Can you believe it – the Holiday Season is almost upon us again! Thankfully, Covid is behind us now, and it is encouraging that many of us are again feeling confident to get out and explore this beautiful planet. Interested in last-minute meaningful Holiday Season travel ideas?
Availability is back to being tight again over the Holidays in popular spots, with many properties sold-out, or with just a room or two left, so act fast to grab any of what is left from the suggestions below.
What follows are ideas for where you can go, and how you can embrace the true meaning of the Holiday Season, and have a meaningful Holiday Season by giving back and helping others:
Galapagos and Ecuador – the Galapagos Islands are extraordinary at any time of year, and highlights in December include the hatching of giant tortoise eggs, so you might get to see baby tortoises on Isabela Island. Marine iguanas are at their colorful best as they try and attract mates, and you may get to see Albatros before they migrate. The warmer, calmer weather in December makes this month ideal for snorkeling, and you may encounter playful sea lion pups.
In Ecuador itself, adventures abound, with fascinating colonial Quito and Cuenca, numerous volcanoes, hot springs, enchanting haciendas, and of course traditional markets.
Make it meaningful: You can help renovate a day-care center and also assist the permanent staff in caring for the children at a center that focuses on low-income families in Quito. It is an inspiring place where your children may become inspired to be future world-changers.
Accommodation currently available: Galapagos Safari Camp
Belize – Explore little-known Mayan ruins, design your own chocolate bars, kayak, snorkel the Belize Barrier Reef, track jaguar, and more
Make it meaningful: Build an eco-friendly stove for a rural Mayan family. These stoves are fantastic in that:
- they are enclosed, so kids don’t fall into open flames;
- they have a chimney to expel the smoke, reducing respiratory problems such as asthma
- they consume much less fuel, so are better for the environment, and for family’s budgets
Accommodation currently available:: Copal Tree Lodge
Guatemala – Hike up volcanoes, explore the villages dotted around postcard-perfect Lake Atitlan, shop for beautiful crafts in Chichicastenango, be in awe of gorgeous Antigua, encounter the Mayan wonders of Tikal, and more
Make it meaningful: Give the gift of sight by fitting and distributing reading glasses to people who cannot afford them.
Accommodation currently available: El Convento
Costa Rica – Zip-line, white water raft (including family-friendly rapids), jungle walks, safari, surf, and so much more.
Make it meaningful: Help at a wildlife rescue center: prepare meals for monkeys, parrots, and more, feed them, maintain their enclosures, and create enrichments to stimulate the animals whilst learning an enormous amount about them.
Accommodation currently available: The Springs Resort
Mexico – Mountain bike, be in awe of Sian Kaan Biosphere Reserve, Chitzen Itza and Tulum, snorkeling, swim in freshwater sinkholes (‘cenotes’), relax on the beach, sail, snorkel, and more.
Make it meaningful: Renovate classrooms, sort donated food and clothing, prepare meals and serve at mealtime, help in the garden
Accommodation currently available: Rosewood Mayakoba
Morocco – Discover the delights of Marrakech and Fes with your private guide, hike in the Atlas Mountains or in the breathtaking valleys around Skoura Oasis, ride a camel in the Sahara Desert, windsurf in Essaouira, and more.
Make it meaningful: Install solar panels for a family, dramatically improving their financial situation and quality of life.
Accommodation currently available: Dar Ahlam
Thailand – Relax on a pristine beach, bike, zip-line, kayak, snorkel, learn how to cook your favorite dishes, explore vibrant cities and ancient ruins, and much more.
Make it meaningful: Help at an elephant conservation center: prepare meals, walk with the elephants, watch them bathe and socialize, and learn so much about these gentle giants.
Accommodation currently available: Soneva Kiri
Whatever you end up doing this Holiday Season, do it well, and with your loved ones.
Feeling inspired to make a difference this Holiday Season? Get in touch today as availability is scarce – I promise to personally help you plan your meaningful luxury family vacation for this December/January.