2019 is for exploration. Personally, I find very few things as exciting as going to a new place and experiencing the new and interesting things it has to offer. The great thing about travel is that it can be as macro or as micro as you want it to be. You can explore a nearby town on a Saturday, or you can schedule an entire huge vacation in a country or continent that you’ve never been to.
That’s what this article is all about. If you’re suffering from a bit of wanderlust, and you’re itching to find somewhere new to visit, I’m going to give you my #1 suggestion for which country you should visit on each continent.
North America: Canada
Why: Beautiful Landscapes and Amazing People
Can’t Miss: Canada is a huge country, and it’d be impossible to see it all in one trip. With that being said, I’d recommend starting out on the Western side of the country. The Canadian Rockies are a sight to behold, Vancouver is a world city, and Squamish might have some of the most dramatic seascapes you’ll ever see. Banff should be at the top of your list, and don’t forget to sample the poutine while you’re there!
South America: Chile
Why: Tasty Wines and World Heritage Sites
Can’t Miss: Chile is an interesting, yet somewhat forgotten country, but that only adds to its charm. Snaking along the Western coast of South America, this slender land features deserts, mountains, cities, vineyards, and more. If you want to make your trip extra special, hop on a boat and check out Easter Island. It’ll be a pretty long ride, but it’s famous for its giant statues with huge heads. Nobody’s sure how they got there, which only further adds to the mystique.
Why: Greenery, English Speaking, and History
Can’t Miss: There’s a good chance that if you’re living in the USA, you have at least a little bit of Irish heritage. Why not take a trip back to the homeland? This island nation has tons to offer travelers, including the Cliffs of Moher, Dublin, pubs, and more. It’s always intimidating thinking about visiting a foreign country because of the language barrier, but in Ireland, folks speak English. Easy peasy! Just remember, they drive on the left side of road there!
Why: Rainforests, Beaches, and Coffee
Can’t Miss: Do yourself a favor, and Google Madagascar. This island nation is about as close to an alien planet as you can get on the earth. Avenue of the Baobabs is so otherworldly, it’s almost unbelievable. Lemurs abound, and the beaches are magnificent. A major grower of coffee, you can treat yourself to some fresh caffeine in a local cafe before you trek out to any of their incredible national parks.
Why: Friendly Folks, Affordable, Breathtaking Coasts
Can’t Miss: Even though the USA and Vietnam have a checkered past, there are few countries that love American tourists more than this tropical nation in Southeastern Asia. Ha Long Bay is unique and gorgeous with its rocky islands and emerald green water. You can visit Buddhist shrines, sample local street food in Ho Chi Minh City, and even hike in the green mountains nearby. Did I mention that the people are extremely friendly?
Oceania: New Zealand
Why: Fjords, Sheep, and Hobbits
Can’t Miss: I cheated a little bit with this suggestion. Technically, Oceania isn’t a continent; Australia is, but the entire collection of islands in the South Pacific comprise Oceania, and New Zealand is awesome. The filming site for the Hobbit and Lord of the Rings franchises, you can still visit the sets and live like a hobbit. Go Google Milford Sound. Now pick your jaw off of the ground and book your tickets now. Wow, what a place.
Antarctica: Deception Island
Why: There’s Nowhere Else
Can’t Miss: Antarctica is basically a barren wasteland of snow, ice, and rocky mountains. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t visit! Deception Island is the most accessible portion of this freezing continent, and on it, you can see penguins, whales, and volcanoes. Make sure you pack warm! Rarely does it get above freezing temperatures down there!
No matter where you travel this year, memories will be made. Your memories matter, so make sure you save each one so you can relive them again and again.