I can’t overstate it: 2022 is special for European travel. If you don’t visit in 2022, you’ll be kicking yourself forever.
Have it all to yourself
Leading up to the pandemic, the most popular cities were getting a bit overrun. Before the crowds return in full force, early 2022 may be the best year of your lifetime to visit Venice, Barcelona, Paris or Amsterdam.
While you were away, a slew of new hotels have been opening in Europe, and a number of gorgeous river cruise ships have launched, waiting for you to discover a new, favorite 'home away from home.'
Catch up on all the experiences we’ve been missing:
- the flavors of Europe that taste so much better at the source, like Old World wines at Tuscan vineyards, pilsners brewed by monks and served in biergartens, melt-in-your-mouth cheeses, aged in caves, that you’ve never even heard of before, tapas in the south of Spain, or seafood caught fresh that morning in the Mediterranean, and prepared simply with olive oil, lemons, capers or olives and served with a crisp local white wine that’s cold enough to create condensation on your glass that sparkles in the sunshine;
- the cultural events that remind so many of us of our heritage, like celebrating St. Patrick’s Day in Dublin, mass at the Vatican, and Oktoberfest in Munich. Going to the opera in Vienna, the Palio horse race in Siena, or the Viking Ship Museum in Oslo; or
- the sporting events and occasions that have become cultural touchstones, like the style of the Monaco Grand Prix, the cycling epic Tour de France, the royal touch of tennis at Wimbledon, or even playing a round of golf at its birthplace in St. Andrew’s, Scotland, yourself.
Once-in-a-lifetime travel experiences
In addition to all these beloved travel memories waiting to be revisited, some things happening in Europe in 2022 are once-in-a-lifetime experiences you’ll never forgive yourself for missing:
The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee
2022 marks 70 years since Queen Elizabeth II ascended the throne at age 25. She’s already the longest-serving monarch, and a Platinum Jubilee will be truly historic.
Longevity runs in the Queen’s family, with her ancestor Queen Victoria serving 63 years on the throne and her own Queen Mother living over a century. But the simple math suggests the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee - when she’ll be over 95 years old - may be the last, one-of-a-kind milestone jubilee of her reign, or indeed ever.
So Platinum Jubilee celebrations in the U.K. in 2022 are not to be missed for anyone with an interest in royalty, royal history, or being able to tell their own grandchildren that they took part in this historic occasion.
The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee will come with a year-long series of celebrations around the U.K., with the central festivities focused on an extended official long weekend from 2-5 June.
There will be an epic version of the annual Trooping of the Colour to mark the Queen’s official birthday, as well as a Service of Thanksgiving at St Paul’s Cathedral, a special live concert and the Platinum Jubilee Pageant at Buckingham Palace, the lighting of beacons as well as street parties throughout her realm.
It will be an unprecedented - and likely one-of-a-kind - opportunity to be part of a Royal celebration, see your favorite Royals, and be part of history in the making.
This small Bavarian village has become synonymous with its once-a-decade Passion Play – a recreation of the biblical story of Easter that consumes the entire village for over a year.
WATCH THE VIDEO ABOVE AS THE DIRECTOR, AND THE VILLAGER WHO PLAYS ‘JESUS,’ EXPLAIN THE HISTORY AND MAGIC OF THIS FAMOUS PERFORMANCE
Attending a play that's been performed for hundreds of years in celebration of the most significant Biblical story is a once – maybe twice? – in a lifetime opportunity.
Unfortunately, the pandemic cancelled the Passion Play in 2020… but luckily, the village will stage its Passion Play in 2022 instead, daily from Spring through Fall.
Joining a land tour or river cruise is by far the best way to 'do' Oberammergau - travel companies locked in blocks of the best seats years ago, as well as dining reservations during your time in this small village.
Floriade, the 'World’s Fair' of Horticulture
Every 10 years, this ‘World’s Fair’ of flowers upstages even the Netherlands’ glorious 'Tulip Time.'
Horticulture is famously the Netherlands’ most ‘colorful’ industry. The country sells half of the world’s ‘floriculture’ products and over three-quarters of the world’s flower bulbs. It’s number one in greenhouse horticulture and leads global exports of cut flowers, ornamental plants and even trees.
The ultimate celebration of horticulture, Floriade, happens only 10 times a century, and the next one is in 2022.
Floriade is the largest public event in the Netherlands, drawing 2 million visitors over six months between April and October to its vast displays of almost any plant that grows, in stunning gardens, installations, pavilions and greenhouses, displays from exhibitors around the world and a vibrant arts and culture program.
Floriade 2022 takes place in a purpose-built, ultra-modern, 150-acre ‘garden city’ near Amsterdam.
An electric scale-model train moves visitors around the vast site, and a 35-meter high, 850-meter long cable car provides an incredible view of what will seem like the Garden of Eden below.
Like many other ticketed events, it pays to be part of an escorted group to Floriade, with guaranteed access and no need to line up with people waiting for tickets.
2022 Travel Tip
No matter what’s on your travel list in 2022, we have one big travel tip: book soon.
With people using their stored-up travel credits, and everyone looking to make up lost travel time, some events and blocks of tickets are already selling out.
Now’s the time to start planning with your expert travel advisor to return to Europe in 2022 with a bang.
By: Lynn Elmhirst, Producer/ Host of BestTrip TV
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