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Incredible Crowd-Free Journeys For 2021

Nick Nomi

Senior Contributor

The outlook for travel in 2021 and beyond is beginning to look good. The wounds of 2020 will heal and the natural world, hopefully, a little better for wear will be ready once more for travellers to explore its vast, timeless splendour. And while some of our anxieties are certain to linger for a while yet, some experiences and places seek to calm them, inspiring adventures fine-tuned to our bespoke desires and unique needs, a soothing balm for a year of uncertainty. With this in mind, from Vietnam’s newest luxury train to private sailing aboard one of the world’s most iconic sailing ships, here are just a few unique travel ideas to consider for your 2021, crowd-free itineraries.

Closed Loop Travel Aboard The Maltese Falcon

The Maltese Falcon, with her innovative computer-controlled carbon fibre masts creating an ultra-modern visual appeal, and all the luxuries and open spaces of a motor yacht, is one of the world's most incredible, and one of its largest sailing ships. A masterpiece floating atop the oceans of the world as though through some vast gallery, always a head-turner, no matter where she turns up. Of course, while a private yacht in the middle of the ocean is undoubtedly one of the finest ways to practise social distancing, getting there isn’t quite so easy, but that’s where the recent collaboration between IYC and Magellan Jets comes into play. The partnership allows travellers to fly to the yacht without risking unnecessary contact, and from there, travel is limited by only the imagination for the Maltese Falcon can go almost anywhere. Aboard, the sumptuous VIP cabin looks to a private deck, while the main deck doubles as an outdoor cinema with an opulent dining and bar area. And everything is designed with elegance, innovation and a touch flamboyance in mind, making this not only one of the most exclusive ways to experience the world, but also one of the most desirable.

A Luxury Connection In Vietnam

Launched in 2020, the Vietage Luxury train offers unparalleled luxury for discerning travellers travelling along Vietnam’s coast from the former Imperial capital Hoi An to idyllic Quy Nhon. While the journey isn’t a particularly long one, the six hours are spent luxuriating in understated luxe cabins, dining on a fine menu of Viet-French cuisine, and searching the view beyond the large windows that provide a frame to the beautiful countryside. Curious eyes might see glimpses of the ruins of Trà Kiệu, Quảng Ngãi and An Khe Lake, though others may feel better indulging in the services of the onboard spa. Coincidentally, the launch came just in time for a world searching for travel experiences away from the well-trodden path. And while Vietnam may not generally fit that description, the large carriage carries only 12-passengers, making it ideally suited for travellers seeking a little quiet luxury while travelling through the bustling cities of Vietnam.

Paradise in Privacy

The allure of entirely private travel is nothing new or remarkable, but with the rise of Covid 19 and the associated risks, some intriguing options are becoming more widely available. Responding to the growing desire for risk-free travel, Vista Jet has collated a portfolio of deliriously pretty safe-havens to escape the crowds and relieve some of those post-Covid anxieties. One travels by private jet to a growing portfolio of exclusive-use escapes where experiences are crafted to suit one’s singular needs, with options from Scotland to Thailand. Of most interest is Fiji’s Laucala Island, a stunning private island refuge marked by rainforest landscapes, white sandy beaches and a guilt-free sustainable approach to resort living. While there are various villas, each opening to a private swimming pool, Laucala Island is best experienced from the exquisite privacy of the Peninsula Villa, perched on a pristine cliff with rope bridges connecting living quarters. It boasts a concealed private beach, a natural pool carved out of the surrounding rock wrapped around the main part of the villa, and unobstructed vistas of the sea and lush emerald mountains, making it something of a private island within a private island. As of November 2020, another option is to buy out Laucala Island in its entirety, with private flights provided by Fiji Airlines. An ideal, crowd-free escape for those seeking faultless privacy.

A Need For Adventure

If one craves a more involved adventure, ticking off a few major sights and experiences with the help of a knowledgeable guide, then there are few better small group options than National Geographic. From the available trips in 2021, a tour of Iceland’s Volcanoes and Glaciers stands out. Over 10 days, one makes the journey into the heart of Iceland, to Reykjavik, Húsafell and Mývatn, before descending into an 8,000-year-old lava tube, soaking in hot springs and taking to the seas for a whale-watching cruise. Along the way, tours are led by a host of National Geographic guides, each intensely knowledgeable, passionate and an expert in their field, making this particular tour a perfect option for anyone willing to enhance their adventures with a little experiential learning.

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