This is a question we often ask ourselves when we are looking for our next travel destination or when we want to talk about our favorite travel destination. For whatever reason, talking about favorite travel destinations is always a great topic.
Travel is an important part of my life and also a fantastic topic to write about, whether in short form or in book form. That’s why I wrote this article about my favorite travel destinations and where I’d like to go next.
What Makes a Favourite Travel Destination and Why?
If you ask someone what their favorite place is, you are sure to get a variety of different answers. The reason we have a favorite travel destination is often because of the personal experience associated with it, or what it reminds us of.
For some people, it’s a once-in-a-lifetime travel experience, like a safari in South Africa. For others, it’s a place they love to return to again and again, such as bustling cities like New York, San Francisco, Las Vegas, Hong Kong, Cape Town, Mexico City, New Delhi, Tel Aviv, etc.
Or it can be a vacation to one of the most beautiful places, such as a UNESCO world heritage site (e.g., Great Wall, Taj Mahal, Halong Bay, Cinque Terre, or Machu Pichu in South America).
Some people are drawn to the beaches of Puerto Rico, Costa Rica, or to South India and Southeast Asia, while others prefer a culturally rich dream destination such as South Korea or Sri Lanka.
7 of My Favorite Travel Destinations
I have traveled and lived abroad for 2 decades, and it’s very hard for me to say which is my favorite travel destination because there are so many wonderful places in the world, all with their ups and downs. I’ll list a few of my favorite destinations here:
I fell in love with this country even before I was there.
Laos is one of my favorite destinations in Southeast Asia, and you may be wondering why. I love Laos because of the culture, the place, the food, and also for personal reasons. When I was young, I spent a lot of time with Lao people and we had a great relationship.
Despite the increase in tourism, Laos still offers many authentic areas and it’s easy to travel around.
Indonesia is one of my favorite travel destinations where I have more than one favorite place.
I have been to Indonesia many times and am always fascinated by the scenery, the culture, and the openness of the locals.
Indonesia has some of the most exotic landscapes on the planet. The diversity of landscapes makes it an ideal destination for those who love nature and adventure.
The Pacific Islands are a fascinating region for any traveler. The perfect white-sand beaches are certainly enticing, but the rich cultural heritage of this part of the world makes it even more attractive.
Remote places and cultures that remain authentic are something I really enjoy finding in my travels. There are so many remote travel opportunities in the Pacific, and the beaches are stunning, and inland like Fiji, there are breathtaking landscapes. One of my favorite travel destinations in the Pacific Islands is Fiji, I just love the culture and it’s such a beautiful place!
New Zealand is also one of my favorite holiday destinations, and on my list of best places to live in the world. I lived there for two years and it was fantastic.
The locals are very respectful, the food is fantastic, the scenery is very diverse and it is one of the safest countries in the world. The scenery is spectacular, but it’s the people that make this country so special.
They are forward-thinking, generally well educated, and have a progressive outlook on life. Maori culture is also rich, but some are struggling to preserve their traditions in a rapidly changing society.
I was fortunate to live with locals in Cuba and see places most people would not go. I was very impressed with the richness and preservation of the culture and places untouched by tourism.
The music and art scene is also very rich, and it’s great to see that every single person has a high level of education. But that was 2006, so probably a lot has changed since then.
I was in Jamaica on business, which made my trip very enjoyable because my organization’s partners took care of me and introduced me to some of the most amazing people.
The scenery is beautiful, and wherever you go there is great music.
Greece is one of my husband’s and my favorite holiday destination for summer vacation: great beaches, good food, and happy people.
We love Greece for its natural beauty, amazing islands, beautiful architecture, delicious food, local wine and ouzo, friendly people everywhere, history, and culture.
Greece is a beautiful country with so many different landscapes, from sandy beaches to rocky mountains to lush forests. It’s a place where you have everything at your doorstep – relaxation, adventure, and history. You can lie on an island beach for hours, hike up a mountain, and visit ancient ruins – all on the same day!
7 of My Favorite Cities
Light, sea breezes, and the warmth of the people are the first things that come to mind when you think of Barcelona.
If you love art in all its forms, Barcelona is the place for you!
The city’s artistic and architectural heritage is not limited to the most emblematic buildings and monuments, such as Gaudi’s Sagrada Familia or Casa Batlló, but also extends to the streets, squares, and buildings in every neighborhood.
I lived in Paris for many years and it is definitely one of the most beautiful cities in the world. The food is also excellent! The public transportation is great and very punctual.
Parisians have a pretty bad reputation all over the world, and I actually agree. As with anyone, it depends on who you are dealing with, and there are certainly some nice people, but you will also encounter rude service.
Most locals I know would never go to “touristy” areas like Montmartre, Opera, or the Eiffel Tower because they find them very crowded, and full of pickpockets or scammers. Some areas near the train stations are not perfect either, so it’s always good to do your research before venturing into unfamiliar areas!
London is one of the most multicultural cities in the world. People from all over the world have settled here, bringing their cultures and traditions with them. London has amazing museums and great nightlife, but it has also become very expensive.
If you are a foodie, Budapest is a great place. There are dozens of Michelin-starred restaurants in the city, and the restaurant scene is a mix of Hungarian, Italian, Asian, French, and other cuisines. From Michelin-starred restaurants to small cafes, Budapest has something for everyone, even for travelers on a budget (stick to local cuisine, and you can eat for less than $10 a day).
Do not forget to try Hungarian wine during your stay in the city – excellent wines are produced in the country.
One of the most popular tourist activities in Budapest is to visit one of the thermal bath complexes. Built by the Romans, who used the city as a spa, Budapest is rich in natural hot springs and thermal baths.
The city has many diverse cultural communities reflected in a variety of festivals, markets, cafes and restaurants.
Melbourne is also a great city for foodies – there are so many different dishes from around the world to try!
Melbourne is a trendy and vibrant city with a lot going on, also on my list of best places to live. Melbourne is like Wellington in New Zealand: it’s very safe and it’s easy to get around.
Bangkok is one of Asia’s most cosmopolitan cities, with stunning temples and palaces, authentic canals, bustling markets, and a vibrant nightlife that has something for everyone.
Bangkok is a city of contrasts, with something happening at every turn. Marvel at the shimmering temples, take a tuk-tuk through bustling Chinatown or take a longtail boat ride through the floating markets. Bangkok offers beautiful architecture and a rich culture that will make your time there unforgettable.
Mexico City (Old Town)
I can not say I like all of Mexico City as it is a huge city, but there is something for everyone. I love the old city and its museums are very authentic. For example, the Frida Khalo House or the Leon Trotsky House. They show you how they lived when they were in Mexico City. You can feel that energy, at least I did.
Places I Would Love to Visit
I would love to explore the Grand Canyon, Zion National Park, Mount Fuji, Cinque Terre, Halong Bay, Hoi an, Great Wall, Madagascar, Kenya, South Africa, in fact, most of Africa! British Columbia, New Orleans, New York, San Francisco, South America, is also on my list, and I’d like to visit the Taj Mahal and the Golden Temple, and more of Southeast Asia. There are so many great places in the world that it would take several lifetimes to cover them all!
How to Find Your Favorite Place
The first and probably most important point is what kind of person you are.
Do you want to hike and see a new natural park, or do you prefer to relax on the beach?
- Would you see yourself in a tourist destination like Las Vegas, in a luxury hotel near the Burj Khalifa, or in a remote destination in Sri Lanka?
- Do you want to see something that reminds you of home, or do you want to see something completely different?
- Do you like warm or cold weather (I am not talking about “hibernating at home,” but rather the southern US and northern Canada).
- Are you planning a winter or summer vacation, or a longer trip?
- Think of your current favorite place and why, you may find a few clues on where to go next.
Once you have a general idea of what kind of place suits your personality, you should look at a map. Unless you are really, really, really lucky, there is no way anyone else has not been there.
So start looking for a destination in a place that fits your needs. Then you can start reading about them (e.g. Lonely Planet, travel blog, or even reviews can be helpful to get started) to get a better feel for the place.
If you are planning a trip abroad and need help choosing a destination, you first need to decide what kind of places you like. Some people prefer beaches, others jungles, some cities, and some the countryside.
The Internet is a surprisingly helpful place to start your search, and it’s not as difficult as it sounds. There are a few important things to keep in mind when searching online:
- Make sure you know what kind of places you want to go to. This seems obvious, but if you know where you want to travel, the search will be much easier.
- Look at the map of the world. You probably already have a few destinations in mind, so now is the time to narrow down your choices. If you are looking for beaches, look at coastal destinations; if you are looking for mountains and hiking trails, look at mountain regions; if you are looking for city life, look at major cities.
- Start reading. Lonely Planet is a good place to start, but any guidebook will do (even Wikitravel!). Be sure to read about the culture of the destination so you get an idea of how people live there and what their lifestyle is like.
A Favourite Destination Depends on Who You Are Traveling With
You can travel to the best places in the world, but if the company is not right, it could be your worst destination.
I am a travel lover and have always looked forward to every trip. But when I decided to travel, I realized that it makes a big difference if you travel with people who share the same passion as you.
There are certain things that can ruin your trip, but there are also things that can make it even more memorable.
Traveling With Friends
One of the most important things when traveling is having the right company.
While it is true that you can go anywhere on your own, if you are going to travel with friends or family, you have to be very careful about who you choose as your travel companion.
Independence is important. If I am traveling with friends and want to listen to live music, for example, but my friends want to go to a club or dance, I do not want to be forced to do something I do not feel like doing.
The same goes for me if I am with someone who wants to go shopping and I am more in the mood to spend time with locals and learn about their culture. We can spend time together and then separate for a while and meet again later, maybe for dinner.
Traveling with someone who always wants to do everything together can be very frustrating because you may have different interests or one person gets tired before the other (like my husband!), and then one or both people are bitter or mad at the other.
Traveling with someone can be a great way to have fun and enjoy yourself. But it’s also a great way to get frustrated. The same place that is fun with one person can be a nightmare the next time you visit just because you are with someone.
I love traveling alone and believe it is one of the best ways to travel. But like everything in life, it has its pros and cons.
When you travel alone, you can do what you want, when you want. You do not have to worry about anyone else’s needs or schedules. You can stop at any coffee store without getting bored and without worrying about other people wanting to leave before you finish your drink. You do not have to worry about buying souvenirs for anyone but yourself.
However, there are some disadvantages as well: If something happens to you, no one will know until it’s too late; if you get robbed or sick, there may be no one there to help you; if you are afraid of being alone at night, it could make traveling difficult; if something happens to your family abroad, there may be no one there to help you get home as soon as possible.
What You Should Do to Make Your Destination a Great Experience
It’s almost true that travel is the only thing you can buy to become richer. And if you are very lucky, you’ll fall in love with the world along the way. In fact, most of us dream of traveling the world because we want to see what’s out there. We want to experience everything.
Many people dream of traveling the world, or at least taking a few trips to different places and experiencing different cultures.
There are a lot of things you need to do before your trip. This way you will have a better time while you are away.
If you plan ahead, you can save money. When you are planning a trip, it is never too early to start planning. Make sure you know where you want to go and what seasons are best for that location.
Do Your Research
Research in advance the places you want to visit and the hotels you will be staying in so you have an idea of what to expect when you get there.
When packing your suitcase, always choose clothes that are easy to mix and match so you do not have too many clothes for the duration of your trip, nor do you have to spend time putting together new outfits every day of your vacation.
Remember to take a universal charger when traveling with electronic devices, as well as an extra battery for each device, as the battery power of electronic devices often degrades faster than expected, especially if they are used frequently while traveling.
Learn the basics of the language if you can This is not necessary, but it is helpful. You do not have to be fluent in the language, just know a few words. Phrases like “hello,” “thank you,” “excuse me,” etc. are good to start with.
Find Out About the Culture
Research what people do there, how they act and dress, and anything else that is different from what you are used to at home. You do not want to seem too out of place or offend someone by doing something they do not approve of (e.g., littering).
Things do not always go as planned! Take a small bag of essentials, such as snacks and water bottles. This will save you money in the long run and prepare you for unexpected surprises.