The 2024 travel bucket list

Best holidays, adventures and experiences to book in 2024

When you make a purchase using links on our site, The Week may earn a commission. All reviews are written independently by our editorial team.

Sign up to The Week's Travel newsletter for destination guides and the latest trends.

The Black Forest by train

Stopping at "enchanting" towns as it winds through the "sweeping" mountains of the Black Forest, the Höllentalbahn (or Hell Valley line) is one of Germany's most beautiful railways, says Mike MacEacheran in The Guardian. The journey along its entire length only takes 90 minutes, but it's worth spending a few days over it. In Donaueschingen – where the River Danube rises – you should visit Haus Fürstenberg, a bright yellow château beloved of Kaiser Wilhelm II, and the palatial 18th century Fürstenberg brewery. Then there's the lake of Titisee, a popular spa destination that's wonderful for ice-skating in winter; and the pretty village of Hinterzarten (also charming in the snow). A night at the old farmstead of Ospelehof can be recommended (the food is "terrific"), before the final, spectacular leg of the journey brings you to the glorious medieval city of Freiburg.

Subscribe to The Week

Escape your echo chamber. Get the facts behind the news, plus analysis from multiple perspectives.

SUBSCRIBE & SAVE
https://cdn.mos.cms.futurecdn.net/flexiimages/jacafc5zvs1692883516.jpg

Sign up for The Week's Free Newsletters

From our morning news briefing to a weekly Good News Newsletter, get the best of The Week delivered directly to your inbox.

From our morning news briefing to a weekly Good News Newsletter, get the best of The Week delivered directly to your inbox.

Sign up

Family fun in Herefordshire

Farm stays for families with small children don't come much more "enchanting" – or blessedly comfortable – than Drovers Rest, says Gemma Bowes in The Times. This smallholding near Hay-on-Wye has six huge safari tents with all mod cons and three stone holiday cottages, each sleeping four. There are lots of "dinky" rare-breed animals to pet and feed, including pot-bellied pygmy goats, Falabella ponies and Ouessant sheep. Other diversions include table tennis and a "wild playground". Locals "stream in" to eat at the "industrial-chic meets barn-boho" restaurant, where the South African owners cook "scrumptious" food with influences from their homeland, including the use of a braai. And there's much to do nearby – from visiting Hay's bookshops to walking the Offa's Dyke Path or canoeing on the Wye.
Tents cost from £130 per night for four (droversrest.co.uk).

A seaside rest cure in Denmark

After struggling to recover from a hip operation, I fancied an old-fashioned "rest cure" by the sea, says Kat Brown in The Sunday Times – and found the perfect place in Denmark. As far as I can tell, there's nowhere in the UK quite like the Kurhotel Skodsborg. A former royal palace set between the sea and a peaceful nature reserve, it became a sanatorium in 1898, and now has onsite medical centres specialising in physio and sleep-related treatments. I spent most of the time in the spa, however, and particularly enjoyed the saunagus, a combination of sauna, aromatherapy and cold-water dipping in an outdoor plunge pool or the sea. The plant-based food in the restaurant was "moreish", and I left after three days feeling "utterly restored". Doubles cost from £236 b&b.

Staying in a castle in Argyll

A "bijou" 16th century stronghold recently refurbished as a holiday let, Kilmartin Castle is a great base for a break in the Scottish Highlands, says Gemma Bowes in The Times. Situated near the coast of Argyll, in the village of Kilmartin – a twohour drive northwest of Glasgow – it has five "romantic" bedrooms, most of which have deep copper baths, log-burners, and "hip" art (from cinema posters to plastic Pac-Man Ghost statues). There's a swimming pond, a private chef if needed, and excellent guides on hand to lead hiking and kayaking trips (look out for sea otters). Best of all, however, are the archaeological wonders of the Kilmartin Museum and Kilmartin Glen. The Iron and Bronze Age sites here (including Dunadd hillfort, the capital of the Gaelic kingdom of Dál Riata) have few equals in the UK. The castle sleeps ten, from £2,940 for three nights self-catering.

A Caribbean gem in Costa Rica

A "dusty, ramshackle" town on Costa Rica's Caribbean coast, Puerto Viejo de Talamanca is a "glorious" place, says Mark Palmer in The Mail on Sunday. Its indigenous people, the Bribri tribe, are still going strong, and so is the Jamaican community that settled here around 1900, bringing "cricket, maypole dancing and an interest in Shakespeare", among many other things. More recently, an international array of artists, hippies and surfers has joined the mix. Stay at Aguas Claras, a nearby hotel with "cabanas on stilts" beside a beach so beautiful and unspoilt, it made me think of "what Barbados might once have been like". And don't miss the Cahuita National Park, a nature reserve with an "important" coral reef and a forest where visitors often see sloths, raccoons, monkeys and more.

An Anglican treasure in Malta

Chunks of masonry began falling off it eight years ago, but thanks to a major funding campaign and a restoration project, the spire of Valletta's St Paul's Anglican Pro-Cathedral is safe once more. Its "honey-hued" spire dominates the skyline of Malta's capital, says Juliet Rix in The Daily Telegraph, and the building it crowns (a cathedral without a bishop, hence the "Pro") is well worth a visit. Commissioned in 1838 by William IV's widow, the Dowager Queen Adelaide, it was modelled on London's St Martin-inthe-Fields, and has been "an embodiment of Anglo-Maltese relations" since the 19th century. Princess Elizabeth and Prince Philip worshipped here when they lived in Malta (from 1949 to 1951), and inside the church there are memorials relating to the Allied effort in the Second World War, in which Malta played such a crucial role.

Wellness in the Caribbean

I used to be a spa junkie, but these days I prefer something "less demanding", says Shane Watson in The Times – "an old-fashioned holiday with wellness benefits". 

This winter, I found the right balance at StolenTime (formerly the Malabar Beach Hotel), an "unpretentious", all-inclusive beach resort in St Lucia with an impressive range of activities. You might go for archery, or "sunrise meditation" – but I was drawn there by the tai chi classes. The teacher, Edwin, is a "quietly awesome" St Lucian whose lessons combine qigong ("exercises to relax the body") with meditative tai chi, "the discipline's slowed-down version". I'm "easily bored" by exercise, but I found these "flowing, balletic" movements "wholly absorbing", and noticed that my muscles were tired and my mood markedly improved after just one session. Doubles cost from £703, all-inclusive; stolentime.com 

A historic train ride in Piedmont

Countless railway branch lines have been axed across Europe in recent decades. But in Italy, 19 of the most beautiful are now protected – and you can ride them on the historic trains of the Fondazione FS Italiane, says Taras Grescoe in Travel + Leisure. The carriages, with their wooden benches and wrought-iron stanchions, are familiar from countless classic Italian films, and the views are for the most part wonderfully timeless.

I chose a day-long excursion from Turin through the vineyards of Piedmont to the village of Canelli, where my fellow passengers and I toured the cathedral-like wine cellars. We also had a "leisurely" al fresco lunch, and on the journey back, lowered the windows to inhale the "woodsmoke-scented evening breeze" and wave as children ran out of trackside farmhouses to hail the train's return. Visit fondazionefs.it for more information. 

Staying with the Gladstones

Hawarden Castle, an 18th century mansion in Flintshire, has long been the private residence of the Gladstone family – including William Gladstone, the 19th century PM. Now, however, his great-great grandson has opened up one of its wings as a holiday let, says Sarah Baxter in The Daily Telegraph. It’s grand, but the decor is “joyous”, with “richly painted” walls and an “eclectic” collection of art. The apartment has five double bedrooms, a private garden with a wood-fired hot tub, and access to a lake (good for a wild swim). 

Guests can visit Sir William’s private library (preserved much as he left it), and participate in activities on the estate, including summer “micro-festivals”, and yoga in the ruins of a 13th century castle. From £5,600 per week, sleeping ten, or £2,240, sleeping four; hawardenestateholidays.co.uk

A surfers' idyll in the Philippines

Surfers catch waves on the coastline of Siargao

(Image credit: Matteo Colombo / Getty Images)

There are plans for an international airport in Siargao, and for "blocky" hotels. But for now, this island in the southeastern Philippines is a low-key surfers' paradise, said Chris Schalkx in Condé Nast Traveller, with beautiful beaches, fabulous reef breaks and a main town of "scrappy board shops and hammock-strung hostels". 

The smartest place to stay is Nay Palad Hideaway, which offers "pure toes-in-the-sand relaxation", with its "frangipani-scented gardens", menu-less restaurant and hidden yoga pavilions. They can arrange for you to go on a boat trip to an idyllic swimming or diving spot on a neighbouring island – or you might take a tour of Siargao's interior with Lokal Lab, a Siargao-based NGO whose projects include a "bamboo-clad" Tropical Academy, and a "showcase farm". Visit naypaladhideaway.com and lokallab.org.

Winter walking in Greece

A man walks along a path in Monodendri, one of the Zagori villages

(Image credit: Judith Engbers / Getty Images)

With its high mountains and beautiful old villages, the Zagori region of northwest Greece is wonderful hiking territory. Most visitors come during summer, but it is particularly “magical” in the winter, said Susan Smillie in The Guardian, when icicles overhang its deep spring pools and the roofs of its Ottoman merchants’ mansions are heavy with snow. 

Everything feels “pristine and empty” – as “otherworldly” as Narnia – and yet there are still all kinds of guided activities on offer, including canyoning, skiing, rafting and horse trekking. Among the best places to stay are En Chora Vezitsa (a family-run guesthouse that hosts cookery and yoga classes, and overlooks the spectacular Vikos Gorge), and Mikro Papigo 1700, a “perfectly preserved” 18th century house in Papigo – “the most timeless of all Zagori villages” – with a hammam, sauna, Jacuzzi and spa. Alpine Zone offers year-round guided activities.

Narbonne's many charms

A canal in the French city of Narbonne

(Image credit: amoklv / Getty Images)

Under Roman rule, Narbonne was the capital of a vast southern province of France. It's not nearly so important today, said Anthony Peregrine in The Sunday Telegraph – but it remains a splendid little city. Its old food market is the "liveliest" for miles around. And though only half of it was built, its gothic cathedral was conceived on a superlatively grand scale. 

The city also has a "gripping" museum of Roman history, and a museum dedicated to the chansonnier Charles Trenet, in the "neat petit-bourgeois" house where he was born. And if Narbonne's own attractions aren't enough for you, bear in mind that it lies within easy reach of many others, including Mediterranean beaches (as little as ten miles away), the fortified city of Carcassonne, the Canal du Midi, and an endless array of good wineries.

Tbilisi: Europe's 'next Berlin'

A cable cart is pictured travelling across Tbilisi

Explore Tbilisi's Soviet relics and medieval forts

(Image credit: Stefan Cristian Cioata / Getty Images)

With its co-working spaces and natural wine bars, Tbilisi has "garnered a reputation as the 'next Berlin' among clued-in city trippers" in recent years, said Chris Schalkx in The Sunday Times. But the capital of Georgia is "more than a hipster honeypot: this former Silk Road-era trading hub has passed hands between Mongol khans, Persian shahs and Russian rulers", and they've all left their mark. 

There is a lot to explore: medieval forts, Soviet relics, "crumbling roadside inns"; and when you've had your "urban fix", the country's "snow-capped mountain ranges and frozen-in-time villages are just a short drive or train ride away". As for places to stay, "few places better sum up modern-day Tbilisi" than Stamba, an unpretentious hotel in a former printing factory, where the rooms "meld brutalist bare concrete with glam-rock licks of brass and leather". Doubles from £135 (USD$172); stambahotel.com.

Riding the cobbles of Flanders

Two bikes propped up against a bridge in Ghent

Explore the 'seemingly never-ending' cycle routes through Flanders

(Image credit: Roman_Gorielov / Getty Images)

"The Belgians love their cycling, but the Flemish worship it," said Steve Chamberlain in The Guardian. "Bike sculptures lurk in fields"; and the countryside is criss-crossed with "carefully delineated" cycle routes and "seemingly never-ending" bike lanes. So Flanders is a great place for a cycling holiday – especially if you're not put off by the notion of rattling over the region's "notorious" cobbles, or pavés (though there are routes that don't feature them). 

The town of Brakel makes for a good base. The Flandrien Hotel is a "cyclists' haven", and there are three Ronde van Vlaanderen circuits in the surrounding region. Alternatively, there is the 45km "Peace" route, which starts in Ypres and goes past battlefields and war cemeteries.

A spiritual retreat in Moray

A monk prayers in front of a candle

Retreat to to the Roman Catholic monastery, Pluscarden Abbey 

(Image credit: Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images)

"In the frantic modern world, the notion of a 'retreat' seems to have a currency as never before," said Christopher Akers in the FT. There are fasting retreats in Italian palazzos, Himalayan yoga camps and "gut-health resets in Swiss spas"; but at Pluscarden Abbey, a medieval Roman Catholic monastery, in the countryside 35 miles east of Inverness, it's possible to go on a retreat that is "far older than most" – and free, though donations are gratefully received. 

Male visitors share simple meals with the monks, which are eaten in silence; the women's accommodation is self-catering. Retreats are not directed and, apart from helping with chores, guests spend their time as they like – immersed in the beauty of Gregorian chanting, reading, walking, praying, or helping the monks in manual labour. Visitors come from all walks of life, and camaraderie is quickly established. As the days pass, "I find myself unwinding – more than I ever have on a tropical beach."

A palace in the snow in Sweden

Explore the wilds of Dalarna province in the winter

Explore the wilds of Dalarna province in the winter 

(Image credit: RPBaiao/Shutterstock)

Digging a snow cave and sleeping in it was a "boyhood dream" of mine, said Kevin Rushby in The Guardian, but not one it has been easy to realise in the UK. In the icy forests of central Sweden, however, it's a realistic goal – and Do The North can help you achieve it. This adventure company runs week-long trips that feel "like going away with a gang of friends" – kayaking and camping on Sweden's islands in the summer, and exploring the wilds of Dalarna province in the winter. 

The first stop in Dalarna is an "idyllic" cabin in the woods, with log burners, lanterns, antique furniture and a sauna. Activities include cross-country skiing and ice-skating, and an "extraordinary" range of kit (including beautiful old sleds) is then distributed for an expedition up to the alpine plateau of the Fulufjället National Park. There, you learn how to put up a tent in a blizzard – and, if conditions are right, those who want to can dig a snow hole. On my trip, we created a "palace", with reindeer skins and niches for candles. Wonderfully cosy within it, I enjoyed "one of the best night's sleep I've ever had". 

The trip costs from £1,437pp ($1,821); dothenorth.com

Big Sky: glamour in Montana

Big Sky is the third-largest ski resort in North America

Big Sky is the third-largest ski resort in North America 

(Image credit: Heidi Besen/Shutterstock)

For decades, Big Sky was off the radar of most winter sports enthusiasts: "being somewhat difficult to get to, and offering great skiing but not much else". But this resort in Montana is "in the midst of a transformation", said Gloria Liu in Travel + Leisure, with "increasingly luxe" accommodation, and ever-more "hip" bars and restaurants. And there are now more direct flights to nearby Bozeman from cities including New York. 

It still can't rival the "off-mountain glitz" of Aspen or Jackson, but its "down-to-earth vibe" has an appeal of its own – as does the sheer quantity and quality of skiing to be had here. Big Sky is the third-largest ski resort in North America, after Whistler Blackcomb and Park City Resort. It has more thrilling advanced terrain than any other US resort, but also has a lot to offer beginner and intermediate skiers. Among the resort's swankiest hotels are the Montage and the Yellowstone Club, and a One&Only resort is due to open in 2025. Expert skiers might also enjoy a few nights at the Summit Hotel, which offers early morning lift access to some of the most challenging slopes.

Raiatea: a delightful island in French Polynesia

Raiatea belongs to the Society Islands

Raiatea belongs to the Society Islands 

(Image credit: Nancy Pauwels/Shutterstock)

Crowned with verdant volcanic peaks and encircled by a lagoon so translucent that to float in it feels like "levitation", the island of Raiatea is a sliver of heaven in the heart of the South Pacific, said Oliver Smith in the FT. Often said to be "Hawaiki", the central homeland of Polynesian mythology, it belongs to the Society Islands, one of five archipelagos that make up French Polynesia. But while some nearby islands, such as Tahiti and Bora Bora, are quite urbanised and touristy, Raiatea is the sort of place where "people still wave to passers-by". There are a dozen villages around its coast, with "peach-coloured" Protestant churches, and bungalows with corrugated iron roofs that "chime like glockenspiels during tropical downpours". 

The island offers wonderful walking, snorkelling, kayaking and sailing, and also has one of Polynesia's greatest archaeological sites, the temple of Taputapuatea, from which the priest Tupaia joined Captain Cook on his first Pacific voyage, in 1769. 

See tahititourisme.uk, raiatea-lodge-hotel.com, and tahitiyachtcharter.com

The Algarve's mellow charm in winter

Faro is a 'funky' city with a cobblestoned historic centre

Faro is a 'funky' city with a cobblestoned historic centre 

(Image credit: Mazur Travel)

I used to be dismissive of the Algarve, said Audrey Gillan in The Times, imagining it as "a place for golfers and fly-and-floppers who like a drink". But then I visited this region, in the far south of Portugal, saw what lay beyond the bars and golf courses – including glorious beaches, elegant old towns, and beautiful hiking trails – and liked it so much that I moved here. My favourite time of year is the low season, when it's less busy, but the weather is often mild and sunny, and the sea, though nippy, "is still dippable". 

The regional capital, Faro, is a "funky" city with a pretty, cobblestoned historic centre and lots of fine modernist architecture. From there, you might take the train east along the coast, stopping at the enchanting fishing town of Olhão (which is where I live) and "lovely" Tavira. Among the "chicest" of the region's five-star hotels is the Vila Vita Parc, which has a restaurant with two well-deserved Michelin stars, and also manages some "luxurious" holiday lets with butler service. But there's also plenty of excellent accommodation at more affordable rates (such as Casa Âmago and Morgado do Quintão), and many other wonderful restaurants (I particularly recommend Austa, in Almancil, and Alameda, in Faro).

Beautiful Grenada's dramatic past

Saint George's is Grenada's pretty capital

Saint George's is Grenada's pretty capital  

(Image credit: Pawel Kazmierczak/Shutterstock)

Grenada is one of the most beautiful and unspoilt islands in the Lesser Antilles, said Mark Stratton in The Daily Telegraph – and that is partly because of the short-lived socialist revolution of 1983, which scared off the big hotel chains just as prime coastlines in other Caribbean nations were disappearing under concrete. Today, roughly 80% of the island's tourist accommodation sits close to the pretty capital, Saint George's, beyond which lie towering mountains, undeveloped beaches, coastal villages and "bird-rich" rainforest – all "a delight to explore". 

There are spice farms too, as well as small-scale, "bean-to-bar" chocolate makers, most of which are open to visitors. And here and there you find reminders of the tragic events of 40 years ago, when the violent overthrow by hardliners of the country's moderate socialist leader, Maurice Bishop, prompted the US to invade and occupy Grenada for two years. Eeriest of all is the disused Pearls Airport, where two Russian-made planes still stand, decaying, as though US marines had only withdrawn a few weeks ago.

Art and culture in Turin

Turin is a handsome city with baroque avenues and squares

Turin is a handsome city with baroque avenues and squares 

(Image credit: Sean Pavone/Shutterstock)

Turin doesn't enjoy the same fame as "fashion-fuelled" Milan, but I've always preferred it to its relatively "brash" neighbour, said Nick Trend in The Daily Telegraph. Long the seat of the Duchy of Savoy and, from 1861 to 1865, the capital of newly unified Italy, it is a handsome city, with baroque avenues and squares, and its fine museums make it one of Europe's most indispensable destinations for art enthusiasts. 

Among the best are the Sabauda Gallery (Old Masters); the Museo Egizio (which "outguns" the British Museum with its ancient Egyptian treasures collection); and the Castello di Rivoli, Italy's "leading museum of contemporary art". Most distinctive, however, is the Lingotto building, the old Fiat factory on the roof of which Michael Caine's gang raced Minis in "The Italian Job". Built in the 1920s, it is one of the world's most beautiful concrete structures, and now houses an excellent art museum, the Pinacoteca Agnelli.

A new tour of Mont Blanc

Tour du Mont Blanc

Enjoy panoramas of some of Europe's finest mountain scenery

(Image credit: Inntravel)

Mont Blanc stands proud as Western Europe's highest peak. Its snowy slopes and rocky ridges have long attracted adventurers seeking an ultimate high. Yet for those after a more immersive adventure, a high without ascending the heights, Inntravel is introducing a new Tour of Mont Blanc holiday for 2024. The 11-night trip offers a variation on the classic Tour de Mont Blanc, a Grand Randonnée route, taking in France, Italy and Switzerland, with a non-stop panorama of some of Europe's finest mountain scenery. Inntravel's holiday allows for a rest day in Courmayeur, as well as shortening certain sections through use of shuttle buses or riding by cable car, itself an iconic Alpine experience. 

Available from 26 June to 15 September 2024. Price from £2,195 ($2,727) per person based on two sharing, including 11 nights' b&b accommodation, four dinners, route notes and maps. Flights extra. Guests can also travel from London by rail, from £2,735 ($3,398) per person: UK to Paris (Eurostar), Paris to Geneva (TGV); inntravel.co.uk 

Highlights of Japan family holiday

Kyoto old town in Japan

Learn about Japan's spiritual traditions in Kyoto

(Image credit: f11photo/Shutterstock )

Intrepid Travel will have more than 100 new itineraries on its 2024 calendar. One of the trips is a "Japan Highlights" holiday, where families can learn the spiritual traditions of the country, from geishas and temples in Kyoto, to modern youth culture of quirky fashion, street art, and hole-in-the-wall bars and restaurants in Harajuku. They'll also stay at a rural tea farm and see how tea is harvested by local farmers.

The eight-day trip starts from Tokyo and finishes in Osaka. Seven breakfasts, two lunches, two dinners, transport (Metro, local train, bullet train) and accommodation (hotel for six nights and a farm stay for one night) are included. From £2,709 ($3,435) per person; intrepidtravel.com  

Wilderness walking: highlights of the Highlands

Wilderness walking: highlights of the Highlands

Explore the Highlands' wild beauty

(Image credit: Wilderness Scotland)

This new nine-night, fully guided trip by Wilderness Scotland combines the very best of the Highlands' wild beauty with superb, luxury hotels, offering the finest seasonal food, all while enjoying some stunning hiking. Highlights include a boat trip to the remote shores of Loch Coruisk on Skye; hiking in Glencoe in the company of red deer and golden eagles; a visit to the Culloden battlefield; hiking in the Cairngorms National Park; and guided tours of Scone Palace and the Dundreggan Rewilding Centre. The group will stay in the Highlands' most sumptuous hotels, including the Fife Arms and Isle of Eriska Hotel. 

Price from £4,895 ($6,205) per person sharing, including nine nights' accommodation, all meals, guiding and transfers. Depart 6 May, 3 June or 26 August 2024; wildernessscotland.com 

Ski and surf adventure across Chile

Ski and surf adventure across Chile

Go on a heart-pounding skiing trip in the Andes

(Image credit: Pelorus)

Embark on an extraordinary Chilean adventure with Pelorus that blends heart-pounding skiing in the Andes with breathtaking surfing at Punta de Lobos. Starting at El Morado Lodge, in the Maipo River valley, a week of helicopter-assisted skiing unfolds, guided by experts with decades of experience traversing the Central Andes and Patagonia. Transitioning to a private ski lodge in Curico, your journey takes you closer to the allure of Pichilemu’s coastal treasures and the iconic waves of Punta de Lobos. Days are flexible, allowing you to choose between skiing and surfing as conditions and whims dictate. 

From July to December 2024, eight nights from £30,000 ($37,253) per person; pelorusx.com

Loch Ness, The Jacobite and Skye rail tour

Loch Ness, The Jacobite & Skye Rail Tour

Guests will travel on the stunning West Highland Line

(Image credit: The Adventure People)

The Adventure People has launched a new collection of train-based tours in Scotland and Ireland, including an itinerary to Loch Ness, The Jacobite and Skye. Running from April to October 2024, the trip departs from Glasgow and ends in Edinburgh. Guests will travel on the stunning West Highland Line, including a journey on the world famous Jacobite steam train. Other highlights include exploring the rugged beauty of the Isle of Skye, enjoying a cruise on Loch Ness, catching a glimpse of Britain's highest mountain, Ben Nevis, and discovering the lively capital of the Highlands, Inverness. 

Price includes accommodation in small hotels or b&bs, daily breakfast, two lunches and three dinners. Seven days from £2,273 ($2,823) per person; theadventurepeople.com 

Nepal: hike the Forbidden Kingdom

Hike the Forbidden Kingdom in Nepal

Embark on an unforgettable three-day trek

(Image credit: Pelorus)

Journey into the heart of the mystical and untouched Himalayas in Nepal. Take your own spiritual journey through the Forbidden Kingdom with Pelorus, exploring the very landscapes that have captivated adventurers for generations – a privilege granted to only a few. Embark on an unforgettable three-day trek through the rain shadow of the Himalayas, leading you to the mystical kingdom of Lo Manthang. Traverse arid deserts, ancient caves and snow-capped peaks as you forge your path. 

The journey culminates in an extraordinary helicopter ride back to Kathmandu, a spectacular flight between the towering walls of Fishtail and Annapurna South, granting you an unparalleled perspective of Annapurna Peak, Gangapurna and the lake town of Pokhara. 

From March to May and September to October 2024; 12 nights from £22,000 ($27,888) per person; pelorusx.com 

A £1m three-month family world tour

Burj Khalifa in Dubai, UAE

Dubai is the final stop on the £1m trip

(Image credit: Rasto SK/Shutterstock)

Luxury tour operator Destinology has launched one of the world's most expensive family holidays – a three-month trip to Africa, India, Asia, Australia and Dubai that costs £1 million for two adults and two children. Departing London on 10 April 2024 and returning on 20 July 2024, these travellers will visit a total of 10 countries, and accommodation will include the finest city hotels, exclusive wilderness lodges, beautiful rainforest cabins and luxury glamping. All air travel is business class or by private helicopter charter. 

Prices start from £250,000 ($316,916) per person based on four people travelling. Includes all flights, luxury accommodation throughout and excursions; tailor-made-holidays.destinology.co.uk 

An expedition into Chad's Sahara Desert

A view across Chad's Ennedi desert

A view across Chad's Ennedi desert

(Image credit: S.V.S. TCHAD)

Chad's Ennedi Desert is typically only ventured into by nomads and their camel trains. In 2024, Explorations Company is offering a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for intrepid adventurers to join a small group expedition into this Unesco World Heritage site. Guests will experience a privately guided safari at Warda Camp and a camel trek across the Sahara, with expert guides on hand throughout their off-the-grid two-week trip. And to soak up the breathtaking landscape from a different perspective, a helicopter trip taking in the Tibesti Mountains and Zakouma National Park can be arranged too. 

From $23,000 (£18,340) per person based on a group of six. Price is based on a two-week trip, excluding helicopter supplement and international flights; explorationscompany.com

A Swiss heli-ski safari

A helicopter flies through the Alps

Take a helicopter to the top of some of the best peaks

(Image credit: Swiss Discovery)

Thrill-seeking skiers can take their passion to new heights with this 10-day cross-border itinerary curated by Leo Trippi, winner of the best ski travel agent at the World Ski Awards in 2023 for a record 10th year in a row. Take a helicopter to the top of some of the best peaks in the most renowned resorts in the Swiss, French and Italian Alps before carving your way off-piste, across remote mountains and down glaciers. No two heli-ski safaris are the same, with guests being encouraged to tailor their adventure to suit their preferences. And, for those looking to improve their snow skills, lessons with the likes of Marc Garcia and Jean-Jacques Rey can even be arranged too. 

From CHF24,000 (£21,666/$27,170) per person based on a group of eight including transfers, accommodation, ski guide, ski passes and ski rental; leotrippi.com

To continue reading this article...
Continue reading this article and get limited website access each month.
Get unlimited website access, exclusive newsletters plus much more.
Cancel or pause at any time.
Already a subscriber to The Week?
Not sure which email you used for your subscription? Contact us