Ever scrambled through a street full of tourists, as a tourist, thinking to yourself how much you hate tourists? Well, perhaps unsurprisingly, the people you mistakenly knock sweaty shoulders with are probably thinking the same thing.
Travel in the year 2020, the gurus say, is all about ‘second-city travel’ – where holidaymakers opt for the road less travelled and swap tourist-laden hotspots for lesser-known destinations.
This trend offers not only an escape from crowds (and their unwanted appearance in your holiday snaps), but to help ease the burden of overtourism on our world’s best-loved destinations.
To help inspire your holiday to a lesser-known but just-as-beautiful location, here’s our list of the best holiday destinations in 2020.
Rabat is Morocco’s UNESCO-listed capital. Utterly spellbinding, the city gives guests an enchanting glimpse into the region’s rich history and culture: a walled medina by the sea, Andalusian gardens, an evocative Kasbah and a medieval fortified necropolis paint a colourful picture of the city’s past.
Much less busy than the nation’s more popular cities of Marrakech and Casablanca, Rabat’s drawcard lies in its very nature as oft-overlooked by tourists. You’ll have plenty of time (and space) to meander the medina, indulge in the region’s flavourful cuisine, admire the city’s unique architecture and explore some of Morocco’s oldest monuments.
Appearing on Lonely Planet’s esteemed Best in Travel list this year, Ireland’s lively city of Galway will ramp up its already exuberant festival and arts scene in 2020.
As a European Capital of Culture 2020 (alongside Croatia’s Rijeka), Galway is hosting a year-long party – and everyone’s invited. Art exhibitions, as well as musical, theatre and dance performances, will pack the city’s calendar. Add to this an established foodie scene, and you’ve got yourself one amazing holiday destination in Galway in 2020.
In need of downtime? Explore some of Galway’s stunning natural scenery, such as Galway Bay, or delve deep into the city’s history in the medieval Latin Quarter.
Kangaroo Island is one of the most precious places on earth. It’s a travel destination of choice in 2020 because of its unique ecology, but also because the beautiful island needs visitors now more than ever.
Sadly, much of Kangaroo Island was destroyed in recent bushfires. Yet, we’re told that plenty remains open (the east of the island was unaffected by fires) and tourism can support the island’s recovery.
Separated from Australia thousands of years ago, Kangaroo Island is home to few introduced species and many local sub-species. Known as a little Noah’s Ark, the island has for many years been a haven for spectacular native wildlife. This, plus its beautiful beaches, craggily cliffs and unique rock formations, are what make Kangaroo Island so special.
South Australia Tourism is your go-to for the latest Kangaroo Island travel information, and don’t forget you can always hire a car with Alpha Car Hire at our Adelaide branch.
Portland, Maine, USA
Another to appear on Lonely Planet’s Best in Travel list, Maine celebrates 200 years of statehood in 2020. Towns and cities across the New England state will commemorate the bicentennial with special exhibitions and activities, parades, concerts and festivals.
Celebrations aside, Maine is dubbed ‘Vacationland’ for a reason. From the woodlands, lakes and mountains to the dramatic coastline, the area abounds in natural wonders. Visitors come to Maine to experience nature, to rejuvenate… and to eat and drink, of course.
The city of Portland, our top pick of the region, has an exceptional culinary scene, owing to an abundance of local produce and the passion and creativity of its people. You’ll find plenty of farm-to-table (and sea-to-table) restaurants led by award-winning chefs, craft breweries, artisan bakeries and much more.
Looking for that tranquil island getaway complete with sparkling blue waters, dazzling white sand and an endless supply of Piña colada? Well, best to give the Bali beaches a break in 2020 and head for the shores of Samoa instead.
Samoa is a country of untamed natural beauty – of rugged mountains, tropical rainforest, volcanic coasts, crystal-clear waters and coral reefs. A distinct lack of flashy resorts and tourist attractions means that you can indulge in a truly remote island experience in Samoa.
Be sure to check out Lalomanu Beach, Piula Cave freshwater spring pool, the dramatic To-Sua Ocean Trench, and the spectacular 110-metre Papapapaitai Falls.
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