For a lot of us, holidays are the sole reason we work. Whilst I agree that there’s very little that beats getting away from all of our problems and immersing ourselves in another culture, it can be easy to get stuck in a routine of all-inclusive beach resorts where the culture’s been swallowed up by nightlife. If you want to break out of this on your next trip, here are some travel destinations which are a little more unique. I just need to win the lottery first!
This is a mostly flat desert island, surrounded by white sand and beautiful azure waters, and can make for a wonderfully low-key trip compared to more popular Caribbean destinations. However, it can be pretty hard to get to, as non-stop flights are a challenge to book, and there’s no port for a cruise ship to pull into. This is all a part of the island’s relaxed, untamed vibe. The locals put a huge emphasis on peace and privacy. Jet skis and similar water-sport craft are even banned to cut back on noise pollution. This certainly isn’t a holiday to bring the kids on, as they’ll probably be bored to tears! Something to bookmark for retirement, it’s still a great way to add a little more spice to your travels.
Image from Wikimedia
If you or your partner are something of a history buff, then Olinda could be the perfect place to have a more unique holiday. This is one of Brazil’s most well-preserved colonial cities, and even in the whole of South America it really stands out. It’s nestled on a hilltop that’s definitely worthy of a few photos, and the downtown area is an incredible structure of colonial churches, old houses, along with rustic museums, restaurants and quaint little artisan studios. Every year, the city plays host to an incredible Carnival celebration, which is a little different from the famous ones in Rio and Salvador. Here, the bulk of the celebrations take place during the day, and the music, dances, and other traditions have a strong base in African culture. This is a truly unique settlement, and with flights to Brazil being so affordable Olinda should at least make it into your “maybe” list.
Hainan Island, China
While this is a very popular destination for Chinese and Russian tourists, it remains mostly unknown to travellers from other countries. This is a tropical island off the south coast of China, and is home to a volcanic geopark, a Shaolin Buddhist temple, ancient villages, wild monkeys, and of course some heavenly beaches. There’s currently an initiative which has been promoting Hainan as the “Chinese Hawaii”. While this may sound like a cheap tourist trap, the scenery of the island certainly deserves the comparison. While there never used to be much of a tourist trade, there are now many westernised hotels, spas and so forth where you can stay. If you want to get all the sun and sea of a typical holiday, while experiencing a culture vastly different from your own, this is the destination for you!
Disclosure: this is a collaborative post, all opinons are my own
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