How was the year 2018 for you? Did you explore a new country far removed from the culture of your place? Did you set forth on any adventure – got lost in a jungle, trekked across unknown trails or hitchhiked your way across a new land? If you could not manage a vacation this year, do not despair, let 2019 be the year that changes it all. For all our readers who’re wondering where to travel in 2019, the editorial team of Holidayme got together to put out a 2019 Travel Wish List!
This list of 13 hand-picked destinations has something for everyone:
…a country dotted with ancient cities – an open-air museum for those who appreciate culture…
…an intoxicating backpacker’s paradise for the solo-traveller…
…a well-kept secret from Europe that is every budget traveller’s dream…
…a scenic nation that would delight a photographer…
…a dream-destination for foodies that’s been voted the World’s Leading Culinary Destination for five years in a row…
So here are 13 reasons for you to travel in 2019; here are 13 destinations to ignite that wanderlust in you; 13 ways to see the world – one destination at a time!
Where to travel in 2019: here’s our list of 13 must-visit destinations!
1. Poland – Don’t miss this European beauty in 2019!
Europe’s best-kept hidden gem, Poland is a true backpackers’ destination. The central European country is affordable, has decent yet budget-friendly accommodation, and delightful food, desserts, and vodka to sample! Add to that its charming cities filled with wonderful architecture! Polish cities like Krakow, Wroclaw, Poznan, Gdansk, and Warsaw with their cobbled stone streets, public squares, castles and palaces, museums and plenty of cafes and restaurants beckon travellers and tourists, alike!
Poland is not just about its beautiful cities; the country is blessed with beautiful mountains, ancient forests, and gorgeous beaches of Baltic Sea. The country is steadily gaining tourist footfalls, so visit Poland in 2019, before it turns touristy and commercial.
2. Costa Rica – Must-visit country in Central America in 2019!
Costa Rica is a relatively unheralded Central American jewel that combines the cultural fervour, passion and exoticism of its neighbours with a refined and elegant focus on infrastructure, sustainability and conservation. Beautiful dense forests practically pulsate with life and activity and adventure awaits eager travelers at every turn!
Surf its enormous waves, paraglide over quilted green canopies, bungee jump into rain-lashed gorges or kick back with a cocktail on the beach; the choice is yours! All of this along with a local cuisine-to-die-for has made Costa Rica an absolute no brainer as a must-see destination in 2019!
3. Vietnam – Best 2019 destination in South East Asia
When one thinks of SE Asia, names like Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia, and Singapore come up. Not many think of a lesser known paradise – Vietnam, and that is exactly why this beautiful nation deserves your attention in 2019. If you’re planning a solo trip, let Vietnam be the first destination on your bucket list!
Ferociously intoxicating, exploding with surreal limestone islands, glistening pagodas, sweeping rice paddies shimmering in baffling hues of green, the soporific natural landscapes, a bucolic countryside, and solid culinary punches, let 2019 be the year for this amazingly humble, rising starlet of Southeast Asia!
4. Portugal – World’s leading travel destination
This gorgeous European destination brings you an endless coastline, round-the-year pleasant climate (just like its people – warm and mild), an intoxicating array of good wine (this land gave birth to the famous Port wine) and ancient yet radiant cities like Porto and Lisbon (voted the Best City Destination in the World, 2018!)
Also read: 5 best places to visit in Portugal
The stunning beaches of Portugal, with their golden sands and startling blue waters, are popular destinations, come sunny summers or mild winters! With almost 320 “Blue Flag” beaches to its credit, Portugal is a beach-bum’s paradise. And don’t even get us started on the exotic, super-secret Azores islands that are visited all through the year by whales and dolphins, and now by an increasing number of travellers in-the-know! Offering some of world’s best golf courses, music festivals of every genre, and adventure activities of every nature, it’s no surprise that this European gem has been voted as “World’s Leading Destination” in 2017 and 2018! Like the Portugal Tourism Board says, you just #CantSkipPortugal in 2019!
5. Uzbekistan – Best place to travel in Asia in 2019
From one paradise to another, there is no dearth of spellbinding places in Uzbekistan. An integral part of the ancient Silk Route, the country is an open-air museum! Mosques, mausoleums, and markets – each wonderful and unique. Encompassing every shade of blue, the architecture can be summed up in just one word – magnificent!
This central Asian country will greet you with never-seen-before intricate tilework, vast open spaces, famous vodka and food, and glimpses of Soviet glory. As 2018 draws to an end, add this historic nation to your bucket list of places to travel in 2019. With relaxed visa rules, Uzbekistan is now waiting with open arms for its visitors!
6. Falkand Islands – Best place to visit in 2019 for nature lovers!
If you want to witness a pristine land blessed with epic landscapes, escape to the Falkand Islands – a cluster of tiny islands in the South Atlantic Ocean, about 460 km east off the South American coast! The archipelago has not really been a primary destination in the traveller’s mind, so 2019 can be the year to change this!
This gateway to Antarctica is paradise for nature lovers and bird-watchers! You’ll see awe-inspiring colonies of penguins, and other birds and animals – kingfishers, black-browed albatross, racoon, river turtles – the list is endless! Falklands provide thrilling activities such as 4X4 off roading and boat journeys to small islands. Port Stanley’s attractive streets, unforgettable shipwrecks and stellar tourism are unmissable! A tranquil, laid-back island life and extremely warm, friendly locals add to the charm of these islands.
7. Peru – Must-visit place of South America in 2019
Of all the jewels South America holds in its crown, Peru’s charm has a magic of its own. A charm that has fascinated travellers for hundreds of years and continues even today. Having said that, Peru remains one of the most underrated destinations on the planet. In 2019, visit this South American gem, for its enticing medley of landscapes and culture.
Travel to unearth the mysteries of Machu Picchu and the Nazca lines, to experience life by the Amazon, to mountain bike or horseback through some of the deepest canyons in the world. If you’re a connoisseur of fine food, head to Peru to decode the exquisite and tremendously varied Peruvian cuisine that has led the country to be chosen as World’s Leading Culinary Destination for the past five years (World Travel Awards 2014 – 2018)! Travel to Peru to lose yourself in an adventure like no other.
8. Colombia – Your answer to “where to travel in 2019”
With its friendly locals, picturesque national parks, fascinating history and architecture, and the unmissable Amazon Rainforest – Colombia has all the right reasons to be a destination worth visiting in 2019. You can explore the colourful streets of Cartagena or the lost city of Ciudad Perdida; dance your way to the Barranquilla Carnival or enjoy one of the best coffee in the world! We can vouch that your Colombian experience is going to be truly unforgettable.
Once known for its notorious past, Colombia is now a safe haven for tourists (well, most parts of the country are). This stunning nation is back on the map and how! Have a taste for adventure? Colombia certainly will not let you down!
9. Albania – An untouched beauty to explore in 2019
Albania is a marvellous yet frequently overlooked destination which has the potential to gain immense popularity in 2019. Nature lovers will fall for the Albanian Alps, Osumi Canyon, Prespa Lake and other out-of-the-world scenery that Albania has to offer!
Despite development, village life in this country remains untampered. Mountain villages such as Theth, Vermosh and Fierza are worth adding to your travel itinerary. So is the city of Berat, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
To top it all, Albania is a budget-friendly country! On an average, a meal in an inexpensive restaurant costs 20 AED, one-way ticket on local transport comes up to 1.34 AED, a bottle of water is roughly 2 AED and a double room in a budget hotel is available at 160 AED! A low crime-rate and kind, helpful locals are other welcoming reasons to book a holiday to Albania right away!
10. Chile – Best place for sustainable travel in 2019
There is no place on earth quite like Chile. Where else will you find nature at its most vivid, stark, and arresting best in the wilds of Patagonia, or at its harsh and deadliest in the famous Atacama Desert; one of the driest places on earth? In 2019, make sure to visit this pioneering South American country to not only reconnect with nature, but to do so “sustainably”.
Yes, Chile is leading the way with sustainable and eco-friendly tourism, ensuring that its locals and economy are not affected by “overtourism”. Need more reasons to visit? You can go to the end of the world (Cape Horn), spot the legendary puma or have the most amazing star-gazing experience here! Did you know that Chile has been voted as the World’s Leading Adventure Tourism Destination 2018, being awarded by World Travel Awards for three years in a row!
11. Nepal – Where to travel in Asia in 2019
Nepal is a once-in-a-lifetime experience. And if you’re a conscious traveller who believes in sustainable travel, Nepal is yet another lesser-known, virgin destination to see in 2019! The country is still recovering from the devastating earthquakes of 2015 and putting Nepal on your “must-see countries” list is the best way revive its economy.
Also read: 10 surreal places to visit in Nepal
But before you visit this tiny South Asian country, let us dole out this warning, you will lose your heart to this place! While most people associate the country with the mighty Himalayan range that includes the highest mountain in the world – the legendary Mount Everest, the country offers much more! This year, make sure you do not miss out on the incredible religious and rich cultural experiences that Nepal has to offer. Did we mention, it is also one of the most affordable destinations to visit in 2019?
12. Argentina – Must-add to travel bucket list for 2019!
The home of the legend that is the diminutive footballing maestro Lionel Messi, Argentina is a place where seemingly magical things become a part of everyday life. Argentinians are a vibrant, flamboyant and passionate people who wear their hearts on their sleeves and are always on hand to show visitors a good time. This jovial festive spirit is an inseparable part of any Argentine locale from the bustling metropolis that is Buenos Aires to smaller, quainter cities such as Villa Carlos Paz.
Wade through gorgeous, torrential waterfalls, sample fine wine and Gaucho cuisine at its numerous eateries and witness the magnificence that is the Los Glaciares National park. For all the reasons above, there’s no doubt that Argentina deserves its place on our list of must-see destinations in 2019!
13. Mexico – Travel wish-list for 2019!
Mexico in 2019 promises to be an exciting destination. This beautiful Latin American country is known for its delicious cuisine (there’s more to it than just tacos and tortillas!) and rich cultural heritage (35 UNESCO World Heritage sites here!).
Also, on offer are stunning beach resorts like Tulum, Cozumel, Playa del Carmen, and the party town of Cancun with its pulsating nightlife. Throw in some hidden beaches and voila, here’s a destination to not miss in 2019! The capital, Mexico City, is buzzing with delightful food, art and culture, pre-Hispanic and colonial architecture, and wonderful museums! If you’re wondering whether it’s safe to visit Mexico, then be assured, this country is absolutely safe for travelling. Some of the safest places to visit in Mexico are Puebla, San Miguel de Allende, Merida, and Oaxaca.