Hands up who’s already in your mind spent their Christmas cash on next year’s activities? We know you’re all as totally travel obsessed even as we are, which is why we’ve put together this hand-picked list of the best backpacking destinations for 2020, based on the biggest growth in bookings in the last twelve months.
Simply no travel clichés here close friends – from paradise island destinations to underrated African locations, laid-back surfing towns to isolated mountain retreats, it’s time to start planning in which in the world we’re heading the coming year. Spoiler alert: it’s not even close the beaten track.
Launching you to the 20 very best backpacking destinations for 2020!
20. Sendai – Japan
Travellers will head to Japan in 2020 for the Tokyo Olympics, but if you’re not just one to follow the crowds then Sendai is a great alternative.
It’s built the list as one of next year’s best backpacking destinations. The best time to explore this modern city is in August, when the streets come alive for Tanabata Matsuri on the 6th-8th.
20. Portland (Maine) – USA Eugene
Redwood Valley- Trendy Portland Oregon has become on the traveller radar forever, but we bet you have not added this small , East Coast city to your UNITED STATES wishlist yet! Sure, manufacturers NYC and LA are always gonna have us connected, but can you really say you’ve experienced the US until you have ventured away from the big urban centers? Travellers to Portland will be rewarded with a local, community feel and zero crowds.
The Port’s cobbled streets and vibrant mismatch of boutique retailers and restaurants are a quirky surprise, and you might not anticipate the city to have such an exciting arts scene that includes the oldest public art art gallery in the US. Throw in a renowned farmers’ market and local boat breweries, and it’s hard to believe that more people aren’t shouting about Portland’s awesome credentials!
18. Raglan – New Zealand
Ngarunui Beach is a place for those who’ve under no circumstances picked up a board, seeing that the waves are peaceful and there are several surf universities to choose from. If this isn’t your first rodeo, Manu Bay and Whale Bay give some of the best waves in the world, placed against breathtaking scenery.
To best enjoy all that Mother earth has on offer in Plaid, base yourself at the eco-friendly Raglan Backpackers.
17. Pisac – Peru
best backpacking destinations — Pisac
For any rural alternative to the nearby city of Cusco, many holidaymakers to Peru are choosing to explore the Sacred Valley of the Incas by basing themselves in Pisac, a small village which has a strong sense of spirituality.
This is thanks to the unreal scenery and mysterious history of surrounding valley, the bohemian character and slow pace of life in the Old Village, and the range of wellness activities practiced here.
16. Trapani — Italy
best backpacking places – Trapani
To get a budget-friendly stay in the city hub, Hostelleria is the top decision.
It’s got a minimalistic design but has everything you’ll need, with dorms and private rooms, a shared kitchen and a exciting bar next door.
15. Liège – Belgium
best hiking destinations – Liège
It may have shied away from the spotlight in the past, although Belgium’s fourth largest city is barging the likes of Bruges and Brussels out of the way to get the backpacker appreciation it warrants.
Despite being packed full of incredible architecture, cultural diamonds and amazing food, this manages to keep hold of a laid-back, small town tone that makes you feel instantly at home.
14. Buenaventura – Republic of colombia
For the ultimate tranquil stay, choose Pacifico Hostel. It’s surrounded by virgin new world and has its own private beach(!! ), overlooked by a odd open-air bar.
They select sustainable options like growing their own veg and working their bathrooms with rain water, and they’ll lend you a kayak to explore the local mangroves. We’re starting to believe city life is overrated…
13. Hà Giang – Vietnam
NoMadders Hostel is definitely the perfect base on the borders of the city to saturate in that fresh, mountain air.
Their gorgeous dorms cost as little as £4 a night, and treat yourself to a private hut coming from £20.
There’s an outdoor pool and patio surrounded by new world, a bar and a hot tub for living your better backpacker life!
12. Maputo – Mozambique
best camping out destinations – Maputo
It’s very best explored on foot, and even better with an expert guide, therefore taking a walking tour is a good way to learn about Maputo’s tumultuous history and to discover close-guarded strategies.
11. Nassau – Bahamas
best hiking destinations – Nassau
Additional highlights include sipping rum at a local distillery, diving with sharks at Stuart’s Cove and shopping for crafts at the Straw Market. It is better in the Bahamas!
Hostels in the Bahamas – claim what?! BahaSea Backpackers provides you with paradise on a budget, with two pools overlooking the shining turquoise ocean.
10. Gijón – The country
best backpacking destinations — Gijon
It’s set in a large house where you’ll encounter heaps of other backpackers more than beers in the garden as well as free buffet breakfast.
There are even free yoga every evening, so you’re sure to become channelling the chilled nature of Gijón by the time you leave.
9. Siargao Tropical isle – The Philippines
ideal backpacking destinations – Siargao Island
One more surfer’s paradise, Siargao is a wave-riding capital of The Thailand that’s low-key one of the most exquisite islands on earth.
Full of gifts like waterfalls, lagoons, caves, jungle and of course, those beach locations, it’s one of the best backpacking destinations for nature lovers.
8. Nosara – Costa Rica
best backpacking destinations – Nosara
Ensure you get your wellness fix with a yoga exercises class, followed by a healthy vegetarian meal cooked at the on-site restaurant!
7. Isfahan — Iran
best backpacking destinations – Isfahan
The hostel is definitely decorated in Persian porcelain tiles, and it has a beautiful leafy garden and a roof terrace with views above the city streets.
6. Kodaikanal – India
best camping out destinations – Kodaikanal
The town of Kodaikanal in India’s scorching Tamil Nadu region offers a refreshing break from the heating, with a misty hillside area 2, 000 metres over sea level. The town’s main attraction is the star-shaped lake in its centre, where you can take out a rowing sail boat and explore the eerily peaceful scenes.
5. Trondheim — Norway
best backpacking locations – Trondheim
Scandinavia is as cool since it gets, but if you want to score serious hipster points then don’t just visit the big hitters like Oslo and Copenhagen. Vibrant Trondheim is among the best backpacking destinations intended for 2020.
A creative student town, it has a massive craft beer and local food scene, which you can sample at the many cafes and restaurants in the pedestrianised city centre. It’s filled with prime Insta content, just like the classic Scandi-style colourful structures along the waterfront… just save some space in your camera roll for the towering gothic cathedral! As the first of all capital of Norway, this kind of city is packed full of history for you to discover.
4. Hossegor – Portugal
best backpacking destinations – Hossegor
It’s received its own sandy garden place for hanging out in the sun, substantial comfy beds and a partnership with legendary surfing brands Quiksilver and Roxy, which means discounted surfing lessons for guests!
3. Maribor – Slovenia
While famous Lake Bled and attractive capital Ljubljana have anchored Slovenia a place on most traveller’s Interrailing itineraries, we’re exploring more of the country in 2020.
Second city Maribor may be the perfect place to start – a charming spot filled with medieval buildings, winding streets and comfortable wine cafes. If you didn’t know, Slovenia is famous for the incredible (and ridiculously cheap) local wine, and Maribor is one of the best places to sample it.
installment payments on your Surat Thani – Thailand
From here you can employ the service of a longtail boat and become guided through the canals that surround the city, observing rural life and maybe even spotting a whopping monitor lizard.
Whenever 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 industry.
1 . Nusa Penida – Indonesia
best backpacking destinations — Nusa Penida
Move over Bali, this new kid on the block is our top backpacking destination for 2020! Nusa Penida is a great Indonesian island southeast with the famous backpacker haven, virtually all known for the curved coves and unspoilt bay of gorgeous Kelingking Beach.
This awe-inspiring sight is Nusa Penida’s star attraction, yet there’s no end of marvelous experiences to be had on this amazing island. From attending plea service in a sacred cave halfway up a hill, to hiking to an deserted treehouse turned insane lookout point and then swimming with playful giant manta sun rays, every moment is an adventure on Nusa Penida.