Saturday, October 22nd, 2016

Kate’s Picks: Where to Go in 2016 Before It’s Too Late


Ometepe Sunset Kate

Where are the best places to travel to in 2016?

You’ll find just about every major travel website putting together their own list. Lonely Planet wants you to go to Botswana. National Geographic wants you to go to Greenland. So why should you care about this one?

Well, I chose these places carefully. They’re not just places that I like. They’re not even necessarily places I visited last year and loved — you can see this list for that — these are destinations that I genuinely believe you should prioritize above others at the moment.

By that, I mean that it’s time to go THIS year. Not next year. 2016.

And I totally understand that it’s impossible to go to every destination on this list, but if you’re determined, I bet you can make it to one of these places. Nicaragua is a close and affordable destination for North Americans; Albania and Macedonia are easy and very affordable for Europeans.

So! Without further ado, take a look at what made the cut for 2016!

Yemaya Little Corn Island

Little Corn Island, Nicaragua

Why now? Because it’s changing very quickly and won’t be the same place this time next year.

Little Corn Island is small, it’s isolated, and it’s not easy to get to (you need to fly from Managua to Big Corn Island and take a panga, or local boat, on a very bumpy ride). Because of this, there are still lots of stretches of empty beaches and the people who live there are fun and quirky rather than cookie-cutter package tourists.

But even last winter, locals were telling me how fast it was changing. While there used to be one or maybe two tourist-filled pangas per day, now they’re often getting three. More tourists are arriving. More property is being bought up. Prices are increasing.

Little Corn Island was my first Caribbean experience ever, and frankly, I feel like I’ve been spoiled for life. I really hope you are able to have the same experience as me.

When to go: December to April for the best weather, though keep in mind storms can hit anytime.

When I visited: February 2015.


Osaka in Black and White


Why now? Because the yen has lost a lot of value, making Japan far more affordable than usual.

Japan is the most enthralling country I have ever visited. Just walking down the street or summoning a waiter in a restaurant or buying a drink from a vending machine or using a toilet at a cafe can be an eye-opening cultural experience! And that’s before even immersing yourself in temples, maid cafes, bullet trains, cherry blossoms, geishas, hovel bars, and all the fantastic food.

While Japan is often said to be an expensive destination, I think that’s unfair — Japan may be expensive compared to Thailand or India or Indonesia, but it’s nowhere near the cost of Switzerland or Norway or Australia. Accommodation and long-distance travel can be on the pricey side, but food, attractions, and souvenirs can be quite cheap!

The current exchange rate is making this even better. For the past few decades, 100 yen has been fairly close to $1 USD, making calculations simple for Americans. However, 100 yen is now equal to 84 cents (or $1 is equal to 119 yen)! Even if you keep the mindset of 100 yen = $1, you’re getting a 20% bonus! So go now while you can take advantage of that extra money.

When to go: Spring or fall are best. Summer can be either lovely or uncomfortably hot and humid; it was more the latter on my summer trip.

When I visited: August 2013.


Portland Maine

Portland, Maine

Why now? Because it’s emerging as a major American culinary destination.

Name the top foodie cities in America and you’ll get the classics: New York, San Francisco, New Orleans, Chicago. But  the “other Portland” has been quietly growing in prominence over the past decade. New local restaurants, food tour companies, and craftsmen, not to mention access to outstanding ingredients like lobster and blueberries, make this city a great place to eat everything in sight.

I helped plan a bachelorette party in Portland this past spring. We went mead tasting, wine tasting, gin tasting, cider tasting, kombucha tasting — and that was without even hitting up any of the many local breweries! Between that and restaurants like Duckfat, we ate so well in this city. Thanks to the Portland’s small size, we walked to most places and probably spent less than $15 on Ubers.

When to go: June through September for the best weather, but spring and fall are good, too. You might get hit by snowstorms in winter, making it tougher to get around.

When I visited: April 2015.



Macedonia and Albania

Why now? Because these destinations are just opening up to mass international tourism, particularly the latter.

Albania and Macedonia sit side by side in the Western Balkans, making them easy to visit on a single trip. (Kosovo makes a great addition if you have enough time.) Both are abundant in natural beauty (particularly Lake Ohrid in Macedonia, the Albanian Riviera, and anywhere with mountains), World Heritage Sites (the Ohrid region in Macedonia and Berat, Gjirokaster and Butrint in Albania), and two wacky and offbeat capital cities (Skopje and Tirana). Albania and Macedonia are also the two cheapest countries I’ve experienced in Europe.

Tourism here is very basic, especially compared to more-developed Balkan countries like Croatia and Slovenia. If you don’t mind rough overland transportation, language barriers, and being the only foreigner in town, these are extremely rewarding countries to visit. But before everyone else discovers them, that is. The clock is ticking.

When to go: June through August. Resort areas and tourist attractions in both countries tend to shut down outside the high season.

When I visited: July 2013 (Macedonia), July 2015 (Albania).


Camels in Wadi Rum, Jordan


Why now? Because a world gripped by Islamophobia needs to realize how wonderful the Middle East and Muslims can be.

I worked with the Jordan Tourism Board back in 2011 when they were trying to increase the profile of Jordan as a standalone destination. At that time, most tourists visited Jordan as a side trip from Egypt — so once visits to Egypt falling after the Arab Spring, Jordan’s economy suffered.

Jordan is a perfect standalone destination. Floating in the Dead Sea, camping with Bedouins in Wadi Rum, snorkeling in the Red Sea, playing Indiana Jones at Petra, cooking with grandmothers, cafe-hopping in Amman, and drinking cup after cup of mint tea with some of the friendliest people you’ve ever met. It’s easy, it’s got plenty of tourism infrastructure, and yes, it’s very safe, even though Syria is next door. (While many Syrian refugees are living in camps in Jordan right now, the Syrian war has zero effect on the vast majority of travelers visiting Jordan.)

At a time when much of the world is gripped by increasing Islamophobia, I encourage you to visit a Muslim country and share your experiences with your loved ones. You won’t change everyone’s mind, but you will change some minds.

When to go: April to October. I went in November and it was a little cooler than I would have liked, but still warm enough to swim in the Dead Sea.

When I visited: November 2011.


Table Mountain Flowers

South Africa

Why now? Because it’s probably the best value eclectic adventure destination in the world.

What do I mean by eclectic adventure? South Africa excels in so many different ways. I consider it the most beautiful country of the 63 I’ve visited so far. The wildlife is outstanding, especially in Kruger National Park. The wine is some of the best in the world, and with excellent wine comes excellent food. It’s easily the best value-for-money destination for adventure travelers, where you can bungee jump or skydive for a fraction of what you’d pay in Australia, New Zealand, or the United States.

Like Japan, South Africa has a weaker currency at the moment, but unlike Japan, it’s a very cheap country to begin with. This is an excellent place to splurge on a luxury hotel if they’re usually out of your price range, or to backpack down the coast from Johannesburg to Cape Town. South Africa also has unique activities like crocodile cage diving in Oudtshoorn and kayaking with sharks and crocs in St. Lucia Estuary.

Take advantage of it this year and you’ll see why South Africa is one of my favorite countries.

When to go: You’ll have the best weather from October to May. I especially loved seeing fall colors in “spring”!

When I visited: October-November 2012 and May 2013.


Koh Lanta Sunset

Koh Lanta, Thailand

Why now? Because it’s hit the perfect sweet spot of just-developed-enough, but who knows how long that will last!

Koh Lanta is my favorite place in the world, and my recent visit there, my third, confirmed that for certain. The prices are good for the region, the people are so kind, there are excellent guesthouses, bars, and restaurants, and it’s got long stretches of west coast beaches (perfect for sunsets!) along with rustic jungle cabanas.

Yet I know how rare it is for a destination to hit this sweet spot so well. On Thailand’s Andaman Coast alone, I’ve seen Railay spiral out of control between 2010 and 2015. I’ve seen Koh Phayam overflowing with jellyfish and Koh Phi Phi turning into a sewage-scented Scandinavian playground. Koh Lanta has been perfect for the past five years. I pray that this continues for a long, long time.

When to go: November is my favorite — it’s a good mix of sunny days with a few shoulder season storms thrown in. December to April has the sunniest weather.

When I visited: November 2010, December 2013-January 2014, November 2015.



Faroe Islands

Why now? Because this is one of the last corners of Europe that you’ll find in near-isolation.

If you want to go somewhere quite off the beaten path, the Faroe Islands are one of my top recommendations. The archipelago, technically part of Denmark but home to many avid separatists, lies between Scotland and Iceland. Most of the islands are raised up on cliffs launched from the sea. The islands are usually in the news for one reason: their traditional annual whale hunt, which is derided by animal rights activists each year.

This is probably the best place to hide away from the world or take a digital detox. There are rural landscapes, splendid tiny towns, some tough roads, and limited internet access, especially once you leave the main islands. But with more Nordic cruise ships arriving to take in Tórshavn and Mykines, it’s only a matter of time before more tourists start arriving. You should be one of them.

When to go: June through August, as tourism is limited outside high season. Don’t forget your winter coat.

When I visited: June 2012.


Ometepe Sunset

Ometepe and San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua

Why now? Because the Chinese are building a canal that will affect these destinations forever.

These two destinations couldn’t be more different. Ometepe is a rural volcanic island sitting in the middle of Lake Nicaragua where chickens run wild and everyone goes to bed early. San Juan is a colorful beach town where backpackers come to surf and party. Both are two unique slices of Nicaragua and two major highlights in Central America, but they may not be for much longer.

China has long been planning to build a canal through Nicaragua, including the lake — it’s their answer to the Panama Canal. Major construction is slated to begin in 2016. After seeing the beauty of Nicaragua’s Pacific coast, I’m devastated at the thought of it being destroyed. I don’t even want to think about it. Go enjoy these special destinations now before the construction gets crazy.

When to go: You’ll find the best weather from December to April.

When I visited: February 2015.


Centre Pompidou, Paris


Why now? Because after two terror attacks, you shouldn’t stay away from Paris.

I was sickened by the attacks in Paris this year — Charlie Hebdo in January and the city-wide attacks in November. Not only is terrorism a terrifying event on its own, it happened in a city that so many of us travelers know and love dearly, a city where many of us have friends. I was especially rattled after learning that one attack was at Le Petit Cambodge, a restaurant where my friend Edna took me once.

A lot of people cancelled their upcoming trips to Paris and even beyond, fearing more attacks. I understand people’s fears, but this is playing into terrorists’ hands — they want us to be afraid. They want to disrupt our lives. Don’t give them the satisfaction. Those who cancelled their trips had no reason to do so.

So why go to Paris? Easy. There is nowhere like it in the world.

When to go: Anytime! It’s Paris! December brings Christmas markets, June and July bring festivals, January brings city-wide sales. May and September bring good weather and slightly smaller crowds.

When I visited: Many times, in almost every month of the year, since April 2001.


Black and White Village Scene

New York City

Why now? Well, this one is for selfish reasons. Your girl is moving there shortly and she would love to see as many of her friends as possible!

New York always has something new and interesting to offer — a new neighborhood, a new restaurant, even surprising slices of nature throughout the city. And it changes all the time. I can’t believe how dated Sex and the City is when watching it today! (Remember when Miranda refused to move to Brooklyn because nobody went there? That was just over a decade ago and it couldn’t be more different from 2016!)

And yes, this city can be expensive and dirty and once someone took a video of a rat carrying a slice of pizza. But you can’t deny that New York is one of the most exhilarating destinations in the world. Come see it for yourself. Soon.

When to go: April through June and September through December. These months are best for avoiding the snowstorms of winter and the smells of summer.

When I visited: I’ve had one foot in the city for the past year, and have visited frequently for years previously. First visit: 1997.


And Three Places I Haven’t Visited Yet

I rarely write about places that I haven’t been to and can’t vouch for personally, but there are three places that I’d like to recognize as emerging destinations for 2016.

Portraits of Cuba

Image: Christopher Michel


Why now? You all know why! It’s on everyone’s list! The end of the U.S. embargo is going to change things forever.

While Cuba has long been off-limits to Americans, it’s long been a popular destination for Canadians and Europeans especially. Here you’ll find vibrant cities, gorgeous beaches, antique cars, salsa, colonial towns, cigars. That said, Cuba is already changing enormously — long known as a destination with little internet, Cuba is now more connected than ever before, which is changing the word-of-mouth travel industry.



Image: Levan Gokadze


Why now? Because it’s poised to become the next great adventure destination.

The Caucasus is a perfect choice for travelers who have been to places like Jordan and Turkey but want something a bit more offbeat and adventurous, yet doable independently. Today, Georgia is far more developed for tourism than Armenia or Azerbaijan. In this country you’ll find excellent hiking, Black Sea beaches, unusual and hearty food like khachapuri, good wine, and one beloved capital city, Tblisi.


Nepal shining

Image: Alexander Mueller


Why now? Because after the earthquake, they really need your tourism.

Nepal was hit by an earthquake in April that devastated much of Kathmandu and wreaked havoc throughout the country. More than 8,000 were killed. Nepal is a safe destination to visit now, but they are still suffering economically. Tourism is one way that you can help out the locals recover from this tragedy. Nepal is also one of the countries where your money goes the furthest, so take advantage and see as much as you can.


What destination do you think is a must-visit for 2016?Where to Go in 2016 Before It's Too Late

photos by: & ,


108 Responses to “Kate’s Picks: Where to Go in 2016 Before It’s Too Late”
  1. Edna says:

    Thanks for encouraging people to visit Paris! The city felt so muted after the attacks; it was frustrating to see people cancelling their trips when it was probably the safest place to be in the aftermath, given all the increase in security.

    Also, I’ve had no interest in Central America for the longest time, but you’ve finally convinced me to visit Nicaragua!

  2. inka says:

    I have promoted and recommended and, in fact, visited Jordan since a long time. And your reason why one should go now is very valid. Sadly, only a few Middle Eastern countries are left which are relatively safe to visit. Turkey is another one of my favorites.
    I’ll follow your recommendation of Albania and Macedonia. Living in Spain, bot are easy to reach. I’m invited ona press trip to Turkey at the beginning of June, so I might continue on first to Georgia and then the other two. Sorry for the lengthy comment.

    • Yael says:

      Don’t forget about Israel! I just moved to Tel Aviv from NYC 3 months ago and absolutely love it. And Israel and Jordan are very easy to pair together!

  3. Amy & Evan says:

    In the last 2 years we have travelled to Japan 3 times and highly recommend it.
    It really has opened our mind to all the weird and wonderful experiences.
    A favourite for us is the random animal encounters, whether it be a cat or owl cafe, the deers of Nara, a cat cart casually making its way through Harajuku or a dine in restaurant that your dog gets a seat at. ONLY IN JAPAN.

    Hope to visit a couple of the US destinations when we move to Canada next year.

  4. Lovely list and great recommendations! I’d go to each and every one of them!

  5. Hong Minh says:

    I will probably travel around Vietnam only since there are so many pretty places in my country that I haven’t been to yet. will check out some provinces in the North with some hiking and down to the southern central part to discover the distinctive culture there!

  6. Kate says:

    This is a fantastic list – so many great places. Thanks for sharing such great insights!

  7. Christine says:

    Yay thanks for including my NYC list! Can’t wait to hang out when you’re here! I’ve been to a lot of these, buuuut Faroe Islands might just have to happen sooner rather than later 🙂

  8. Amanda says:

    All great picks for some great reasons! I’m super excited to finally be going to South Africa this year!

    • Lorenda says:

      You chose your time well, Amanda – the Rand has fallen considerably against the US dollar.

      SA is a beautiful country and a great holiday destination (so, too, neighbouring countries such as Namibia, Botswana, and Zim (great destination that many give a miss due to the political situation, but it is still safe to visit!).

      So much to see in SA, though, that you will have to come to Southern Africa again to visit other countries.

      If the Africa Bug bites you, you WILL be back, because there is NO CURE!!

  9. Great picks! I doubt that the arguments about currency drops in South Africa and Japan also count for Europeans. The Euro has also dropped which makes even the US and unattractive destination moneywise for us. That having been said, money is not usually one of my considerations (apart from a trip to Antartica… Money is a consideration there) so I’ll plan away and I’ll likely end up in one of the destinations you have mentioned here this spring or fall! 🙂

  10. Maria says:

    So glad the Faroe Islands is on this list! It’s both mine and my partners favourite place to travel. I cheat slightly as am half Faroese, the whale hunt is actually something that interests me a lot, it’s a fascinating case of global misinterpretation of an indigenous practice! Made me rethink a lot of what I read on the internet about other countries 🙂

  11. Aude says:

    I’m visiting Nicaragua and Japan this year! x

  12. Awesome article!!! You listed two of our favorite places in the world, NYC and Paris, and gave us some new destinations to consider. I particularly like your mention of Jordan and your anti-Islamaphobia thoughts. We have been to Morocco and Turkey and never had a moment’s problem. In fact, Istanbul is one of our favorite cities and we can’t wait to return. The friendliness of the people there is amazing and the food is incredible.


    P.S. We really really want to spend some quality time in Cuba before it gets changed forever.

  13. We’re going to Egypt, the Nile Valley, in 2016. People are freaked out about going to the Middle East because they are afraid. But, at least in the Nile Valley, there hasn’t been a terrorist attack in a long time. It’s hard to travel there independently, so we are doing what we never do: take a tour.

    I agree with you about Nepal. I did the Mustang Trek two years ago and it was awesome.

  14. These places are all spectacular, what a great list!! I’m kicking myself for not going to Macedonia while i was in Albania, so much so that i’m gong back to see more of Albania and stopping in Macedonia for sure! And finally, South Africa is going to happen for me this year and i’m so excited! It looks so different and beautiful! I’m definitely going to use your blog posts as a guide :). The Faroe islands though, OMG!! I’m adding them to the never-ending list!!! 😉

  15. Sarah Renee says:

    Shh, stop telling people about Little Corn Island! 😉
    I’ve stayed there for a total of three months in different seasons, and I have to say I disagree with your “best time to visit” advice. June was far better than December for scuba diving, lobster, mangoes and weather.

  16. Anne says:

    I would definitely agree with #Cuba. It’s likely to look more like Cancun than Cuba once hoards of spring breakers descend! Also Myanmar which is truly one of the most magical places I have visited with a palpable culture. Some great options on here though. I’m really fascinated by Montenegro and Albania but getting to them is no mean feat from the North of England (not for a weekend anyway) but I will go check the flights anyway! Happy New Year

  17. Zascha says:

    Koh Lanta, Jordan, Faeroe Island – all places I really want to go.
    And New York is just pure awesome!

  18. Lots of great choices, I would love to visit South Africa if the flight wasn’t so long and those rates are pricey from where I’m at. Would love to check out all on your bucket list for 2016

  19. Natasha says:

    I’m going to Georgia this year! I’ve always wanted to go &I never really could explain why. Because I don’t know anyone who’s been, maybe. Because it’s pretty maybe. Because I feel like I don’t really know anything about it & it hasn’t been Pinterested to death yet.

  20. Hi Kate,

    This is an impressive and thought provoking list of places to go. I wasn’t aware of the canal that is about to change Nicaragua.



  21. Japan is my priority this year, so I’m happy to see it’s on the list! I definitely recommend Koh Lanta as well – I completely fell in love with the place last year!

  22. This is a FANTASTIC list!! As we’re already planning for eastern europe this fall, I think we may have to look more seriously at adding Albania & Macedonia into the list! Cheap areas of Europe are what we are after, and these seem quite affordable. Glad you mentioned the natural beauty too…that’s one of my favorite aspects of traveling.

    Also, Georgia, never really considered it! Sounds like a very unique and beautiful place tho, so I’m glad you put it in here. Really exciting! Also…still never been to Thailand, but when I finally go, Koh Lanta is always in my mind from how much you love it. 2017, perhaps 🙂

  23. Abbi says:

    So many places to add to my wanderlust bucket list! Hoping I can visit some of these this year. Thanks for the tips Kate! 🙂

  24. Jane says:

    Cuba and Nepal are on my to do list. Georgia looks interesting… I had a day visit to Albania and would have liked to have seen more and would recommend… Thanks for the list…

  25. aimee says:

    Fantastic list – completely agree with every place on there.

  26. Eli says:

    Amazing list! I would absolutely love to visit Cuba and I’ve already heard how different it is now.. but won’t know till I see myself! Thank you for this xx

  27. Prasanthi says:

    Really looking forward to considering Nicaragua as a destination. I am hoping to tick off a few in Central America this year & was inspired by your trip last year to Nicaragua! Did you have any issues with safety as a solo female traveller in this area? I am hoping to go alone so I am not restricted by a tour group.

    • I found Nicaragua to be an easy place to travel solo for the most part, but I did get a lot of street harassment, especially at night in Granada and Leon. I tended to stick close to home at night or spend time in a group. Other places, no issues!

  28. Danny says:

    Very interesting list of places!

    I’ve only been to Cuba, and it was back in 2007 when things were still VERY difficult for Americans (I went on a humanitarian visa). I’d love to go back though, now that diplomatic relations have been restored. My dad was there last April and said it still felt just as authentic as eight years ago – although I’m not sure how much longer that will last!

    Otherwise, Albania would definitely pique my interest (Montenegro, too). My aunt is originally from Tirana, so it would be interesting to see if the city is really the way she describes it.

  29. Sally says:

    Normally I read these lists and dream about the exotic places mentioned and close it and go about my business. Today I can add that I will be going to Japan this year and I am booked and paid and excited beyond believe!
    I also honeymoon in Koh Lanta 12 years ago! Now I would love to return there and see how much it has changed! I would love to take the kids back to the resort we stayed at for our honeymoon and its still there!
    Being an Aussie, its often hard to tick things off these lists as we can’t just pop over and visit Little Corn for example! I’m saving now for our 2017 white christmas trip! For a family of 5 of us we are going to need between $20,000-$25,000! As much as I love living in Oz, I yearn for the ability to travel to different places like American’s and european’s do.
    Great list Kate, my sister is off to Cuba next month and I can’t wait to see how she goes. I’m super excited for her, I don’t think I will make it there before it all changes! Its on the ever expanding list though!

  30. I would love to travel to Jordan, Macedonia, Albania & the Faroe Islands! I completely agree with you about South Africa, an amazing destination no matter what your interests are.

  31. What a fantastic list! I’ve traveled to Japan and New York City several times and they are two of my all time favorites. I visited Cuba a few years ago on a people to people tour but would love to visit again on my own. I’m definitely intrigued by all the other places on your list especially Faroe Islands!

  32. Katie says:

    I would add Myanmar to your list of places to go now, it is still delightfully un-westernised and relatively un-visited, especially compared to other countries in SE Asia. I would particularly recommend the three day trek from Kalaw to Inle Lake – the best trekking I have ever done

  33. Warren Williams says:

    Great list and great info. Just spent 6 weeks in Thailand and Cambodia. Spending this year getting ready for traveling most of 2017. Wish I could go to them all.

  34. Anne says:

    Fantastic list! Thank you!
    Now to make some dough and get visas to these places…

  35. Happy New Year to you Kate!

    Great list! I especially the fact that you have added both Macedonia and Albania. You know how much of an East European freak I am lol!
    And thank goodness someone put the Faroe Islands which everyone thinks is part of the UK (thanks you guys!) but is actually part of Denmark!

    I’ve already been to Egypt (3 times), Tunisia & Turkey. Sadly, Jordan, Morocco, Dubai, Qatar seem to be the safe interesting places to visit in the Middle East at the mo. And of course, Paris. Don’t let the fear take you. At all!

    Nice one!

  36. Randy Ross says:

    Incredible! Fascinating places you bring up. And such a huge variety of places. You so knowledgable, amazing.

    You caught my attention with Nicaragua. The Caribbean is amazing! I had a blast in Belize and told myself I need to get to Nicaragua too. Sounds like you think it’s going to be the next Costa Rica and Beliz with so many tourists???

    I’d love to see all the places you mention. But the one I really want to go to next is Portland, Maine. I had NO IDEA it existed lol….looks soooo relaxing, comfortable, and beautiful, not to mention the delicious food!!!

    Thanks for all your travels and putting together an incredible blog!!! Really glad I found it!!


    • I think Nicaragua has a decent chance of being the next Costa Rica — it has so much in common with its neighbor, geographically, but it’s much cheaper and lesser-visited!

  37. Rob says:

    Woow you are absolute travel maniac. Is possible sometimes travel with you? I want travel too in Cuba in near future.

  38. amanda says:

    I really want to try and get to Cuba this year. I’ll be in Florida in October, hopefully I can squeeze in a Cuban getaway! My girlfriend is from Nicaragua and goes back to see family every year. I’ve been to join her one year. That saddens me about the canal so I better hurry!

  39. I’ve been to Greenland and Iceland last year but the Faroese are still on my list! Would love to go there one day!!

  40. Even though it was the top pick for T+L for 2016, I still think Nashville should be on your list! Then again, I suppose I’m marginally biased 😉

  41. We visited Macedonia last year and it is really worth a visit. As you say, it is still a bit forgotten but is opening up a bit more for tourists. A even better reason to visit Macedonia would be that a lot of people still don’t even know that the country exist. 🙂

  42. Jaime says:

    I am torn between Nicaragua and Cuba for my week of travel in March. Anyone have any opinions?

  43. Andrew says:

    some great choice Kate! I keep hearing awesome things about Nicaragua from many different bloggers. However I’m hoping to make it to South America this year.
    Japan is seriously not that expensive these days. I moved back to Australia from Japan nearly two years ago and was absolutely shocked at how expensive it is here now. Japan is well priced after they deliberately dropped the value of the yen. And Georgia is a wonderful, warm country that I have very fond memories of – I spent three months there in 2011. I’d say there’s plenty of time to visit it still though! great post!

  44. Sky says:

    I love this list! I’m definitely heading back to Nicaragua this year and San Juan Del Sur and Ometepe are on my list. I’d love to visit Little Corn too but I’m not sure if it will be feasible. Hopefully!

    • If you’re sticking to a budget, spend most of your time in Ometepe. Wonderful place and super cheap! San Juan is more expensive and Little Corn is similarly priced, but you also have to pay around $180 for the round-trip flight.

      • Sky says:

        Thanks for that advice! I would have imagined Ometepe and San Juan to be about the same and Little Corn to be far more expensive. But definitely heading to San Juan for Sunday Funday and to visit the cafe you and Graceann talked about!

  45. Zak Aly says:

    I highly recommend travelers to explore Sarajevo, marvellous beauty and very affordable.

  46. Katrinka says:

    Thanks for linking to my Georgia article, dear Kate. I’m hoping to get BACK there this year, it’s splendid! And if you make it this way, make sure you let me know. See you in NYC 😉

  47. Thank you for this! This makes me especially interested in Japan, Jordan and South Africa — I wish I could go to all of these places.

    I did get to Cuba last January and it was really a memorable experience. Yes, it will change, but change is also needed in this very poor country. I am hopeful that their strong cultural pride will stave off the feared influx of chain restaurants and outside influences. The old Colonial cities like Cienfuegos and Trinidad are thrilling glimpses into America’s past. I can’t wait to go back.

  48. Great List! And Faroe Islands is in our next plan to visit in 2016.

  49. Inspiring list Kate. Thank you for including Paris and Nepal. Both these destination need more travellers as many families are dependent on tourism. We will definitely explore some places you have recommended.

  50. Flora Baker says:

    Lovely choices Kate! And thanks for linking my Cuba article 🙂 Hope you make it over there sooner rather than later!

Speak Your Mind

Tell us what you're thinking...
and oh, if you want a pic to show with your comment, go get a gravatar!

one + two =