My top tips for travel planning in 2016

Galle Fort sunset, Sri Lanka

The year is well underway already and my travel plans for the year are starting to fill up the calendar – so what are my top tips for travel planning?  Here’s a few ideas to help you – the process I go through when I plan my travel for the year ahead.

1. Have a year planner

Yes there’s a spreadsheet on the wall, with the year mapped out, school holidays and public holidays factored in, with a calculation of annual leave used and even a link to our travel budget. Think carefully about what you want to achieve, get organised and make the most of your travel year!

St Peters Basilica, Rome

2. Consider who’s travelling

One of my key tips for travel planning is to consider who is travelling? Will you be travelling solo, as a couple, with a friend or with your family? It’s important to make sure everyone participating in the trip has ‘buy in’. I love to travel with my family and that means considering the needs of everyone. That doesn’t mean child-friendly resorts and kids clubs (I can’t think of anything worse). It does mean slower travel and only staying in two places for our week in Sicily. It does mean sometimes staying somewhere with a pool when we are in France over the summer. It does mean having rest days while travelling around Sri Lanka. It does mean doing sightseeing that will be of interest to everyone (Roman history is big in our family at the moment so Sicily will be perfect).

Talalla Beach Sri Lanka

3. Mix of overseas travel and staycations

I think people often overlook travel opportunities that are on their back doorstep. I love staycationing (wherever I happen to be living) and this year we will be returning to some favourite haunts in Derbyshire and Dorset in England. Snowdonia is also on the cards for later in the summer.

Upper Derwent Valley reservoir walk, Derbyshire

4. Mix of active and cultural holidays

This year I am returning to the European Alps to complete my Tour du Mt Blanc hike and I can’t wait. I am also planning quite a number of rock climbing weekends and five days rock climbing near Alicante in Spain. On the other hand I am a complete culture vulture so I can’t wait to see all the historic sites in Sicily. And there was a mixture of beach time and sightseeing in Sri Lanka. Don’t forget to mix it up because variety is the spice of life!

Triente Valley on the Tour du Mt Blanc

5. Always go at least one place new

Because an important part of travelling for me is experiencing other cultures, I always like to include at least one new culture/region in my travel plans. In 2016 travel in Sri Lanka and Morocco are very exciting additions to the calendar!

Drivers of Kandy Sri Lanka

Obviously there is plenty of material online to help you research where and how to holiday this year. Travel blogs like mine offer a wealth of travel ideas and tips for travel planning to help make your travel dreams a reality.

Happy travel planning!

Natasha von Geldern

Where are you travelling to this year and do you have some tips for travel planning to share?

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