February 03, 2011
Escape - Angkor Wat in Cambodia. Source: News Limited
AUSTRALIANS are becoming more adventurous when it comes to travelling overseas.
Cambodia, Korea, and Sub-Saharan Africa among our fastest-growing holiday destinations.
Brazil and Mauritius are also soaring in popularity, with more traditional hot spots such as Italy, Fiji and Indonesia.
But New Zealand still remains the number one travel destination for Australians, according to Australian Bureau of Statistics figures for November.
Travel to the United States increased 10 per cent from the same time the previous year, largely as a result of the strong Australian dollar.
At the same time travel to the UK - which is still struggling after the global financial crisis - dropped by 8 per cent.
Travel to the Netherlands, Malaysia and Japan also suffered small falls.
Overall, more than 600,000 Australians holidayed overseas in November - 10 per cent more than the same month the previous year.
Cambodia is an emerging destination with a 74 per cent year-on-year rise, although the number of Australians travelling there is still small in comparison to more mainstream holiday spots.
Italy increased 57 per cent, Sub-Saharan Africa and Brazil both grew by 31 per cent and Korea rose 21 per cent.
Australian Federation of Travel Agents chief executive Jayson Westbury said budget airlines were increasingly flying to new destinations, leading to great opportunities for adventurous travellers.
"Cambodia is definitely a hot one," he said. "I remember going to China years ago when it wasn't on anyone's radar, now with great air access it is opening up so much."
He said the same thing would slowly happen throughout Asia.
"As we become more educated about destinations with so much more information available, people are realising that some of these places that you might never have contemplated are not that difficult to get to and are quite safe and fun," Mr Westbury said.
As well as hosting the 2014 FIFA World Cup, Brazil was also experiencing a rise in tourists thanks to more airlines flying to South America directly from Australia.
"As we get better connected links it has become a lot easier and more affordable for Australians to access South America," Mr Westbury said.
"You can get across there without having to fly to the United States."