Cooler weather destinations are becoming more popular due to climate change

A cycler enjoys a ride on a road meandering through hills. Picture: Unsplash

A cycler enjoys a ride on a road meandering through hills. Picture: Unsplash

Published Jul 2, 2024


Cooler weather destinations like Canada and Norway are becoming more popular due to the increase in global temperatures.

That’s according to the latest 2024 Adventure Travel Industry Snapshot report, which was released by the Adventure Travel Trade Association (ATTA).

It offers a comprehensive analysis of the industry’s health, future prospects and global trends which impact the adventure travel industry.

The report’s data was gathered through a survey which was conducted between March and May this year.

The survey questioned a global audience of tour operators in the ATTA community about their 2023 business operations and sales, 2024 booking expectations, travel trends and consumer motivations.

According to ATTA, a key finding of the report is that climate change is impacting where adventure travellers explore, though top destinations for adventure travellers have remained consistent with past years.

The survey also revealed that the last chance adventure travel trend is also a top motivator for this type of tourism in 2024 ,revealing an increased awareness of the effects of climate change and a desire to experience a destination before it’s too late.

“These results also serve as a critical reminder to the industry to step up and protect the delicate ecosystems in which adventure travel operators live and work – a charge that ATTA and its global community of tour operators and destinations have led for 20 years,” the organisation said

Here are some other key findings reported in the survey:

• Top trending adventure travel activities continue to lean towards accessible soft adventure such as hiking/trekking/walking, culinary/gastronomy, cultural, safaris/wildlife viewing, electric- bike cycling and wildlife/nature photography.

• Regarding climate-related actions, 53% of respondents are reducing emissions by purchasing from more sustainable suppliers, 45% disseminate climate-conscious travel education, 41%are reducing emissions by conserving water and 40% are reducing emissions by sustainably sourcing food.

• The most popular consumer motivations for travelling were new experiences, to go off-the-beaten-track location and to travel like a local.

• The hottest trending destinations were the Mediterranean, Western Europe, Scandinavia and North-East Asia.

• Respondents are diversifying their market base primarily by increasing their focus on families, women, travellers aged 50 and over, regional and local travellers and LGBTQIA+ travellers.

Commenting on the report, ATTA CEO, Shannon Stowell, said their core belief is that adventure travel inspires sustainable and regenerative approaches to tourism development.

“It is encouraging that 48% of respondents have or are pursuing sustainability certification, but we need this number to increase,” she said.

“As a global leader, the ATTA has a responsibility to address the social, economic, and environmental challenges facing the industry.”

Stowell added that in 2024, the organisation launched the Sustainability Resource Center, which includes a detailed Sustainability Policy and Fund.

“By providing tools and resources for sustainability and climate action, we’re helping to ensure that adventure travel is a force for good,” she said.