4 popular TikTok travel trends

TikTok is full of content creators, most of them female, sharing their solo adventures. Picture: Supplied

TikTok is full of content creators, most of them female, sharing their solo adventures. Picture: Supplied

Published Jun 20, 2024


TikTok has over a billion monthly active users, and a big focus for many of these users is travel.

#TravelTikTok and #TravelTok have 8.5 million and 1.4 million posts, respectively, providing aspiring travellers with their daily dose of wanderlust and holiday tips.

According to getaway.co.za, 79% of South Africans prefer to travel domestically and family-friendly travel is a big priority for locals. The travel site also said that nearly 75% of South Africans travel once or twice a year while 50% said their holidays last at least a week.

Flight Centre South Africa travel experts highlighted that it’s evident people rely on social media for travel inspiration but the question is: What is inspiring them?

Here are some of the biggest travel trends on TikTok at the moment, according to the travel experts.

Adventure travel

Sue Garrett, GM of Supply Pricing and Marketing at Flight Centre South Africa, said that adventure travel tops the list on the social media platform, with users posting about “places on earth that don’t feel real” and adventurous ways to explore them, from feeding flamingos at Kenya’s Kanaru Lake to feeling the water crashing down on you beneath Millford Falls (also known as Tamarind Falls) in Mauritius.

“Adventurous travel interests people because they’re craving a break from monotony. It also offers a sense of accomplishment and gratitude. Plus, since most adventurous activities are outdoors, travellers get an extra dose of fresh air, sunshine and freedom,” said Garrett.

View reveals

The travel expert also said that view-reveal videos take the audience along for the journey, building anticipation before unveiling beautiful vistas, from 360-degree valley views to dramatic drone shots of the bushveld plains at sunrise.

“View reveals on social media rack up those likes because they tap into our curiosity and inject magic into our daily routines. They remind us there are still hidden gems and extraordinary places waiting to be discovered, and that’s a powerful motivator for travel,” she said.

Library travel

The travel expert also stated that libraries and bookshops have become relatively outdated since Kindles landed on the scene in 2007, but hardcore readers and followers of #BookTok still believe nothing can compare to that dusty, musty smell of opening an old book and feeling the pages between your fingers – hence the rise in library and literary travel.

“Search these hashtags on TikTok, and your feed will flood with videos of people exploring amazing libraries and bookstores from around the world. Think floor-to-ceiling bookshelves with ladders, cosy reading nooks and bottomless tea or coffee,” she said.

Solo travel

And finally, Garrett revealed that solo travel still reigns supreme, and this trend has social media to thank for its ever-growing popularity.

She highlighted that TikTok is full of content creators, most of them female, sharing their solo adventures to destinations far and wide.

“For example, South African travel content creator @gopharitravels has over 186k followers and regularly posts about how solo travel has set her free.

“She ventured solo to Zanzibar, Zimbabwe and Kenya and to many wonderful local hideaways, educating her followers on how to travel alone safely and make the most of the experience,” said Garrett.

While these trends can leave you dreaming about the perfect escape, Garrett emphasised that it’s important to remember social media often presents a curated version of reality.

“Don’t get swept up in the hype; instead, use these trends as a starting point for your own special adventure. A knowledgeable travel agent can help you create a bespoke holiday that’s right for you, rather than a one-size-fits-all trends-inspired getaway.

“It’s about finding the balance between inspiration and practicality,” she said.