Four best places you’ve never heard of
You’d think after millennia of people traveling, not to mention how quickly the world has shrunk with access to the Internet, we would have seen it all.
But here are four beautiful and intriguing highlights from places that might not be as familiar. After two and a half years, many locations are ready to welcome tourists back. These are great areas that are lesser-known, but even the most popular sites need tourists.
If you’re craving a break from busyness and noise, Haida Gwaii will give you the silence you’re longing for. A 180-mile-long archipelago off the coast of British Columbia is the ultimate getaway for nature lovers. May-September is the summer season, with more tourist services available and a greater chance of seeing spectacular wildlife like the Orca migration. But if you’re into surfing, try October-May for the best waves.
To get a feel for what life was like for the Vikings, hop a ferry from Denmark or Iceland and check out the Faroe Islands. Located about 400 miles off the coast of Northern Europe and accessible by flights and ferries year-round, the Faroe Islands are ringed with dramatic green cliffs that plunge into the ocean, sparkling bays, and breathtaking Nordic scenery. In the city of Gjógv, stay in an authentic sod-roofed hotel and take hikes up into the mountains with a spectacular view of the gorge below. Go in July or August for mild temps and long days.
A hidden travel gem lies in the Western Baltics, which is already a somewhat-unknown region brimming with breathtaking scenery and a proud cultural heritage. The Via Dinarica is a year-round adventurer’s wonderland. Love gorgeous summer hikes and biking tours? This trail stretches through 1,200 miles of varied terrain and eight different countries in May-September. If you’re into skiing and snowshoeing, hit the Via Dinarica from January to mid-March for a pristine wonderland. Stay in remote mountain shelters or immerse yourself in centuries-old tradition by staying with local host families.
We see many of Japan’s bustling cities, its towering skyscrapers, its industry, its bright lights. But if you’re interested in reclining into the contemplative heart of Japan, seek out Koyasan, a pristine monastic complex two hours south of Osaka by train and the seat of Japanese Shingon Buddhism. Many temples here offer guest rooms, and you can get a feel for what monastic life is like in the lush, misty mountain interior. Savor the simple flavors of clean Buddhist eating, take in morning rituals, or hike along winding green mountain paths by lantern and moonlight. After the intense and unique sensory experiences that the large urban areas of Japan provide, Koyasan is the perfect retreat into silence, simplicity, and mystery.
One of the many reasons we love what we do as travel agents are that there is so much to see, take in, and learn. We all have the fantastic opportunity to launch out into new places, to find some new adventure that will change us forever — and we love getting to be a part of that process.
If you’re feeling that pull to places that are new to you, contact us today, and let’s start planning your next adventure!