Where the (Pique) Pros Want to Go
Now more than ever our team is itching to get out and travel. Here’s a little more about where some of our “pros” want to go as soon as we’re given the chance!
Erin Green, Travel Designer
A place that's been on my list for a while is one of the more "off the beaten path" islands in the Caribbean: St. Kitts. When the dazzling Park Hyatt opened on St. Kitts in 2016, it captured my attention. A gorgeous retreat on Banana Bay, it offers the perfect luxurious home base with beautiful views of the Nevis volcano and white sand beaches for kayaking, snorkeling, and sunbathing. However, the island itself offers a lot of adventure for someone like myself that gets a little antsy after a few days of beach time whether it's ziplining, riding a historic railway to learn about the sugar cane production history of the island, or hopping on a 15-minute water taxi over to Nevis for some really great hiking (gotta love a destination that has a sister island so close!).
Jessica Carey, Operations and Affiliate Manager
We’ve helped clients do trips to the Grand Canyon several times...whether it’s a rafting expedition down the river, a couple days of hiking or a day trip from a nearby spa resort. One of the more active options I want to do includes a trip to Havasupai Falls (this picture was taken by my Dad on his recent trip!). Allowing us to book this experience for travelers makes it so much more accessible than trying to buy a permit on your own (permits are very limited and you can sit on hold for hours every day trying to get through!). Our partners have the permits, gear and provide/prepare the food. The local guides help make the most out of the trip by showing guests off the beaten path trails, assisting over challenging parts of the hike and sharing knowledge that would otherwise be lost.
Liz Matassa, Travel Designer
The sooner I can take my next big trip, the better! And when I do, I’m going to explore Norway and Iceland. I’m mesmerized by the dramatic and rugged landscapes as well as by the minimalist architecture and design. It’s a feast for the eyes. I love visiting countries like these by small ship that navigates around the difficult terrain (and at night while we’re sleeping), stopping in smaller ports that are less frequented to get a more authentic, local experience. I actually have my eye on a Silversea itinerary for August 2021 that is perfect and combines both countries (plus the hard to get to Faroe Islands)...saving me airfare by going to each country separately. A visit to a local hot spring at the end of the trip sounds like the perfect ending. Ahhhh.
Amy Vohs, Travel Manager I was sad to have to give up my Spring Break plans to Costa Rica so it’s on my “must go” list sooner than later. I’m intrigued by the mix of rainforest/adventure and beach/relaxation. Sounds perfect right now! I know it’s a popular place to go, but few places give you such a diversity of regions and activities. I also love that most times of the year it’s a relatively short (5 hours) and direct flight from Minneapolis.
Kris Nosworthy, Travel Design
No matter how many times I travel to New Zealand, it will always remain near the top of my list. Easily one of the most breathtaking countries in the world, this country of two islands packs so much into such a small space. Not to mention it has some of the friendliest people you will ever meet. Rugged snow-capped mountains, gorgeous glacier valleys, dense redwood forests and never-ending fjords allow you to experience adventure in so many different ways: hiking, cycling, climbing, rafting, bungee jumping, skydiving, caving, zorbing, wine sipping, golfing, white water rafting, horseback riding, to name just a few! The most alluring part of New Zealand is the nature – with 14 National Parks and 1/3 of the country being protected lands, there are so many ways to enjoy and lose yourself in its beauty.
Emily Hove, Executive Assistant I love sun/fun getaways and Hawaii has always been high on my wish list. Because Pique owners, Jim and Linda Bendt, lived there I have access to some of the more authentic and hidden places and experiences the islands have to offer. Their beaches are always rated among the top in the world and I love the allure of their uniquely blended culture. I’m also curious to try some of the amazing local fish, Asian fusion dishes and fresh fruits/vegetables that make their Farm to Table cooking known throughout the world.
Jim Bendt, Owner
Morocco is high on my list...hopefully within the next few years. I've been lucky to travel to Egypt and more than 7 other African countries, but the culture, sites and history of Morocco is so different than the others. Of course, I'm fascinated to spend time in the likes of Casablanca, Fez, Marrakech and other usual suspects, but I'm also curious about places like the Blue Village of Chefchaouen, Tangier and Rabat. And, of course spending time in the iconic Atlas Mountains, by the sea and in the desert just offers so much to do there!
Linda Bendt, Owner
I’m going to cheat and list two places that are top on my wish list: Vancouver/Western British Columbia as well as Alaska (I would also put Banff for a long weekend, but then I’d really be cheating). I love the city and outlying areas of Vancouver. The city itself is beautiful with great gardens and parks, in addition to the biking and walking trails that give you access and ability to stay active. Not to mention an amazing food scene. Paired with Vancouver I want to do a fly-in trip north along the coast of British Columbia to stay at a floating lodge where you have access to seeing the spirit bear (a black bear with a recessive gene that makes it white). Learn more about the spirit bear so you know I’m not making it up.
Alaska is also tops on my list. While Jim and I have been in the past, we have yet to take the kids. My ideal trip would be on a small expedition ship (100 passengers or less) through the inside passage and then end with an extension on land to explore the areas deeper inland. Part of the land portion needs to be a return to Katmai National Park to see Brooks Falls and the grizzly bears. If time allows, I’d love to head back to Denali to see the amazing landscapes. To appease our son Andrew, fishing would have to be on the itinerary at least every other day (he wants to fly fish for rainbow trout and ocean fish for halibut!). For Abby, seeing the whales and other marine animals would make her day...especially if she’s in a position to fine-tune her photography skills.
Want to learn more about these amazing places? Or other destinations and experiences on your wish list? Email LindaB@PiqueTravel.com.