Best International Travel Destinations – One person’s idea of the best holiday destinations in the world differs wildly from the next’s. It all depends, of course, on what you want from a holiday. Whether your idea of fun is taking off as many clothes as is humanly decent.
lying down for two weeks, or standing ponderously before Giotto’s candlelit frescoes in Assisi, or hacking through rainforest to discover the indigenous tribe that has never clapped eyes on an outsider. Why, every day thousands make the pilgrimage that is the three-hour queue at Madame Tussaud’s to see a bunch of famous dummies, and they can’t get enough of it.
Some places in the world, however, are so unequivocally brilliant, so indisputably incredible, that it would take extraordinary effort to not love them. Places that have everyone from belligerent old uncles to jaded been-there-done-it-alls about what a simply WONDERFUL holiday they had.
So here is the ultimate holiday calendar to help you find out where to go when, top holiday destinations whether you want beaches or wilderness, safari or city breaks, skiing or winter sun; whether you want to know where’s hot in October, or where to escape the crowds at Easter: the 10 best holiday destinations for every month of the year.
Table Of Content
- 1 1. Milos Island Greece
- 2 2. Conrad Bora Bora Nui
- 3 3. Croatia
- 4 4. India (Matheran)
- 5 5. Thailand
- 6 6. Scotland (Dunnottar Castle)
- 7 7. Norway (Trolltunga)
- 8 8. California (Sequoia National Park)
- 9 10. Cancun (Sagrado Cenote Azul)
- 10 10. Bagan (Myanmar)
1. Milos Island Greece
If you’re looking for a relaxing Greek island getaway, Milos is the place for you! Like many islands in Greece, particularly in the Cyclades, Milos is the product of the area’s volcanic activity. Like Santorini, Milos is actually a volcanic island that surrounds a caldera. But despite their shared similarities, Milos and Santorini offer two completely different experiences.
The biggest difference between the two is that Milos is a stunningly beautiful island that somehow doesn’t get the same amount of visitors each year. For those that do come here, Milos offers a completely relaxing experience. Here’s a list of some very good reasons why you should consider visiting this island.
The beach of Papagragas is located at the bottom of a cave. The cave and the beach together offer a combination of natural beauty that can easily win the hearts of even the most critical travelers. The cave of Papafaragas Beach has been carved out of a cliff, making way for the sea water to rush in and form a separate beach that in fact resembles a rather large swimming pool.
One of the most beautiful things about the island is its unique geography. Dubbed “The Island of Colors” by those who have spent time here, the island is characterized but its interesting rock formations and multi-colored waters. The island’s volcanic history is largely responsible for these unique features.
As a result of this, Milos has some great beaches that are well worth exploring. Some boast great views of some of the more memorable rocks formations. All of them are fairly quiet and relaxing and free from the boisterous beach crowds that flock to some of the other islands on Greece. In particular, the Golden Milos Beach stands out as being one of the island’s best spots. The island also has some hot springs, which attract tourists and natives alike for their warm and healing waters.
Venus de Milo
The thing that has really put Milos on the map, however, isn’t its geography – it’s a statue! The Venus de Milo sculpture, which is currently on display in the Louvre in Paris, originated here. It is believed to have been sculpted somewhere around 100 BC and is thought to depict Aphrodite, the Greek goddess of love.
It is said that Alexandros of Antioch was the original sculptor. However, there is some debate as to the statue’s true creator. Even though you’re only able to view it in the Louvre, visitors are continually intrigued that the statue originated here and its discovery is celebrated on the island.
2. Conrad Bora Bora Nui
Heaven is indeed a place on earth, and its name is Bora Bora. But how do you decide which overwater bungalow is worth your precious vacation time? Our top pick: the Conrad Bora Bora Nui. The former Hilton emerged from a multimillion-dollar renovation, and reopened in April 2017 as the only Conrad property in French Polynesia. The property has also debuted another first in the region: a pair of two-story overwater bungalows. Read on to see why this dreamy hotel is worthy of your bucket list.
Arriving at the Conrad Bora Bora Nui is a surreal moment, one that you’ll probably experience a few times during your stay thanks to the resort’s location on Motu To’opua, its own private island. And since Bora Bora’s airport is also located on an island, you’ll arrive to the resort via boat transfer. Seeing the overwater bungalows from the water kicks off a romantic getaway in a special way, and truly never gets old.
Of the 114 rooms at the property, the overwater bungalows are the star. (Although if it’s a view you’re after, opt for a Garden Villa, perched on the hillside, or the Beach Villas give direct access to the sand.) The Overwater Villas have everything you’ve dreamed of: a king-size bed, a dining table and a sitting area, plus wall-to-wall sliding glass doors that lead to an expansive deck with lounge chairs, an outdoor shower and direct access to the water. There’s also a Bluetooth sound system throughout the villa — hook up your device and listen to your music while lounging on the catamaran net, spying spotted eagle rays floating below.
Again, is a massive soaking tub really necessary when you’re staying over the water? Absolutely. The sleek bathroom also features his-and-hers sinks, a rain shower and windows that open out so you can see the water below.
Two-story Overwater Villas
If Oprah and Gayle were to stay in Bora Bora, we’re pretty sure they would stay in these two Presidential Suites. Each swanky two-story overwater bungalow (the first in French Polynesia) is 4,300 square feet and features two bedrooms, two outdoor decks, a private pool, a hot tub, a sauna and an outdoor dining space. Get a tour of a villa on our Facebook page.
Main Infinity Pool
Swimming right off your overwater bungalow is nice, but the beachfront infinity pool at is also pretty sweet. Hang out at the swim-up bar or soak up the sun from the built-in loungers. Then laze on the resort’s beach, or take advantage of the complimentary snorkel gear, kayaks and paddleboats. The property also provides bicycles to ride to and from your bungalow.
I love the Balkan countries, and Croatia is one of the countries that I’ve explored the most in that region. The summer of 2016, we stayed 1 month in Zagreb before our road trip to the Southern parts via Plitvice Lakes, Krka, Zadar, Split, Dubrovnik and much more.
In 2017 Christine and I came back to explore some more, visiting the islands of Brac and Hvar as well as Ston, Makarska, Omiš, and Split!
It’s an incredibly diverse country filled with culture, history, nature and some pretty delicious food! So, as you can probably tell, I’m a big fan of Croatia and what the country has to offer its visitors.
And if you haven’t been yet, here are 5 Reasons why you should definitely visit Croatia at least once in your life!
Another proof of the mighty nature of Croatia is the Plitvice Lakes, also known as “Plitvička jezera” in Croatian. Spectacular views, waterfalls and one of the most turquoise waters I’ve ever seen.
I’m not joking when I name this as one of the most beautiful cemeteries in the world. It’s well maintained but there is also some kind of indescribable peace while walking around here.
Mirogoj is located in Zagreb, and while I normally won’t say that a cemetery is a place to visit as a tourist, this one sure is.
But please do so with respect and remember that it’s a place of peace and quiet. Come here and enjoy the beauty!
ADVENTURES IN OMIŠ
Here you can get that adrenaline rush and go for ziplining or rafting. We tried the ziplining and it was a lot of fun!
Afterward, we drove up to this viewpoint and it’s truly amazing. What a beautiful place!
PAKLENICA NATIONAL PARK
Remember how I told you that nature is fantastic in Croatia? Well, here is another proof of that!
A very beautiful old coastal city that has nowadays become a popular tourist destination. This is one of my favorite places in Croatia, and you’ll have proximity to everything you could possibly want.
4. India (Matheran)
One might think of Matheran as a cliched holiday spot which may have become too commercialized due to its popularity. However, Matheran continues to be one of the most beautiful and clean hill stations to visit in Maharashtra. If you are unaware of the reasons that make Matheran an ideal destination to visit with your family, here are five for you:
Ideal Destination for a Breath of Fresh Air
It is the only hill station in the country which refuses entry to motorized vehicles. As a result, it has succeeded in keeping pollution at bay making it the ideal destination for a breath of fresh air!
Perfect for Beginner Level Trekkers
It is perfect for beginner level trekkers as it is just a 30-45 minute-trek from the parking lot. From young kids to senior citizens, anyone can easily visit Matheran.
36 Viewing Points
Like most other hill stations in Maharashtra, Matheran provides breathtaking views of the Western Sahyadris. It has as many as 36 viewing points from where you can enjoy the sunset and check out surreal landscapes.
Just Around 80 km From Mumbai
It is just around 80 km from Mumbai and 117 km from Pune making it one of the easiest getaways from these two major cities. It’s a blessing to have such a marvelous hill station at such a short driving distance and a crime to still not visit it!
Matheran is surrounded by several other small hills and trekking delights like Peb and Vikatgadh. A trip to Matheran can be combined with a trek to these beautiful trails with breathtaking views.
Though traveling to Thailand is commonplace for Europeans, most North Americans consider it too far away and even too exotic to visit on a regular week or two-week vacation. That’s a shame because if you can get past the 14-plus hours on a plane, Thailand is a mind-expanding vacation destination. Although it’s always better to visit if you have weeks or even a month to spare, you’ll also get plenty out of your visit if you go for just a week or 10 days.
Whether you visit in December or May, expect warm weather and mostly clear days. There are seasons in Thailand; they’re just a little different from the ones Americans are used to—cool, hot, and rainy.
Thailand has some of the best beaches in the world: warm, clear water; stunning vistas; and marine life to gawk at as you swim, snorkel, or scuba. Plus there are so many different types of beaches in Thailand, from quiet and laid back to party all night, that everyone can find the perfect fit.
If you like markets, bargains, or cool and quirky stuff, you’ll find shopping in Thailand rewarding. Big city markets carry everything from shoes to art, and the malls in Bangkok are some of the fanciest in the world.
The booming, bustling capital of Bangkok and Chiang Mai, the quieter, charming center of Northern Thailand, both offer culture, history, architecture, great food, and lots of diversions.
Whether you are on the beach or in one of Thailand’s cities, you won’t be far from the bars and nightclubs that have made the country famous. Don’t worry, it’s not all go-go bars and scantily clad women. There are plenty of discos, nightclubs, and regular bars, too.
6. Scotland (Dunnottar Castle)
The time to visit Scotland is NOW! Rough Guides has listed Scotland as being one of the must-see destinations in 2018, and we couldn’t agree more. As the influential travel guide publisher puts it, ‘wildlife, whisky and a wonderfully warm welcome make Scotland a perennially popular destination, but in 2018 there are even more reasons to visit.’
So what are these reasons, we hear you ask? Look no further – we’ve put together a list of what’s new, special anniversaries and things that you really should not miss in 2018-2019.
BE PART OF THE YEAR OF HISTORY, HERITAGE AND ARCHAEOLOGY
Once-buried Neolithic settlements, mysterious standing stones and crumbling medieval castles are all part of Scotland’s rich history. We’re set to celebrate all these and more in 2017, the Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology.
As well as visiting historical sites and exploring our heritage and traditions, such as Gaelic, folk music and storytelling, you can join in with some fantastic events.
On April 18, take part in World Heritage Day with exciting celebrations at some of our UNESCO World Heritage Sites with Scotland in Six. From glow-in-the-dark adventures at the Heart of Neolithic Orkney to steam punk surprises at the Forth Bridge, there’s a dynamic range of events which will really bring Scottish history to life.
SEE A BRAND NEW MODERN ENGINEERING WONDER
Due to open in the summer, the newly constructed Queensferry Crossing will be the longest three-tower, cable-stayed bridge in the world stretching 1.7 miles (2.7km). The impressive structure will link road traffic from Edinburgh and the Lothians to Fife.
Appearing like three giant yet graceful sailing boats over the water, it’s dramatically different from the existing Forth Bridge, the red cantilever railway bridge, and the Forth Road Bridge, a suspension bridge, which currently span the Firth of Forth.
The Forth Road Bridge will now serve public transport as well as walkers and cyclists, so you could cross it on foot or on two wheels and admire two neighbouring engineering wonders of old and new; the modern Queensferry Crossing and the 127-year-old Forth Bridge.
TRACE THE BEGINNINGS OF HARRY POTTER MANIA
It’s hard to believe that 20 years have passed since the cultural phenomenon of Harry Potter was first introduced to the world – it was in June 1997 when Bloomsbury published J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone with an initial print run of 1,000 copies.
Rowling wrote the novel in cafés around Edinburgh, including The Elephant House. It’s thought that Edinburgh and Scotland provided some inspiration for the book series, and the stunning landscapes of the Highlands were actually used in the films (who can forget that train scene?!).
Perhaps it’s time to round up your Ron and Hermione and plan a magical Scottish adventure? Follow our Harry Potter itinerary to discover enchanting scenery and spellbinding locations.
VISIT AN EXCITING NEW CULTURAL ATTRACTION
Located in the heart of town’s Heritage Quarter, the brand new Dunfermline Carnegie Library and Galleries will open in May 2017. Inside this state-of-the-art centre lie a new museum, art galleries and a reading room full of local history – it’s the perfect place to find out about Dunfermline-born philanthropist Andrew Carnegie. The new building is actually joined onto the world’s first Carnegie Library, fusing old and new architecture.
In addition, you can browse the new shop or sit back in the mezzanine café which overlooks Dunfermline Abbey. If coming from Edinburgh by car, you could take the new Queensferry Crossing on your way!
FIND FANTASTIC NEW PLACES TO SLEEP
In Scotland, there are already some fabulous places to rest your head, from unique hideaways and unusual self-catering properties to swanky hotels, packed with luxury from top to bottom. But if you’re looking for the hot new place to stay, we’ve got a couple of pretty spectacular suggestions.
Natural Retreats will open stylish and elegant apartments and bedrooms in the recently renovated Lews Castle on the Isle of Lewis. This gothic-revival style building has a fascinating history, having been a wartime hospital during WW2, a college and a school.
When it comes to quirky in the countryside, book a break at the Bus Stop in East Lothian. Located on a working farm, two buses have been converted into luxury accommodation, complete with log fired hot tubs, BBQs and sublime views of the Lammermuir Hills. Or, find more accommodation in Scotland.
EXPLORE THE FILM LOCATIONS OF THE LATEST BLOCKBUSTER
The camera loves the Isle of Skye; with its breathtaking landscapes and striking geological formations, it’s no surprise that it’s been used as backdrop in dozens of movies. Once you’ve seen the new epic fantasy King Arthur: The Legend of the Sword, (directed by Guy Ritchie and due to be released in the UK on 19 May 2017), you can visit one of the filming locations on Skye.
Not to be missed is The Quiraing, a mighty landslip on the northernmost summit of the Trotternish Ridge. This area was also used in the fifth instalment of the Michael Bay directed Transformers series, Transformers: The Last Knight (due to be released in the UK on 23 June 2017).
7. Norway (Trolltunga)
Norway has always been one of those countries you wish to visit but you never really have the right opportunity to make a final decision and go there. Many people are afraid of extreme coldness, but if you visit Norway during summer, in some places can get as hot as in the rest of Europe. So why wait? Here are the top 5 reasons why everyone should visit this “northern beauty”!
Visit a town more than 1000 years old
Exactly this year, the city of Trondheim will celebrate its 1000th birthday. The city was founded in 997 by king Olav Tryggvason although some archaeological findings of Trondheim date from the 8th century.
During the Viking Age Trondheim was the capital of Norway, while today it counts around 180 000 inhabitants, making Trondheim the fourth largest city in the country (after Oslo, Bergen and Stavanger).
The main attraction in the city is the medieval Archbishop’s Palace which is among the best preserved palaces in Europe. The palace has an amazing collection of royal jewelry and military exhibits from Viking Age to World War II.
In the south wing of the palace is located the Palace Museum where you can see archaeological findings of Nidaros Cathedral, the most significant Gothic church in all of Scandinavia.
Feel like standing on top of the world at Trolltunga
Trolltunga or literally “troll’s tongue” is a long rock formation which “sticks out” 1100 metres above the Lake Ringedalsvatnet in Hordaland County. The view from the cliff is truly indescribable but getting there can be quite a challenge.
It is recommended to hike to Trolltunga from June to September and the hike should start no later than 09:00 because the hike itself takes around 10-12 hours. Proper equipment is a must, plenty of water, nice weather and you’re good to go!
Witness magnificent Aurora borealis
Aurora borealis also known as polar light is usual phenomenon in the Arctic regions and it can be also seen in some parts of Scotland as well. It usually occurs during September, October, March and April although it is still not completely clear why is that the case.
Besides the northern lights, the same phenomenon happens around the South Pole too and it is called Aurora australis. One of the best places to see northern lights in Norway is the city of Tromsø where you can even book a professional “aurora chasing” tour and take the most stunning photos you’ll ever take!
Stand in the “air” on Kjeragbolten
Bet you’re asking yourself how is it possible to “stand in the air”? Kjeragbolten in Norway is an unusual boulder which stands between two sides of 984 metre-high mountain crevice and surprisingly – it doesn’t move nor it is THAT dangerous as it looks.Probably the most challenging is to reach Kjeragbolten, however, there are chains installed on steeper parts of mountain to help the visitors.
And let’s not forget the capital, Oslo
Oslo is, of course, the city you just cannot miss. Oslo is the perfect mix of traditional and modern. The most iconic symbols of the city are the City Hall, Akershus Fortress and Vigeland Sculpture Park – the largest sculpture park in the world with over 650 sculptures in bronze, granite and iron. Art lovers should definitely visit Munch Museum dedicated to famous Norwegian painter, Edvard Munch.
You don’t have to leave Oslo to get the feel of Arctic atmosphere, you just need to visit one of the most visited attractions in the city – the famous Ice Bar. It is a bar entirely made out of ice – walls, tables, stools, even the glasses are made out of ice. The regular temperature is -5 °C and at the entrance you get a coat and gloves to keep you warm.
8. California (Sequoia National Park)
Sequoia National Park is one of America’s most incredible national parks. It was established way back in 1890 by men who had the foresight to recognize this was truly one of America’s most beautiful national treasures. Here are 4 reasons why you simply MUST visit Sequoia National Park this summer.
Giant sequoias are incredible
They have been called by lots of different names; sometimes they are referred to as Giant Redwoods, Sierra Redwoods, or sometimes just simply “Big Tree,” a nickname given by famous naturalist John Muir. By volume, they are the largest living things on Earth! They are also among the oldest living things on Earth; the General Sherman tree is the largest tree in the Sequoia National Forest. It is estimated to between 2300-2700 years old.
Mt. Whitney hides behind the snowcapped peaks that make up the Great Western Divide. Even though Mt. Whitney’s height classifies the mountain as the tallest in the lower 48 states, the Great Western Divide reaches up to 12,000 feet, obscuring the view of Mount Whitney. To get a clear view, take a trip to the Interagency Visitor Center on Highway 395. If you plan to climb for a day hike or an overnight trek, secure a permit ahead of time through the National Park Service.
Escape the summer heat by going underground at Crystal Cave. View the stream-polished walls, stalactites reminiscent of icicles and stalagmites that extend skyward from the ground. The temperature stays a constant 48 degrees, so bring a sweatshirt and escape summer’s heat.
Enjoy a half-mile hike on your way to the entrance of the cave viewing some beautiful trails. During the summer season, choose from five tours: the Daily Tour, Historic Candlelight Tour, Discovery Tour, Wild Cave Tour and the Junior Caver Tour. You can access the caves only during summer into early fall.
Regardless of the season you decide to visit Sequoia, several scenic drives and viewpoints make your drive more relaxing. Fall, summer and spring routes include five possible options with the ability to combine the first two drives to make a complete loop through the park.
Winter driving provides three routes, with the ability to combine the first two drives into a single loop through the park. If you don’t want to drive during the summer, take one of the four shuttle routes that travel through the park.
10. Cancun (Sagrado Cenote Azul)
Cancun may bring to mind raucous Spring Break parties, but there are plenty of things to do if you want a more relaxed trip. Here are some of the top reasons to make the trip to Mexico’s most famous beach.
Visit the underwater museum
Snorkel or dive at the Cancun Underwater Museum (MUSA) and see some of the 470 underwater statues. The attraction is designed to give visitors somewhere else to visit to take some pressure off the overused reef.
Spot whale sharks
The biggest fish in the world are found in the waters off Cancun from May to September each year. Take a tour from Cancun or head to Isla Holbox or Cozumel.
Thousands of places to stay
From opulent all-inclusive resorts to backpacker hostels, accommodation options in Cancun truly run the gamut. Stay in the Hotel Zone for easy access to the beach and other amenities, or find a hostel in the centre of town if you’re on more of a budget.
Sign up to a day trip to Xel-Ha water park, home to slides, snorkelling and boat trips. It’s great for kids, but it’s a lot of fun for adults too. Tickets can be fairly pricey, but it’s a once in a lifetime experience.
10. Bagan (Myanmar)
Is Bagan a new destination in your note’s travel guide? Why you should visit Bagan? One of the world’s greatest religious sites, Bagan offers a vast number of historic temples, magnificent sunrises and sunsets, and a magnitude of scale unimaginable to everyone.
A Grand Number Of Primitive Temples And Pagodas
Less well known than the temples at Angkor Archaeological Park in Cambodia, Bagan is definitely one of the must-sees in Southeast Asian countries. The sheer number and diversity of temples and pagodas with the incredible sights will leave you breathless.
More than 2000 ancient temples scattering over Bagan, each of them has their own ravishing beauty as well as historical and religious significance. The “sun set temple” Shewsandaw Temple, the holiest Ananda Temple built in 1091 and the tallest Thatbyinnyu pagoda in Thatbyinnyu Temple.
A Wide Range Of Festive Time
Additionally, coming to Bagan in January or February, you have a chance to witness annual pilgrims from all over the country gather here to celebrate Burmese traditional festival. With music, worship in the holiest atmosphere, you are surprised by the spiritual Ananda Pagoda holiday.
Known as the festive land, the festival of Lights is expected to bring you the most peaceful moment in the flow of time. Light from the balloons, lanterns or fireworks is the symbol of moving out of darkness and towards the brilliant future.
Then, following a monk, you come to a unique alcove with served-candles and enlighten oil lamps in sequence to make a queue of furious flames. If you are considering why you should visit Bagan, a festive time obviously gives deserved answer!
Stimulating Outdoor Activities
The easiest way to watch temples, pagodas and payas from the bird-eye views is trying a hot air balloon. Awe inspiring flights over the unique city of Bagan with unrivalled majestic of thousands of ancient temples.
You, absolutely, have the sight of the cultural city from the air! From a unique and charming platform of a hot air balloon basket, all the remarkable landscapes appear as far as you can see.
Enjoy an unforgettable sunrise over the panoramic plain from the upper terrace of the famous temples and peaceful Irrawaddy River in the pure morning. Hot air balloon adventure is highly recommended, particularly for those who love photography and adore the best scenic beauty of Myanmar that you have never seen before!
Bagan, a new or old Bagan? Actually, the area in Bagan is divided into three exclusive towns. A new Bagan in the south, Old Bagan in the north and the newest town, called Nyaung Oo in the east of Old Bagan. Discover all in a journey? Such a perfect mixture! This is one of the reasons why you should visit Bagan!
Don’t be rush in Burma. Don’t be rush in Bagan. The most exotic thing you can do is biking or riding a horse carriage. Take a bike or a horse cart around each part of town and do a whole round: from new Bagan to old Bagan, head to Nyaung Oo and end at New Bagan. By this way, even the picturesque vista or the biggest temples inspire you by its own exquisite beauty. A Bagan, with both modern and ancient towns, enables you discover all in only one city. The real images of Buddha are everywhere, in the walls, in elegant brick stupas in every narrow corner.
The highlight of a visit Bagan is to climb the steps of the Mount Popa, the towering pagodas and contemplate the splendid sunset over Bagan. In this setting, the view becomes more brilliant. The river reflects the fading sunlight, the reddish glimmer of the stupas and the vast of huge plain are slowly dimmed by the setting of sun.
Best Place To Get YES For A Proposal
Sunrise and sunset are always the magical moments everywhere. But in Bagan, it is definitely surreal. Blessed with over 2,000 Buddhist monasteries, temples and pagodas, the plain of Bagan offers visitors the romantic landscapes from another prospective.
Climb to the top of Lawkaoushaung, contemplate the sun rising over the vivid temples and its shadow in the golden canvas. It is an incredible sight to watch.
When is the best time to get on bended knee than with a backdrop of sun-kissed Burmese temples? Of course, sunrise! It is hard to refuse. According to the Lonelyplanet, Bagan is one of the best places to get YES for a proposal! It is a worth to visit!