Though we’ve visited many places over the past year, there are many more hidden gems and up-and-coming destinations that we don’t have the resources to explore personally (yet). Expanding one’s scope of research can yield some great insights. In the spirit of Travelitic’s data-driven approach, we surveyed the top ten articles on the internet on the subject of travel destinations in 2020. We distilled down the data into the top 5 places to visit in 2020.
We performed this meta-analysis of trending travel destinations by evaluating the top-ranking search results for “best places to go in 2020.” The top performing articles came from such respected sources as Frommer’s, Lonely Planet, National Geographic, and others of similar pedigree. Because these contain some inherent subjectivity and judgment criteria, we distilled our list down into just specific locations that were mentioned in at least three of the ten sources we compared. This way we filter out at least some of the individual preference and bias of the original articles’ authors.
Read on to explore our meta-analysis of the top five places to visit in 2020!
Lille is not typically what you’d think of for a romantic French getaway, but that could be changing. This medium-sized city of 200,000 near the Belgian border is experiencing a revival thanks to their major efforts in the arts and sustainability. For decades, Lille was a major industrial center, focusing on the coal, mining, and textile industries. However, in recent decades the city has increasingly shifted to the service sector and tourism.
This year will be a standout year for Lille because it was named the 2020 World Design Capital. This prestigious award is only given out every two years and typically goes to much bigger cities such as Mexico City, Taipei, and Seoul.
Over the course of 2020, Lille will host around 50 cultural events, including six major exhibitions. A good time to go would be in the fall, when the region will host the first-ever Lille Metropole Design Week.Architectural Digest – The Top 20 Places to Travel in 2020
Several new, incredible venues are opening their doors for the first time in 2019 and 2020. This includes hotels such as the bohemian-chic Mama Shelter with its incredible views as well as restaurants such as Coke with its timeless French cuisine.
Finally, don’t forget to check out Lille’s world-class museums. The La Piscine art and industry museum occupies the space of a former art deco swimming pool. For modern art lovers, the LaM musuem is sure to delight.
Maine is a seafaring state in the northeast United States that’s full of charm. This sparsely-populated state is known for its iconic lighthouses, seafood cuisine, and dense interior forests. It just so happens that 2020 is Maine’s 200th anniversary of becoming a state (its bicentennial), and organizers are celebrating with plenty of parades, festivals, concerts, and other events.
Some of these events include:
- Statehood Weekend – March 14-15, Augusta (and statewide)
- Bicentennial Parade – May 16, Auburn
- Summer Coast Festival – July 3-10, Portland (and along the coast)
- Grand Finale Weekend – October 9-12, Augusta (and statewide)
Maine is a great place to visit even if you can’t attend one of the special events. For those who enjoy the quiet pleasures of traveling, Maine is perfect for its farm-to-table restaurants, craft breweries, coffee, and artisanal bakeries. Nature lovers will also enjoy Maine’s expansive wilderness and rugged coastline.
For most Westerners, Australia is exotic enough. But the remote island of Tasmania 240 km off the southeastern coast of Australia is even more exotic still. Tasmania is a ruggedly beautiful place largely untouched by modern development and populated by just half a million people. Tourism is really heating up on Tasmania, so 2020 might be a great year to explore the island before it gets overrun.
No matter where you go in Tasmania, you’ll find somewhere to get off the beaten path.Insider – 40 stunning places to visit in 2020 before they become packed with tourists
For outdoor adventuring, don’t miss Cradle Mountain, Freycinet National Park, and the Bay of Fires. And besides the impressive old growth forests and endless beaches, Tasmania is home to a booming wine culture. Tamar Valley in the central north region is Tasmania’s hottest spot for wine connoisseurs.
During your stop in the island’s capital of Hobart, check out the Museum of Old and New Art. This unique museum is entirely underground with three levels and tons of interactive features.
Just remember to plan your trip for Australian summer (November – March) because Tasmania is significantly colder than other destinations further north.
One of the most important historical cities of all time, Athens is a perennial tourist mecca. The epicenter of the classical Greek civilization, ancient structures like the Parthenon still remain and even dominate the Athenian skyline. So why visit Athens in 2020?
Most sources point to the excellent value of Athens and/or the Athenian Riviera as a major reason to visit. Despite its huge popularity, Athens remains one of the best major sites in terms of the bang for your buck. Plenty of landmarks can be visited and enjoyed for free, including the National Garden, Lycabettus Hill, and the Stavros Niarchos Foundation Cultural Center. Even the Acropolis Multi-Site Pass with access to the Parthenon, the Ancient Agora, Hadrian’s Library, and more is only 30 Euros.
Besides all the ancient ruins, Athens is a delightful place to stroll around, relax at a café, and enjoy cheap, delicious street food. In fact, you can find mouth-watering gyros for as little as 3 Euros. Compared to other major European cities, this is an incredible deal.
Try to go during the Spring or Fall to avoid the massive crowds and sweltering heat of July and August.
Dubai, United Arab Emirates (UAE)
Dubai has been growing in the travel world’s consciousness for many years now, but 2020 may well just be its peak. No other city on earth has such a reputation for hyper-modern, futurist extravagance. This year is truly the year in which Dubai flexes its global reputation with its massive Expo 2020 celebration. This six-month event is dedicated to expanding worldwide creativity, innovation, and culture and is expected to host 25 million visitors. Expo 2020 is such a big deal that Dubai is listed a massive five times among the ten top articles for places to visit in 2020.
The expo begins in October and the UAE has already spent billions developing a 1,000-acre “District 2020” park halfway between Dubai and Abu Dhabi. Over 190 countries have agreed to participate in the event, and each country will have its own pavilion for the first time ever at a world expo. There are even rumors of Dubai showcasing “flying cars” as part of its futuristic wonders.
It’s not often we get to publish the words “an event the likes of which the world has never seen” — but in this case, whatever you think of the whole expo enterprise, it certainly applies.Travel and Leisure – The 50 Best Places to Travel in 2020
- Travel and Leisure – The 50 Best Places to Travel in 2020
- Lonely Planet – Best in Travel 2020
- Frommer’s – Frommer’s Best Places to Go in 2020
- Condé Nast Traveler – 20 Best Places to Go in 2020
- National Geographic – Here are the best trips to take in 2020
- Forbes – Where To Go Next: 27 Best Places To Travel In 2020
- Architectural Digest – The Top 20 Places to Travel in 2020
- Insider – 40 stunning places to visit in 2020 before they become packed with tourists
- Good Housekeeping – The best holiday destinations for 2020: Top places to visit
- Fortune – Your 2020 Road Map: The Best Travel Destinations for Every Season of the Coming Year