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Seven 2017 travel trends we’re excited about

It’s a brand new year and the promise of new discoveries, new adventures and of course, new trends, is in the air. The Portfolio Team is committed to bringing you the freshest travel ideas and happenings, so to start the year with a bang, we’ve put together some of what we feel will be the hottest trends for 2017 – let’s do this!

Go on a conservation safari

Let’s not kid: travellers have been flocking to Africa for years to embark on an authentic safari, bringing them face to face with the majestic creatures of the wild. This will still be true in 2017, but we feel conservation safaris will be what visitors are most interested in. People not only want to experience a safari, but they also want to give back to the environment and the wildlife.

We love: Thonga Beach Lodge in the iSimangaliso Wetland Park for its turtle tracking nocturnal walks and drives. Trained guides lead you in search of egg-laying turtles – a truly unforgettable experience (only available between November and February each year). Scorpion and spider night walks are also available between March and October.

**These are not considered conservation safaris but they do give you the opportunity to have a unique encounter with these creatures.**

Explore on foot

There’s something deeply rewarding about discovering a new (or old) place on foot. This year we expect to see loads more travellers ditching public transport for good old-fashioned walking or cycling tours. Included in this will be walking safaris, a special experience that allows you to get up close to nature, particularly its smallest features.

Find out which of our luxury private game reserves and safari lodges offer walking safaris here.

Take more weekend trips

Sure, while those longer, action-packed holidays filled with new experiences, people and places are always exciting, they’re not always achievable in terms of time and budget. That’s why we think we’re going to see more travellers enjoying weekend trips away – they may be shorter getaways, but they shouldn’t be underestimated. Getting away for a weekend can do wonders for your mind, body and soul, not to mention somewhat quenching that wanderlust thirst more frequently.

(The Robertson Small Hotel pictured)

Discover our selection of:

Weekend breaks around Johannesburg

Weekend breaks around Cape Town

Weekend breaks around Durban

Weekend breaks around Port Elizabeth

Keeping it local

Local really is lekker! As we mentioned, those lengthy trips to exotic places abroad are always wonderful, but there’s something to be said about the charm and splendour of the little local gems right here on our South African doorstep. The country is filled with a variety of interesting places to explore and while the rest of the world offers the same, we shouldn’t overlook what we have right under our noses. In 2017, we’re expecting to see a bigger drive towards local travel.

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Indigenous tourism experiences

Main landmarks, sites and monuments can very much take centre stage when discovering a new place and we don’t disagree. Experiencing a culture and getting to know the locals has always been a huge part of travel, but in 2017, we feel this is going to ramp up a notch. For example, people are likely to take even more of an interest in visiting rural communities on guided tours to see first-hand how true locals live and to get a taste of the traditional ways of life. This can be a very rewarding way of experiencing a place and can truly enhance a travel journey.

Discover the colours and textures of Limpopo when you stay at Madi a Thavha Mountain Lodge with a variety of tours and experiences, offering a peak into local living.

Eco-friendly stays

Environmentally aware travel is definitely on the up and up with a number of eco-friendly accommodation options having popped up in the last few years. More and more travellers are seeking to stay at places that display a conscious commitment to respecting and preserving the environment, be it through eco-friendly design, water-saving methods or sustainable approaches to food and energy. In 2017, we expect to see even more of an interest in “Going Green” when it comes to travel.

Enjoy the fruits of the organic gardens of Summerfields Rose Retreat & Spa along the famous Panorama Route.

Take a look at Portfolio’s list of eco lodges available here.

(Summerfields and Grootbos Nature Reserve Garden and Forest Lodges pictured above)

Multi-destination trips

Set to be even bigger in the coming year, multi-destination trips will be all the rage. Travellers want to get the most out of their trips, doing and seeing as much as possible, so they’re likely to include more than one place in a single holiday. This is an excellent approach and one that can even be applied to local travel. Road-trips can be a great and affordable way to see many parts of the country on one trip and because you’re in control, you can choose where to stop along the way and for how long. The possibilities are endless...

The popular Garden Route can be an ideal area along which to hop from place to place, as is the South Coast of KwaZulu-Natal.

We’re sure that as the year unfolds, many more trends will emerge but for now, we hope these have inspired you to get out there and explore.

Our fabulous res team would be happy to help you plan your 2017 (and beyond) trip, so get in touch for assistance and guidance.