There are so many fabulous destinations around the world, yet it seems as though the same locations keep popping up as being the “best places to visit.” Tourism doesn’t come without its cost though. The boom of tourism in these well-loved places is leading to dangerous overcrowding and sometimes even the destruction of worldwide sanctuaries and architectural monuments. If you’d prefer to enjoy your next vacation soaking up a quiet and serene locale instead of waiting in crowds of sweaty, obnoxious people, consider one of these underrated destinations instead of their famous counterparts.
Slovenia or Colmar, France instead of Venice, Italy
Venice is battling serious issues due to over-tourism, with sky-high rent prices and crowded canals. Help to preserve it by vacationing elsewhere. If you’re looking for a quaint and romantic spot where you can enjoy a peaceful gondola ride and great cuisine, the tiny towns of Colmar, France or Ljubljana, Slovenia might just be the restful escape that you’re seeking.
U.S. Virgin Islands instead of Hawaii
Hawaii is not only overcrowded but very expensive these days. It can even difficult to get to depending on where you live. Jet off to one of the pristine beaches of the U.S. Virgin Islands instead. You’ll have all of the fun and excitement of Hawaii without the high cost or the exhausting plane ride, feeling relaxed and ready to vacation as soon as you step off the plane.
Hvar, Croatia instead of Ibiza, Spain
With Ibiza setting limits on tourism as of late, hip party destinations like Hvar are starting to step out of Ibiza’s shadow. This glamorous destination has almost as many beach clubs and late-night party spots as Ibiza and it’s cleaner and dare we say, even classier.
Mozambique, Africa instead of Phuket, Thailand
Thailand is a beautiful country that has some of the nicest people–and most gorgeous beaches–in the world. But over the past decade, flocks of tourists have deeply damaged the local environment. If you miss the days when Ko Phi Phi island used to be an unspoiled wonderland and you didn’t have to wrestle your way through droves of tourists just to get to your beach spot, you’ll love the wild (and empty) beaches that stretch over 1,500 miles along Mozambique’s coast.
Zagreb, Croatia instead of Dubrovnik
Dubrovnik is considered one of the gems of the Adriatic Sea, but with so many cruise ships docking here lately and the throngs of Game of Thrones fans, it’s becoming more crowded. Instead, head to the capital city of Zagreb where you can indulge in delicious meals, soak up the local culture and admire fancy architecture without damaging the country’s economy.
Tulum, Mexico instead of Cancun
Skip the crowded, dirty beaches of Cancun in favor of the talcum-powder beaches and natural beauty of Tulum. You’ll escape the party atmosphere and drunk vacationers and instead enjoy peace and quiet at the ancient ruins of one of our favorite underrated destinations. You might even find one of the beautiful cenotes scattered throughout the area.
Crete, Greece instead of Santorini
Santorini is stunning, but no amount of beauty can make up for the steadily-increasing steep prices and the flood of tourists. Alternatively, a trip to Greece’s largest island, Crete, provides tourists with the same gorgeous vistas along with historic sights and fun experiences, all for reasonable prices. You can roam around on foot without running into non-locals every other step.