After the Covid 19 health crisis, travel takes on a new taste. This is what makes traveling in 2022 so special. It’s the year of return – with vaccines readily available and borders nearly fully open, our travel calendars have started to fill up again. Now, as we plan our travels in 2022, it’s clear our travel priorities have changed. We think about the impact of our actions on local communities during our stay.
This year’s list of best places to visit reflects this change in mentality. We hope this will make it easier to plan your next plan to travel in 2022 and help you figure out where to go first from the 20 exciting places that were on our list.
Thirty years ago, Serbia did not exist as the independent, modern nation we know today. In fact, together with other countries like Croatia and Slovenia, it was part of Yugoslavia. But after the dissolution of the latter, Serbia began to emerge as one of the major tourist centers of the region.
This Western Balkan country is a wonderful country, perfect for traveling in 2022. It offers incredible nightlife, delicious food, hospitable people and some of the most breathtaking scenery in all of Europe. There is, for example, the Pannonian plain, which many describe as the most fertile land in Europe. On the other side, there are mountainous and arid peaks at an altitude of 2000 m.
The capital, Belgrade, is rich in nightlife and often compared to Berlin in the 90s. But, it will get a luxury upgrade in 2022 with the opening of a St. Regis. This hotel will be in a 42-storey tower that will be the tallest skyscraper in the Balkans outside of Istanbul. It is the perfect addition to the new chic urban waterfront district of Belgrade.
Serbia’s second largest city, Novi Sad, is also one of the three European Capitals of Culture for 2022. Incidentally, it is one of the first non-EU cities to receive this honor. This progressive city center of music, art and literature sits on the Danube. This is the Serbian city where you find contemporary art galleries and performance spaces that will host events and exhibitions throughout the year.
Trøndelag County, Norway
Trøndelag county in central Norway has become a world-famous gastronomic region in recent years. The region’s diverse landscape – forests, mountains, fjords and fields – produces high-quality seafood, organic dairy products and fresh vegetables, which farmers share locally and with restaurants around the world. It is a perfect destination to travel in 2022.
Trondheim-Trøndelag has been named European Region of Gastronomy 2022, and to see what it’s all about, food connoisseurs should start at the newly refurbished Hotel Britannia to dine at the Michelin-starred Speilsalen, the Norwegian restaurant in the year 2020. chef Christopher Davidsen’s signature dish, consisting of scallops from the island of Frøya fried in organic butter from the town of Røros and served with celery and caviar.
Visit Bula Neobistro for chef Renée Fagerhoei’s lamb from Madsøy Island with an anchovy and green peppercorn sauce. Stop at chef Heidi Bjerkan’s Michelin-star Credo (pictured) for grilled langoustine tail or langoustine soup, and finish your tasting tour at Kraft Bodega, where chef Thomas Bogan serves up a delicious dessert of waffles with ice cream with porcini mushrooms, Norwegian potatoes, and brown cheese, all dishes you won’t find anywhere else.
The region hosts several annual celebrations, such as the Trondheim Wine Festival in March, the Trondheim Brewery Festival and the Trøndelag Food Festival, one of Europe’s biggest, both in July, and the Trondheim Gin Festival in August. Consider timing your visit around one of these events, where you’re bound to be surrounded by like-minded people.
Alberta’s turquoise lakes and snow-capped mountains have always drawn crowds. But there’s a new draw for those returning to travel again in 2022: a spotlight on the region’s Indigenous heritage.
Fort Edmonton Park, Canada’s largest living history museum , is now home to the Indigenous Peoples Experience. It is an immersive 30,000 square foot exhibit exploring First Nations and Métis culture. For a deeper dive into the area’s thriving Métis community, head to the Métis Crossing Cultural Interpretation Center. The latter recently launched its new animal park and will soon open a 40-room boutique pavilion adorned with Métis artwork. Later, the property will also launch Whispers from the Stars, an evening where Métis knowledge holders will tell stories about the constellations.
The annual Jasper Dark Sky Festival in Jasper National Park Dark Sky Preserve also includes more Indigenous voices in its programming. Those planning a stay in Jasper can expect a new 88-room nature-themed hotel to open in June from local hospitality and attractions company Pursuit.
Banff launched new experiences. In particular the 360° Dome. It’s a private, open-air restaurant at the Fairmont Banff Springs that pairs local dishes like buffalo ribs with views of the Bow Valley. Next summer, the historic hotel will launch a $28 million renovation of its Royal Suite and Fairmont Gold rooms. Visitors this winter can end the evening at the Banff Gondola with Nightrise, a multi-sensory experience (December 2 to March 12) that highlights the historical significance of the Stoney Nakoda Nation through multimedia storytelling against a backdrop of mountains.
The southernmost of Japan ‘s four main islands , Kyushu is known for its vibrant culinary culture, abundance of historic sites, subtropical climate, and laid-back reputation. It cannot be missing from a list of the best destinations to travel to in 2022.
Despite its seemingly remote location, Kyushu is surprisingly accessible, both by air via Japan’s many national carriers and by Shinkansen (bullet train). A flight from Tokyo to Fukuoka, Kyushu’s largest city, takes just under two hours, while a train ride from Shin-Osaka Station to Fukuoka’s Hakata Station takes about two and a half hours.
Kyushu’s rail network will get a noticeable boost when the Nishi-Kyushu Shinkansen, linking the historic port city of Nagasaki with Takeo Onsen in Saga Prefecture, opens. Foreigners can take advantage of deeply discounted rail passes throughout Kyushu, with unlimited rides on all trains operated by the JR Kyushu Railway Company.
Onsen lovers are also spoiled for choice in Kyushu. In fact, hot springs are dotted everywhere, from the famous black sand beaches of Ibusuki in Kagoshima Prefecture to the rural enclave of Yufuin in Oita. In the summer, Hoshino Resorts will open Kai Yufuin, a luxury property designed by renowned Japanese architect Kengo Kuma, with 45 rooms in the remote onsen town.
Those looking for a little more adventure should head to the town of Sasebo in Nagasaki Prefecture for a luxury catamaran cruise around the Kujuku Islands. Some packages include meals, but it’s also possible to seek out a Sasebo Burger, a popular meal whose influence dates back in part to the large number of American servicemen who arrived in the city after World War II.