A senior vacation is a time to take all the stress and deadlines the working world brings and substitute in morning walks and dinners at prestigious restaurants. They are a time to explore an area of the world unknown to you, and as a result find a part of yourself you may not know. A senior’s vacation is full of whatever you want it to be – including how involved in the planning you want to be. If you are the kind of person who wants to use your senior vacation as an opportunity to completely relax you might want to hire a travel agent. Travel advice from those whose job it is to know will not only take the stress out of a vacation, but tell you about information and activities you might overlook in your own planning. The most basic vacation information for seniors is where it is going to be. Are you going to travel the world or stay domestic? Will you be traveling in this hemisphere, or travel to a completely different atmosphere? Do you prefer touristy destinations or off the beat travel?
Top US Senior Vacation Destinations
These cities are based off of the attractions, activities and historical markers that make up their social environment. These cities have different characteristics that can bring in multiple demographics and can have seniors thrive there as well as young adults.
- Las Vegas, Nevada
- Branson, Missouri
- Washington, D.C.
- Baltimore, MD
- New Orleans, Louisiana
- Orlando, Florida
- Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Top European Senior Vacation Destinations
This list is composed of the top city destinations in Europe as well as some of the best unknown destinations that are slightly off the beaten path. Places like Amsterdam are amazing European destinations, but have been overrun with younger tourists and might be too much for a relaxing senior vacation.
- London, England Travel to Big Ben and Much More
- Venice, Italy Surround Yourself with Decadent Italian Cuisine
- Madrid, Spain Find Rich Culture in Madrid
- Meteora, Greece Relax on the Beautiful Beaches of Madrid
- Florence, Italy See the Statue of David by Michelangelo
Over Visited or Overrated Senior Vacation Destinations
Travel advice on where and where not to travel can be found on travel books and sites, but finding the balance between what critics say and what you will enjoy can be a difficult task. Rustic cities that once shown with a historic light have been overrun with tourist stands and crowds. According to the World Tourism Organization, France receives more foreign tourists per year than any other country – about 76 million in 2005. Spain followed with 55 million, the United States with 50 million and China with 47 million. Italy rounded out the top five with 37 million (with the U.K. not far behind). If you don’t mind being jostled by other tourists, or waiting in humidity and heat as long as you get what you came for, then this list can be bypassed and you should go directly to our senior destinations section. Keep in mind that one of the biggest advantages of traveling in retirement is you can go on a senior trip during the off-peak season. If you make a senior vacation to Venice in the fall, chances are the masses of tourists will be diminished. However, keep these hints in mind before traveling domestically or internationally if you want to focus on your next attraction and not your next line.
- Orlando, Florida theme parks in the summer – The summer heat and humidity of Florida is a thing that cannot be described to people who have not felt it firsthand. Making your senior vacation to Florida in the off-season will prevent you from encountering long lines and health risks due to the heat.
- Irelands Blarney Stone – Irish legend tells that the Blarney Stone will bestow the gift of gab to anyone who kisses it. However, to get to that point, one must wait through extremely long lines, pay £7, and get on hands and knees to reach the stone. Seniors might have a difficult time contorting their bodies to be able to reach the stone.
- Visiting the Mona Lisa – The Mona Lisa was created by one of the most studied and criticized men in history; Leonardo de Vinci. His most famous work, the Mona Lisa, is one of the smallest pieces of art in the Louvre, making the swarms of people seeing it that much more packed in.
- Central Park – This “green oasis in the middle of a concrete jungle” is a great spot for people watching and street shows, but is very similar to other metropolitan parks. Contrary to popular belief, it is not the largest park in NYC; the Pelham Bay Park in the Bronx is over 1,900 acres bigger.
- The towns of Caribbean Ports of Call – Whereas the beaches at these ports are gorgeous and worth getting off the boat for, the towns surrounding places like St. Thomas, St. Lucia and St. Maarten consist of t-shirt shops, jewelry makers and street merchants taking advantage of the cruise vacationers. The culture of these small towns has been swept up into a tourist trap.