With 2020 generally being a write-off in terms of international travel, 2021 is the new beacon of hope to satisfy the pent-up travel urges we're being forced to repress. With numerous countries largely getting the virus under control and a potential vaccine on the way, it's no longer such a fools hope to dream of traveling the world next year. To save you time while planning your post-pandemic voyage, here are some of our favorite spots we think are best to avoid the crowds and have a good time.
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The Top Travel Destinations to Visit in 2021
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The Japanese government is firing off all kinds of tourism promotions to encourage domestic travel and give local economies a well needed boost. While most of these are set to expire just around the time that tourists are expected to be let in, most likely the government will announce some other promotions aimed at foreign tourists when the time comes.
For those lucky enough to already be residing in the Land of the Rising Sun, JR East are offering super cheap rail passes that allow foreign passport holders to explore this beautiful area of Northern Japan. Unfortunately the promotion expires in February next year, however there's still a chance it'll be extended.
Tohoku is well connected by different shinkansen (bullet train) lines, and while it can quickly pile up in costs, if you're using the JR Pass, you can even explore the region in day trips from Tokyo. While it's a four and half hour drive from Tokyo to Sendai for example, taking a train will cut that down to under two hours.
Featuring some of the most beautiful scenery in all of Japan, Tohoku is much less popular with foreign tourists, meaning you'll often have spots all to yourself.
Queenstown, New Zealand
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The government of New Zealand has shown the world again and again that they know what they're doing when it comes to pandemic control. There's little need to worry about outbreaks during your vacation, all that's left is for the country to open up to tourists.
New Zealand features some of the most dramatic scenery in the world, witness-able within the beautiful city of Queenstown itself. The area is known in particular for being the adventure capital of the southern hemisphere, heightened by the incredible scenery displayed in the backdrop. It's the perfect spot to base yourself for exploring the surrounding region and having some fun in the process.
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Another country that managed to quickly steer clear of the coronapocalypse, Taiwan offers a unique view of Chinese culture, along with its delicious cuisine and beautiful mountain landscapes.
Although Taiwan has always been a popular tourist destination, 2020 has put the country in the spotlight, meaning foreign tourism will likely only increase further. While the major cities along the west coast are often crowded with tourists, in particular the capital Taipei, the east coast is still fairly untouched.
The beautiful sea meets mountains landscape of Taitung and further north in Hualien is stunning and well worth spending some time to check out. If you'll have a bit of time on your hands, consider renting a scooter and biking along the east coast from Taitung to Yilan, you'll find some of the island's most incredible scenery along this stretch of the country.
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Most visitors to Mexico tend to flock to the coastal resorts when visiting Mexico. Luxury, expensive and devoid of anything remotely Mexican, you might find some of the best beaches there but the narrow window-like view of the local culture and food you'll get is a far cry from the real Mexico. Instead of setting yourself up for disappointment head to the beautiful central city of Oaxaca.
From the colorful colonial buildings lining its streets, friendly locals and one of the most impressive historical sites in the country just a stone's throw away, the city leaves an incredible impression to anyone visiting. Best of all however is the food. One of the main gastronomical centers of Mexico, Oaxacan cuisine is one of the most varied and vibrant of any food you'll find in the Americas. A food lovers paradise, you'll find street stalls and food markets all over the city. Best of all, it's super cheap.
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It's about time this fascinating Eastern Europe nation became a popular tourist destination, still being one of the most underrated areas in Europe. The country is covered in incredible mountain scenery, picturesque villages and castles, but none more so than the region of Transylvania.
More commonly known for being associated as the home of vampires, Transylvania is full of beautiful landscape easily rivaling more popular destinations like Italy and Switzerland. Romania is also one of the cheapest countries to visit in Europe, even more so if you get out of the capital Bucharest to explore the Romanian countryside.
While it's currently still too early to be booking next year's trip, before knowing when countries will start opening up to tourism. There's nothing stopping you from planning your dream vacation for 2021. Although 2020 has been difficult for the tourism industry, there are plenty of reasons 2021 will make a strong comeback, enticing would-be-travelers to take a well-needed vacation.