The travel industry losing $800 billion in annual market size compared to 2019 should come as no surprise.
With travel bans and stay-at-home measures left and right, the difference between survival and shutting down now lies in the effectiveness of this vital marketing tool – the website.
In fact, 65% of global tourism sales are currently made online.
So hop on as we look into the best travel website design examples whose creativity, features and usability help businesses gain an upper hand during these difficult times and get visitors to dream of distant places again.
Baita Valton is an Alpine hideaway in Italy’s mountainous Trentino region. Their website is a brainchild of Samuel Clara, a freelance web designer and programmer who operates under the moniker Meteorit.
A full-screen image carousel above the fold greets the visitor, with several hi-res photos of the resort in all its splendor.
To both sides of the photos are two navigation buttons in the brand’s dark green color: a hamburger menu to the left and a CTA button in the shape of a reception desk bell to the right.
The former opens the menu navigation across the entire screen – but instead of scrolling through the items vertically, the menu is introduced horizontally.
The CTA button clicks to the Request page where visitors can make their reservations through a simple form submission.
All the pages on the Baita Valton website follow the same layout, including the homepage. Plenty of negative space surrounds the mix of serif and sans-serif fonts. Sliding modules use the space economically by storing multiple pieces of content.
Seat Frog is a mobile app for booking train trips in the UK via bidding. Its unique value proposition is that the app users can upgrade their seats to First Class amenities.
The website for the Seat Frog app, designed by We Discover, is a one-page user journey that explains the workings of the app to interested parties. Its palette consists of navy blue/white with electric yellow as the accent color on CTAs.
Just below the fold is the well-illustrated 3-step process of using the app. As the user scrolls past the on-screen app images, headlines and brief instruction paragraphs, a purple dot slides along the wavy line representing train tracks and mirroring the user’s movement.
The website’s messaging is concise and brief, never exceeding three lines per paragraph.
On the bottom left corner of the website is a pop-up tile that appears periodically, showcasing the names of new app users who just signed up, as a way of providing social proof and incentivizing prospects to follow suit.
Hotel Frida is a relaxation and leisure resort in Italy’s South Tirol region. Its website is designed by Austrian creative agency Plural that went above and beyond any norm for this highly unconventional website.
Upon landing, the visitor encounters an illustration of a strange, hybrid creature adorned with motion effects, custom-made serif typography and floating bubbles sporting two letters each. When a visitor clicks on a bubble, it opens a small window with a short story involving hotel guests.
Then, the visitor notices that the mouse cursor has turned into a spray can. Clicking anywhere on the screen paints the website’s background in a wide range of vibrant colors with the authentic graffiti effect. Pinks, greens, blues and yellows turn the mostly white website into a festival of colors.
To emphasize the resort’s location in one of Europe’s most preserved regions, the website comes with a “soundtrack” of a bird song, a sound of water streaming and gentle buzzing of insects. This is a very well-executed use of sound on a website which is, ordinarily, a very risky business as it can do more damage than good.
Go Breck is a website for Breckenridge ski resort at the base of Colorado’s Rocky Mountains. Designed and developed by Bellweather creative agency, it welcomes visitors with a looping full-screen video in the background and several user journey options to explore the resort’s amenities during three separate seasons.
Clicking on either of the three options/seasons opens a page with a portrait-mode video and a list of activities during the given season. Each page is adorned with a gallery containing hi-res images and links to value-rich blog articles on relevant activities.
Back on the homepage, the main menu button on the upper right-hand corner opens sliding full-screen navigation with four main sections containing images. Hovering over any of these shows more navigation items on the right.
Just below the main menu button are transparent icons for booking, search bar and the weather info. These do not distract the visitor’s attention from the important design elements on the page.
At the footer, a harmonica/tab component condenses multiple content groups in one place.
Australia-based AHOTELs’ website is designed and developed by ED. creative studio. The distinctive brown/black/yellow palette is what hits the visitor immediately, as these establishments rarely employ such colors for website use.
The main menu is quite prominent and stays with the visitor the whole time. In fact, every bit of copy is. Thanks to the two types of sturdy sans serif fonts that make the website extremely simple to skim.
The navigation is a collection of anchor links moving the user to certain points on this one-page website. A brief but sufficient user journey starts with the general info about the hotels before moving on to inclusions and, finally, the booking/contact info.
Hi-res images provide a welcome break from the “brownness” of the website, with a mouse cursor transforming some parts into a bold yellow display that triggers more engaging videos showing the hotel’s amenities.
Narie Resort & Spa is a leisure and recreation establishment in northern Poland whose website was created by Szymon Michalczyk, a freelance designer from Poznan in cooperation with Profitroom.
A professionally shot looping video of the highest quality and wonderful post-production work dominates the opening screen of the website’s homepage. It showcases the natural splendor of the resort and the luxurious amenities visitors get to enjoy, whetting the appetite of prospective guests.
At the upper right-hand corner upon scrolling the opening page is a very convenient booking module containing the check-in and check-out dates.
A “frame” separating the website from the browser’s screen (and different bits of content from the others) effectively introduces viewing clarity.
This tidy arrangement of images complementing each piece of content completes the homepage’s simple but attractive layout.
Padstow Breaks website lists holiday apartments, cottages and other tourist properties in this picturesque holiday destination in southwestern England.
Designed by Edge of the Web, it employs the on-brand color palette associated with coastal UK areas, contributing to the high-end branding and feel. The website balances the modernity and charm of a seaside town, presenting Padstow Breaks in a distinctly luxurious light.
As per the agency’s remark, the redesigned website “needed to give the audience the confidence to make a booking”. The clear showcase of properties and meticulous UX design applied to the mobile version of the site made booking accessible quickly and conveniently via any device.
The website has an integrated 3rd party booking system that enables real-time booking and pricing updates to cut down on admin time and avoid the user dissatisfaction of failing to book in time.
Goolets is a yacht charter service with offices in the US, UK, Singapore and Australia. Their website is the creation of ENKI, a digital agency from Ljubljana, Slovenia.
A sumptuous photo of a yacht against the ultramarine sea and classy white serif typeface begins the visitor’s experience and takes off to a whole new level once they scroll.
The opening screen slides up and new content appears, separated into asymmetrical boxes. This effect repeats for each subsequent scroll as the visitor advances in their buyer journey.
After scrolling through a well-crafted presentation of the company’s services and benefits, the user journey ends with a page containing a neatly presented list of yachts for rent.
The colorful photos are enough to lend the website its appeal, so the color palette is very restrained and uses only white and navy blue.
The two-level main menu navigation consists of four items only, including a prominent CTA for yacht rental.
Onyx CenterSource is a Dallas-based payment processing solution for the hospitality and travel industry whose website, courtesy of Idea Grove, communicates the benefits and capabilities of their numerous products.
An excellent UVP messaging opens the user journey above the fold before the CEO’s quote, separated in a distinctive module, elaborates on the solution’s purpose and mission.
The remainder of the homepage delivers social proof with brands that use Onyx and it specifically helps travel agents and hoteliers.
A very contemporary sans-serif font is there to enhance the copy’s clarity. The journey ends with a lead-capturing form, while the chatbot icon in the bottom-right corner enables instant assistance to visitors.
The main menu navigation, although complex in its structure, is quite intuitive. Thanks to its “stickiness”, the visitor is always a click away from navigating to the desired page or to the smart search engine.
Descartes is a Russian travel agency that specializes in high-end, luxurious tours and tourist arrangements. To match the business’ glitzy character, Dvoe Design has delivered a website experience that doesn’t leave anything to be desired in terms of opulence, class and grandeur.
Copper and white are the two most dominant colors that provide plenty of breathing space for remarkably succinct messaging. Serif fonts used in headlines use italic style to emphasize certain phrases, while expertly edited images of travel destinations evoke wanderlust in visitors.
A dedicated page for every individual travel arrangement consists of easy-to-follow content and attractive photography before the visitor is given the option to leave their contact details so that a representative can contact them.
At the footer of every page, more useful contact links pointing to Descartes’ social media pages prove useful if the visitor wishes to indulge in more visual splendor of the company’s travel offerings.
Flemings Mayfair is an iconic hotel establishment at the heart of London. The brand required a website design that would match its positioning as one of the oldest hotels in the UK’s capital and ARO Digital Strategy delivered just that.
The agency has conducted a full rebrand and incorporated the hotel’s extensive visual library and brand colors to mirror its outstanding service, luxurious experience and long-standing tradition.
The website’s homepage employs a unique grid layout with each box showcasing either an image or a video associated with the hotel’s past and present. A simple Instagram feed finishes off the homepage, while the main menu navigation contains CTAs for gift vouchers and booking.
An auxiliary menu in the top-left corner opens across the entire screen with an elegant fade-in effect. The grayed-out painting and classy typography provide a welcome stark contrast to the website’s main portion.
Greaves India is a tour operator specializing in local trips and visits to India’s notable locations and landmarks. Their stunning website is a product of Crowd digital marketing, design and branding agency.
Captivating photography of the Taj Mahal veiled in morning haze and adorned in stylish white typeface makes for a remarkable entry point once the visitor lands. The links at the bottom turn out to be the main menu items, which becomes apparent once the visitor begins to scroll.
The website then takes on a decidedly different look. Following a boxy 1:1 layout, it uses black and white background colors alternately, animated CTAs, custom illustrations of landmark locations across the subcontinent and a short video.
An accompanying blog section follows a similar layout pattern and relies heavily on vibrant photography while providing value to the visitor interested in visiting India and other neighboring countries.
The website for Enjoy Kamchatka, a group organizing expeditions to Russia’s easternmost peninsula, is made by Digital Lab agency.
A striking timelapse video of the area’s active volcanoes occupies the entire screen above the fold. It is complemented by a chunky typeface, a contrasting red CTA button and a hamburger menu icon that opens the user journey options across the right half of the screen.
Asymmetrical boxes of content follow the opening screen, giving the website a contemporary and casual feel. Beautifully composed color schemes provide the right accents and contrasts in all the right places.
A particularly eye-catching element is located further below, where different types of excursions are presented with unified, grayed-out vector illustrations that get color once the user hovers over them.
Animated sections like the sliding tabs module and the moving reel of trusted partners provide more liveliness to an overall very engaging website experience.
Release Wanaka is a luxury holiday rentals website for accommodations in New Zealand's South Island. Its website, courtesy of Tomahawk, condenses all the key ingredients of a booking website into the homepage and main menu.
The multi-level menu provides a multitude of options to an eager visitor, including the Search Homes option that lets a user look for a certain type of accommodation during desired dates. The reservations can also be made using the AI chatbot in the bottom right corner - sticky, same as the main menu.
Scrolling down the main page reveals an interplay of large images and textual content, describing the benefits of visiting this area of NZ via this service. A classy serif font implies a luxurious visitor experience, while supplying just the right amount of info so as not to overwhelm the user.
Teal and navy blue brand colors stand well against the white bits of background and the hi-res imagery. Featured accommodations and user reviews offer a glimpse into what a prospective user can expect when booking their holiday via this site.