2023: Destinations, Trips, Experiences I Am Excited About

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I am overjoyed to flush 2022 down the drain and get this new year started. Here are the destinations, trips, and travel experiences I am excited about in 2023. 

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2022 Was Fine, But I’m Ready For More This Year

From a travel perspective, 2022 was… fine. The world re-opened and travel came back in a big way. We saw some new countries, tried some new products, but we had some challenges in 2022 that make us ready to move on to a new year. Two of those new countries for me were Armenia and Georgia and while that area of the world was new for me, the two countries share many commonalities.

We had some plans we had to cancel and some things that didn’t go the way we’d hoped. But today is a new day, and we have a chance to start it fresh right now.

Destinations On My List in 2023

There are so many exciting places to see, some of them new, and some places we have just missed after being away the last few years. Here’s what I have on my list for the year ahead.


Much of Asia closed due to COVID restrictions the last few years, Japan, China and Hong Kong just opening up to the outside without limitations in the last few weeks. As a family, we have missed Thailand, a place we visited almost every year for the last decade.

I’m not sure we will get to it this year, but I would love to add Nepal, and Bhutan to the list but I will settle for being able to get back to Bangkok.

Thailand Resume Tourism


A visit to the Great White Continent is packaged up with a few other bucketlist travel items that have been toward the top of the list for me for a long time. For example, in addition to the luxury cruise aspect, there’s also the experience of seeing amazing wildlife, crossing the perilous Drake Passage, and visiting Buenos Aires. I was originally slated to study abroad in Buenos Aires in 2002, but due to tumult in the country at the time, I switched to Peru and have never visited Argentina at all.

Antarctica Seabourn Cruise

The #1 destination for Scott & Thomas clients (my travel agency) is Antarctica and for good reason.


My travel experience in Africa is nearly non-existent aside from Morocco. I intend to fix that. The softest targets are Cairo, Nairobi, Cape Town, and Zanzibar but I there’s only so much time. If I crossed one of those of the list, the year would be a success.



American West

Much of my mother’s family lives in the American West – Idaho (formerly in Wyoming), Washington, California, and Utah. I have taken the Rocky Mountains for granted, but high on my wife’s list is Moab, my daughter wants to visit the Grand Canyon, and we all want to spend some time in Montana.



The Caribbean may be old hat for many of our readers, but for my family there are lots of open spots on the map to fill in. I’d love to find the right way to visit Cuba this year, for one. We have yet to visit Trinidad and Tobago, Belize, Turks and Caicos, among others. I’d like to see some of those places closer to home that have lingered out there for a while.

Travel Experiences

One of the things I would really like to do is ride some of the classic luxury trains. One trip that we are presenting to Scott & Thomas elite customers this year are a pair of rail trips, one on a luxury train line in Africa that comes equipped with a private room with private bathroom, the other is the Orient Express which has been revived.

Antarctica is an experience unto itself, but Seabourn ships that service the 7th continent include a nearly all glass bubble-style submarine to see the underwater wildlife and that fascinates me.

We also don’t do a lot of outdoorsy trips, but hiking through Moab or camping Yellowstone in Big Sky country really is something we should add to our experiences.

More than anything else, it’s a departure from what we have done in the past and that’s exciting.

Cruises, Resorts

I have taken just one cruise in my life and it wasn’t a great experience, my wife and daughter have bever been aboard. But the cruising world has changed so much, not just the ships, but the ports, and the brands we would target. I am looking at cruising some this year and adding content that Boarding Area readers don’t usually see.

Along the same lines there are so many all-inclusive properties that don’t get reviewed on Boarding Area (and certainly not on LiveAndLetsFly) because they are outside of the major programs. But with Hyatt, Marriott, Hilton, and IHG all making major investments, I’d like to review more of these types of properties as well as Sandals and similar chains that don’t grace our sites.


I am looking for a very different travel experience in 2023 than I had in 2022 and looking forward to sharing it with our readership. I hope to add value to our readership through some of these new places, experiences, and types of trips and hearing about where you are planning on traveling this year.

What do you think? Where are you headed in 2023? Any places you’ll be skipping? 

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