The travel industry saw a frightening dip in 2020 and 2021, but it’s currently on track to reach unprecedented heights –  even before the pandemic. That’s according to Brandon Berksen, founder of New York-based travel company Hotels Above Par, who spoke to CNBC about travel trends for 2022. If you’re like me, and you’ve been itching to step into foreign territory and have new exciting adventures, you’ll be glad to hear this: travel is back.

That said, it’s been a long time since many of us have travelled and travel may still feel like a foreign and distant memory. Even so, it’s important to remember that travel can and should be a priority, because it promotes adventure, fun and enjoyment, and, it may even be the key to better relationships, according to data by Exodus Travels. In their recent study, Exodus Travels found that 71% of survey participants believed that travel could strengthen relational bonds, and 77% of participants admitted to having made lifelong friendships when travelling.

Heather Greenwood Davis on the Social presenting Cottage Alternatives

Before you leave on your next unforgettable travel adventure, there are just a few small things you should be aware of:

1. Stay Up To Date With Your Travel Documents (Especially Your Passport)

The last thing you want is to realize that your passport has expired while standing in line at the airport. To prevent this embarrassing mishap, make sure to check the renewal dates in your passport and on your Nexus––regularly. 

holding out passports in front of monument

2. Pack Some Patience In Your Luggage Along With Your Belongings

Everyone and their cousin seems to have received the memo that travel is back, which means that airport check-in and security lines are ridiculously long. Many of us have become used to breezing into the airport with minutes to spare in the past, but these days you’ll want to make sure that you’re at the airport at least three hours before your scheduled flights just to have peace of mind.

3. Check The COVID-19 Restrictions and Regulations At Your Destination of Choice

If you’re travelling internationally, you’ll need to be aware of the COVID-19 regulations at your chosen destination. While Canada no longer requires a negative COVID-19 test upon entry to the country, other countries still require this and more. Whether you’re headed to Barcelona, Spain or Athens, Greece, make sure you’re aware of the rules and restrictions in your destination and be prepared to follow them. Also, you’ll want to make sure you have ArriveCan filled out before returning to Canada.

cars lined up on a road with yellow road line

4. If You’re Planning A Road Trip, Keep An Eye On Gas Prices

Unfortunately, gas prices are steadily rising, which means you’ll want to overestimate how much you plan to spend on gas and include that in your budget. You’ll want to snag a good travel deal while you’re at it.

Now that we’ve covered the basics of getting back into travel, here are a list of cottage alternatives you’ll want to visit ASAP:

Cottage Alternatives Every Nature Lover Should Visit ASAP

1. Borealis Basecamp, Alaskawhite bed in dark room behind borealis northern lights

Located in Alaska, Borealis Base Camp is offering guests a chance to stay in their pristine location during the summer! The Fairbanks-area property sits on 1000 acres of boreal forest, and it is known for their 20 glass-domed igloos and northern lights views. In the summer, you’re guaranteed almost 24 hours of sunlight! You’ll want to fill your time with things like a guided driving tour of the Dalton highway all the way up to the Arctic Circle, Wilderness rides, sled dog kennel visits and, of course, the ever popular reindeer walking tour.

2. The Green O Tree Haus, Montana

the Green O Tree Haus in Montana

Set 23 feet in the air, this property is one in a collection of 12 stunning architectural gems located in the woods of Montana. You’ll want to bring a camera with you to capture the Tree Haus’s spiral staircase and the 1000+ square feet of indoor living space. On the edge of the popular Paws Up Ranch family resort, this spot is designed for adults.

3. Chuck Wagon Glamping and more – Sandy Pines, Maine 

orange-tinted tent lit up by cozy fireplace

Sandy Pines in Maine is another fantastic travel option because they have numerous choices for all types of campers. Couples can take a vintage airstream that is fully decked out inside, or sleep in a tiny home with a glass ceiling so you can see the stars. There is also the option to book an old-fashioned Conestoga Chuck wagon. Families have cottage options that are equally cute but that include features like bunk beds and mini-fridges. Solo travellers will also love the Hideaway Huts – A-frame cabins on wheels that give you great coverage while you sleep but still keep it outdoorsy. Plus, there are fully furnished glamp tents available for couples or families.

4. Huttopia, Upstate New York

rustic wooden cabin with white bed and wooden headboard that says "Huttopia"Huttopia is located in the jaw-dropping Southeast Adirondack Mountains, just minutes from the historic town Lake George and the Sacandaga River. It’s the perfect combination of camping and “glamping”, since you will feel more comfortable than in traditional camping, but not so comfortable that you miss the beauty and wonder of the outdoors. All accommodations include a wooden terrace, firepit and picnic table, which will surely have you itching to leave your tent and enjoy some of what nature has to offer. Huttopia also features mouth-watering French cuisine at the on-site restaurant, a large heated swimming pool (with views of the forest) and fun outdoor activities to keep you busy and having the time of your life.

5. Arcana, Ontario

four red sofa chairs in a rustic cabin

The great part about Arcana is that you don’t have to go to far from home to enjoy their cozy cabins. Located in the Ontario woods and just a couple of hours from Toronto, the cool thing about Arcana is that you don’t find out the exact location until you’ve booked it. If you can’t get there this summer, it is equally serene and romantic in the winter.

6. Parc Omega, Quebec

sleep with wolves parc omegaIf you like nature but prefer a bit of glass between you and the wild neighbours, you might want to check out Parc Omega’s sleeping with wolves options. The wolf sanctuary in Quebec offers 12-km self-guided safaris you can do mainly from your car and more than 2200 hectares of wild lands. Likewise, at night you can choose from luxurious accommodations that boast floor-to-ceiling glass walls. On the other side: grey and Arctic wolves!

7. Firvale Wilderness, British Columbia

white A-shaped dome or tent

Where do you go when you need to get away from it all? British Columbia. Firvale Wilderness camp is located in the Great Bear Rainforest, and, it’s perfect for a romantic getaway or a completely solo escape, since they have a no pets and no kids policy. Also, they’ve got plenty of gorgeous and cozy A-frame cabins and domes to choose from, so you’ll enjoy peace and quiet and be able to truly relax.

8. Black Spruce, Yukon

architectural complex hidden behind trees - black spruce

Located just minutes from Whitehorse — the ‘landscape hotel’ was designed to blend in with the surrounding wilderness and highlight the natural beauty of the rocky, treed hillsides that surround it. Built with sustainable methods and materials, the four self-catered cabins feature Shou Sugi-Ban, which is a wood preservation technique that originated in Japan, and involves burning one side of each piece of wood. This method was used to treat all of the local Yukon Spruce siding for a beautiful and durable mottled finish. The interiors feature a clean, modern, organic design with kitchenette, heated marble tiles, hardwood flooring, organic linens and WIFI. A sauna opened in summer 2021.

If you enjoyed this article, scroll below to watch Heather Greenwood Davis discuss these cottage alternatives on The Social: