15 Vacation Spots You Probably Haven't Thought of Yet from 15 Vacation Spots You Probably Haven't Thought of Yet

15 Vacation Spots You Probably Haven't Thought of Yet

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15 Vacation Spots You Probably Haven't Thought of Yet

The holidays at the end of the year are times for people to reflect on what they’ve accomplished and what they want to achieve next. Travel plans are usually included. How about discovering a new and exciting destination, a place that for whatever reason you have probably not considered until now?

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Valladolid, Spain

Most people look to go to Madrid or Barcelona, ignoring Valladolid, which is just two hours away from the capital anyway, as a vacation destination. The city is known for its architectural diversity and rich history. Tour the home of Miguel de Cervantes where he wrote Don Quixote and see the place where Christopher Columbus died.

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San Juan Islands, Washington

The San Juan Islands are one of the world’s best whale watching spots. This is the perfect vacation escape for both nature-lovers and adventure-seekers alike. Your journey to the islands, whether by plane, boat, or float plane, will offer the opportunity to explore the great outdoors by hiking along beaches or through the deep woods of San Juan Island National Historical Park. Don’t miss biking over back roads with views of animal-filled farmlands and fields.

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Azerbaijan

This post-Soviet Central Asian is an up and coming escape destination. It used to connect ancient historical empires, now famous for its cosmopolitan capital, Baku, with astounding 21st-century architecture. If you have time, visit one of the most spectacular pink lakes in the world – Masazir Lake. You won’t travel too long to see a semidesert, mud volcanoes, pastoral villages, and rising Great Caucasus mountains.

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Mauritania

Most people go to neighboring Senegal or Morocco. But the sandbanks in Mauritania are absolutely extraordinary. See the Adrar region’s epic sand dunes, stunning plateaus and green havens. Make sure you visit the Richat Structur, also known as the Eye of the Sahara and one of the most mysterious places on Earth. Take time to explore Tagânt’s World Heritage caravan towns.  

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Sitka, Alaska

Getting there is an adventure itself. Sitka is considered Alaska’s most beautiful seaside town with its views of island-studded waters and stately spruce forests reaching to the water’s edge. Ancient lands were home to the Tlingit Indians, long before Russians or Americans walked on the rocky shores. Visit the Fortress of the Bear, go whale-watching, and explore Alaska’s oldest national park, Sitka National Historical Park. It commemorates the Battle of 1804. The 113-acre park includes the scenic Totem Trail.

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Hungary

You can stay at an expensive hotel for a reasonable price of about $160 per night. Hungary is also one of the most affordable holiday destinations in Europe. Resting on both sides of the Danube River, Hungary’s capital city is often referred to as the “Little Paris of Middle Europe.” Tourists are drawn to Budapest for its rich history and modern allure. Visit numerous World Heritage Sites such as the Buda Castle Quarter, Andrássy Avenue, and Millennium Underground Railway (the world’s second oldest metro line).

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American Samoa

This adventure destination doesn’t require a passport from American citizens. The American unincorporated territory of five volcanic islands and two coral atolls is massively underestimated. But it has everything – mountain ridges, bays, villages, and some remote, untouched and naturally beautiful beaches. You will find the National Park of American Samoa, one of the most remote national parks in the U.S., absolutely stunning. Visit the Rose Atoll as well. It is an uninhabited wildlife heaven that has the largest populations of giant clams, nesting seabirds and rare reef fish.

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Bhutan

The Buddhist kingdom in the Himalayas has plenty of monasteries, fortresses, subtropical plains, steep mountains and valleys. Thimphu is one of the most captivating places to visit. A popular destination with tourists is the Phajodhing. The hike to get there is amazing as you pass by forests and valets. If you are looking for authenticity, the Snowman Trek is the place. The spectacular 200-mile, 25-day high-altitude adventure includes some of the most untouched rocky countryside with snowcapped peaks and glacier covered terrain.

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Gallipoli, Italy

The gorgeous fishing village, the name of which literally means “beautiful city,” is on the coast in southern Italy’s Puglia region. Its old hub was built on a limestone island and is linked to the mainland, where the modern hub is, by a 16th century bridge. Some of the best beaches in the country are in Gallipoli. You won’t get enough of its golden sand and turquoise, unspoiled waters.

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Shirakawa-go, Japan

This is the place to go if you want to see an authentic part of Japan, one you’ll never be exposed to if you just go to Osaka or Tokyo. Declared a UNESCO world heritage site in 1995, the Shirakawa-go and neighboring Gokayama are famous for their traditional gassho-zukuri farmhouses, some of which are more than 250 years old, according to Japan Guide. Staying overnight at one of them is the best way to experience the town.

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Dahlonega, Georgia

Visit the site of the first major U.S. Gold Rush and the Heart of Georgia Wine Country, settled in the state’s Blue Ridge Mountains. Go in November for the Hemlock Festival if you want to enjoy three days of live music, arts and crafts. Don’t skip the Gold Museum to learn about the region’s unique history and to see rare coins and nozzle used to blast soil from mountainsides. Dahlonega is also home to the University of North Georgia, one of the fittest colleges in the country.

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Krakow, Poland

Kraków is located in the southern part of Poland on the Vistula River. The pulse of the city can be felt at the Rynek Glówny, a lively medieval market lined with shops, restaurants, cafés, and bars. Must-see attractions include Wawel Castle built in the 16th century, Rynek Underground, a sublevel route located underneath the major market square, and Schindler’s Factory, a museum surveying the Nazi occupation of Krakow housed in a former enamel factory of Oskar Schindler, the Nazi industrialist who saved the lives of his Jewish workers during the Holocaust.

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Halkidiki, Greece

Most tourists head to Santorini, one of the most beautiful places on Earth, or Athens, the capital. But Halkidiki, too, has breathtaking white sand beaches and crystal clear waters, which is why it’s sometimes referred to as the “Greek Riviera.” Snorkeling is one of visitors’ favorite adventures. Hike to the many secluded bays and coves and feel the refreshing fragrance of pine trees and salt brine of the sea.

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Oman

The Middle East these days is known for civil war and political instability. But if you look beyond that, you will a find a few unexplored gems. The long stretch of coast along Oman has ideal conditions for big and long surfing breaks. Joe’s Point in Sur is the place to go. See some of the area’s amazingly well-preserved castles and forts, and enjoy some of the best food in the country. Escape the wrath of winter on a fitness retreat. Programs include training sessions with a coach, massages, mountain biking, kayaking or tennis.

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Tuvalu

Tuvalu is the least visited country in the world, according to UN data, with just about 1,000 tourists a year. This is a bit surprising considering the tiny nation spread across several atolls in the South Pacific has stunning beaches, spectacular turquoise waters, and outstanding lagoons.

15 Vacation Spots You Probably Haven't Thought of Yet