After weeks of festive excess, it’s time to tackle the New Year head on. Everything that didn’t go entirely according to plan over the last 12 months will be better in 2018, perhaps from exercising more, to losing weight and saving more money. But let’s be honest: Oftentimes, those same promises were made last year, and January is infamous as the month for making – then breaking – your New Year’s resolutions.
Fear not! One of the most perennially popular New Year’s resolutions is to travel more – and as it turns out, traveling may also hold the key to making your other resolutions last. If 2018 is really going to be the year for change, Airbnb has some suggestions for making those resolutions a little easier to achieve.
1. Exercise More
In this London clock tower, it is practically impossible to be a couch potato. There are more than 250 steps in this apartment on Airbnb — so you’ll burn calories just by exploring the flat.
You can also tackle fitness goals by ditching the gym routine and adding excitement to your workouts. Get total body conditioning on a kitesurfing lesson in Malibu, or jog along the Moscow River to break a sweat while learning history with a personal coach. Alternatively, tap your competitive spirit in a volleyball match with local Cubans, or learn to dance like a K-pop star in Seoul.
2. Lose Weight
Dieting has never been so easy. Anyone who chooses to vacation in India will suddenly find themselves a little lighter than in Europe or the United States after just a few hours on the plane. How is this possible? The Earth’s surface is at its lowest point in southern India. This has a negative effect on the gravitational force. If you still think this is strange, then see for yourself in host Loris’ private room.
Even if you don’t find gravity working to your advantage, achieve your weight loss goals through a healthy, holistic approach. Book a hike and meditate at a private retreat in Malibu, learn the health benefits of aloe at this healthy spot in Paris, explore the Niagara by snowshoeing through six vineyards on a scenic hike in Toronto, or put your muscles (and your trust) to the test during an acrobatic yoga class in Tokyo.
3. Worry Less
If ‘less stress’ is your mantra for the new year, then this treehouse from host Klaus-Dieter is the perfect spot to kindle a carefree attitude. In the beautiful north of Germany, he lives a balanced life with his family, three dogs, eight cats and several Icelandic horses. And the homes he offers on Airbnb — treehouses elevated on stilts and enveloped in a fresh North Sea breeze — provide a sense of freedom and vitality.
Or free your mind with exhilarating adventures: Catching waves with a surf guru in Bali, learning to fly a plane above Los Angeles, riding horses through the countryside in Cuba, kayaking through a marine sanctuary in Melbourne, or hiking through nature and European history outside Dublin.
4. Drink Less
Indulge and get koselig in Norway, which is reportedly home to some of the world’s happiest people. If your resolution is to cut back on alcohol, then visiting a place where people embrace the winter as opposed to hiding from it might be a good distraction. And who needs beer when you’ve got this incredible log cabin to relax and cuddle up with a flask of hot chocolate in?
Or learn to make your own healthy, delicious drinks. Prepare authentic matcha tea while practicing traditional instruments during this music and tea Experience in Tokyo. Caffeine lovers can get a hands-on look inside Seattle’s famous coffee scene, or make their own specialty coffee like a pro in Barcelona. For those with a sweeter palate, shop for local produce and make your own fresh juice while learning Spanish in Havana.
5. Smoke Less
For those giving up smoking this year, there’s no better destination than Bhutan. Not only is smoking prohibited in Bhutan, but the temperature also drops during the winter months, tempting travelers to relax in warm, cozy places like the peaceful, non-smoking home of host Sangay.
Or put those hands to work by folding and flipping crepes in Paris, sewing a unique and original kimono in Tokyo, painting your own sneaker design in NYC, or preparing a traditional Argentine dinner in Buenos Aires.
6. Try Something New
When does anyone find time to learn a new hobby, if not while traveling? Some places just have a way of inspiring, and this little A-frame cabin surrounded by redwood trees in Calzadero, California has that certain something. With outstanding hiking trails around the cabin and numerous cookbooks provided by host Rachel, this home will invite any aspiring chef to try out adventurous new recipes when you’re not enjoying the outdoors. If not, settle down with a musical instrument or a literary classic upstairs.
Guests who enjoy getting out and about can explore a wide range of activities in nearby San Francisco with hosts providing a wide variety of Experiences on Airbnb. One of which exposes you to Japanese spoon carving, where you can hand carve your own wooden spoon using traditional Japanese tools and techniques. Or nurture your inner artist by sketching botanical Illustrations in London, learning to craft sushi in Tokyo, producing podcasts with a pioneer in Chicago or diving into tango culture in Buenos Aires.
7. Live More Healthily
The Japanese are not only known for design and architecture, but they are also experts when it comes to health and aging gracefully. Now, you can discover why from the residents of Okinawa — the island group with the longest life expectancy in the world. To learn the secrets of living well, check out host Mari’s home on the beach, the perfect hideaway for enjoying yoga and slow food.
In Osaka, practice the art of Japanese self-care by refreshing your body through natural medicine and bodywork. If you don’t find yourself in Japan, embrace a more conscious lifestyle in an outdoor hatha yoga class near Havana, make your own natural cosmetics in Amsterdam, or show your body some love with a sunset Hollywood sign hike and yoga session in Los Angeles.
8. Spend More Time with Family
Adults are not the only ones who can enjoy a weekend in the Dolomite Mountains of Italy. Children will also be thrilled to see real-life cows and witness for themselves where milk comes from. Host Christian’s farm is an ideal place for the whole family, and is the perfect home base for day trips to nearby destinations like Hochpustertal.
Make time for family through new activities that every age group will enjoy, like uncovering Disneyland Park Secrets at Disneyland Paris, learning puzzling illusions to impress friends during a magic and dinner show in San Francisco, create a traditional handicraft by painting an Alebrijes figurine in Mexico City, or unleash your inner adventurer on a white water rafting expedition in Bali.
9. Be More Present
With just 138 inhabitants per square mile, Georgia is the perfect country for those seeking a respite from modern life. Look no further than this private room in Sighnaghi: There is Internet access, but in this magical environment, you can’t help but put the phone down and charge your own internal batteries instead. Host Piotr offers not only expeditions to the Vashlovani or Tusheti national parks, but also tastings of local wines in the evenings.
Or take a well-earned screen break while breathing in the cleanest air in Barcelona with a nature yoga practice on Collserolla Mountain. Connect with your inner child while hiking, playing and finding your zen during a meditative mountain hike in Seattle, or take a mindful walk with a meditation practitioner in Havana’s historic city center. Want to really unplug? Learn how to digital detox and to live sustainably with off-grid Guy in Sydney.
10. Spend Less Money and Save More
Some people will certainly decide to be more thrifty this year. A trip to one of the most affordable and least touristy countries in Europe may help achieve this goal. Sofia, the Bulgarian capital, has one of the lowest costs of living in Europe; and on Airbnb, you’ll find plenty of beautiful accommodations that won’t break the bank. In this spacious and artistic apartment, hosts Tanya and Alexander will warmly welcome you to what may be one of the best bargains in the city.
Also looking for something fun to do, but trying to save some well-earned cash? Get to know Little Africa and its heritage in Rio de Janeiro for just $9, get a taste of the royal lifestyle for just $15 on a royal London walking tour, take home some brews from a visit to a craft brewery in Hong Kong for just $11, or pick up a new instrument and build a KoAloha Ukulele in Honolulu for $15.