Travellers turn to farms, castles and tiny houses for unique stays on Airbnb

About 4.5 million people saw in 2022 at more than 53,000 rental properties in over 220 countries around the world

Over 4.5 million people celebrated new year in an Airbnb with castles, farms and tiny houses popular choices around the world. Photo: Airbnb

Rental accommodation provider Airbnb wrapped up 2021 by hosting more than 4.5 million people in its properties across the globe on December 31.

From Italy to the US, Peru, the UAE and hundreds of places in between, millions of visitors spent New Year’s Eve in 53,000 Airbnb accommodations in 220 countries.

Brazil, which is famed for its festive celebrations, was the most popular destination for travellers searching for a stay to wind down the year, but people also sought out more remote destinations, often famed for their mountains and snow.

After a year that kept a lot of us inside our own homes because of travel restrictions, isolation requirements and rising Covid-19 cases, people were keen to find somewhere different to ring in the new year.

Spending New Year on a farm was the most popular 'unique stay' on Airbnb this new year. Photo: Airbnb

Farm stays were the most popular unique stays on Airbnb on December 31, with nearly 50,000 guests checking in to a farm or prairie home to welcome 2022.

Tiny houses were also popular, with 30,000 bookings for the minuscule properties. And more than 3,500 guests sought the exact opposite, choosing to spend New Year’s Eve in castles across the world.

Treehouses and snowy, remote destinations were popular on Airbnb this new year. Photo: Airbnb

Tree houses and yurts were also highly popular choices for 'unique stays' and more than 850 guests booked to bed-down on private islands to truly get away from it all. More than 130 hardy travellers chose to stay in an igloo, for a sub-zero start to the new year.

Airbnb has revealed that this New Year’s Eve was the biggest night for the company since the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic. The data is despite the company’s ban on one-night bookings which was introduced to help prevent parties or large gatherings.

Valentino Castle in Turin, capital of Italy's Piedmont which was one of Airbnb's most popular destinations for December 31 stays. AFP

The most popular place for stays on New Year's Eve was Praia Grande in Sao Paulo while Malaysia’s Subang Jaya near Kuala Lumpur was the second most popular destination.

Italy’s Piedmont – known for its alpine ski-runs – ranked in third place, while Gerardmer in France and Portugal's Santarem made up the rest of the top five trending destinations.

Tiny houses like this converted barn in Switzerland's Zermatt proved popular with Airbnb guests. Photo: Airbnb

People also travelled further for the holidays with more than 40 per cent of Airbnb bookings on New Year’s Eve for places located more than 1,000 miles away from guests’ origins.

Despite ongoing travel restrictions around the world, many regions saw a spike in traveller numbers from specific destinations when compared to visitorship on New Year’s Eve 2019.

The US saw a 210 per cent growth in travellers from Turkey, while German travellers to Portugal increased by 190 per cent. Costa Rican tourists flocked to the UK this year, with a 140 per cent increase in traveller numbers from the tropical destination, and people from France were keen to explore Ireland, with Airbnb documenting a 130 per cent rise in the number of French visitors to the Emerald Isle.

Updated: January 7th 2022, 10:20 AM