Alaska Named Top Destination in Princess Travelers' Survey

Princess Cruises has released a recent poll of its Facebook fans designed to learn which destinations and travel experiences top their bucket lists in 2011 — respondents' number one destination was Alaska.

Other results included:

Domestic vs. International Travel

Surprisingly, more than one-fourth of consumers chose a U.S. destination over an exotic international location, citing Alaska as their first choice. The Caribbean (15 percent) and Europe (14 percent) also made many people’s lists this year, with fewer folks choosing Hawaii (8 percent); the Panama Canal (7 percent); Africa (5 percent); Australia (5 percent); the Amazon (4 percent); Asia (2 percent); Canada/New England (2 percent); Mexican Riviera (2 percent); New Zealand (2 percent); South America (2 percent), and India (1 percent).

Ultimate Travel Bucket List Experience

Alaska was also popular for future bucket list experiences. Seventeen percent of respondents chose dog mushing on an Alaskan glacier as their top pick inspired by a growing list of essential experiences shared by destination experts on Princess’ recently launched blog, 50 Essential Experiences: The Travel Bucket List.

Equally inspiring to travelers was the dream of discovering the lost city of Machu Picchu in Peru, which also got 17 percent of the vote, as did visiting historic castles in Scotland (17 percent).  Other travelers selected climbing the cliffs of Santorini, Greece (14 percent); traveling the golden circle in Iceland (7 percent); exploring the ancient city of Petra, Jordan (7 percent); journeying to Christ the Redeemer statue in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil (7 percent); visiting Vietnam (6 percent); bobsledding in Jamaica (5 percent); and visiting art deco treasures in Napier, New Zealand (4 percent) for their bucket lists.

Most Desired Travel Companions

Spouses and significant others won the popularity contest for most desired travel companions in 2011, with 68 percent of respondents planning to take along their “other half.” The next most common co-travelers are good friends (15 percent); while kids garnered only 6 percent of the vote as did extended family groups.  Only a few people resolved to travel with their siblings (3 percent) and parents (2 percent) this year.

However, if they could choose a celebrity instead of their spouse, most travelers want to pack their bags with Oprah, who outranked 11 other notable figures as the most desired celebrity travel companion  with 19 percent of the vote.  Other famous folks that travelers wanted to take along included Jack Black (17 percent); Tina Fey (14 percent); Bono (12 percent); Heidi Klum (10 percent); Mario Batali (8 percent); Michelle Obama (6 percent); and Peyton Manning (5 percent).  However, future princess Kate Middleton only received 3 percent of the vote and surprisingly few people chose Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg (2 percent).  Teen sensation Justin Bieber (1 percent) and Mike ‘The Situation’ from reality show “Jersey Shore” (1 percent) were the least popular choices.

Travel Experiences

Despite the adventurous nature of many of their favorite destinations, what Princess fans really wanted from their vacations was relaxation.  Nearly 50 percent of respondents chose this as an essential component to culling a travel bucket list, followed by adventure (19 percent); entertainment (17 percent); culture (12 percent); and romance (12 percent).

Results were based on findings from a poll fielded on the Princess Cruises Facebook page from Dec. 27, 2010, to Jan. 3, 2011.