10 February 2017
Travel long-haul and you’ll be rewarded with some incredible sights. Sights that you often just can’t glimpse closer to home. Towering Mayan ruins. The sweeping emerald green of a tea plantation. Breathtaking temples, masterpieces of architecture.
Wondering whether the longer flights are too much of a chore? Most long-haul airlines offer impeccable service and plenty to keep you (and little ones!) occupied, so often the flight goes far quicker than you think.
Entertainment galore (with seemingly endless films, music, and games), tasty food – and complimentary snacks and drinks throughout the flight when you’re peckish – and even on-board bars mean that your plane journey can become an enjoyable part of your trip. Plus, it’s a perfect opportunity to get through one of those books on your reading list or catch up on your favourite show!
If you haven’t travelled long-haul in recent years or are looking for a little inspiration for your next holiday, we’ve chosen 10 incredible sights to see on your long-haul travels this year…
Vineyards, mountains, desert, and glaciers – Chile has a diverse landscape. It’s easy to combine city and countryside on a trip here, and with British Airways you can fly from South Africa to London Heathrow to Santiago, so you could combine a city break in London with a trip to see Chile’s incredible landscape.
Santiago is a bustling, cosmopolitan city and it’s a delightful place to wander. Explore spectacularly grand buildings, world-class museums and parks, and don’t miss the view across the city from Cerro San Cristóbal.
Venturing further away from Santiago, see turquoise blue lagoons and breathtaking glaciers at Parque Nacional Torres del Paine. Sip Chilean Sauvignon Blancs and ruby red Chilean Carmeneres as you venture from winery to winery. And marvel at the Atacama Desert, one of the world’s top destinations for stargazing.
Machu Picchu, the stunning Inca citadel, perched in the rugged peaks of the Andes is mesmerising, no matter how many photos you’ve seen of it.
Lima, Peru’s capital city, is a blend of stunning modern architecture and colourful, ornate colonial buildings - don’t miss walking through the parks, along the cliffs in the exclusive area of Miraflores, in Lima.
Dazzling beaches, amazing food, incredibly friendly locals, and a wealth of breathtaking sights to see, from tropical rainforests to towering temples.
Wat Pho is Bangkok’s oldest, largest, and, arguably, most famous temple. Adjacent to the Royal Grand Palace, there are 1,000 statues of Buddha in the grounds, and the temple is home to the exquisite Reclining Buddha. The gold-plated statue is 15metres high and 48metres long and inlaid with mother of pearl. It’s an absolutely astounding sight.
Costa Rica is a nature-lover’s paradise. Glistening emerald green cloudforests team with birds and animals. Enormous volcanic peaks loom in the distance. And beautiful beaches are nestled next to tropical forests for miles and miles.
This fascinating country offers so much for anyone interested in nature or an active break. There are over 800 species of bird in Costa Rica, plus giant leatherback turtles, monkeys, sloths and many more creatures to spot amongst the trees and bushes. For outdoor-enthusiasts, zip-lining, horse riding, fishing and scuba diving are just some of the activities to fill your days with!
Mexico is famed for its dazzling beaches and Mayan ruins, but there’s a huge amount to do here, no matter your interests.
The sprawling, luxury resorts are really family friendly, and there are plenty of day trips for times when you want to venture away from the white sands and sparkling sea.
The Mayan ruins at Tulum are spectacular and overlook the tropical waters, while Chichén Itzá, with its famous pyramid, is one of Mexico’s largest archaeological sites.
Australia is a huge country – the world’s sixth largest – and, as such, you’ll find cosmopolitan cities, sweeping bushlands, a beautiful coastline, and no end of natural attractions to explore. Frequent internal flights mean that it’s really easy (and quick) to explore Australia, so you can easily combine city adventures with the more intrepid kind.
A few places to add to your Australia travel list? The Whitsunday Islands and Great Barrier Reef. Sydney Opera House and the Harbour Bridge. Uluru and the outback. A Melbourne coffee shop (the city is famed for its love of coffee) and the Royal Botanical Gardens. And Perth, for its friendliness and culture.
From the sight of thousands of delicate pink blooms as cherry blossom sweeps through the country in spring to the dazzling skyscrapers in Tokyo, Japan is a charming blend of modern and ancient.
Japan is a beautiful country and the fantastic train network makes getting around extremely easy. You’ll find beaches here, skiing, spectacular monuments, and wonderful gardens.
Some highlights include visiting temples in beautiful Kyoto, wandering through Tokyo’s bustling streets, and taking a moment to gather your thoughts in Hiroshima.
Canada is the world’s second largest country and it’s a dazzling mix of snow-capped mountains, national parks and sophisticated cities.
2017 marks 150 years since confederation, and that means there’s a huge programme of events throughout the year, with spectacular celebrations planned for Canada Day, 1st July.
Make the most of Canada’s epic landscapes and combine a city break with an adventure into the Rocky Mountains. Jasper and Banff National Parks are breathtaking, Whistler is incredible for skiing, and Victoria Island is utterly charming.
The bright lights of New York City. The turquoise waters of the Florida Keys. The hills and Golden Gate Bridge of San Francisco. The beautiful landscape of Yosemite National Park. The United States of America boasts an incredible array of experiences, ready to delight everyone from foodies to thrill-seekers.
As with other countries this large, the best way to see the country is to combine a few different places. Perhaps a bustling city, a beach and one of the wonderful national parks. Or, travel one of the epic transport routes, from Route 66 to Big Sur to the meandering train routes that crisscross the country.
The Great Wall of China and the Terracotta Army are just two of the delights this fascinating country has to offer. And, as with Machu Picchu and Sydney Harbour Bridge, there’s nothing quite like seeing these iconic cultural icons in real life.
One of the best ways to explore China is to join a tour. With action-packed itineraries taking you from iconic sight to iconic sight, tours can be at a busy pace but, you’ll get to experience a lot of the country in one go – and it’ll leave you with ideas for your next trip to China!
Ready to see more of the world? Get in touch with your Travel Counsellor to plan your trip to faraway shores!