What’s a new year without writing a travel bucket list? But with SO many places to see, narrowing down your dream destinations can be difficult – my list is currently two pages long!
So, if you are struggling to decide where to explore in 2019, here are a selection of some of my favourite places in the world. Each destination offers a little something different depending on how you like to travel and what you like to see/do. I can guarantee at lest one of these destinations will end up on your bucket list!
1. Iceland – For the adventurous traveller
I can easily say, Iceland is the most beautiful place I’ve ever visited! It is a country like no other – the natural wonders and scenery are just out of this world! The locals are also extremely welcoming and friendly! So if you have the opportunity to visit this truly breath-taking country, or a debating whether or not to visit, DO IT NOW!
Iceland can cater for all sorts of travellers – the capital of Reykjavik is a great city break, the blue lagoon offers a perfect spot for relaxing. But for adventure lovers, this is the place to go! With so much beautiful scenery to explore, you will be constantly on the move. Glaciers, waterfalls, geysers, hot springs, volcanoes, black beaches and the northern lights – are just a few of the must see sights! Oh and don’t forget to taste some of the very unique local cuisine – such as fermented shark and dried fish!
Iceland is becoming ever more popular and accessible, with many budget airlines now flying to this amazing country. There is also an array of budget friendly accommodation in the capital. So, what’s stopping you? If it’s not already, add this to your bucket list now!
2. Budapest – For the city break lover
If an action packed city break is more your style – head to Budapest! This wonderful Central European capital is full of beautiful cultural sights and architecture – such as Buda Castle, The Parliament Building, The Citadel and Heroes square – to name a few!
Budapest is a place where you will never be bored. As well as the sights, there are SO many things to do, you can cruise along the Danube, visit a thermal bath, explore the museums, head to a ruin bar, and try all the wonderful local dishes! You can’t leave Budapest without trying some Goulash!
Budapest is very easy to get around due to its high quality transport system. It is also highly renowned as one of the cheapest city break destinations in Europe! It truly is one of the greatest cities in Europe, so if you love getting value for money – head here!
3. Hvar – For the sun chaser
The beautiful Croatian Island of Hvar is known as the sunniest place in Europe – the perfect summer getaway! But Hvar has much more to offer than just wonderful weather.
This UNESCO heritage site is rich in culture, with many spectacular historical buildings lining the cobbled streets. Hvar Town is the best place to stay, with ferries transporting passengers directly from Split, Dubrovnik and the surrounding Islands. Here you can visit the Pakleni Islands, which boast some of the best beaches in the area. You can also climb the Hvar Fortress, which offers amazing panoramic views overlooking the port – sunset is definitely the best time to do this!
If you’re a seafood lover – Hvar is a must visit, it has some of the best quality fish I’ve ever tried! Hvar can be a little pricey, but there are a range of budget friendly options. So if you have been tempted by this beautiful island – read my ultimate guide to find out more!
4. Santiago – For the culture seeker
If you are after something a little different and further afield, visiting Santiago is a must! Santiago is the capital of Chile – one of the most developed countries in South America. It is also one of the safest major cities in the region.
This city is full of culture and it very much embraces the outdoor lifestyle. Streets are typically full of performers, food stalls, markets and much more!
There is so much to do and see in Santiago. For the best panoramic views of the city and the Andes mountain range, head up the Cerro San Cristobal Hill. As Chile has such a vast and shocking history, make sure to visit some of the museums in Santiago, especially the Museum of Memory and Human Rights. I also recommend a day trip to Valparaiso, a vibrant port city, full of colourful houses, with a great nightlife. There’s also the option to travel down to Patagonia, which is definitely a bucket list sight in itself!
Chile can be relatively cheap to eat and stay in, although travel fares may be quite steep. However, if you are planning a trip around South America, make sure this beautiful country is top of your itinerary!
5. Cinque Terre – For the scenic lover
The Cinque Terre is one of the most breathtakingly beautiful and quaint places I’ve ever been to. The Cinque Terre or ‘the 5 villages’, consist of centuries-old seaside villages on the Italian Riviera coastline.
Vibrant colourful houses rest on the cliff face, vineyards line the terraced hill tops, fishing boats tour the harbours and wonderful fresh seafood fill the restaurants.
Each village is accessible by train and boat – great for a day trip to the region. However, if you have the opportunity, I recommend you stay here for a few nights to be able to see each village in all its glory! The 5 villages are all unique, but my 2 favourites were Manarola and Vernazza, both great places to stay overnight.
The Cinque Terre is quickly becoming a very popular destination and its easy to see why – with so much natural beauty on offer. But this means it can be extremely busy in peak times, so I definitely suggest visiting in the low season!
Feel free to comment below your top recommendations for places everyone should add to their 2019 bucket list!