rooms, indoor green spaces and vegan restaurants at such airports now.

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5. Young adults are choosing to spend more on holidays

Millenials are no longer satisfied with ‘beach and sun’ kind of holidays. They are becoming aware about the benefits of wellness and fitness travel and are using their vacation to further their fitness goals. Looking for new explorations, these young travelers are game for new experiences and are already recognizing the need to connect from within. 2016 will see more young people opting for wellness retreats than ever before.

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6. Stronger focus on organically grown food and healthy diets

Wellness travel is not limited to spa, yoga and spiritualism. It encompasses new, unique experiences that connect people with nature and its resources. Eating organic has grown from being a paltry fad to a way of life. People are now looking to not just imbibe new good habits but also further their scope in their life. That is why, hotels and restaurants are paying more attention to locally produced, organic food that offers an authentic experience of the region it is grown in. People are not shy of exploring new ways to eat while on vacation. So whether it is raw vegan food or dishes with ‘living foods’, this trend is only going to gather more steam in 2016.

Image Source: Markus Spiske/Flickr

7. Customization is key

The discerning customer is now demanding to be pleased in specialized ways. The days when people were content with ‘one size fits all’ packages are gone. Instead, resorts and hotels are designing programs that are fit for you and your needs. From wellness packages to food preferences, you can now have it entirely your way on your wellness holiday.

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Plan a Wellness Vacation at some of the most exotic locations around the world with our smart trip planner

8. Surprising locations for wellness

Even though North America and Europe have the bigger chunk of the wellness industry, there are some surprising additions to the list of wellness countries. India has always been an attraction for those who wish to trace the roots of yoga and meditation. Besides that, countries like Columbia, Laos, Costa Rica and Iceland are also becoming popular as wellness locations. These locales have unexplored landscapes and offer plenty of opportunities to connect with history and nature. We see many new locations open up for exploration in 2016.

 Image Source: Gusjer/Flickr

The boost in wellness travel stems from the dissatisfaction of the urban workforce with congested spaces and mundane routines. To really feel free and liberated, we must feel at ease in our own shoes and learn to listen to our body and mind. Wellness travel is an attempt to wipe out, even if just for a few days, the dust and grime that technology and urban life envelops us with. It helps to remind us of what really matters in life. Sometimes, all we need is to just breathe!

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
RESHMA DEWDA RESHMA DEWDA

A hippie hiding in civilized clothes, a borderline feminist and a dreamer stuck in a practical avatar, Reshma is an incorrigible idealist who lives in a black and white world. A robin hood in her own right, she loves to come to the rescue and most times , she ends up rescuing herself in the bargain.

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