Looking to plan a holiday somewhere off the beaten track next year but still figuring out where to go?
Those who are looking for inspiration for their travel planning, TripAdvisor has put a spotlight on some amazing destinations that caught the eye of travelers.
"Between large cities gathering steam and off-the-beaten-path spots surfaced by our community, travelers can discover wonderful accommodations, attractions and restaurants in all of these award-winning destinations." said Barbara Messing, chief marketing officer for TripAdvisor.
1) Havana, Cuba
A city trapped in time, Havana captures the imagination like no other. Faded glamour meets careful colonial-era reconstruction with a backdrop of irresistible color. Walk El Malecón, the walkway bordering the ocean; visit Old Havana and the Catedral de San Cristóbal; and listen for salsa music, open-air bazaars and parties that last all night.
2) La Fortuna de San Carlos, Costa Rica
La Fortuna de San Carlos is at the center of an array of geological wonders. The nearby Arenal is Costa Rica's most active volcano, routinely bursting with lava and ash, and the Catarata de La Fortuna is a waterfall pouring from a seventy-meter cliff. The Tabacon Hot Springs are a relaxing intermission in the midst of the various spectacles, and the Leaves and Lizards Arenal Volcano Cabin Retreat is a blissful end to any day's excursion.
3) Kathmandu, Nepal
Nepal’s capital is surrounded by a valley full of historic sites, ancient temples, shrines, and fascinating villages. Mingle with locals and animals amid Durbar Square’s monuments, or join mountain trekkers in the bustling Thamel District. Explore shops for exquisite work by local artisans—carpets and paper prints are specialties.
4) Jerusalem, Israel
Religious pilgrims have been traveling to Jerusalem for centuries, yet you don’t have to share their zeal in order to appreciate this city’s profound cultural and historical significance. Plan on seeing the major sights, but also leave plenty of time to walk through the streets and simply immerse yourself in the daily life of such an ancient and revered place.
5) Cusco, Peru
Incan majesty and Andean baroque exist side-by-side in Cusco's stone streets, epitomized by the Qoriacancha palace and the church of Santo Domingo flanking the Plaza de Armas. In this high-altitude melting pot of Amerindian and mestizo culture, you'll find extraordinary textiles, lively summer festivals and archeological wonders
6) Ambergris Caye, Belize
Ambergris Caye hovers in a vacation sweet spot: just enough amenities to make it exciting, but not so overdeveloped that you’re tripping over flip-flopped tourists. A mangrove swamp is the eye of this white beach island, the largest in Belize, and golf carts are the main form of transportation along the sandy roads. Reef divers drool over the Belize Barrier Reef and the Blue Hole, a 400-feet deep circle of limestone that teems with angelfish, elkhorn coral, cleaner shrimp and stalactites.
7) Sapporo, Japan
Probably best known for its eponymous beer, Sapporo—the capital of Hokkaido, Japan’s northernmost island—has maintained the youthful and open atmosphere of the 1972 Olympic Winter Games, drawing international visitors for its annual Snow Festival and its world-famous ramen. Those seeking out the full diversity of Japanese cuisine will want to visit: a city with a ramen-inspired theme park is one that embraces and pampers foodies.
8) Hanoi, Vietnam
The charming Vietnamese capital has aged well, preserving the Old Quarter, monuments and colonial architecture, while making room for modern developments alongside. Hanoi may have shrugged off several former names, including Thang Long, or "ascending dragon," but it hasn't forgotten its past, as sites such as Ho Chi Minh's Mausoleum and Hoa Lo Prison attest. Lakes, parks, shady boulevards and more than 600 temples and pagodas add to the appeal of this city, which is easily explored by taxi.
9) Corralejo, Spain
Corralejo is the largest resort on Fuerteventura. Town Beach, with its calm waters, is best for families, but if you’re into windsurfing or kitesurfing, try breezier Flag Beach or Glass Beach. Diving, fishing, and tours to nearby islands are other popular pursuits.
10) Fortaleza, Brazil
Beaches are the top draw in this sunny, rapidly developing city, particularly bohemian, party-hearty Iracema, family-friendly Meireles, fishing and boating base camp Mucuripe and low-key Praia do Futuro. Stalls at the Mercado Central or Feirinha Beira Mar brim with local handicrafts, ranging from ceramics to lacework and leather goods. The Dutch-built Fortress of Nossa Senhora da Assunção in the city center, constructed in 1649, marks the spot where Fortaleza originated.