CultureEcuador and Galapagos Islands
2019 will be your year! And instead of planning your travels according to what's trending, try something new. Head to one of these alternative destinations for an adventure that is truly one-of-a-kind.
This name probably doesn't ring a bell, but as soon as you set foot in the upbeat seaside city, it will quickly find its way into your heart. Guayaquil is Ecuador's largest and most populous city, although it's not as much a tourist magnet as the capital, Quito.
Seated on the shores of the Pacific Ocean, this colorful port is imbued with a distinctive, elated atmosphere. The versatile city will take you on a lively tour of its swirl of treasures, guiding you in and around bucolic streets, boisterous nightclubs and serene art galleries in a matter of seconds.
Mainland Africa's smallest country has a lot to offer. Lying on both sides of the Gambia River, the tiny territory is replete with a wide array of cultural jewels and natural wonders. Its pocket-sized coastline encompasses so much beauty in such a minuscule stretch of land that you'll never ever want to leave.
Cerulean lagoons, glorious beaches, surf-ready waves, and magnificent birds are all part of the heavenly landscape, which is made even more charming by the somnolent fishing villages dotting the coast.
For history enthusiasts, this fortified city is the medieval citadel of your dreams. With a history that dates all the way back to the neolithic period, with the city's golden age occuring during the Middle Ages as a royal fortress, Carcassonne has been repelling enemies and wowing visitors for centuries.
Lying on a hilltop, with its massive walls, imposing keeps, and noble drawbridge, Carcassonne is a remarkable sight. From breathtaking panoramic views to labyrinthine cobbled streets to a fairytale-like bridge crossing the Canal du Midi, there's much to explore during your time in Carcassonne. Don't forget to take a break from sightseeing by indulging in the region's famously hearty cuisine and its delectable wines.
Albania is one of Europe's hidden gems, and Durrės perfectly captures the essence of an overlooked city that is confident in its charms. Situated on the shore of the Adriatic Sea, Durrės is a place of fascinating history, which can be witnessed in its numerous landmarks, all vying to be the most enthralling. With everything including a Roman-era amphitheater, a mosaic-covered 9th-century church and bathhouses built in the 2nd century AD, the city's rich culture permeates every corner.
Whether you're strolling around streets that Julius Caesar himself once visited or enjoying paradisiac beaches, you don't have to choose in Durrės, you can do it all.
Chattanooga, Tennessee, US
Why visit New York or Los Angeles when you can go to the heart of Tennessee? There will be considerably less tourists, and it will definitely reinforce your hipster credentials. Situated along the Tennessee River and surrounded by scenic mountains, Chattanooga is known for its outdoor activities, including hiking, climbing, kayaking, and mountain biking, as well as its multitude of green initiatives.
The city's elegant downtown area flaunts a rustic yet forward-looking atmosphere, with its brick walls, authentic craft breweries, and gourmet eateries. Chattanooga might have a funny name, but you should be serious about considering it for your next city break.