Stand-out destinations for alternative accommodation stays
If you’re part of the 68% of Indian travelers who want to book a stay in an alternative accommodation type in 2019, but you’re still trying to decide where to travel to next or which destination to explore during your upcoming vacation, look no further. Booking.com, the global leader in connecting travelers to the widest choice of incredible places to stay, has identified five stand-out cities that have proved increasingly popular for alternative stays over the last year*. While Naples, Ubud, Gdansk, Porto and Marrakesh are all great locations in their own right, they also offer some great alternative accommodation options for travelers wanting to experience these destinations in a more authentic, adventurous and often more affordable way.
Naples, Italy For travelers who don’t want to choose between adventure and historic tranquility on their next vacation, the city of Naples is the perfect solution. Located in the breathtaking south of Italy, it is known for its volcanic energy, with still-active Mount Vesuvius just around the corner. Once travelers have settled into their home away from home, the opportunities for exploration are endless – from feeling like royalty during a visit of Palazzo Reale, located just opposite the Famous Piazza del Plebiscito, to the bustling shopping venues and vibrant restaurant scene, Naples will never cease to amaze the curious traveler.
Where to stay: Bed and Breakfast B & B da Mimì, positioned a short walk from the historic center of Naples, is a popular choice amongst Booking.com travelers due to its scenic and central location. Its tastefully decorated rooms ooze with a unique mix of modern and romantic features, making this accommodation the perfect place to stay for couples.
Ubud, IndonesiaUbud, the cultural capital of the Indonesian island of Bali, provides never ending variation. Known for its traditional crafts and cultural dances as well as the surrounding rainforest, Ubud will mesmerize even the well-traveled explorer. You will find an abundance of rice paddies, Hindu temples and shrines, some of Bali’s most famous landscapes and landmarks.
Where to stay: Villas are one of the accommodation types that will see the highest increase in demand in 2019, with over one third of Indian travelers (37) ** planning to stay in one of these in the coming year. Get ahead of the crowd by booking a stay at The Kalangan. After a day exploring, travelers can reflect in the property’s peaceful garden or have any hiking-related pains massaged away in a nearby spa.
Gdańsk, PolandPerfect for the art, history and culture loving traveler – the vibrant and colorful port city of Gdansk is the ideal location for a weekend trip. Located on the Baltic coast of Poland, the city’s most notable attractions, Long Market and Neptune Fountain, are a must visit. Yet, the city has so much more to offer and something new to discover at every turn.
Where to stay: Apartments are one of the accommodation types that 21%** of Indian travelers plan to book in 2019, so follow this trend and with a stay at Sweet Suite in the Old Town district of Gdańsk. Featuring beautiful interior design throughout, this chic accommodation is walking distance to all of city’s main attractions.
Porto, PortugalOftentimes overshadowed by the country’s world-famous capital, the coastal city of Porto in the northwest of Portugal is not to be missed. Famous for its stately bridges and port wine production, the city oozes with charisma. Stroll through the medieval Ribeira (riverside) district, along the narrow-cobbled streets winding past merchants’ houses, have a glass of port in one of the countless cafes and let the city’s charm cast its spell on you.
Where to stay: Living like a local is key for a majority (65%)*** of Indian travelers, who believe that staying in a home-type accommodation lets them see areas of a city or parts of a country that they wouldn't have previously explored. Trait House, surrounded by authentic restaurants and bars, has retained its original 19th century facade whilst simultaneously oozing with modern decor, providing guests with the perfect starting point for exploring the city’s hidden gems.
Marrakesh, Morocco Marrakesh, located in western Morocco, is the home of some of the world’s most exquisite mosques, palaces and lush gardens. Let the city’s unique atmosphere entice you as you stroll through the Majorelle Garden, with its exotic plants and fountains. Following this, a trip to the city’s majestic souk, where traditional textiles, jewelry and pottery are being sold, should be high on every traveler’s bucket list.
Where to stay: Booking.com’s research revealed that almost a third of Indian travelers (27%) *** prefer unique and quirky accommodations while on vacation and amongst the fastest growing categories are: luxury tents, capsule pods and riads. So if a combination of luxury, elegance and culture sounds like the perfect combination, then look no further than Riad Timel. Located a short walk from Djemaa El Fna Square, this accommodation is the perfect place to stay to absorb the local culture and relax after a long day of shopping and exploring.
If you are looking for unique experiences closer home you here are some options you can explore:
Goa has been a popular tourist spot for years now, with beaches covering its length, North Goa has emerged as a party destination for both national and international tourists. South Goa on the other hand is for a more relaxed getaways. From party hotspots, water sports to relaxing spas, Goa is a complete package for all travellers from all age groups alike.
Where to stay: Cassoi offers a unique experience with its tent accommodation. Surrounded by greener and the beautiful view of the sea, you can explore outdoor activities like cycling and fishing in the vicinity. The Agonda beach is just 11 km from Cassoi, while Cola Beach is 14 km away. If you are planning a trip to Goa and don’t want to go the traditional way, go the luxury tent way!
Karnataka a state in southwest India with Arabian Sea coastlines. The capital, Bengaluru is a tech hub known for its shopping and nightlife. Popular tourist destinations in the state include Coorg, Hampi, Gokarna and Mysore among others. Mysore is home to lavish temples including Mysore Palace, former seat of the region’s maharajas. Hampi, once the medieval Vijayanagara Empire’s capital, contains ruins of Hindu temples, elephant stables and a stone chariot. Coorg on the other hand is a nature lover’s paradise.
Where to stay: Tea Estate - Plantation Trails is set in Gonikoppal, the beautiful property also offer a tennis court and a garden. The nearest airport is Kannur International Airport, 79 km from the property. Want some time off in the nature’s lap as you sip on your cup of morning coffee accompanied by your family and the chirping of the birds, here is a place for you. You can also explore nature trails and golfing in the vicinity.
Ahmedabad, the largest city in the state of Gujarat is known for its mouthwatering street food and delicacies. The city is also home to some historic events and landmarks that go back to India’s freedom struggle. The Gandhi Ashram situated on the western bank of Sabarmati River, relays the story of the spiritual leader, displaying his living quarters and artifacts. Additionally, the popular Calico Museum of Textiles, is known to house a significant collection of antique and modern fabrics. From food lovers, and history lovers to shoppers, the city has something for everyone.
Where to stay: French Haveli a restored heritage haveli located in Ahmedabad, has a history dating back to 150 years. Want to travel back in time in a city that is constantly moving forward? This is a place for you, with wooden furnishings and floor tiles resembling a state of art from the bygone era this place has stories to tell. The Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel International Airport is 15 km away while the Ahmedabad Railway Station and the State Transport Bus Station are within the radius of 2 km.
*The above list of cities was compiled by looking at the destinations where the share of bookings in the alternative accommodation segment was highest, from amongst the 100 most popular destinations in the past year (December 2017 - December 2018) on Booking.com.**Research commissioned by Booking.com and independently conducted among a sample of 53,492 respondents across 31 markets. In order to participate in this survey, respondents had to be 18 years of age or older, had to have travelled at least once in the past 12 months and be either the primary decision maker or involved in the decision making of their travel. The survey was taken online and took place between October 16th and November 12th, 2018.***Travel Predictions 2019: Research commissioned by Booking.com and independently conducted among a sample of adults who have taken a trip in the last 12 months/plan to take a trip in the next 12 months. In total 21,500 respondents were polled (including 1,000 each from Australia, Germany, France, Spain, Italy, China, Brazil, India, US, UK, Russia, Indonesia, Colombia and South Korea; and 500 each from Japan, New Zealand, Thailand, Argentina, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Hong Kong, Croatia, Taiwan, Mexico, Netherlands, Sweden, Singapore and Israel). Respondents completed an online survey between 10th August to 30th August 2018.