Paris, Rome and the glistening lights of NYC are at the top of everyone’s travel musts. But ever thought about what else is out there? All the off the radar destinations just ready and waiting to be explored…
Well it’s time to expand your travel bucket list, because these are the under the radar destinations we just can’t wait to uncover in 2018.
Situated in the middle of the Mediterranean Sea, Sardinia is mainly a mountainous region brimming with captivating coastlines. An absolute must for all outdoor adventurers, beach lovers and history buffs, the magnificent island is all about hiking trails, wind surfing, ancient ruins, beach bumming … and of course, indulging in some of the tastiest Italian food. Yaasssssssss please!
Salzburg is a city overflowing with charm and deeply rooted in musical history. Yes, Salzburg is well known for being the home of Mozart (250 years ago) and the original location of The Sound of Music, but there’s a whole lot more than musical genius these singing mountains have to offer. The burgeoning arts scene, abundance of parks and foody dreams is a good place to begin … All which can be explored on Contiki’s Eastern Quest trip.
Nice and Cannes probably comes to mind when dreaming about a luxuriously sun-ridden South of France get away. But Antibes is your answer if you’re looking to base yourself between the two, whilst still having a slice of the high life. Situated on the Cote d’Azur, Antibes is one of the most photogenic towns on the Mediterranean. The 16th century old town is brimming with cobbled streets and markets. Whilst the shimmering white yachts, private villas and swanky hotels collide South of France vibes and culture into one unique under the radar must.
Gothenburg is essentially Stockholm before it became one of the hottest tourist spots. This city in Sweden just oozes culture and charm – It’s neoclassical architecture, canals, trams and pretty seafront make it a must-visit. Whilst the city is also renowned for its art museums, galleries, designer-shops, restaurant scene and cool bars which are sure to have you busy from day till dusk. But don’t be fooled by the sophisticated exterior, Gothenburg has a few secrets up its sleeve, like Lisebergs Nojespark – A theme park where visitors have the choice to go on rides or explore the landscaped sculpture gardens.
Lisbon has been a massive hit for us millennials in 2017. But the pastel coloured palaces that sit up on the hills of the Sintra Mountains are unknown by many travellers. The old Portuguese town consists of exquisite palaces, extravagant residences and decorative gardens, making it a fairy tale landscape rich with culture, heritage and picture-perfect backdrops. Yup this place is pretty extra and can be explored on Contiki’s Madrid to Lisbon Independent Insider trip, which gives you heaps of time to uncover this hidden gem.
This historic village in Japan is located in a remote mountainous region which has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site thanks to its traditional gassho-zukuri farmhouses. The thatch roofs and architectural style village lies between Takayama and Kanazawa in north central Japan and offers a great insight into traditional Japanese living.
Sure, you may initially think of Cancun when Mexico comes to mind. But the sugar sands and emerald green waters of Tulum make this by far one of the most inviting coastlines Mexico has to offer. Just 90 minutes south of Cancun, the jungle filled lands and idyllic beaches of Tulum offer a great alternative to Cancun. The destination is all about beach paradise, hot yoga and cheap food – or in other words, burritos, tacos, and tequila on repeat!
Guernsey, English Channel
Located in the Channel Islands, this isn’t actually part of the UK, nonetheless it has a strong British feel to it. Known for its beaches, scenery and coastal cliffs, Guernsey also boasts 27 different bays to choose from and one of the prettiest harbour towns in Europe offering a whole load of Regency architecture, cobbled streets and incredible restaurants. With a similar vibe to Cornwall, Guernsey is a great go-to coastal retreat during the summer months.
Belize, Central America
With the lowest population density of any Central American country, Belize is brimming with undeveloped land and biodiversity. Expect caves, dense jungles, outdoor adventures, culture and turquoise Caribbean waters. And then there’s the Belize Barrier Reef. With more than 100 types of coral and 500 species of tropical fish, it’s pure paradise for scuba divers and snorkelers, whilst the likes of zip-lining, horseback riding, canoeing and hiking around the national parks make on-land activities pretty awesome too.
This may be a little town but it has a lot going on! The flamboyant streets are full of tapas, tradition and beautiful architecture. With a whole load of Gothic cathedrals, baroque churches and winding medieval lanes this is a destination full of culture AND it’s the birth place of Flamenco. Be sure to check out the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Alcázar and the Plaza de España on Contiki’s Spanish Spree extravaganza. Oh, and did we mention this place is hotttttttttt (like sweaty hot). With 40 degree days being an average during the summer months, be sure to have a fan to hand, or be prepared to seriously top up your tan!