Condé Nast Traveler and Lonely Planet release a list of the best countries and places to visit for every year. In fact, they have both been releasing these lists for a few years now. So what’s in the lists for 2018? Let’s find out –
Chile is incredibly beautiful. In fact, there are few more beautiful countries than narrow and long Chile, which stretches along the western edge of South America. The Andes soars to the east, while on the west there is the Pacific Ocean. The Atacama Desert is in the North and Patagonia is down south. Chile marks 200 years of independence this year. There are more non-stop flights now to Santiago than ever before.
Portugal has finally come out of the shadow of its eastern neighbor, Spain. And for good reasons too! Portugal stands out because of its cuisine, art, and culture. As if that was not enough, many artfully designed museums have opened up in the last couple of years. More than 300 beaches received the prized Blue Flag rating. There are two new biosphere reserves as well. Plus, Portugal is more affordable too.
The 700 Islands of The Bahamas are picture-postcard beautiful. Bahamas escaped almost completely from the wrath of the hurricanes this fall. That’s where you should visit as the rest of the Caribbean is still recovering. Bigger and better resorts and restaurants have opened in recent years. Rosewood Baha Mar, a collection of villas with exclusive beach access and upscale dining is opening this April. There is now direct service from many more places.
India is often in focus for its forts, forests, desert, historic sites, heritage, and of course the Himalayas. This time, it is the turn of the East – the mega-metropolis Calcutta, which is now called Kolkata and the Andaman Islands. The city is very close to the less frequented part of the Himalayas, which is equally beautiful, and also the North East, where you can see many unique tribes with their own cultures and ways of life. Calcutta is also a delight for the foodies, and the gateway to the beautiful Andaman Islands, which is more serene and natural than the more crowded Thailand.
The small island country between Italy and Tunisia is a must-visit in 2018, particularly if you love ornate baroque architectures and scuba diving. The capital city is 450 years old and a treasure. There is the Valletta’s International Baroque Festival, which is a must see. There is also a lot of food and heritage to enjoy here, and plenty of prehistoric ruins you will want to see as well.
Mauritius is brochure-perfect – an idyllic island getaway you will surely fall in love with. Its luxurious beaches and dazzling sapphire seas are a pleasure. The country has emerged as a hub for flights to mainland Africa in the last few years, so connectivity is much better now. The island celebrates 50 years of independence this year.