Beach destinations were a hit for NYE celebrations.

New Agoda data and insight showed that traveler preferences for New Year’s Eve (NYE)–beach and rural destination–proved more popular than previous years. Familiar cities remained hot and popular destinations, but the travel trend to truly escape continued to dominate the post-pandemic travel recovery.

Topping the list leading up to New Year’s Eve is still Manila, with its many hotels and activities to do. World-class beach destination, Cebu (#3), kept its spot in the number three spot, thanks to its rich history and proximity to multiple islands.

New joiners Bohol (#8), known for its unique chocolate hills and nature, and Davao City (#7) with its hustle and bustle of city life knocked Laguna and Iloilo off the Top Ten list.

Travelers are taking care of themselves after on-and-off lockdowns in 2021. According to Agoda, the preference for 4 to 5 star hotels is even stronger in the Philippines and other Asian countries as venues to celebrate the arrival of 2022.

“Travel is back, although domestic travel remains the predominant source of business for Asian destinations during the NYE celebration season. Agoda data shows that in addition to the big city, traditional, celebration destinations, travelers across Asia are showing their ongoing desire to get out, to getaway, and to escape the constrictions and controls of COVID-impacted cities,” said Timothy Hughes, vice president corporate development at Agoda.

The city staycation is booming, he said. Equaling the appeal of Asia’s beaches is the stunning scenery and freedom of open space. In the Philippines, Boracay sprung into the second spot, up from fifth place the previous year.

Also in the Top 10 list in the Philippines where Filipinos welcomed the new year are Tagaytay (#4, down one spot), Baguio (#5, up one spot), and Subic (#6, down two spots). Completing the top 10 are Angeles / Clark (#9, down one spot), and Batangas (#10, down four spots).