Enjoying the fresh air and avoiding the crowds -- that's what's in store for our upcoming vacations, when the Omicron wave finally stops disrupting global travel plans. Logically, the most popular destinations will be those where social distancing is par for the course. As such, national parks and little-known islands off the coast of Scotland and Canada will be the 2022 vacation hotspots of choice.
Imagine reconnecting with nature in a place where blissful solitude means that there's no fear of spreading viruses and encountering new variants. A place where you can take a deep breath and forget these long, stressful months spent living at the pace of the pandemic. Given the current public health context, the idea might still seem unreal. However, that hasn't stopped CNN from publishing its annual list of destinations to visit in the coming year. In fact, the American network has established itself as something of a reference in terms of travel trends to follow.
Faced with the tourism sector's current problems -- from border closures to reduced flight schedules and various health protocols -- the Cable News Network decided to shine the spotlight on some of the planet's vast, wild and remote spaces, where travelers can be sure they'll encounter very few people.
From Gabon to Greenland
National parks are the most obvious option. It's therefore not surprising that CNN has selected the wildlife reserves of Gabon, in particular, the Ivindo Park, recently recognized by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site.
In the US, Yellowstone Park -- celebrating its 150th anniversary in 2022 -- is also on the list.
When it comes to spaces where social distancing won't be an issue, the American network suggests some little-known islands off the coast of Scotland. Indeed, Orkney is a group of 70 or so islands, 20 of which are unoccupied. Otherwise, travelers can head for Canada -- to the country's east coast, more precisely, following in the footsteps of the Mi'kmaq First Nations people on Cape Breton Island. Measuring more than 10,000 sq km, the destination treats visitors to ocean and mountain landscapes and is big enough to make sure curious visitors don't need to rub shoulders.
If you're a seasoned traveler looking for an unusual getaway at one with nature, CNN suggests packing your bags for Disko Bay on the west coast of Greenland. The only encounters you'll have here are with whales and monumental icebergs.
And if you're looking for warmer climes, why not head to the Australian outback? If you thought you'd seen everything the island nation has to offer, then the Munga-Thirri-Simpson desert could be just the destination for you. This corner of the famous Simpson Desert can be reached from the city of Adelaide, in the state of South Australia.