We like to treat our New Year’s resolutions like a bucket list – with a one-year deadline.
Which is to say: These 10 destinations are on our travel radar between now and the time 2015 wraps up. Some are new adventures, while others were so good the first time that we simply have to indulge in round two.
Yes, averaging almost a trip a month is ambitious, but isn’t that what setting goals for the New Year is all about?
So if you’re in the same boat – or, rather, on the same plane – below you’ll find the perfect destination for every young professional taste:
For the Culture: Istanbul, Turkey
East meets West in the Eurasian metropolis, with equal parts Old World charm and modern flair. Spending a morning at the Grand Bazaar followed by a late lunch and cocktails at one of the city’s swank waterside hotels is an exceptional contrast worthy of any weekend away.
For the Cuisine: Lisbon, Portugal
Our dining experiences in Lisbon have been among the best we’ve had anywhere – and they come at unbelievably affordable prices. Most restaurants offer tapas-style menus, tight quarters, and exceptional wine selections; so expect a social outing every time. Our favourite: Taberna da Rua das Flores.
For the Nightlife: Berlin, Germany
Sorry New York, but Berlin’s actually the city that never sleeps. Many clubs are open 24 hours from midnight Friday until sometime around sunrise Monday morning, and the German capital’s thriving cocktail scene is definitely worth diving into. We love Bar Tausend (8pm-5:30am) for an upscale vibe and King Size (9pm-7am) on rowdier nights.
For the Urban Experience: Tokyo, Japan
Nothing says ‘urban’ like sharing a city with almost 38 million people. On top of world-class shopping, dining, and transit, part of Tokyo’s appeal is immersing yourself in the city’s blistering pace and appreciating the efficiencies of managing such an extremely dense population. Keep your head up.
For the Nature: Andes Mountains, Chile
Do a quick Google image search. Convinced yet?
For an Adventure: Iran
Fascinating history, desert trekking, stunning terrain, warm hospitality, and the fact that it’s somewhat of a taboo destination are all reasons why Iran ranks high on our 2015 travel bucket list. Secret Compass’ 2015 expedition is an excellent way to experience the country’s adventurous side.
For the History: Jordan
Between Petra, established as early as 312 BC, and the capital, Amman, which is among the oldest continuously inhabited cities in the world, Jordan offers an experience your high school history teacher wouldn’t know what to do with. Don’t worry, though, a day-trip to the Dead Sea is definitely doable if your brain starts to hurt.
To Experience Paradise (before it’s lost): The Maldives
Again, start off with a Google image search if you’re unfamiliar. This is the ultimate escape for couples, the kind of trip where the word “vacation” applies in the most literal sense. Leave your phone on airplane mode.
To Splurge: Dubai, UAE
This shouldn’t come as a secret, but if it’s luxury you’re after, there’s simply nowhere else in the world that can compete with Dubai’s opulence. What it lacks in substance, it more than makes up for in glitz and glamour.
To Rejuvenate: Iceland
A trip to Iceland is like a reset button for your mind, body, and soul. Lava field excursions, geothermal pools, unrivalled hiking opportunities, serene rural stopovers, and fascinating cuisine – almost entirely sourced domestically – are the answer to your next work-week from hell.
Cover image from: istock.com/Nick_Thompson