10 staycation trends for 2021

A lot has changed in the last year, regarding most aspects of life but the biggest impact has been concerning travel, and more people than ever are now looking into staycations instead of traveling abroad.

Before 2021, a lot of us would automatically choose a holiday abroad, however recent lockdowns and travel restrictions mean that we are looking closer to home for our holiday needs. Travel and outdoor adventure experts SwitchBack Travel have analysed Google Trend Data to determine the top travel trends of 2021 so far. 

The research reveals that much of the UK are looking to change their holiday habits, with a focus on more sustainable travel, mindfulness holidays and spa retreats. 

1) Sustainable travel (377.78% UPLIFT)

Sustainable travel means travelling in a way which minimises negative impact on the planet and the place we visit. Back in April 2020, just after the UK Lockdown was announced, a UK Government survey found that people were able to notice cleaner air and more wildlife.

Sustainable travel has seen a 377.78% uplift in searches in the first quarter of the year as more of us are trying to be more sustainable and environmentally friendly when we travel. SwitchBack Travel experts say, ‘whether we fly less or visit places which are known for their ethical and sustainable views, a lot of us are trying to make more conscious decisions.’ 

2) Activity holidays (914.43% UPLIFT)

It’s an outdated idea that a holiday is where you “stay and lay” on the beach, or by the hotel pool. Although of course this is still a preference for some, many are looking to make up for lost time during lockdown and finally tick exciting adventures off their bucket list. 

Whether they favour something exhilarating like zip lining, or learning to surf on the Cornish coast, many are now beginning to think “if not now, when?” Adventure and outdoor activity experts, SwitchBack Travel, encourage this and say the 914.43% uplift in searches is an encouraging figure, as it shows people are looking to leave their comfort zone.

3) Yoga retreats (550% UPLIFT)

The week following the announcement of lockdown saw the UK searching for “yoga for beginners” increase a huge 291%. It’s no wonder that many of us are researching retreats to learn more about our newfound skill in lockdown.

After a stressful year, there’s been a huge increase in changing our personal habits to help support our wellbeing and a yoga retreat especially is a great place to unwind. There are plenty of beautiful spots across the UK, from the Highlands of Scotland to the South Coast, where you can visit and engage in yoga practise.

4) Camping holidays (293.75% UPLIFT)

A more traditional family holiday, camping has constantly seen peaks in interest across the years. An outdate stereotype is that camping means sleeping in a cold, leaky tent in the middle of nowhere, but this doesn’t need to be the reality. There are numerous options to choose from now, whether it’s already set up tents in campsites, yurts and even geodomes so you can camp in luxury. 

Camping is also a great choice as it’s not just about sitting in a tent all day, many campsites have numerous activities to keep kids and adults entertained. Whether it’s zip lining in Yorkshire, or even skiing down a dry ski slope in South Wales, camping can be the most diverse staycation families choose to do. 

5) Spa retreats (990% UPLIFT)

After a year with almost no beauty and pampering treatments, it hardly comes as a surprise that searching for spa retreats have increased so much. Many of us would like to unwind and treat ourselves to some TLC and there are countless spas across the UK to do just that. 

Whether you are looking for just a spa day to get that long overdue massage, to help fix your work from home posture, or if you’re looking for a spa hotel in the middle of the countryside, to really feel part of nature, there is something for you. 

6) UK villas (265% UPLIFT)

As extended family and group holidays have been off the cards for the last year, a key date in many of our calendars is the 21stJune, as this is the earliest date where group holidays are allowed to happen again. 

Villas are popular, regardless of whether in the UK or abroad, as they allow groups to spend quality time together. Located across the UK, villas can either be more luxury, with pools and even spas, or more quaint cottages in villages.

7) Theme park holidays (3800% UPLIFT)

With places like Disneyland arguably the most popular theme park holiday destination, it’s easy to forget that the UK is actually home to some of the biggest and best theme parks in the world. Thrill seekers can now spread out their rollercoaster and ride time by including a mini break within the grounds. 

There are also numerous options across the UK, with all theme parks adding extra safety measures to keep social distancing possible. 

8) Forest holidays (692.29% UPLIFT)

Perfect for family adventures and romantic getaways alike, forest holidays have always been a popular choice for those looking to holiday within the UK. Forest holidays are great as they allow people to reconnect with nature in some of the most beautiful forests in the UK, but groups can also stay in truly unique properties, such as tree houses and log cabins – in fact searches for “tree houses UK” have increased 350% in April alone. 

9) Mindfulness holidays (9700% UPLIFT)

After a stressful year, a lot of us still feel down, whether we feel anxious and constantly on edge, or perhaps we are tired and need a break from working from home. 

A mindfulness holidays is the perfect way to give ourselves a well-deserved break, and there are beautiful places across Britain which offer just that – a chance to take a break and press pause on the mundanity but also chaos of our everyday lives. 

10) Spiritual retreats (334.97% UPLIFT)

The purpose of a spiritual retreat is to temporarily leave behind the usual daily distractions of everyday life, and allow ourselves to relax enough for an inner change to occur. 

Lockdown saw a rise in interest in spirituality and religion, where lots of us wanted to learn more about aspects of life which we may not have ever paid attention to before, however spiritual belief isn’t necessary for this kind of retreat. Instead, a solo spiritual retreat can be a way to just reconnect with yourself and be alone, without feeling lonely, which is something we have all struggled with in the last year.

Photo by Clay Banks