As one of life’s greatest pleasures, traveling is undoubtedly enjoyably for people of all ages. And while a majority (57%) of Americans over age 65 make time for regular trips or vacations, many seniors and retirees find that many elements of the overall adventure start to become a bit too overwhelming: standing in lines or heavy crowds, sitting through long plane rides or other forms of transit, and withstanding all types of weather conditions are just a few examples. But that isn’t a reason to stop traveling and seeing the world altogether! Whether you’re traveling solo, with a group of friends, or with your significant other, there are plenty of destinations that offer countless opportunities for both adventure and comfort. Here are just a few vacation ideas that are perfect for seniors and retirees.
The Caribbean is among the most popular tropical destination spots, so if you’re determined to avoid crowds, you should plan your trip during the months of May, September, or October. But regardless of when you visit, the Caribbean has all sorts of beautiful scenes and opportunities for adventure: beach resorts and hotels, cruises, and more. Spending for cocktail hours has risen to 76% from 69% in 2010, and if all you want to do is kick back with an ice cold cocktail, you can look into countless all-inclusive vacation packages, so you can eat, drink, and soak up the sun to your heart’s content.
If you’re looking to stay in the states, Williamsburg, Virginia offers a rich and fascinating historical experience. There are plenty of activities and attractions that appeal to retirees and members of the older generation, including golf courses, museums, and numerous shopping opportunities.
“Williamsburg and nearby Jamestown provide a wide range of price and activity levels for virtually every interest,” Elizabeth Avery told CBS News. Avery is the founder of travel deals site SoloTrekker4U, which specializes in providing deals to those traveling solo. “The price range for lodging is better than large urban areas, although tickets for events do add to costs,” Avery said.
Williamsburg has relatively affordable lodging costs as it is, but if you’re still looking to offset expenses, there are quite a few alternate options that can be much more affordable than a hotel. Camping is one of the most beloved outdoor activities among Americans. So much so that in 2013, the campground industry in America, grossed about $5 billion. Williamsburg has plenty of camping and RV campground options so luxurious that they don’t really feel like camping at all. There are also a myriad of senior discounts available to help older guests truly make the most of their time and money.
Machu Picchu, Peru
Finally, Machu Picchu is a destination with some of the most incredible landscapes and views.
“Machu Picchu is an Incan citadel and temple and should be on every retiree’s bucket list. If you’re an active senior, you can take a one-day Inca Trail hike to Machu Picchu…For retirees who are less active, a trip to Machu Picchu can be scaled and slowed down,” said Jacquie Whitt, co-founder of travel organizing service Adios Adventure Travel.
While tours for couples are expensive, planning a group trip with friends makes rates much more affordable. And as is the case with many exotic international destinations, flights tend to be the biggest expense of your whole trip, so don’t be afraid to choose your departure date based on what’s the most affordable.
By 2030, older adults (seniors) will account for roughly 20% of the U.S. population, and as a result many popular tourist destinations are offering new options for retirees and older Americans. Taking the time to explore these vacation options can result in an enjoyable and even more relaxing trip.
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