Hands up who’s already mentally spent their Christmas funds on next year’s ventures? We know you’re all as totally travel obsessed as we are, which is why we’ve assembled this hand-picked list of the best backpacking destinations for 2020, based on the biggest growth in bookings in the last twelve months.
Not any travel clichés here friends – from paradise destinations to underrated African cities, laid-back surfing towns to isolated mountain retreats, it is very time to start planning wherever in the world we’re heading next year. Spoiler alert: it’s not even close to the beaten track.
Bringing out you to the 20 greatest backpacking destinations for 2020!
20. Sendai – Japan
Combining two of our favourite things, Orit Hostel & Café Bar Lounge has an on-site coffee shop with a inviting atmosphere. It’s perfect for solo travellers on the hunt for innovative travel buddies, or digital nomads needing a noiseless space to chill with their notebooks.
The facilities are very modern, and there’s a terrace to enjoy your morning coffee overlooking the city.
20. Portland (Maine) – USA Seattle
Salsbury Cove- Trendy Portland Oregon is on the traveller radar forever, but we bet you haven’t added this small , East Coast city to your USA wishlist yet! Sure, manufacturers NYC and LA are always gonna have us hooked, but can you really say you’ve experienced the US until you have ventured away from the big metropolitan areas? Travellers to Portland are rewarded with a local, community feel and zero crowds.
The Old Port’s cobbled streets and colourful mismatch of boutique retailers and restaurants are a idiosyncratic surprise, and you might not expect the city to have such a delightful arts scene that includes the oldest public art art gallery in the US. Throw in a well known farmers’ market and local build breweries, and it’s hard to believe that more people aren’t shouting about Portland’s awesome credentials!
18. Raglan – New Zealand
The North Island town of Raglan is surrounded by incredible natural beauty and epic browse breaks.
It’s best known because of its unusual black sand shore, but venture a little outside of town and discover peaceful going for walks trails through the Wainui mother nature reserve, cycling routes over an ancient volcano and the sparkling green waters of the Engagement Veil Falls. Most backpackers come here to surf although, as there’s a spot for each and every ability.
17. Pisac – Peru
best backpacking destinations – Pisac
For your rural alternative to the near by city of Cusco, many vacationers to Peru are choosing to explore the Sacred Valley of the Incas by basing themselves in Pisac, a small village with a strong sense of spirituality.
This is thanks to the unreal areas and mysterious history of the surrounding valley, the bohemian tone and slow pace of life in the Old Town, and the range of wellness activities practiced here.
16. Trapani – Italy
best backpacking locations – Trapani
If you’re travelling to Italy in 2020, don’t skip more than sun-kissed Sicily.
The stunning Mediterranean island is home to glowing beaches, smoking volcanoes and attractive cities like Trapani, one of next year’s best backpacking destinations.
15. Liège – Belgium
best camping out destinations – Liège
It may have shied away from the spotlight in the past, yet Belgium’s fourth largest city is barging the likes of Bruges and Brussels out of the way to get the backpacker appreciation it should get.
Despite being packed packed with incredible architecture, cultural gemstones and amazing food, that manages to keep hold of a laid-back, small town vibe that makes you feel instantly at home.
14. Buenaventura – Republic of colombia
Though Buenaventura is crammed full of lively salsa pubs, Afro-Colombian seafood restaurants and waterfront entertainment, the city itself isn’t actually the main attraction – we’re most enthusiastic about the unspoilt beaches, warm jungle and natural swimming pools that surround it! Compared to the rest of the country, this area is still relatively under the radar, so that you can enjoy surfing and beach front cocktails minus the crowds of Colombia’s more famous spots. Don’t miss a night-time cave swim with neon plankton – an experience you will never forget.
13. Hà Giang – Vietnam
NoMadders Hostel is the perfect base on the borders of the city to relax in that fresh, mountain weather.
Their gorgeous dorms expense as little as £4 a night, and you will treat yourself to a private hut by £20.
There’s an outdoor pool and patio surrounded by jungle, a bar and a hot tub for living your very best backpacker life!
12. Maputo – Mozambique
best camping out destinations – Maputo
For a local feast, check out the fish market, where you can pick your catch and still have it cooked with potato chips or rice at one of the surrounding restaurants! And when town life all gets a bit too much, you can hop on a bus for 90 a few minutes to reach the quiet pristine beaches of Ponto do Ouro.
Maputo is only only emerging as a backpacker vacation spot so there aren’t heaps of hostels, which means you should take complete advantage of The Base.
11. Nassau – Bahamas
best camping out destinations – Nassau
They’ve got two rescued pigs who like to take a dip too! It may be in a quiet beachfront area with easy public travel links to downtown, and has a mixture of private rooms, mixed and female-only dorms.
10. Gijón – Spain
best backpacking destinations – Gijon
It’s set in a tremendous house where you’ll meet up with heaps of other backpackers more than beers in the garden and also the free buffet breakfast.
There’s even free yoga every evening, so you’re sure to get channelling the chilled heart of Gijón by the time you leave.
9. Siargao Tropical island – The Philippines
best backpacking destinations – Siargao Island
Much like any South East Asian backpacker spot, you can expect wonderful nightlife in the form of casual pubs and cocktail buckets — the Jungle Party about Friday nights isn’t to become missed! Our top insider tip is to head out for the pier on Cloud on the lookout for beach with a few beers one particular evening and watch the sun arranged over the ocean, as the previous few surfers drift in. Entirely magical!
8. Nosara – Panama and nicaragua ,
best backpacking destinations — Nosara
Get the wellness fix with a yoga exercises class, followed by a healthy vegetarian meal cooked at the on-site restaurant!
7. Isfahan – Iran
best backpacking locations – Isfahan
The hostel is decorated in Persian floor tiles, and it has a beautiful green garden and a roof terrace with views over the city streets.
6. Kodaikanal – India
best backpacking destinations – Kodaikanal
With rustic common spaces, outdoor terraces overlooking the hills and lovely dorms, it doesn’t receive much cosier. You can go out with other travellers around the back garden bonfire, or hike throughout the hostel grounds with the citizen pups!
5. Trondheim — Norway
best backpacking spots – Trondheim
Scandinavia is as cool since it gets, but if you want to scores serious hipster points then don’t just visit the big hitters like Oslo and Copenhagen. Vibrant Trondheim is one of the best backpacking destinations meant for 2020.
A creative student city, it has a massive craft draught beer and local food scene, which you may sample at the many restaurants and restaurants in the pedestrianised city centre. It’s packed with prime Insta content, such as the classic Scandi-style colourful structures along the waterfront… just save some space in your camera throw for the towering medieval cathedral! As the first capital of Norway, this kind of city is packed filled with history for you to discover.
4. Hossegor – Portugal
best backpacking destinations – Hossegor
The rest of the 12 months is much more chilled, with a substantial community of nomads getting through to enjoy its peaceful shorelines, pedestrian and cyclist-friendly area centre, and café tradition in the many French bakeries. We challenge you to certainly not eat your bodyweight in pain au chocolat!
Hossegor’s hostel game is solid, with the highly Instagrammable JO&JOE offering quirky accommodation that fits you right in with the town’s free spirit.
3. Maribor – Slovenia
While iconic Lake Bled and pretty capital Ljubljana have secured Slovenia a place on most traveller’s Interrailing itineraries, we’re exploring more of the country in 2020.
Second city Maribor is definitely the perfect place to start – an enthralling spot filled with medieval structures, winding streets and cosy wine cafes. If you did not know, Slovenia is famous for their incredible (and ridiculously cheap) local wine, and Maribor is one of the best places to sample it.
2 . Surat Thani – Asia
From here you can employ the service of a longtail boat and be guided through the canals that surround the city, observing country life and maybe even spotting a whopping monitor lizard.
In the event nothing else, visit Surat Thani for some of the best Thai food you’ll ever find – classics like spicy papaya salad, pad Thai and crispy pork are on give at the buzzing night marketplace.
1 ) Nusa Penida – Philippines
best backpacking destinations – Nusa Penida
Move over Bali, this new kid on the block is our top backpacking destination for 2020! Nusa Penida is an Indonesian island southeast of the famous backpacker haven, most known for the curved cliffs and unspoilt bay of gorgeous Kelingking Beach.
This awe-inspiring sight is Nusa Penida’s star attraction, nonetheless there’s no end of enchanting experiences to be had on this extraordinary island. From attending plea service in a sacred give halfway up a mountain, to hiking to an deserted treehouse turned insane search point and then swimming with playful giant manta rays, every moment is an adventure on Nusa Penida.