A recent poll of 2,000 American Millennials found that nearly 58% said they needed a vacation to forget about the current political situation in the U.S.
A full 33% reported being so dismayed with politics that they're looking into moving abroad permanently.
But before ditching their home country for good, they also ranked their top travel destinations for 2017. And it turns out the number one destination isn't in Europe, Asia, or anywhere down under. No, Millennials say it's... drumroll, please ...
While the United States' northern neighbor may seem a pedestrian choice, the fact is Canada in 2017 is anything but.
First of all, 2017 is the country's sesquicentennial - a fancy way of saying its 150th birthday. This means, among other things, that there will be parties. Lots of parties. Festive, raucous, historical celebrations in beautiful, progressive, and internationally-flavored cities like Montreal and Vancouver. What could be better?
This could: In honor of said sesquicentennial, admission to all of Canada's spectacular national parks will be free.
Canada has some of the most epic natural landscapes in the world, not to mention ubiquitous wildlife, including grizzly bears, musk oxen, bison, moose, caribou, porcupines, Arctic hares, badgers, wolves, foxes, mountain lions, lynxes, lemmings and more. It's one of the least densely populated countries on the globe, and much of that uninhabited land is nature, pure and unadulterated.
Second, the weak Canadian dollar means your money will get you a lot further in Canada than it will in places like western Europe. It's a good time to take advantage of the exchange rate - especially since no one knows what will happen to American currency in the near future.
Finally, for Americans it's just a road trip away. This is a big deal when you consider that if you get your crew together to head up north, splitting gas makes it very affordable to both get there and get around. Plus, with no need to fly, you can bring whatever you want in the trunk (within reason, of course).
Lonely Planet agrees with Canada being the top spot. They've ranked it the number one travel destination in the world for 2017, citing the sesquicentennial that Canadians "won't be shy about celebrating."
Those who want to get in on the action can plan their own way around the country or go with operators like Geckos Adventures, which conducted the survey and organizes small group trips specifically for Millennials aged 18-29. Their new Canada trip starts at $1395 for 11 days, and includes Vancouver, Banff, Jasper and Whistler. Other notable trips include Cambodia ($382 for 6 days), Thailand ($700 for 9 days), and an African safari ($915 for 9 days).
Traveling for pleasure is a luxury afforded only to those who have the resources to make it happen, but that doesn't mean it's an idle thing. Building ties with other nations helps us become responsible, committed, and compassionate members of a united global citizenry -- a need that's more glaring now than ever. So whether you're a Millennial or not, pack your bags and get out there.
It's part of how we all come together.
"A journey is a person in itself; no two are alike. And all plans, safeguards, policing, and coercion are fruitless. We find after years of struggle that we do not take a trip; a trip takes us." - John Steinbeck