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A new year means new adventures - so we’ve asked our in-house travel experts to highlight 15 places they think you really should visit in 2019.
It might be somewhere you’ve been itching to tick off your bucket list, or maybe you’re just looking for a little inspiration for your Instagram feed.
Well we’ve got you covered. We’ve listed some idyllic islands, some sexy city breaks, and even a less-known Scottish city, Yes, really.
We’ve been helping you travel for twenty years now, and we know people are taking shorter breaks, but more of them. Which is good news if deciding between a break in Berlin or a jaunt over to Jordan - you can do both.
And it’s never too early to start planning. So here’s 15 incredible places to visit in 2019. What are you waiting for?
If you love France and Italy, then this is the island for you. Just north of Sardinia, you can discover the best of both cultures here - especially when it comes to food. Think wonderful wine, honey and olive oil among their local produce. The beaches and sea are some of the best in the whole of the mediterranean. It’s also going to be birthday party time on the French-owned island of Corsica in 2019, especially in the capital, Ajaccio. French Emperor, Napoléon Bonaparte, was born there 250 years ago (August 15, 1769). Visit his home, turned museum, La Maison Bonaparte.
Turkey was the smash hit of 2018 with Antalya, Dalaman and Bodrum seeing more and more visitors and we expect the Turkish coastal destinations to delight again in 2019. So we think you should take a gander at Cappadocia in the middle of the country. This really is the alternative Turkey and a chance to escape the crowds. It’s also, franky, bizarre. As we’re a little away from landing on Mars, this could be the next best thing. It’s got hills and mountains that look like honeycomb.And you can stay in caves. And caves are cool.
With Brexit looming we know 2019 could be an interesting year for travel. So when it comes to beach breaks in Britain, the Channel Islands are a great shout. Jersey has been a trending destination for some time, but we predict it to smash records next year. Why? Well the short flight time, one hour, helps. but it’s the huge wellness trend which means Jersey’s spa retreats, as well as clean sea and sand, is the ultimate place to relax. It’s also a fine dining destination, especially for seafood, but you can really save on the pounds by visiting foodies paradise, Tennerfest, in the autumn.
If he’d lived, former President, Nelson Mandela would be celebrating his 100th birthday in July 2019. You can follow special Madiba trails around the country and learn more about his legacy. And it’s a great time to go money wise as the rand is very cheap against the pound, meaning you’re going to get more bang for your buck. Cape Town is simply stunning, with its blue seas and spectacular mountain backdrop. It’s got some of the best wine and undoubtedly wonderful wildlife to see on safari. And the tiny time difference means you can even do a long weekend.
Croatia goes from strength to strength with its castles and coastline and medieval cities, but the emerging place to visit for 2019 is Split. The second largest city has the lot. It’s a UNESCO World Heritage Site and also has superb bars and restaurants. Use this as a stepping stone to the up and coming Dalmatian islands of Brac, Bol and trendy Hvar - the beaches are brilliant. The next series of Game of Thrones is due in 2019 and thanks to the hit TV show, Dubrovnik is one of the most recognisable places. It’s Old Town and walls have provided the backdrop to the drama.
What does Dundee have in common with Beijing, Berlin and Montreal - it’s one of only a handful of cities to become a UNESCO City of Design. Scotland’s fourth largest city saw the hotly-anticipated V&A Dundee museum open in 2018. This building is unbelievable and stands out from the rejuvenated waterfront. It’s a one hour flight from London and just an hour and a half drive from Edinburgh if you need to get your bearings. With uncertainty around Brexit next year, this is the coolest city break to change things up in the UK in 2019.
Menorca means “smaller island” but this unspoilt and quieter Balearic Island should make more noise about how great it is. It’s got incredible beaches, blue waters and loads of sports and nature trails to discover. And with a short flight it really is our pick for the best place to go for families in 2019. The entire island is a UNESCO natural biosphere, so perfect for a walking holiday. Don’t miss the the famous 185 mile coastal path, Cami De Cavalls (Path of Horses) surrounding the island. Don’t worry you don’t have to do it all at once.
Why should you visit Jordan in 2019? Well let's start with the fascinating culture and incredible scenery. If we then said there’s new direct flights to Aqaba from Gatwick with easyJet for 2019 which makes Jordan more accessible than ever, you can see why we want to recommend it to you. Aqaba’s a resort on the Red Sea and great for diving. It's only one hour from Wadi Rum desert, for a Bedouin camp experience and also its the filming location for ‘The Martian’ film. It’s also under two hours from one of the Seven Wonders of the World, Petra so it makes the best base to explore the country.
The release of Mamma Mia: Here We Go Again in 2018 has propelled Greece back to the top of the summer hotspots. So while everyone is heading to Skopelos, we say stay on mainland Greece and visit Halkidiki. It’s a more traditional and relatively untouched part of Greece. The range of accommodation make it really attractive, ranging from budget friendly hotels to luxury 5 star resorts. Take time out from the beach with some culture in the form of Mount Athos, the oldest surviving monastic community in the world dating back more than a thousand years.
We could just tell you to go to Morocco in 2019 but lets get specific. Agadir is our tip for an alternative sunshine break. And it is sunny - it has 300 days of sunshine. Every year. And a massive beach to soak it up on. Loads of room when the sand stretches for six miles. Walk up to the ruined hilltop Kasbah for a great view and get some more history by visiting some traditional Berber villages. You’re about four hours from Marrakech here, if you want to do a combination beach and city break. But Agadir has flamingos. Just saying.
The second largest of the Caribbean islands, the Dom Rep is several holidays in one. It’s also got some seriously classy hotels - if you’re going to splash out in 2019, do it here. You’re also only a couple of hours flight from Miami - if you want to try a twin city break in 2019. But we suspect you’ll want to explore the island. Santo Domingo’s one of the oldest and prettiest cities in the Caribbean. While we advocate you spending as much time as possible on the fabulous beaches and exploring the reefs, don’t forget the lush interiors.
Berlin is brilliant every year - but its 30 years since the fall of the Berlin Wall in 2019. And that’s definitely something to celebrate. Book early for around the actual date, November 9, but there’ll be special events across the city all year round. There’s loads of spots to see what remains for the wall, from Checkpoint Charlie to the East Side Gallery project. You’ve got a Bowie pilgrimage, the big buildings like the Brandenburg Gate and the haunting Holocaust Memorial. Throw in cracking nightlife and alternative culture and you’ve got a classic city break.
In 2019 it will be 25 years since the Channel Tunnel opened on May 6, 1994 and saw visits to Paris, many by Eurostar, rocket as we became more connected. While Brexit rumbles on, nothing can beat our love affair with the City of Lights. And they have much to celebrate as they ride on the crest of a wave following the World Cup win. It’s 500 years since the death of Leonardo Da Vinci - so you have to go visit the Mona Lisa, if not to remark how tiny it is. And of course it’s 250 years since Emperor Napoleon Bonaparte was born. So expect some special events this year to mark these occasions.
Shall we go on a beach holiday to Albania in 2019? Sounds a little far-fetched but, found between Montenegro and Italy, the Albanian Riviera has miles and miles of beaches. Can the likes of superb resorts, Ksamil and Dhërmi, tempt you. Tirana holds no such fears, the capital city gets better and better. Grab your camera as there are some seriously quirky buildings. Spring Day on March 14 is when the Albanians love to party, with loads of special events.But you’ll find great cafes, restaurants and bars. And if you’re wondering about the food - you’ll find Mediterranean cuisine here.
In 2019 it will be 50 years since the moon landings - but we’ve got somewhere similar, a little closer to home, that is equally out of this world. Despite their remote location in the North Atlantic Ocean, you’re not actually leaving Europe, as this Portuguese-owned island uses the Euro. The stunning archipelago was created by volcanic activity, and it looks like a planet from a science-fiction film with craters and black and red sand. The Lagoa das Sete Cidades is the instagram dream - one side of the twin lake is blue, the other green. When to go to The Azores? Anytime really, it’s always warm.