With 2020 just around the corner, it’s time to make a start on your travel plans for the next year. But where to go? Do you visit some of your all-time favourites or venture into the unknown?
The more important question is—what does your budget say? Travel experts Lonely Planet recently published its official list of best value destinations for 2020, and we’re in complete and utter agreement with the varied and exciting results.
Check out these five places that will give you the most bang for your buck and your time.
East Nusa Tenggara, Indonesia
Visit the secluded, pristine beaches (some with pink sand!) in Indonesia’s southernmost province. Get into the water and scuba dive at one of the best diving sites on the Alor Archipelago, offering outstanding marine diversity and underwater excitement.
Visit the last home of the ancient komodo dragons at the Komodo National Park, hike the hills of Gili Laba, and chase the gorgeous waterfalls at Oenesu.
This beautiful European city has something for everyone, and it’s not bad on the budget. Hungary’s capital city is full of history and magnificent architecture. Soak in healing thermal baths, unleash your photography skills on the imposing Hungarian Parliament Building in all its Gothic Revival-style glory, go on a treasure-cum-bargain hunt in the fascinating Esceri Flea Market, and experience Budapest’s unrivalled nightlife in its famous “ruin pubs”.
Madhya Pradesh, India
Dubbed “The Heart of Incredible India”, Madhya Pradesh is not as visited as India’s other more well-known states. Its completely central location and good representation of India’s historical monuments, modern amenities, culture, food, people and wildlife—all on a doable budget—will impress travellers the world over.
Go on breathtaking yet budget-friendly wildlife safaris in Bandhavgarh, witness the erotic scenes at Khajuraho’s temples, and trail through small, historic towns.
Buffalo, New York, USA
The largest city in upstate New York is one place to visit for 2020. With a fast-growing scene for hardcore foodies and a fine selection of neoclassical, beaux arts and art deco architecture to draw in serious photography and art buffs, Buffalo is experiencing a cultural resurgence and reinvention as a travel destination.
The Albright-Know Art Gallery houses a superb collection ranging from Degas and Picasso to abstract expressionists Ruscha and Rauschenberg. For those seeking artistic inspiration, gaze upon the stained glass windows and the intricate terracotta tiles that cover the facade of the Guaranty Building.
Bordered by the Caspian Sea the Caucasus Mountains, the country of Azerbaijan is a gem of a travel destination just waiting to be experienced. The capital, Baku, boasts of a medieval walled city at its core—a UNESCO heritage site—and contemporary marvels like the Flame Towers, 3 “flame-shaped”, pointy buildings covered with LED screens.
Visit the mud volcanoes of Qobustan, hike the scenic Great Caucasus mountains and witness the amazing fire phenomena of Azerbaijan, where fires occur spontaneously, thanks to the country’s plentiful natural gas reserves.
Go somewhere different for your 2020 adventure and don’t break the bank along the way. /TISG