Hands up who’s already psychologically spent their Christmas money on next year’s journeys? We know you’re all as totally travel obsessed even as we are, which is why we’ve combined 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 cities, laid-back surfing towns to isolated mountain retreats, it’s time to start planning exactly where in the world we’re heading next year. Spoiler alert: it’s not even close to the beaten track.
Launching you to the 20 very best backpacking destinations for 2020!
20. Sendai – Asia
Combining two of our favorite things, Orit Hostel & Café Bar Lounge comes with a on-site coffee shop with a welcoming atmosphere. It’s perfect for one travellers on the hunt for innovative travel buddies, or digital nomads needing a noiseless space to chill with their notebooks.
The facilities are super modern, and there’s a terrace to enjoy your morning hours coffee overlooking the city.
20. Portland (Maine) – UNITED STATES Antioch
Seaside- Trendy Portland Oregon has been on the traveller radar for a long time, but we bet you haven’t added this small , East Coast city to your USA wishlist yet! Sure, the likes of NYC and LA are gonna have us hooked, but can you really say you have experienced the US until you have ventured away from the big urban centers? Travellers to Portland are rewarded with a local, community feel and zero crowds.
The Port’s cobbled streets and vibrant mismatch of boutique retailers and restaurants are a peculiar surprise, and you might not expect the city to have such a vibrant arts scene that includes the oldest public art museum in the US. Throw in a famous farmers’ market and local hobby breweries, and it’s hard to believe that more people are not shouting about Portland’s amazing credentials!
18. Raglan — New Zealand
The North Island town of Raglan is surrounded by outstanding natural beauty and epic surf breaks.
It’s best known for its unusual black sand coastline, but venture a little away from town and discover peaceful running trails through the Wainui dynamics reserve, cycling routes over an ancient volcano and the glistening green waters of the Marriage Veil Falls. Most travellers come here to surf though, as there’s a spot for each and every ability.
17. Pisac – Peru
best backpacking destinations – Pisac
This beautifully boho hostel has eco-friendly features, a bright communal space disregarding the valley and outdoor hammocks with some of the best landscapes in South America.
There’s an on-site café, outdoor yoga and fitness space and even a spa to relax in after a day’s trekking.
16. Trapani — Italy
best backpacking places – Trapani
Take a trip through the narrow streets from the Old Town and check out their churches and basilicas, before feasting on hearty Sicilian classics like arancini and cannoli. For the best vistas around, visit the clifftop medieval small town of Erice. At 750m above sea level, you will get unbeatable views of Trapani’s sand-hued architecture as well as the surrounding Med.
Trapani is additionally a perfect spot to base yourself for day trips about Sicily. The stunning Aegadian Islands are only 30 minutes apart by boat, so you can dedicate a day of pure bliss exploring coves and snorkelling around white sand beaches.
15. Liège – Belgium
best backpacking destinations – Liège
It may have shied away from the spotlight in the past, yet Belgium’s fourth largest town is barging the likes of Bruges and Brussels out of the way to have the backpacker appreciation it warrants.
Despite being packed packed with 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
Though Buenaventura is loaded full of lively salsa bars, Afro-Colombian seafood restaurants and waterfront entertainment, the city on its own isn’t actually the main appeal – we’re most considering the unspoilt beaches, tropical jungle and natural cartouche that surround it! In comparison to the rest of the country, this area remains relatively under the radar, so you can enjoy surfing and beach cocktails minus the crowds of Colombia’s more famous destinations. Don’t miss a night-time cave swim with neon plankton – an experience you are going to never forget.
13. Hà Giang – Vietnam
Hà Giang is Vietnam’s most northern province, which despite being one of the most jaw-droppingly stunning regions of the country, is often overlooked by simply backpackers as it’s far away from the usual hotspots.
It indicates no one spoiling your beautiful places shots – bonus! Is considered easily (and cheaply) come to via overnight bus, and travellers who make the lengthy journey will reap the rewards.
12. Maputo – Mozambique
best hiking destinations – Maputo
For a local feast, visit the fish market, where one can pick your catch and have it cooked with snacks or rice at one of many surrounding restaurants! And when city 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 perform Ouro.
Maputo is only just emerging as a backpacker vacation spot so there aren’t tons of hostels, which means you should take complete advantage of The Base.
11. Nassau – Bahamas
best backpacking destinations – Nassau
You might not think of funds travellers when you picture the Bahamas, but then again you probably don’t think of cities either.
Well that’s all about to change, since the Bahamas’ capital (and only) city is one of the best backpacking destinations for 2020 — especially if you’re the type of visitor who swerves the areas and seeks out real experiences (i. e. many of us! ) The city oozes Carribbean culture, nowhere more so within the vibrant ‘Fish Fry’ neighbourhood, where colourful cool joints, bars and road food vendors line the streets, the energy is electric and the soundtrack is provided by DJs and reggae bands.
10. Gijón – Spain
best backpacking destinations – Gijon
Asturias is known for its cider, and there are plenty of bars in the city where you can watch your order being put from a great height — the traditional way to serve it! But before you have an excessive amount of that, you need to hit the soft golden sand of Playa de San Lorenzo for some beach yoga and surfing. Trust us, you won’t be able to resist the easy-going vibe!
If you want to make the most of the waves, Gijón Browse Hostel will help you out with cheap board rental, lessons and a convenient location close to the beach.
9. Siargao Area – The Philippines
ideal backpacking destinations – Siargao Island
Mad Monkey hostels are the stuff of hiking legend, and Mad Monkey Siargao is no exception. It is got a huge social space set around the swimming pool, having a tiki bar and cafe, beer pong and foosball tables.
They’re known for their outrageous events and bar crawls, and every night after their particular bar closes the staff lead their tribe of holidaymakers to the best parties on st. kitts.
8. Nosara – Costa Rica
best backpacking destinations – Nosara
When you have recharged your zen, it is time to head out on firefox in a riverboat (eco-friendly naturally , this is Costa Rica! ) Prepare yourself to spot mammoth crocs, iguanas, monkeys and exotic chickens.
Pick your jaws up off the floor – Selina Nosara is a hostel, and you can stay there for less than £10 a night! It’s got two trust, a bar (with frequent live music) a theatre room, co-working space and way, way more, all set inside incredible eco surroundings.
7. Isfahan — Iran
best backpacking places – Isfahan
Iran needs to be on your camping out itinerary for 2020 and the city of Isfahan is the top pick – there are a reason the old Persian saying calls it ‘half the world’! Pictures of fantastic Iranian architecture have probably previously sparked your wanderlust, and you’ll find Isfahan’s Naqsh-e Jahan Square to be a treasure trove.
With the iconic blue-tiled Imam Mosque, the sizzling Sheikh Lotfollah Mosque plus the royal Ali Qapu Building all in one place, your readers (and camera lens) will be spoilt for choice.
6. Kodaikanal – India
best hiking destinations – Kodaikanal
The town of Kodaikanal in India’s scorching Tamil Nadu region offers a refreshing break from the high temperature, with a misty hillside location 2, 000 metres previously mentioned sea level. The town’s main attraction is the star-shaped lake in its centre, where one can take out a rowing motorboat and explore the strangely peaceful scenes.
5. Trondheim — Norway
best backpacking areas – Trondheim
You can also tick off a container list experience by experiencing the Northern Lights below between September to Mar. So , what are you waiting for?
To save some dough in this pricey city (that’s Scandinavia for you), Trondheim Vandrerhjem is the best budget holiday accommodation option. It’s minimalistic although has everything you need, with comfy beds, a fully equipped home and a communal TELEVISION SET area to mingle to guests.
It’s about a 15-minute walk from the centre of Trondheim, with a quiet area up a hill and great views of the metropolis!
4. Hossegor – Portugal
best backpacking destinations – Hossegor
It’s acquired its own sandy garden place for hanging out in the sun, considerable comfy beds and a partnership with legendary surfing brands Quiksilver and Roxy, which means discounted surfing lessons for guests!
3. Maribor – Slovenia
It’s surrounded by wine-growing hills and even includes a wine museum that offers tastings! For such a small metropolis Maribor packs a push, with a strong line-up of summer festivals, a active student vibe and a picturesque Old Town that rivals Europe’s biggest and best.
Stay right inside the heart of the city by colourful Uni Youth Hostel. This highly-rated hostel features common areas with pool area tables and cosy couches, plus an on-site bar for even more of that Slovenian wine – we’re sure it counts as a cultural activity! Just make sure you’re in time for the breakfast buffet full of local treats.
installment payments on your Surat Thani – Asia
From here you can retain the services of a longtail boat and be guided through the canals that surround the city, observing country life and maybe even distinguishing a whopping monitor lizard.
Whenever nothing else, visit Surat Thani for some of the best Thai foodstuff you’ll ever find – classics like spicy papaya salad, pad Thai and crispy pork are on offer at the buzzing night market.
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 in the famous backpacker haven, virtually all known for the curved cliffs and unspoilt bay of gorgeous Kelingking Beach.
This awe-inspiring sight is Nusa Penida’s star attraction, nevertheless there’s no end of wonderful experiences to be had on this extraordinary island. From attending prayer service in a sacred give halfway up a pile, to hiking to an forgotten treehouse turned insane lookout point and then swimming with playful giant manta sun rays, every moment is an adventure on Nusa Penida.