The Mindful Traveler: Four Destinations to Inspire Serenity, Clarity and Relaxation
To pay homage to Stress Awareness Month in April, we have selected four ultimate peaceful destinations across the globe perfect for the mindful traveler. Sometimes all the body and mind needs is some good rest and relaxation and, with the world of international travel opening up, experiencing a new destination can have a remarkably positive impact on our wellbeing.
With 78% of global travelers saying that taking time to mentally unwind is their motivation to travel*, why not take some much-needed time out from the hustle and bustle of daily life? From the natural beauty of Costa Rica to the cultural haven of Japan, this list of serene and seriously stunning spots around the globe will help travelers find peace of mind and clarity.
Escape to Alajuela in Costa Rica and explore the beauty of Mother Nature. Travelers can clear their mind with a relaxing soak in the Termales del Bosque Hot Springs, surround themselves with the enchanting scenery of the bright blue Rio Celeste River, or take a scenic hike around the Poas volcano where sweet silence, space and serenity awaits.
Where to stay: Nestled within a rainforest adjacent to the Tenorio Volcano National Park, the boutique Rio Celeste Hideaway Hotel offers luxe bungalows with a rustic yet modern feel – and is a Booking.com Travel Sustainable property as the property has implemented a combination of sustainable practices to offer a more sustainable stay. Find peace absorbing the sounds of the jungle, admiring the Rio Celeste waterfall and meandering through the untouched Palo Verde National Park.
Sweden is a place where lifestyle, culture and food traditions are all linked to nature, and Stockholm is a must-visit destination to cleanse the mind, body and soul. Sail around the stunning surrounding archipelago of 30,000 islands, or embrace the Nordic ritual of sweating out the stresses with a detoxing trip to Hellasgården’s lakeside sauna. Explore all Stockholm’s Nature Reserve has to offer with a Guided Hiking Tour: soak up breath-taking views from the high granite cliffs, swim in the lake and even learn how to start a campfire.
Where to stay: Located in the idyllic Old Town of Stockholm, the quirky Victory Hotel boasts rooms with a naval theme inspired by its own maritime antique collection, and is certified with the Booking.com Travel Sustainable badge for its sustainable practices in place. Complete with plush velvet furnishings, comfy leather armchairs and heated bathroom floors, it’s the ultimate comfort stay. Relax in a secluded nook of the hotel’s lounge bar, soak up steam in the sauna or take a dip in the plunge pool.
Costa Blanca is more than 120 miles (200 km) of beautiful coastline on Spain’s south-eastern Mediterranean coast, but there’s a lot more to discover than just sun, sand and sea. Soak in the heritage and history with a trip to Cartagena for a Gastronomic and Cultural Tour, take in the tranquility of nature by visiting the Algar waterfalls or hike across the vast Serra Gelada nature conservation area.
Where to stay: Just minutes away from the sandy beach, the lavish Suites del Mar by Melia with calming pastel-colored and natural wooden décor each feature a terrace with breathtaking sea views. Guests can de-stress at the hotel’s Sanarium Circuit Spa which boasts a rooftop pool and hot tub with spectacular views of the Med.
Just outside of the neon-lit and eccentric Tokyo is the coastal city of Kanagawa, that offers beaches, Buddhas and botanical gardens far superior to those of the big city. Visitors can take a stroll through the beautiful Sankeien Garden, and explore their spirituality with a trip to the Hasedera Temple and the Great Buddha of Kamakura. A visit to Lake Ashi and the mesmerizing waterfall Sunset Falls will guarantee to cultivate calm.
Where to stay: For an authentic Japanese experience, Gyokutei is a traditional inn offering rooms with woven-straw tatami flooring and futon bedding. Situated atop a hill in Hakone, the inn features an indoor hot spring bath with views of the surrounding lush gardens – along with a massage service the ultimate unwind.
*Research commissioned by Booking.com and independently conducted among a sample of 48,413 respondents across 31 markets (2,000 from USA, 1,864 from Canada, 1,999 from Mexico, 2,003 from Colombia, 2,005 from Brazil, 2,002 from Argentina, 1,020 from Chile, 1,777 from Australia, 818 from New Zealand, 1,999 from Spain, 2,002 from Italy, 1,998 from France, 1,990 from UK, 2,005 from Germany, 2,003 from Netherlands, 985 from Denmark, 999 from Sweden, 910 from Croatia, 918 from Switzerland, 1,986 from Belgium, 998 from Russia, 953 from Israel, 1,999 from India, 1,990 from China, 901 from Hong Kong, 1,775 from Thailand, 1,001 from Singapore, 975 from Taiwan, 1,800 from Vietnam, 1,757 from South Korea, 1,001 from Japan). In order to participate in this survey, respondents had to be 18 years of age or older, had to have traveled at least once for business or leisure in the past 12 months, and planning to travel in 2022 and be either the primary decision maker or involved in the decision making of their travel. The survey was taken online and took place in January 2022.