“In the 1990s and 2000s, younger travelers were the first to predominantly try this newer style of travel. It offered an alternative to backpacking that was more expertly organized and more socially structured than going it alone,” she says. But from 2013 to 2018, the number of U.S.-based travelers booking vacations with G Adventures grew by more than 80 percent, and the fastest growing demographic were travelers over the age of 40. “It’s more inclusive, more diverse, and more flexible than ever before,” McCane says.
It’s a shift that’s occurring across the industry, and a 2018 survey from the Adventure Travel Trade Association (ATTA) found that 22 percent of adventure travelers fell into the 51 to 60 age bracket. With their buy-in, the global adventure tourism market is expected to grow by 45.73 percent between 2018 and 2022.
The most-trafficked regions for adventure travel, according to the ATTA, are Western Europe (France, Italy, Germany, U.K., Norway, Switzerland, etc.) and Central America (Belize, Costa Rica, Guatemala), and the most common activities are cultural tours, walking and hiking, and culinary excursions. This more immersive way to explore the world—and learn something along the way—speaks to the ever-growing desire to break free from monotonous routines. “Travelers are looking for something different—they always have been,” poses Tanner C. Knorr, the owner and founder of Off Season Adventures. “Adventure travel allows for a safe form of danger and excitement that far exceeds the daily nine-to-five grind.”
Many of these providers also work to make sure their offerings are easy on the planet. “One of the great things about sustainable tourism is that it inherently lends itself to more unique, immersive experiences in a destination, so it’s a win/win at the end of the day for both traveler and local community,” says Kelley Louise, the founder and executive director of Impact Travel Alliance. “Sustainable travel is wonderful, but eventually, sustainability will be the norm. The pioneers in the industry right now are looking toward the circular model economy, a system that not only minimizes waste but also essentially finds a way to exist as its own ecosystem.”
mbg’s Top 7 Healthy Travel Trends To Watch In 2019 – mindbodygreen.com