Destination Guides

How to plan your world travel after retirement?

Whether you’re already retired or you’re close to retirement, you’re probably thinking about travel – and it’s never too early to start planning! You’ve got the whole wide world to explore – so where do you begin? We’ve broken down the steps to planning your travel after retirement, from where to go and how to go, to what to pack for any retirement travel adventure.

Create a bucket list

Wondering where to travel after retirement? It’s time to create a bucket list! Do you want to see the iconic attractions or discover the hidden gems? Would you prefer a relaxing holiday or an intrepid adventure? Do you want low cost or luxury? These are all questions you should ask yourself while you’re putting together your bucket list for your travel after retirement. Here are some of our favourite experiences around the world to inspire your retirement travel adventure:

RELATED CONTENT: 7 bucket list trips to take to celebrate your retirement

couple on holiday sharing a cocktail overlooking the water

If you love exploring nature, you might consider heading to some of the most extraordinary landscapes on the planet like Patagonia, Norway’s fjords, the Canadian Arctic, the Greek Islands, the Namibian deserts, Thailand’s beaches, or the national parks in the US. You could see the Northern Lights in Iceland, meet panda bears in China, go on safari to see the Big 5 in Africa, travel Down Under to Australia and New Zealand, or venture to the final frontier – Antarctica. 

Or maybe cultural and historic experiences are more your speed? When you travel with Trafalgar, you could enjoy a cookout with local Native Americans in Monument Valley, fly over the mysterious Nazca Lines and explore Machu Picchu in Peru, or meet a local family on the Croatian Island of Hvar. You could spend the night in Ashford Castle in Ireland, meeting a family on their ranch in Costa Rica, see the ancient wonders of Egypt, or learn about traditional crafts in Japan. The world really is your oyster!

RELATED CONTENT: 13 of the most remarkable experiences you can enjoy when you tour with Trafalgar

elderly couple exploring the mountains in Scandinavia

Choose your way to travel

Do you want to take an iconic train journey like the Rocky Mountaineer in Western Canada, the Glacier Express in Switzerland, the West Highland Line in Scotland or the Bergen Line in Norway? Perhaps you’d prefer to take to the water with a river cruise in China, a Mediterranean sailing trip in Italy, or a cruise down the mighty Nile in Egypt. When you travel with Trafalgar, you’ll also get to experience our customised luxury coaches for the road trip you’ve always dreamed about. 

RELATED CONTENT: Why you shouldn’t wait until retirement to start travelling

Let Trafalgar take care of the rest

You’ve chosen your dream destinations, your activities and your way to go. Now all you have to do is find your favourite Trafalgar trips (or create your own custom tour if you’re travelling with a group of 10 or more people) and book! Our friendly teams are with you every step of the way, from booking, to pre-departure planning, to 24/7 on-trip support. We take care of every detail, from accommodation to meals and activities, and your Travel Director is always there to ensure you’re getting the most out of your trip. We make sure you see all the very best bits of your destination – from the icons to the hidden gems – plus you’ll have enough time to explore on your own. 

couple holding hands admiring architecture in Spain

Start packing

So you’ve planned and booked your retirement travel adventure. Now it’s time to start packing! It can get overwhelming when trying to plan what you need for your trip. You’ll need to consider the climate of your destination at the time you’re visiting, what activities you’ll be doing, and how long you’ll be travelling. We’ve put together a basic packing list with the essentials to get you started.

Basic everyday items

  • Clothing and shoes – refer to the climate and activities on your trip for the ideal clothing and shoes to wear.
  • Sun protection – hat, sunglasses and high SPF sunscreen. You’ll need these anywhere in any season.
  • Scarf or sarong – perfect for when you need to dress modestly or protect yourself from the cold or heat.
  • Secure day bag – whether you go for a backpack or a cross-body bag, choose one that’s waterproof with lots of pockets.
  • Toiletries – you can save space and waste by using reusable travel bottles. You can even try solid toiletries like bar shampoos, soaps, deodorants and toothpaste tablets.
  • Medical kit – it’s always handy to have a small first aid kit, especially in a post-pandemic world. Our medical essentials include face masks, hand sanitiser and sanitising wipes. You might also like to bring nasal spray, eye drops, pain relief, electrolytes, bandaids, antiseptic ointment, and travel sickness tablets. You’ll also need enough personal medications for the trip (plus a letter from your doctor if you’re taking prescribed medication). Be sure to check your destination for specific health advice before you go.
  • Reusable water bottle – you’ll never have to buy wasteful plastic water bottles again! Plus you can often refill with filtered water at your accommodation or at public fountains.
  • Eye mask and earplugs – essentials for light sleepers.
two couples looking out over a scenic viewpoint in Italy

Travel essentials

  • Cash and cards – it’s handy to bring a mix of credit and debit cards and some local cash. That way, you’re never caught without a backup plan.
  • Electronics – smartphone, camera, extra memory cards, chargers, portable chargers, and waterproof cases. Bring an e-reader or headphones for some entertainment on long coach rides or relaxed days. You might also like to bring a power strip so you charge multiple devices at once.
  • Travel adaptor – check your specific destinations for the required plug adaptors, or bring a universal adaptor.
  • Important documents – download or take photos of your important documents like your passport, visa, travel insurance and tickets. Always bring physical photocopies of your important documents as well. If they get damaged or lost, you’ll always have a copy to help you get a replacement. 

RELATED CONTENT: On the road again: Classic American road trip movies to inspire your next adventure

Where are you planning to travel after retirement? Let us know in the comments below!

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