As the 2024 travel season approaches, Avani Hotels and Resorts, a lifestyle brand for millennial travellers, invites guests to discover UNESCO World Heritage Sites that transcend seasonal boundaries and offer a treasure trove of sustainable activities year-round. From sunrise picnics at Angkor Wat and alms giving with monks in Luang Prabang to coral planting in Baa Atoll and bungee jumping over Victoria Falls, each Avani property offers a collection of cultural and natural adventures designed to create a deep connection with a place of global historical and aesthetic significance.
Home to over 250 species of coral and 1,200 species of fish, Baa Atoll is a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve where nature lovers can indulge their passion for conservation and wildlife with coral planting and reef protection activities led by a team of marine experts at Avani+ Fares Maldives Resort. The extraordinary diversity of Baa Atoll’s marine ecosystem is on full display at Hanifaru Bay, where guests can dive with manta rays, while turtle searches and night snorkelling amid shimmering blankets of bioluminescent plankton offer a change of perspective and a thrill that few experiences can match. Above the sea, the turquoise waters off Fares Island offer excellent kayaking, paddle boarding, jet skiing, windsurfing, sailing and romantic sunset cruises on dhoni boats.
Over in Laos, where natural tranquillity meets cultural diversity, Avani+ Luang Prabang offers visitors unparalleled access to an enchanting ancient city designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Guests can fill their days exploring the old town on guided tours with stops at historic temples, traditional Lao houses and colonial architectural gems; soaking up the slow pace of local life on a cruise along the Mekong River past villages and sacred caves; and shopping for local produce, handicrafts and textiles at the bustling morning market. A deeply spiritual experience is the early morning almsgiving ritual, which offers guests a unique opportunity to meet Buddhist monks as they collect offerings in exchange for blessings and advice.
A 10-minute drive from the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Angkor Wat, FCC Angkor by Avani is the perfect base from which to explore the world’s largest religious monument, which preserves the rich history and mythology of the ancient Khmer Empire. In addition to guided tours of the Angkor Archaeological Park and scenic rides through the countryside, Avani guests can explore the vast temple complex in an open-top vintage jeep, visit lesser-known religious sites on a Vespa tour, or book the exclusive Angkor Wat Sunrise Experience with a gourmet picnic. For an insight into Cambodia’s mixology scene, guests can join a local gin distiller for a workshop in the botanical garden, followed by a cocktail tasting at FCC’s signature Scribe bar.
One of the seven natural wonders of the world and a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the spectacular Victoria Falls is within earshot of guests staying at Avani Victoria Falls Resort, Zambia. Thrill-seekers can participate in adrenaline-pumping activities such as helicopter rides over the falls, bungee jumping from the Victoria Falls Bridge and white-water rafting, while tranquil river cruises through lush rainforest offer excellent wildlife viewing opportunities. Guests wishing to explore the awe-inspiring falls up close can book guided tours to learn about the history, geology and local legends surrounding the natural wonder poetically referred to by locals as ‘smoke that thunders’.
For guests seeking new ways to connect with the places they visit, UNESCO World Heritage Sites offer the best of both worlds: stunning natural and cultural attractions that also contribute to the global good through their conservation and preservation efforts. Whether it’s witnessing the majesty of Angkor Wat or standing in awe at Victoria Falls, Avani opens the door to immersive and transformative experiences that not only capture the soul, but also protect the planet’s most treasured places.