The popularity of certain travel hotspots can have its drawbacks. These 10 alternative travel destinations will be sure to help you beat the overcrowding and help you embrace more original destinations.
Compared to its neighbours Dubai and Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates and their towering skyscrapers, Oman feels entirely otherworldly whilst retaining that Middle Eastern charm. Visit the Grand Mosque to witness its breathtaking architectural beauty, experience the dunes of Wahiba Sands by camel and camp under the stars in the desert or visit the turtle reserve of Ras al Jinz to watch baby turtles hatch by the rolling waves as the sun comes up.
While Paris stands as France’s go-to city to visit, Lyon remains a more hidden gem, making it a perfect addition to our list of alternative travel destinations. The city’s rich history provides visitors with some of France’s oldest ruins, such as the Ancient Theatre of Fourviére. Lyon is certainly not lacking culture, as it’s home to the Musée des Beaux-Arts which houses a collection of exceptional fine arts, magnificent enough to rival that of the Louvre’s.
At the heel of Italy’s famous boot is Puglia. Puglia is one of the best alternative travel destinations to escape the crowds found in popular cities visited in Italy, such as Rome, Venice or Milan. With its slower pace and authentically strong Italian community feel, Puglia boasts miles of coastlines for quintessential beach days, hilltop villages with stunning sunset views and an abundance of traditional Italian restaurants to satisfy your appetite after a long day of exploring.
Often overlooked and forgotten, this archipelago can offer so much for a traveller. Positioned between Sicily and the North African coast in the centre of the Mediterranean, Malta offers a mix of Italian, North African and English culture and food. Its capital of Valletta is packed full of historical sites that will transport you to another time. The sparkling turquoise water in Comino’s Blue Lagoon is not to be missed or you can hire a boat to explore the islands.
Asia has become a popular student travel destination lately, particularly Thailand and Indonesia, but the Philippines is a far more original and unique destination. Consisting of 7,641 islands, the Philippines boasts endless dreamy white sand beaches laden with luscious palm trees, with Boracay and El Nido being amongst the most popular. The people are known to be friendly and accommodating, not to mention English-speaking, allowing for ease of communication to perfectly top off this unforgettable tropical experience.
Colombia’s city port of Cartagena provides the quintessential tropical escape and truly encapsulates Colombia’s rich and vibrant culture. The walled Old Town is the city’s most popular attraction and is the soul of the city. Walking through the streets, it’s as if time has stopped as the city’s buildings from Colombia’s Spanish occupation have been so well preserved. As with any Latin city, there is a prevalent party culture, and since Latinos know all about having fun, most nights will be spent dancing away under the stars.
Iceland’s popularity has skyrocketed in the past years, which means more crowds and higher prices. Instead, why not try Lapland as an alternative travel destination? Lapland is located in Finland’s northernmost region and is the postcard-perfect setting for a winter getaway. There is an alluring beauty in the harshness and extremities of its landscape, with its 24-hour sunlight summers contrasting its dark winter days.
The dreamy island of Paros will surely captivate you. The island is covered in dazzlingly white buildings for that authentic Greek island feel and boasts numerous activities for tourists to enjoy, such as hiking, winery visits, trendy bars and clubs and, of course, no island trip is complete without a visit to the beach to soak up some sun.
Located in northeast France, Strasbourg has the appeal of Amsterdam without the crowds of tourists, placing it onto our list of alternative travel destinations. The architectural beauty of the city is something that cannot go amiss, especially its historic district in La Petite France and the stunning stained glass windows of Strasbourg Cathedral.
10. Shetland Islands
You’ll find no overwhelming buzz of tourists in this secluded archipelago, located in the northeast of mainland Scotland. The rugged landscape is a far cry from swanky beach resorts or city breaks, but it will certainly give you an original travel experience and a chance to appreciate nature in a landscape not often explored by travellers.
Will you visit any of these alternative travel destinations? Let us know in the comments below!
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