Choose a lesser known place for your next trip to help prevent overtourism and spread the sustainable tourist love, from previously war-torn countries to alternatives to traditional sun-soaked destinations.
To ensure your safety when you travel, be sure to check the political/climatic travel advice from the official site maintained by the government of your country before you book your trip.
Georgia is where people in the former Soviet Union used to go on holiday, and it has extraordinary, dramatic landscapes, a friendly mix of cultures and a super rich heritage. Head for the off-the-beaten-track Svaneti region, home to the Caucasus Mountains, or break your exploration in the capital Tbilisi, an exciting place with a vibrant nightlife and interesting foodie scene.
Nearly 25 years after the awful 1994 genocide, Rwanda is now deemed a safe country to visit that’s low on crime and famous for its amazing population of endangered Virunga mountain gorillas. But come also to hike volcanoes, go bird watching in one of the national parks, see lions in the wild and hang out beside Lake Kivu. The country banned plastic bags in 2008, and it’s now illegal for tourists to bring them in.
Once one of the most dangerous places in the world is now deemed safe by authorities and loved by travellers for its wild tropical beaches, Andean peaks, rich Amazon rain forests and small colonial-era towns. The other-worldly lost cities of Tayrona National Park are worth a visit alone, and the country’s major cities are upping their game when it comes to food and art.
Situated on the Adriatic Sea, Montenegro has a spectacular coastline with islands and islets that make it a viable alternative to more popular European destinations such as Italy and Croatia. Come for picturesque medieval towns, delicious food that fuses different Central European influences, and its many festivals celebrating poetry, theatre, music and dance. City lovers should head to Budva for the medieval walled city and nightlife.
This ethnically diverse country is a fascinating place to visit. Awesome diverse landscapes range from snow-capped peaks and huge deserts to nomadic plains and forests inhabited by bears and leopards. There are oodles of historical sites to explore too, from the astonishingly beautiful Imam Square in Isfahan to the ancient site of Persepolis.