The Return to Travel: 10 Great Destinations


Read our team’s top 10 destinations, from Harajuku, Japan, to Iceland’s Blue Lagoon and a chalet in the Canadian

Woman looking at map

Now that pandemic concerns have receded enough to allow a return to travel, we have our sights set on everything from road trips to long weekends and international travel. While our 2023 list of desired destinations is long—including Argentina, Japan, Singapore, Turkey, Morocco, and even Austin, Texas—we figured some good advice (from, ahem, advisors) might help narrow down the choices. We rounded up Mercer Advisors team members, from wealth advisors to managers and directors, for input on this year’s favorite travel destinations.


Osaka, Harajuku, and Kyoto, Japan

My husband studied in Japan during college, and we have wanted to travel there as a family for years. We had our tickets booked and our itinerary built…for May 2020. We all know what happened then! Fast-forward a few years, and we are finally rebooking our tickets to Tokyo, now that Japan has opened up. There are so many places we want to experience (Harajuku! Kyoto! Osaka!), but we are leaving some room in our itinerary to fall down a few rabbit holes. We are also planning on climbing Mt. Fuji; mountain-hut bookings open soon!

Emily Messegee, CFP®, MBA
Wealth Advisor, Director


Lisbon, Portugal

My family will visit Portugal for a wedding. We will spend our first few days in Lisbon, exploring the city and making some day trips, before heading out to the countryside for the wedding itself. There will be lots of family time, with people arriving all week. Being in Portugal for an extended period will allow us to explore the city and the country for a few days each.

Cameron Willcox, CFP®
Associate Wealth Advisor


Zion National Park, Utah, United States

Our family decided to visit Zion National Park so that we could spend quality time in nature, away from screens. We plan to take a few family hikes, stargaze, enjoy long meals on the porch, and let our three boys (ages two, five, and seven) just throw rocks and get dirty, as they would in their Junior Ranger program.

Jessica Caruso
Managing Director


Reykjavík and Blue Lagoon, Iceland

I visited Iceland with my family and very much enjoyed spending quality time with them. We saw waterfalls and the Northern Lights, snowmobiled to an ice cave, visited the Blue Lagoon, and ogled black-sand beaches. My wife booked our return flight on Super Bowl Sunday. No comment.           

Rob Medvey
Sr. Wealth Advisor


Alaskan Passage, United States

My parents are well-traveled, but Alaska has been on their bucket list for years. So, in July, they are treating us to a Princess cruise to the Inner Passage. In addition to enjoying the scenery and wildlife, we are excited to spend quality time together, relaxing and kayaking. I am excited for my son, who turns 13 in June, to experience a cruise for the first time. I hope it will be a very memorable experience for him—and for all of us! 

Jennifer Searle
Local Marketing Manager


San Francisco to Anaheim, California, United States

My family will be traversing California: We’re starting in San Francisco and working our way down to Disneyland. My sister moved to California last year, and we have never been there. We plan on having lots of family adventures, including beach tours; riding the Redwood Forest Steam Train, in Felton; and visiting the Monterey Bay Aquarium. This is our first trip with our kids (ages five, seven, and 10), and we are excited to start traveling more!

Elizabeth Yunker
Associate Wealth Advisor


Coastal Costa Rica

My family will be visiting Costa Rica for Thanksgiving (partly to see my parents, who are spending about four months there). We plan to do lots of snorkeling, hiking, and swimming! We are also looking forward to taking surfing lessons. Costa Rica also gives us the opportunity to practice our Spanish and explore another culture.

Laura Combs, CFP®
Managing Director


Blanket Glacier Chalet, Revelstoke, British Colombia

I chose to visit Blanket Glacier Chalet because, well, how can you say no to a helicopter ride to a backcountry mountain hut in the prime of ski season? I will be seeking adventure through five days of guided backcountry skiing, deep in the Canadian Rockies. That means five days of hiking up mountains, skiing down them, and then spending plenty of time in the wood-fire sauna to recover.

Alexander Cote, MBA
Portfolio Manager


Utsunomiya, Japan

We are going to visit my sister, my brother-in-law, and their two kids, in Japan, where they recently moved. We plan to spend our time first recovering from jet lag (we have three kids under five), then visiting Tokyo Disney and the small city of Nikko, which houses one of the more famous shrines from the 1600s and a temple from the eighth century. We also plan to try lots of new food! We’re excited to see family and visit a region that’s entirely new to us.

Josh DeForest, CFA, CFP®
Managing Director


London, United Kingdom

Having stumbled on a great British travel package offer last year, my wife and I hope to explore several tourist attractions, including the Globe Theatre and London Bridge. Then we’ll wrap up the trip with a home game for Arsenal Football Club, a team I’ve followed my whole life and have always wanted to see in their home stadium. This is my first trip to Europe, so I’m thrilled!

Carl Larimore, CFP®
Sr. Wealth Advisor, Director

Well, there you have it. At Mercer Advisors, our approach is both comprehensive and collaborative, on everything from vacation planning to your financial future! Enjoy your adventures, this year and every year—and stay safe.

Mercer Advisors Inc. is the parent company of Mercer Global Advisors Inc. and is not involved with investment services. Mercer Global Advisors Inc. (“Mercer Advisors”) is registered as an investment advisor with the SEC. The firm only transacts business in states where it is properly registered or is excluded or exempted from registration requirements.

All expressions of opinion reflect the judgment of the author as of the date of publication and are subject to change. Some of the research and ratings shown in this presentation come from third parties that are not affiliated with Mercer Advisors. The information is believed to be accurate but is not guaranteed or warranted by Mercer Advisors. Content, research, tools and stock or option symbols are for educational and illustrative purposes only and do not imply a recommendation or solicitation to buy or sell a particular security or to engage in any particular investment strategy. For financial planning advice specific to your circumstances, talk to a qualified professional at Mercer Advisors.

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