Special Report: Top 20 Up-and-Coming Destinations

Featured, Local Insight, Offbeat — By Alex Resnik on May 7, 2011 at 6:00 am
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Turquoise-lapped beaches untroubled by hawkers. Gourmet fare at quaint Quebecois quarters overlooking virgin Arctic seas. A Laotian backpacker favorite on the cusp of development. Remote white dunes trodden by wild horses. Travel porn.

Drooling and yearning, we read through submissions from our network of on-the-scene Local Experts, and compiled this exclusive list of  20 destinations most likely to be the next big thing in travel. Make sure to check out these up-and-coming places before they’ve up and gone all fancy on us.

Click through any of the headings for a full report.

1. Island of Kea, Greece

Image: Paige Moore

The Wow: With terra cotta roof-dotted hills, windmills, and a rugged terrain, Kea is less spoiled and easier to get to than its more popular Cycladic island neighbors. Stone villages stacked on craggy cliffs are linked by approximately 22 miles of footpaths that wind through 3,000 varieties of flora, century-old forests of oak and plane, and ruins dating back to the 6th century BC.

Why Now? Due to inexpensive ferry tickets and a mere two-hour trip from the center of Athens, budget-conscious travelers are increasingly choosing Kea for their next trip. While over half of the island’s traffic is domestic, Kea has all of the ingredients necessary to become an international destination, and the transition is already underway.

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  • Jon says:

    Catch sunset between the twin harbours of Korissia and Voukari is a cafe/bar called Kews atop the hillock and is an ideal place to catch the sun setting over the bay’s inlet. Stunning!

    If you do go to Greece make sure you get some Jet Lag advice! Flew from Chicago to London then on to Greece. Was dying from jet lag! Tour rep gave me some Protex H for the way back… worked a treat.

    • Jean says:

      Jon –
      scientifically, the only time that you really get jet lag is when you fly from West to East. When you flew back you to Chgo from London you were going the other way, so you had little or no jet lag anyway.

      • Paris says:

        What do you base this on? I flew from West to East—West Coast to Asia—-and I was MIGHTLY jetlagged.

      • Jean B. says:

        Jet lag comes from changing time zones, not the direction you fly in. When your body has to reset it’s natural clock, you suffer from fatigue and “jet lag.” And I think different people are affected differently by travel. You might not get jet lag as severely as someone else. I get jet lag every time I travel from home on the east coast to Las Vegas. It takes me about 3 days for my body to adjust to what it considers staying up later and getting up later. And then the same thing happens when I return home. My body must not be scientifically correct.

  • alhenascott says:

    There are NO PALM FORESTS in Uruguay….Pine forests yes, but no palms. I was born and
    raised in Uruguay, and the geography and climate of the tiny country do not encourage
    palm forests. There might be a few scattered around plazas in towns and in the capital, but
    certainly nothing that could be called a Palm Forest. The country is indeed a small, unknown,
    peaceful gem, but forget about “tropical paradise”,,,,it’s more like California’s central coast, certainly
    more like Santa Barbara, or Carmel, than Hawaii or Florida.

  • Noela says:

    Love number 7. Albania. It is a great place for a vacation. Adventurous, great food, art and the most important crystal clear water. A must see.


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