Everyone has their own interpretation of the best vacation destinations. Some like destinations that are thriving with activity, while some travel oceans in search of tranquility. Vacationers look for something new, while loyalists frequent their favorites haunts. All in all, considering everything, there are just a few places that you can call 'different'. These places offer something unique, experiences that are usually unmatched. Of course, there are exotic destinations like Antarctica and Samoa, but then traveling there is no cakewalk.
Located in the Leeward group of Society Islands, you can reach this Pacific island by a one-hour flight from Tahiti. The island mesmerizes every tourist, and has a picturesque backdrop like no other vacation spot you must have ever seen. The population of this island is just about 9,000, and half of it resides in the city of Vaitape. The rest of the island is sparsely inhabited, which gives tourists the much-desired seclusion. Activities range from scuba diving, to watching shark feedings, to lagoon excursions, to even safaris. The island is surrounded by a number of islets known as motus. Most of the resorts are located on these, in the form of over-water bungalows. The ideal vacation spot for a couple, it has all the privacy a couple needs. Mount Otemanu is the perfect addition to what we can call God's best romantic painting. If you choose this one, you will be living on glass floors that show you the magical underwater life, your breakfast will be served from a canoe, and you'll have candlelit dinners in one of the most magical surroundings nature has to offer.
The most renowned vacation spots, the eight islands of Hawaii are the most precious jewels in the waters of Mother Earth. Of course, a lot of beaches in the world will provide you with seclusion, but never will they offer you with the out-of-the-world experience that Hawaii does. The island of Oʻahu is famous for attractions such as Pearl Harbor, Valley of the Temples Memorial Park and Aulani Laie Hawaii Temple. Also, beaches such as Ala Moana Beach, Kailua and Lanikai Beach, Sandy Beach, Sunset Beach, Waimanalo Beach and Waikīkī Beach are some of the most amazing coastlines you'll ever witness. The island boasts of great, vibrant nightlife. It is also one of the world's most famous surf destinations. In Maui, you should visit the Haleakalā National Park and Lahaina. Driving on the Hāna Highway is an experience in itself. For surfing and windsurfing sports, you can visit Ho'okipa. Kauaʻi happens to be a hit among explorers. Kalalau Trail's last stop, Kalalau Beach, is a one-mile-long secluded beach with breathtaking beauty. The Waimea Canyon on the other hand, shows you a different Kauaʻi altogether. Near the Honopū Valley, you can see humpback whales in winter. Niʻihau provides no accommodation. But helicopter rides let you visit the island for activities such as hunting and to see the coastline.
The country of lakes, Finland is an exotic destination. The country has approximately 200,000 lakes with excellent water quality. A country in Northern Europe, it has all the charms to tempt tourists. If you visit Finland in the summers, you will notice that sometimes, the sun doesn't set at all. Another highlight of this vacation will be watching the spectacular Northern Lights (Aurora Borealis). Skiing and cruising are integral parts of Finland tourism, with cross-country skiing being an important sport. In winter, all the lakes are frozen, inviting ice fishing enthusiasts. This also happens to be one of the best vacation spots for kids, as children can enjoy trips in reindeer sleighs and visits to Korvatunturi, where Santa Claus is said to live. Cities famous as tourist spots include Oulu, Tampere, Jyväskylä (called the Mecca for architecture), Rovaniemi, Turku, Porvoo and of course, Helsinki the capital. A visit to the 7 UNESCO World Heritage sites in this country should also be a part of your to-do list. Helsinki also has a vibrant night life with other recreational activities such as ice swimming, exploring museums and visiting amusement parks.
Snow-capped mountains, lazy yachts and mesmerizing beaches welcome you to Kiwi land all year round. The country comprises two huge islands, known as North Island and South Island. North Island is more populous with almost 77% of the country's population residing here. However, both these islands are famous tourist destinations and attract millions of tourists every year. Milford Sound, a fjord in South Island, happens to be the most famous tourist spot. So much so that Rudyard Kipling had called it the eighth wonder of the world. The Bay of Island area in North Island is also a tourist spot famous for sailing and fishing. Another spot on this Island is where the Waitomo Caves are located. Last but not the least, don't forget to visit Aoraki/Mount Cook, the highest mountain in the country. Another city you must visit is Rotorua. Here, you will get to see geysers (specially, the Pohutu Geyser) and hot mud pools. Dunedin, known as New Zealand's oldest colony, will offer the only mainland albatross colony in the world, along with fur seals and yellow-eyed penguins. For all the adrenaline junkies, Taupo is just the place. This city offers some of the best jetboating, skydiving and bungee jumping activities.
In between the wonders that nature created and the ones that man did, the ones by nature have always dominated visual appeal. And if you want to see an example that justifies this, go visit the country of Slovenia. Located in Europe, half the country is covered by forest. Increasing tourism did lead to famous gambling towns like Portorož, but what enchants visitors the most, are valleys, caves and lakes the country has to offer. The caves in Slovenia, such as Postojna, Škocjan, and Vilenica are truly intriguing. Also very famous is Moravske Toplice, a spa town that attracts thousands of tourists yearly. Apart from these, the Julian Alps are also a fascinating sight. A part of these Alps is admitted in Triglav National Park. Accompanying these mountains, are the Kamnik Alps, along with the Karavanke mountain range and the Pohorje mountains, which also happen to be famous tourist spots. Architecture is another aspect worth exploring here. Ljubljana, the capital, is home to many Art Nouveau and Baroque buildings. For Venetian Gothic architecture, you can visit the Mediterranean town of Piran. Medieval towns such as Škofja Loka and Ptuj are a beautiful sight, with Ptuj being the country's oldest city. Similarly, fortified villages such as Šmartno, Štanjel and Vipavski Križ are fast gaining international attention. The country is also a fine example of tourism and food going hand in hand. The white wine from Styria and the distinctive cuisine from Prekmurje are fast making a noted presence in global cuisine. The culture of this country is also very impressive. You can get a glimpse of it during Kurentovanje, a ten-day carnival in Ptuj during spring.
Southern provinces in Thailand, both these destinations offer an experience that is different from one a usual beach holiday would. Phuket and Krabi are neighboring provinces, each with a similar yet different feel. The pictures we often see advertising Phuket, show us the western, more popular part of the province. Definitely, the beaches here such as Patong and Karon, thrive of tourist activity and have a lot of water sports to entertain you. However, beaches in the southeastern part of the province are also worth a visit such as the Chalong Bay. Some of the popular attractions here are Two Heroines Monument, Thalang National Museum, The Big Buddha of Phuket, View Point, Laem Phromthep and The Khao Phra Thaeo Wildlife Conservation Development and Extension Centre. Some other fairs and events are Phuket King's Cup Regatta, Phuket Travel Fair and the Chao Le Boat Floating Festival. Krabi, another province in Thailand, is home to many National Parks such as the famous Ko Phi Phi and Ko Lanta are coral-fringed islands with some of the best diving sites. Though beaches here are less extravagant in terms of activity, tourists are said to prefer them to the noisy ones in Phuket. Also, don't forget to visit Railay Beach that attracts umpteen climbers for the Rock and Fire Festival. For all these reasons, Thailand will always be among the top vacation spots in the world.
A southern state in mystic India, Kerala has, for many years attracted tourists for its ayurvedic tourism experience. However, this happens to be only a drop in the sea of exotic experiences this state has to offer. Rightly known as God's Own Country, the state is famous for her mountain ranges, sanctuaries, houseboats, ayurvedic therapies and ecotourism initiatives. The eastern part of the state is host to a number of hill stations, the most famous being Munnar. The other are Wayanad, Peermade, Nelliyampathy, Ponmudi and Vagamon. The backwaters of Kerala are a fascinating sight, specially during the snake boat races during Onam. They also include the Vembanad Kayal, the longest lake in India. Kerala also offers a host of cultural activities and traditional events that are a favorite among explorers. The Kathakali performances, Vallam Kali (boat race), and Kalaripayattu (most difficult marital art to master in the world) performances are just some of the important ones. The Chinese fishing nets of Kochi, the Lighthouse Beach in Kovalam and the Guruvayur Temple in Guruvayur are other attractions you will love.
Perhaps the only Emirate to bank so heavily on tourism, Dubai is indeed one of the liveliest places on Earth. Tourists flock the city during the Dubai Shopping Festival held every year in January. At least till last year, Dubai Mall was the largest mall in the world. Apart from this one, there are approximately 60 other malls in Dubai with roughly 8 new ones being constructed as of now. If there is a list of 'World's Best Shopping Capitals', Dubai has to feature in each one of them. However, don't just think of this city as a shopping haven. There is definitely more to it than just that. The world's 4 tallest buildings are in Dubai, with the Burj Al Arab being the 4th tallest and The JW Marriott Marquis Dubai Hotel being the first. Dubai also has some magnificent aquariums, like the ones in Dubai Mall and Burj Al Arab. Raffles Dubai, a 19-storey pyramid-shaped hotel, is another attraction. The Palm Islands, consisting of artificial archipelagos such as Palm Jumeirah, are another must-see tourist spot. Palm Jumeirah also happens to be the largest artificial island globally. Also, don't forget to try dune bashing and the desert safari that shows us a different Dubai altogether. All in all, this destination will offer some of the world's best, be it resorts, shopping malls or landscapes.
It's a dream for many, to see the Big Five up close and personal. And what better place to turn this dream into reality than Africa? Of course, there are more animals you'd want to see once there, but the Big Five do have their own charm. Masai Mara, Amboseli, Samburu, Lake Nakuru, Tsavo, Laikipia, Meru, and Mt. Kenya are some of the best regions to spot all the important animals. Tsavo National Park, is the best for watching the wildebeest, antelope and zebra migration that takes place in August, September, and October. However, you must know that this is peak tourist season, and you'll have ample company. You can also indulge in ballooning over Masai Mara, an experience in itself. Birdwatching enthusiasts will be more than happy with this holiday as Kenya happens to be one of the best birdwatching spot in the world. Starting from October, millions of birds start their journey from Europe to Africa, which ends only in April. On the last few days, you can visit beaches with beautiful coral reefs and water sports. In Malindi, The Marine National Park offers a great snorkeling experience.
The ultimate holiday, Las Vegas is often called America's dirty little secret. From the world-famous casinos to the magnificent resorts to nightclubs and pubs, everything in Vegas tempts you to do nothing but have a party every single minute you spend there. Most tourists say they've never felt so good spending so much. Amidst the lifeless desert, stands Las Vegas, a place that shouts out life loud like none other. If you want to visit the casino, downtown LA is the right place for you. The Las Vegas Strip will offer you with an even better gaming experience. However, the strip isn't exactly within city limits but is very near. Must-see attractions include the Stratosphere Las Vegas, a tower/hotel/resort that is famous throughout USA. Others include the Fremont Street Experience, a street that is host to many famous casinos. After or before your Las Vegas holiday, you can also visit the Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area which is just 15 miles on the outskirts. Don't worry about the limited clichéd attractions. Remember, Sin City never disappoints anyone.
In one's lifetime, there is no better way to capture the beauty of our planet than by traveling to places far and wide. Personally, these places top our list of best vacation spots in the world. However, there are scores of other places one can visit across the globe. Nevertheless, these top vacation spots in the world will definitely make you experience something different and unique.