VIRTUOSO LIFE® Magazine Reveals Readers' "Travel Dreams" And Shows How To Create A Trip-of-a-Lifetime Experience

Jul 02, 2012, 15:50 ET from Virtuoso

NEW YORK, July 2, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Virtuoso®, the leading network of luxury-focused travel advisors, shows that upscale travelers continue to seek out new experiences, from the traditional to the exotic, and they are willing to travel far and wide to do so. Today, Virtuoso reveals findings from its sixth annual "Travel Dreams" survey, a poll made available earlier this year through the network's award-winning magazine, VIRTUOSO LIFE®. Responses came from the magazine's readers who are among the world's most sophisticated travelers, in part because they rely on the expertise, knowledge and connections of Virtuoso travel advisors. Survey results appear below. 

According to survey findings, spending time on the high seas proves to be a favorite theme, while taking a world cruise, calling on all seven continents and sailing the Mediterranean by private yacht rank among the top three "Trips of a Lifetime." To plan the winning dream trip, VIRTUOSO LIFE's savvy editors suggest Silversea Cruises' 115-day world cruise. The 382-passenger Silver Whisper's voyage from Los Angeles to Fort Lauderdale circumnavigates the globe, calling on 52 ports in 28 countries. Departures begin January 4, 2013, with fares from $49,999, including domestic business-class airfare.

Also in the coveted "Trips of a Lifetime" category, the Galapagos Islands reclaims its spot, causing "Dining through Paris' Best Restaurants" to fall off the list, while "Riding the Orient-Express" makes its debut at number six.  For those wishing to capture the romance of the rails, VIRTUOSO LIFE's editors recommend taking the classic six-day Venice-to-Istanbul journey. Coming in at number nine this year is "Renting a Private Island" (yes, the entire island). VIRTUOSO LIFE editors say this is an easier feat than one would think. They suggest Belize's Cayo Espanto, with its seven oceanfront villas. Only an eight-minute boat ride from San Pedro, the private island offers access to great snorkeling, diving and sport-fishing, not to mention plenty of relaxation for all 18 guests. Full-island rental begins at $13,500 per night, including three customized meals per day, beverages (excluding wine) and butler service.

Australia has one of the strongest showings in the poll. Not only does it rank the number one "Dream Destination," but it also appears on the list for "Top Family Getaways" and Sydney appears as a "Go-To Style and Design Capital." Perennial favorites like Italy, New Zealand, South Africa and French Polynesia round out the remaining top five "Dream Destinations." The Hawaiian Islands take first place in "Top Family Getaways" and as well as the overall "Most Wanted Island Escape." However, Fiji ranks as the top island destination amongst readers aged 21 to 34 years.

Whether cruising on inner waterways or ocean-faring, Europe remains a favored destination. The Mediterranean tops the ocean cruises, while the French wine country canal ranks as the favorite amongst river cruisers, particularly luxury travelers. According to VIRTUOSO LIFE, there is a direct correlation between a reader's higher income level and their preference for this particular cruise. 

"Virtuoso travelers continue to blaze new trails, setting the standard for how and where those in-the-know will venture next," says Elaine Srnka, editorial director for VIRTUOSO LIFE. "The 'Travel Dreams' results show us the destinations and products that are likely to be the most popular in the year ahead, allowing us to focus our editorial in a way that our readers will find more compelling."

To sweeten the deal, Crystal Cruises, presenting prize sponsor of VIRTUOSO LIFE's "Travel Dreams" survey, provided one lucky survey participant with an 11-day cruise for two in a Penthouse aboard Crystal Symphony, sailing from New York to Montreal, P.Q., Canada.  This grand prize includes Voyager Club benefits: invitation to an exclusive onboard welcome cocktail reception, access to a dedicated onboard host and a per person shipboard credit. Five additional participants took home $1,000 each in cash, no doubt going toward their dream trip.

The "Travel Dreams" survey, conducted between January 5 and March 31, 2012, yielded over 5,000 responses. Please visit to see the survey results featured in the current issue of VIRTUOSO LIFE magazine. To reserve any of the above packages or to be connected with a Virtuoso advisor, please contact Virtuoso at 855-570-3830.

Top Trips of a Lifetime

  1. Setting sail for a world cruise          
  2. Calling on all seven continents                
  3. Sailing the Mediterranean on a private yacht        
  4. Visiting all Seven New Wonders of the World            
  5. Photographing "the big five" on an African safari     

Top Dream Destinations

  1. Australia                                                                 
  2. Italy                                                                                   
  3. New Zealand                                                                     
  4. South Africa                                                           
  5. French Polynesia                                                    

Top Family Getaways                                                

  1. Hawaiian Islands                                                    
  2. Italy                                                                       
  3. The Caribbean                                                       
  4. Galapagos Islands                                                  
  5. Alaska                                                                    

Most Romantic Cities                                                 

  1. Paris, France                                                                       
  2. Venice, Italy                                                                        
  3. Santorini, Greece                                                                
  4. Rome, Italy                                                                         
  5. New York, New York   

SOURCE Virtuoso