11 Expensive Vacations Worth Every Penny

Some people take camping trips during the summer, while others head out for some family fun at Disney World or Universal Studios. Yet another group embarks on exotic vacations beyond your wildest imagination.

Some of the luxury vacations on this list cost tens of thousands of dollars, but others can be booked for under $2,000. You just have to know where to look. From cruises to hotels and sightseeing to glamping, check out these luxury vacation ideas.

An Expedition to the North Pole

Maybe tropical islands and trade winds aren’t how you want to spend your vacay. How about cruising to the North Pole on a nuclear icebreaker? Adventure Life offers a 17-day trip that takes you north aboard Le Commandant Charcot, starting at $32,970 per person. You’ll check out plenty of polar bears, walruses and glaciers along the way.

Cool bonus: After you walk around the North Pole, you can officially say you have walked around the world. Now that’s an icebreaker.

China’s Magnificent Mountains

The Yellow Mountain and Jiuzhaigou National Park are known for being some of the most beautiful sights in the world. On a 13-day journey from Remote Lands, however, you’ll find out just how real they are firsthand. Plunk down a starting rate of $18,800 per person, and you’ll get one of the best tours of China’s National Park, as well as Tibetan villages of the Zharu Valley.

A Luxurious Treehouse

If you thought your childhood treehouse was the coolest place on the planet, get ready to find out just how wrong you were. Now that you’re grown up, it’s time to check out the Treehouse Hideaway Suite at the Chewton Glen Hotel & Spa in New Forest, Hampshire, England.

Suspended 35 feet above the ground and boasting an outdoor terrace deck that includes a hot tub, this treehouse is one of the most unique lodging options you can find. Inside, there’s a separate bedroom with a king-sized bed, wood burner, marble bathroom, flat screen TV and mood lighting.

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Still think your plywood treehouse was the bomb? Try charging $1,641 a night for it.

An Underwater Room in Zanzibar

If you want to stay in a room with a breathtaking view, consider this: a bungalow with an underwater room at the Manta Resort on Pemba Island, Zanzibar. The three-level, floating cottage has a sun deck, kitchen and a bedroom that rests below sea level, boasting 360-degree views of reef fish, coral and more. A double room for one night under the sea costs between $1,760 and $2,200.

Glamping in Botswana

Who says you have to sleep in a tent when camping? If you’re willing to pay the high price tag, you can go on a glamping vacation and enjoy luxurious accommodations.

For example, go glamping in Botswana. Bordering the 55,600 acres of the Moremi Game Reserve, the gym, spa and 12 private pool-equipped suites of the &Beyond Sandibe Okavango Safari Lodge marry the worlds of nature and man-made luxury.

The amenities in these contemporary cocoons include fireplaces and reading nooks — you’ll need those cozy spaces after taking a bush walk among the fig trees, enjoying a safari game drive or soaring over lagoons in a private helicopter. At peak season, your glamping trip will rack up a bill of $4,100 per night for a suite starting in 2024.

Education Galapagos-Style

Want to have an amazing luxury vacation and come back a little smarter? Luxury adventure travel company Quasar Expeditions has an all-inclusive, eight-day package that evolves with its guests. And we really mean “evolves” — this journey illuminates the islands that inspired Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution.

Snorkel, kayak and hike your way through Darwin’s footsteps on a journey of a lifetime, and get comfy along the way — your home for the “class” will be a luxury yacht. With a master suite costing about $11,350 in 2024, it’s cheaper than college — and a whole lot more fun.

Your Private Island in the Maldives

Known for being an ultra-exclusive beach vacation spot, The Maldives is a perfect string of islands in the Indian Ocean. And, you can vacation on your own private island, thanks to the Four Seasons.

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The Four Seasons Maldives Private Island at Voavah, Baa Atoll boasts a double-story Beach House, white powder sand, a gym, library, lounge, spa and much more. It even offers the Voavah Summer, a private 62-foot luxury yacht you can hop on to explore the island, go snorkeling or watch dolphins.

All of these perks likely don’t come cheap, though. For pricing information, you’ll need to contact the Four Seasons, as every booking is bespoke.

A Great Barrier Reef Beach House

The Qualia Resort on Hamilton Island in the famed Whitsunday Islands, near Australia’s Great Barrier Reef, is nothing if not postcard perfect. In Latin, Qualia means “a collection of deeper sensory experiences,” and that’s exactly what the resort is going for.

Situated on the eastern edge of the Barrier Reef, Hamilton Island is one of the most pristine of the 74 Whitsunday Islands — 70% is a protected national park. You can go on bush walks to isolated spots with panoramic views of other islands and the crystal-blue Coral Sea.

And why not rent the Beach House to enjoy it all? With a lap pool, dining area that seats 10 and more panoramic views, this luxurious accommodation costs between $5,940 and $8,460 for two to three nights, depending on the season and the number of guests.

Neverland in Scotland

The island of Eilean Shona off the West Coast of Scotland bills itself as “Neverland Found,” and you’ll believe in Tinker Bell when you see its 600 acres of mist-covered ancient pine trees, hills and tide-lapped inlets.

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One thing you won’t see here are cars. Instead, you’ll find rustic cottages, fantastical castle ruins and wildlife, including deer and sea eagles.

The comfiest way to enjoy all of that seclusion is at the Eilean Shona House, a combination boutique hotel and family home that sleeps 20 and sports a library, a full-size billiard table, fire-warmed drawing room and no less than 12 bedrooms. You have to book months in advance, with pricing and availability on application.

Uluru’s Dune Pavilion

The Great Barrier Reef isn’t all Australia has to offer travelers with a taste for the finer things. To take in simultaneous views of the sandstone rock formations of Uluru and Kata Tjuta, Baillie Lodges is your ticket.

Of course, a three-night stay for nearly $5,000 nets you a little more than just pretty rocks. Inclusive fine dining and an exclusive guided walking tour of the Uluru base pair perfectly with the Pavilion’s contemporary vibe. The space offers a luxury-infused update on the traditional  Australian homestead, complete with locally commissioned artwork, an outdoor deck with a daybed, a fireplace, curated bar and personal plunge pool.

The South Pole in Style

If you’ve already done a luxurious North Pole tour, you might as well do the South Pole in style.With White Desert‘s array of exploratory packages, you can check Antarctica off your bucket list in a single day.

You’ll start in Cape Town before jetting off to the least populated continent on Earth. You’ll then explore mile-high ice mountains before getting back on the plane for a gourmet Champagne dinner.

For the ultimate in South Pole luxury, you can book a spot in the camp for anywhere between $62,500 and $104,000 per person, with Exclusive Use (Owners Club) packaging available when you contact White Desert’s booking desk.

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