Vacationing to new and exciting places is one of life’s pleasures, but going somewhere where you won’t get locked in a tourist trap can be tricky. If you are looking to escape someplace where all your friends have not already been, then there are four destinations you need to consider. Here are some alternatives to give you a little more perspective.
If you are looking for an island getaway, then consider Hainan, China, which is the most southern point in China. This private island enjoys a tropical climate all year-round with average temperatures of 75. Avoid the frequent rains by traveling to Hainan from January to May. Most people come here to play on the beaches and the area known as the Hawaii of China offers great surfing most of the year. Shop on Old Street, especially at the Dongmen market where you can see thousands of exotic foods. Indulge in other edible delights at the Hainan University Night Market. Hike into a dormant volcano at Haikou Shishan Crater Cluster National Geological Park, stroll under the coconut trees at Dongjiao Coconut Plantation, and take a boat ride through an old growth Mangrove forest at the Dongzhai Harbor Mangrove Natural Reserve Area.
Essaouira is a beautiful example of an 18th-century fortified town with a new hippy attitude. Although the climate is warm all year with average temperatures in the 70s, the best time to visit is from June to September when the rain is less likely to fall. This city is surrounded by miles of golden beaches. Wind and kite surfing are very popular here. Go on a horse trek from Zouina-Cheval allowing you to experience traditional villages and stunning lush scenery. Enjoy a guided walking tour to a Berberian village where you can have fresh mint tea with a traditional family. Explore the Fish Market where you can choose your own fish and then take it to the kitchen to be cooked. Eat the Harira which is a spicy soup from the street vendor on La Soupe Street while you people watch or have a romantic dinner at Riad El Barak while seated under the shade of a large fig tree and listening to live music.
This beautiful city has been the hideaway for celebrities including Tom Cruise and Prince Charles for ages. Yet it still seems off the beaten path. The best time to visit Hvar is in July when temperatures will reach the high 70s and there is very little chance of rain falling. Located on a very scenic island, Hvar offers something for everyone because of its vast varied landscape including white sandy beaches and gently rolling hills. Rent a boat or take the water taxi to explore the Blue and Green grotto sea caves where natural light appears to glow off the floor of these show caves at certain times of the day. Nearby Pakleni Island makes the perfect place for a romantic picnic complete with a bottle of Croatia’s finest wine. Dance the night away while the international DJs spin tunes at Carpe Diem and eat the rabbit in fig sauce accompanied by the fig brandy at the Golden Shell.
Ras Al Khaimah City, United Arab Emirates
Ras Al Khaimah is the northern most of the seven United Arab Emirates and is currently governed by His Highness Sheikh Saqr al Qasimi. The best time to visit this area is in from March to April and September to October, because the winter and summer can be brutal. There are a wide variety of activities to do in this city. Put your bets down on a camel at the camel race track. Go troll fishing for barracuda, tuna and king fish. Play at the Ice Land Amusement Park featuring 59 different rides and water attractions. Head into the mountains surrounding this city for four-wheel drive adventures, picnics, and camping. You can stay in the Ritz-Carlton Hotel located directly on beach property or even one in the desert.
If you are looking for an alternative vacation destination, make sure to add these four to your list. You might just discover a place worth revisiting in future!