At this time of year, particularly when snow is falling outside, I can’t stop thinking of my next travel destinations. As always, I find myself poring over copies of Conde Nast Traveller or Lonely Planet in search of destination inspiration. I also love following other travel bloggers and seeing their travel plans, or pictures and documentation of their recent travels. There’s nothing quite like learning about new places, or reminiscing over descriptions and photos of destinations you’ve already visited. So, here are 10 of the top travel destinations for 2019 from my pick of the best recommendations:
Often overlooked by its Eastern city counterparts (Sydney, Melbourne, and Brisbane), Perth is not to be missed in 2019. Definitely one of the top travel destinations for 2019, it’s situated on the southwest coast of Australia. In fact, Perth was born right where the Swan River meets the ocean. The city unsurprisingly boasts some of the most beautiful beaches in the world. Beach bums should head to the Sunset Coast just north of Perth for the iconic Cottesloe Beach. The popular Marmion Marine Park is also great for both surfing and snorkelling. Visit Rottnest Island to spot adorable quokkas, or if you’re feeling brave, swim with whale sharks at Ningaloo Reef.
Since there are now direct flights from London to Perth, it feels like the West Australian city just got a little closer to the rest of the world. Unbeknownst to me, Perth is quite a foodie hub with tons of amazing fresh produce and local wines. Its annual Margaret River Gourmet Escape attracts celebrity chefs from across the globe. For culture vultures, attractions aren’t difficult to come by either. Enjoy ballet and opera, a science centre, and an 1850s prison to explore in nearby Fremantle for a little history. For dwelling, a new Ritz-Carlton is popping up in the city this year amongst other luxury hotels. It’s pretty clear, therefore, that Perth is the place to be in 2019.
With one of the most incredible landscapes in the world, it’s little wonder this virtually deserted area is so appealing. Patagonia has not only beautiful snow-capped mountains, but miles of desert and lakes. There are many amazing views that stretch between Chile and Argentina across the Andes. Thanks to the area’s dark skies and little pollution, lucky visitors will see the stars and even the southern lights. In fact, in July, there will be a total eclipse visible from Patagonia, making it a wonderful time to visit. 2019 is also perfect to see the landscape thanks to the brand new Route of Parks. This is a 1700 mile stretch through dozens of Patagonia’s national parks. It’s also actually the world’s longest hiking trail, so it’s certainly not a walk to pass by.
With safaris possible in Chile’s Lake District, there is plenty to do and stay occupied. Visitors can spot diverse wildlife, from sea lions to orcas to penguins. Patagonia is also famous for its delicious wine and food thanks to the fertile landscape. This is pretty perfect for when you’re not hiking or kayaking. New hotels are gradually popping up around the Argentinian Lake District. Evidently, there’s no time like the present to squeeze in a visit to this beautiful part of the world.
India’s capital is currently undergoing a creative renovation. This is thanks to the arrival of a number of exciting new additions in the city. Previously known as Bombay, India’s west coast city is also its largest. Head to Juhu to the north of the city, for all the coolest yuppie hangouts in this chic neighbourhood. So cool, in fact, that Soho House has introduced its latest addition right there. Mumbai is also famous for its creative community of filmmakers, models, and musicians. Its foodie scene too is placing it in favour of Delhi with many travellers across the world and within India.
Be sure to check out the legendary Gateway of India sculpture at Mumbai Harbour. It’s an important memory in India’s colonial history. Of course, visitors should catch a Bollywood movie and see the incredible architecture of the city. Don’t forget also to shop in the city’s colourful bazaars with their unique antiques. The beaches are beautiful, and Chaupati Beach is popular for good reason thanks in part to its skyline views. For something a little out of Mumbai, nearby Sanjay Gandhi National Park has some remarkable caves. Stop off at Elephanta Island, too – it has some historic temples dedicated to the Hindu god, Shiva. With such unique culture and historic beauty, it’s for sure one of the world’s top travel destinations for 2019.
It’s no secret that Alberta is one of Canada’s most beautiful provinces. This is thanks to the impressive Rocky Mountains, turquoise lakes, and incredible coniferous landscapes. There’s no better time to visit than in 2019, whether you’re after beautiful hikes or ski slopes. This is thanks to a number of new attractions in this extraordinary part of Western Canada. Cruise through Calgary to marvel at the architectural gem of the new Central Library. If you fancy, you may want to tie it in with the annual Stampede rodeo festival in July. Guests can don their cowboy hats and enjoy a range of fun and wild country events. Visit nearby Kananaskis for its newly opened Nordic Spa, complete with salt exfoliation cabins, eucalyptus steam rooms, and hydrotherapy pools. It has incredible views across the Rockies too.
If you’re visiting Alberta, you can’t miss the beautiful Banff National Park. A new movement for 2019, bison haven’t been seen here for over 100 years due to hunting, but in summer of 2018, a herd was released in Banff. Keep your eyes peeled for plenty of other exciting wildlife during your visit, from moose to bears. Take your trip in the winter for ice skating on Lake Louise, or in summer for the beautiful aquamarine lakes of Banff and Jasper. Mountain biking, fishing, and hiking is also in abundance in the area. For more of a city break, Edmonton boasts the Royal Alberta Museum for incredible culture and history of the province. It also features North America’s largest mall for those in search of some retail therapy.
With greater political stability encouraging an influx of visitors, Egypt is well and truly one of the top travel destinations for 2019. Connecting Africa with the Middle East, there’s no denying Egypt’s fascinating cultural history. The incredible structures along the iconic River Nile are obviously a must-see, including the Pyramids of Giza and the Great Sphinx. Tourism to the area is guaranteed to soar when the huge Grand Egyptian Museum finally opens in 2020. Get there this year to beat the crowds. The amazing hieroglyphics of Luxor and the Valley of the Kings tombs are also bucket list highlights to tick off while exploring Egypt.
The capital city of Cairo is seeing an upturn in new arrivals thanks to the luxurious St Regis coming soon. As the home to some of the world’s finest Ottoman treasures, including the Muhammad Ali Mosque. There are incredible Egyptian activities like river cruises on the Nile, and camel or jeep rides across the Sahara desert. For a more relaxing take on a trip to Egypt, head to a hotel on the Red Sea. Sharm-el-Sheikh is a popular choice for exploring the beautiful coral reefs.
Israel has been an up and coming travel destination for years. With a fast developing infrastructure and a growing party scene, it’s becoming quite the holiday destination. While Tel Aviv may already be ahead of the game, recent developments on a high-speed train now means the ancient city of Jerusalem is more accessible than ever. The major airport of Ben Gurion itself is undergoing renovation this year. This means, therefore, that there’s no better time to explore this fascinating country. Direct flights to Israel from across the world are making it much easier to visit. Often known as the biblical Holy Land, Jerusalem has a plethora of sacred sites and structures. These include the Dome of the Rock shrine, the ancient Western Wall, and the Al-Aqsa Mosque to name but a few.
As the country’s most happening city and its financial hub, you can’t miss Tel Aviv on a trip to Israel. A growing city that’s increasingly fashionable, a number of luxurious hotels are moving in to the city in 2019. Not only can you have fun, but now you can choose from some indulgent places to stay. Tel Aviv is famous for its beautiful stretches of beach and stunning Bauhaus architecture that must be explored. If you’re looking for a break, head to the Dead Sea, which has a number of healing mineral properties. The Red Sea at Eilat is equally as beautiful, with coral reefs and luxurious resorts to enjoy.
Los Cabos, Mexico
Long known as the party resort retreat for celebrities and Californians alike, Los Cabos is experiencing a slight shift in its vacation approach. A municipality at the tip of Mexico’s Baja California Peninsula, the two main cities of Los Cabos are Cabo San Lucas and San Jose del Cabo. Both cities connect via a beautiful twenty mile stretch of beach and resorts. New for 2019, a number of luxurious hotels are paving the way in bringing a classier touch to Los Cabos. Hoteliers including Viceroy, Nobu, and Solaz are allowing for a greater appreciation of local Mexican culture. They’re achieving this primarily through their positions in slightly offbeat locations and by installing refreshing new design.
An area known for its party vibes, you’re not fooled in thinking Cabo San Lucas is still a super fun place to visit. New developments in up and coming areas mean there’s more great vacations in Los Cabos to go around. The East Cape will see its very own Four Seasons arriving in 2019. This even comes complete with yacht docking yard, so it’s sure to be a trip of luxury. When in Los Cabos, be sure to enjoy the beautiful climate, and spot ocean wildlife. Fishing, golf, and pure relaxation is also to be indulged in this tropical part of the world.
With incredible endangered wildlife and stunning landscapes, it’s little surprise the landlocked East African country of Rwanda is experiencing a tourism boom. This is largely due to Volcanoes National Park, which offers one of the world’s few opportunities to spot endangered mountain gorillas. Boasting a lush, mountainous landscape, it’s worthy of such a renowned status thanks to its volcanoes and monkeys. Nyungwe National Park is another beautiful place to visit for walks in the rainforest and go chimpanzee spotting. Akagera National Park also has a rare Rwandan savannah, sprawling with wildlife including zebras and hippos. More sights to catch include the beautiful, clear Lake Kivu. Its northern shore is scattered with relaxing beach hotels in nearby Gisenyi. All this amazing wildlife and landscape help make Rwanda one of the top travel destinations for 2019.
The real place to watch in 2019 is Rwanda’s capital, Kigali. Proving to be a progressive city that supports eco sustainability, it’s recently seeing a number of chic retreats opening. Last year, The Retreat made its luxurious debut in the city and is impressively powered solely by the sun. A couple of cool spots to visit include the Women’s Bakery, a female-operating cafe. Don’t miss Question Coffee either – it works with Rwandan farmers to produce excellent local coffee. The bustling nightlife and excellent restaurants of the city also help to make Kigali a hotspot for travellers in 2019.
The UK’s northernmost country is often favoured by travellers across the world, and for some reason less often by Brits. Really, there’s no excuse and that’s only more valid with some exciting new attractions for 2019. The major cities of Edinburgh and Glasgow are incredible. All visitors must see the hilltop castle, fascinating cultural scene, and experience the vibrant festivals. This year, however, all eyes are on Dundee with the exciting new arrival of the V&A Dundee at the end of 2018. Located in an architectural icon, there’s a whole bunch of Scottish design exhibits to explore inside. A former mill is now converting into a huge arts venue, making Dundee quite the cultural destination.
Of course, Scotland is famous for its dramatic mountainous landscape of the Highlands. Valleys and lochs are also peppered all over the country. Here, you can really get to grips with the wilderness and even enjoy a skiing break in the winter months. Head to the iconic Loch Ness for some trendy retreats with mountain views. For history buffs, discover a historic castle and sip Scotch whiskey after clay pigeon shooting. Who knows, you may even spot the legendary monster!? Golfers can’t miss a stay in St. Andrews for its world class courses which date back to the 1400s. Scotland is undoubtedly one of the top travel destinations for 2019.
Hot off the bat of the movie hit Crazy Rich Asians, the fascination with cosmopolitan Singapore lives on into 2019. This year sees the grand reopening of the legendary Raffles Hotel, also known as the home of the Singapore Sling. The island city-state south of Malaysia is a business hub, with a tropical setting, great cuisine, and friendly people. First timers to Singapore should check out the Padang, a cricket field-cum-core, surrounded by beautiful colonial buildings. Inspiring architecture is a recurrent theme through Singapore. This is thanks to a number of stunning religious buildings. These include the Lian Shan Shuang Lin Buddhist monastery and the huge Sultan Mosque among countless others.
With one of the world’s most famous airports, Changi, it’s little surprise Singapore now offers the world’s longest flight. This is a nonstop service from New York, making the destination even easier to reach. 2019 will see the arrival of a bunch of chic hotels opening, including the Capitol Kempinski Hotel. It’s a luxurious retreat, with a tropical saltwater pol and deep bathtubs for an indulgent soak. The incredible Marina Bay Sands continues to be an impressive favourite, thanks to its Instagrammable infinity pool with city views. There’s world-class shopping at the malls on Orchard Road, and souvenirs aplenty in Little India and Arab Street. Let’s not forget the diverse street food scene and bustling nightlife. Singapore is undoubtedly one of the top travel destinations for 2019.
Which of these top travel destinations for 2019 appeal to you? Where’s on your list for the coming year?