As more and more Indians are becoming experimental while choosing their holiday destinations, they are mostly looking for off-the-beaten-path places like Bhutan, Russia and Middle East to satisfy this adventurous need in them, according to a survey.
“In 2015, Indian travellers are the most experimental in Asia Pacific when it comes to choosing holiday destinations. Keen to uphold this reputation in 2016, Indian travellers are seeking adventures off the beaten track to scratch that travel itch,” global travel search site Skyscanner revealed.
The survey is based on actual searches on Skyscanner from April 2015 – April 2016 for a travel period from May 2016 to December 2016.
The survey revealed the unconventional travel destination rising most in popularity is neighbouring Bhutan with a 75 per cent increase in search from 2015.
“The Thunder Dragon Kingdom is drawing Indian travellers in their droves this year too,” it added.
“Considering the adventurous nature of Indian travellers coupled with increasing disposable incomes and continuously improving travel options, it’s no wonder these destinations are appearing on more and more their bucket lists. The surge in pop culture references in movies and literature may also be influencing tourists to look out for unfrequented destinations,” Skyscanner India Manager, Growth Strategy, Ravish Doctor said.
Bhutan was followed by Russia, where searches jumped 47 per cent year-on-year and is becoming a tourist hot spot for Indians.
In addition to the famed Faberge Eggs, the vodka and the ballet, tourists are discovering Russia through the Byzantine architecture and new holiday destinations such as Sochi, the Black Sea resort and home of the 2014 Winter Olympics.
Affordable and varied flight routes along with the weakening Ruble are also bringing in more tourists to the snow clad country.
Away from the glitz and glamour of Dubai and Abu Dhabi, alternative Middle Eastern destinations like Iran and Jordan have seen a rise of 21 per cent and 15 per cent Y-o-Y, respectively.
With the ease of visa rules and change in policies, it is becoming an attractive unconventional destination, it added.