Globetrotters love to be on the cutting edge, push boundaries, and journey to the farthest frontier. They also love to embrace emerging destinations before they become all the rage in the wider travel world.
We’re globetrotters at Goway, so we also love emerging destinations and to help people beat the crowds and explore some of the new stars of the travel world. As we move into 2023, we’ve identified eight of the top emerging destinations, which have become hits with our travellers and will become even more popular as the year progresses. If you want to hit up one of the emerging destinations of 2023, these are the places to go. And if you want to travel alongside 10 or more like-minded travellers, get in touch with Goway Groups Only, who can plan the ultimate group vacation to these emerging destinations.
What are the top emerging destinations for 2023?
Cambodia never gets its due on the larger stage, despite having the Temples of Angkor, some of the world’s greatest historic landmarks, within its borders. However, many travellers are finally catching up to the incredible travel opportunities within Cambodia. This is a land to explore some of the great treasures of history, but also to cruise the Mekong River, hit up the trendsetting beaches of Sihanoukville on the Gulf of Thailand, or delve into an emerging culinary scene in the capital, Phnom Penh. Cambodia also makes for a great pairing with Thailand, Laos, or Vietnam—or even all three on one itinerary!
Colombia has come a long way over the past few years. For too long, it was a place associated with infamous gangsters of decades past. Today, it’s finally emerged into the light as one of the most colourful, festive, and appealing places to explore in Latin America. The coastal city of Cartagena is the epicentre of holiday relaxation, with a gorgeous colonial old town to explore and long beaches to lounge upon. Medellín is the most attractive city in the nation, with its neighbourhoods across the hillside and easy access to bountiful forests. Colombia’s Ciudad Perdida has also begun to attract adventurers and history buffs who want to journey through the jungle to discover a lost city that predates Machu Picchu. A group vacation with Goway Groups Only offers peace of mind while exploring Colombia as well as the chance to get off the beaten path with an experienced tour manager.
The success of Dune in 2021 was a good reminder of just how otherworldly the landscapes of Jordan are. This Middle Eastern nation is back on the big stage as one of the best places to explore in the region. Its natural landscapes, including the black-rock desert of Wadi Rum and the saline waters of the Dead Sea, offer a vision of otherworldly splendour. Petra is one of the top-five historical sites on the planet, while the capital Amman offers ancient Roman sites and arguably the most comfortable cosmopolitan centre between Istanbul and Cairo. Also, don’t forget about all the biblical sites across the nation, including Mt. Nebo, where Moses first spotted the Holy Land. Travellers seeking once-in-a-lifetime natural or historical encounters are coming to understand just how special a trip to Jordan can be. Jordan is great on its own, but it also works as a convenient combination with other Middle Eastern countries like Egypt and Israel, especially on a Groups vacation with Goway Groups Only.
Like its neighbour, Jordan, Israel is a place to delve into some of the world’s most astounding natural and historical sites. Religious travellers are understandably awed by a trip to Israel; Jerusalem is arguably the most religiously significant city on the planet, with major landmarks relating to Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, such as the Western Wall, the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, and the Dome of the Rock, respectively. Israel also shares the Dead Sea with Jordan, offering travellers a chance to float on the waters of the lowest point on the surface of our planet. It’s also a great place for a night out. Tel Aviv is one of the world’s best party cities, a place to hit up the beach during the day and the club at night. It’s no coincidence that it’s also one of the world’s most LGBTQ-friendly cities.
Travellers are starting to realize they can explore the whole world in one country in South Africa. Not literally, of course, but South Africa offers a breadth of experience that is hard to match. Cape Town is one of the most culturally colourful cities on the planet—literally, with the bright homes of Bo-Kaap providing a burst of colour in the shadow of Table Mountain. The Western Cape is a natural marvel, with stunning coastal views, whale watching, and penguin colonies! The Cape Winelands will delight winelovers, while the Garden Route offers an idyllic journey alongside lakes, forests, and rugged coastland. We can’t forget the safari opportunities, as South Africa abounds with opportunities to see the world’s most beloved animals. Kruger National Park is the most popular game viewing area, but game parks (many malaria free) are dotted throughout the nation.
Tasmania is not a country, but a state, but it’s far enough from the Australian mainland to warrant inclusion on this list. The often-forgotten Australian state is rightly starting to steal the spotlight back from its mainland neighbours. This is a place to hike and experience the stillness and majesty of nature, whether along the Freycinet Peninsula on the east coast or Cradle Mountain – Lake St Clair National Park further inland. Port Arthur offers unmatched insight into the settlement of Australia by European settlers, while Hobart is a friendly, walkable port city that’s also the finish line of one of the most exciting boating events in the world, the Sydney Hobart Yacht Race. Oh, and if you want to see Tasmanian Devils, this is the only place in the world to spot these feisty critters in their natural habitat.
It’s hard to beat the nation that is the intersection between Europe and Asia. Istanbul straddles the Bosphorus, offering travellers who want to eat some of the best food in the region (baklava, anyone?) and visit world-famous landmarks such as the Hagia Sophia and the Grand Bazaar to also say they’ve visited two continents on a single city stopover. But travellers are finally awakening to the other possibilities of a trip to Türkiye. Cappadocia is a fairy tale wonderland of rock chimneys, while Izmir offers sweeping coastlines ripe for a few days of relaxation. The nation also abounds with ancient archaeological sites, including the ruins of Troy, so it’s a place where history, nature, and culture collide in exciting ways.
Vietnam is high on the list of nations that are severely misunderstood. Luckily, the past two decades have seen a thaw in relations with the West and an awakening in travellers, who’ve come to understand what wonders await on a Vietnam vacation. Vietnam is bursting with cultural splendour, from the colonial French Quarter of the capital, Hanoi, with its hidden bars and charming cafes, to the coastal beaches and open-air restaurants of Hoi An, to the mountain kitsch of Dalat, the country’s most underrated destination. It’s rich with historical landmarks, not only the sites of the Vietnam War but also the imperial palaces of the Nguyen Dynasty in Hue. And Halong Bay is rightly considered one of the greatest natural landscapes in the world. If you visit Vietnam simply to cruise the deep-blue waters dotted with thousands of karst islands, the trip will have been worth it. Such is its natural majesty.
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