The 'slowcation' is surging in 2024 — here's how to plan your own

how to, the 'slowcation' is surging in 2024 — here's how to plan your own

Fancy a ‘slowcation’ this summer? Here’s everything you need to know (Picture: Getty Images)

Holidays can often feel rushed, dashing to cram in as much as possible while wanting to feel adequately rested during that crucial time away.

In fact, it takes the average person three days to switch off on holiday, and the average trip length is just eight days. So, how does that match up? And is it possible to accommodate all our rest and relaxation needs?

Enter the ‘slowcation’ (AKA, ‘slow travel’), a trend encouraging tourists to take a slower, more meaningful approach to travel and incorporate more time to unwind and de-stress.

According to new research, 81% of Brits are using travel this summer to slow down and de-stress more than anything else. But in the same vein, 57% don’t think they could go away without their phone, while 50% couldn’t hack 24 hours without checking their social media.

That’s where slow travel comes in, embracing switching off and detaching from everyday life, with Google searches for ‘slow travel trips’ having increased by 61% in the last three months alone. Likewise, the trend has been tagged almost 20,000 times on TikTok.

What is a ‘slowcation’ or ‘slow travel’?

A ‘slowcation’ or ‘slow travel’ isn’t just about slowing down the journey: it also necessitates taking a different mindset.

‘Slow travel is more about a mindset as opposed to a pace of movement, it’s exploring somewhere on a deeper level, making space mentally and physically for things to happen spontaneously. For example, taking time to walk in nature, cycle through countryside, engage with the locals or taking a long-distance rail journey,’ Simon Lynch, Global Product Director at Scott Dunn Travel, explains.

how to, the 'slowcation' is surging in 2024 — here's how to plan your own

Holidays are often about rest and relaxation, but how do we achieve that? (Picture: Getty Images)

What does slow travel look like in 2024?

Train travel

Not only is taking the train eco-friendly: it’s also the most obvious way to slow down a trip and embrace the slow travel vibe.

‘Leisurely train travel is one of the best ways to experience slow travel, allowing you to sit back and savour every moment with each stop of the route,’ Simon advises, noting that the company has seen triple the amount of bookings for train journeys between January and April this year compared to the same period in 2023.

‘A new wave of luxury rail itineraries has driven a thirst for cultural immersion, exploring the less-visited backroads of popular destinations.’

how to, the 'slowcation' is surging in 2024 — here's how to plan your own

Switzerland has some of the most beautiful train rides in the world (Picture: Getty Images)

Likewise, the new figures reveal some of the most popular train journeys right now, which include the Belmond Andean Explorer in Peru, the first luxury sleeper train to travel across South America, alongside the Eastern and Oriental Express, connecting Singapore with Malaysia.

Adopting a ‘go with the flow’ approach

As Simon explains, slow travel isn’t just about the time it takes to reach a destination: it’s also a mindset.

The research from Scott Dunn Travel also finds that Brits aren’t exploring as much as they used to, instead taking a fast-paced, pre-arranged approach to holidaying.

However, 30% reported that going on an excursion helps them to unwind on a trip and 31% said that mother nature also helps them to relax, proving the point that perhaps taking a ‘go with the flow’ approach might wield some benefit.

So, why not channel your spontaneous side the next time you go away? It could change the way you holiday forever.

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