Calling all jetsetters! Add cool destinations in Japan, Scotland, Canada and more to your 2023 travel bucket list.
We’re approaching the end of 2022, and you know what that means! It’s time to start planning ahead for a whole year’s worth of new adventures. There are tons of incredible places to choose from, and we know it can be a little overwhelming to decide where to go. So we’ve put together a list of trending travel destinations you’ll want to visit first in 2023.
Best travel destinations for 2023
1. Hokkaido, Japan
Hokkaido is a winter wonderland you can’t miss. Think of vast snowy landscapes and healing onsen hot springs. During the winter months, thrillseekers can head to Niseko and Rusutsu to take part in activities like skiing, snowmobiling and snowboarding.
The natural beauty of this island is also unparalleled. Don’t believe us? Just stop by Shiretoko National Park for pristine forests and wildlife. And you’ve got to indulge in the fresh seafood – Hokkaido’s not known as Japan’s seafood capital for nothing. Fill up on bowls piled high with fatty salmon, sweet scallops and briny uni.
2. Da Nang, Vietnam
Looking for sun, sand and sea? Da Nang is calling. This vibrant, underrated city in Vietnam is home to some of the most beautiful stretches of sand. From My Khe’s bustling beachfront to Non Nuoc’s secluded scene, there’s something to suit every traveller. You can even go for a good round of snorkelling around Cham Island.
But the beach life isn’t all Da Nang is good for. It also sports several fascinating historical attractions. You can’t miss trekking through myriad caves and tunnels within the storied Marble Mountains, or traipsing ‘round the well-preserved ancient city of Hoi An. Book those tickets today!
3. Jeju Island, South Korea
Located off the coast of South Korea, Jeju Island is a picturesque travel destination perfect for those looking to get away from it all. We’re talking about majestic waterfalls, romantic sunrises and sunsets, and quaint cafes you can’t get enough of.
Treat yourself to gorgeous views of nature (and even a crater lake) when you hike to the top of Hallasan, the highest peak in South Korea. You’ll be the envy of your friends when you snap golden hour pictures at the rocky coastline of Yongmeori Beach. Also, dig into seafood caught by haenyeo – Jeju Island’s community of women divers. They may even put on a show for you filled with folklore songs and pre-diving rituals.
4. Edinburgh, Scotland
The beautiful travel destination of Edinburgh is a feast for the eyes. We think its medieval structures, deep lochs, delicious cuisine and ancient castles are straight out of a fairy tale. Learn all about Scottish history at the grand Edinburgh Castle or climb up Arthur’s Seat for sweeping views of the surrounding area.
Feeling thirsty? Grab a pint down at Duddingston’s Sheep Heid Inn – the oldest pub in all of Scotland. You’ll definitely catch us on this magical Harry Potter walking tour exploring the city where the iconic Wizarding World and its stories were conceived.
5. New York City, USA
Never been to the Big Apple? Well, it’s time to put this city on your travel bucket list. You’ll recognise its skyline, streets and corners in several of your favourite Hollywood films and TV shows. Think Friends, Gossip Girl, King Kong and even The Avengers.
Tuck into a picnic at Central Park, explore the hallways of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and beat on your chest at the top of the Empire State Building. And don’t get us started on the food. It’s burgers, hot dogs and pizzas galore in New York City.
6. Montreal, Canada
From its historic Old Town to its thriving art and culture scene, there’s never a dull moment in Montreal, Canada. Pop down for a wealth of beautifully-preserved buildings, including the Notre-Dame Basilica with its stunning stained glass windows, and the Old Port clock tower that offers amazing views of the harbour.
For art lovers, a visit to the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts is a must to browse a fine collection of ancient to contemporary art. Tip: make sure your travel plans line up with some of the city’s many festivals like the Just for Laughs Comedy Festival or the Montreal International Jazz Festival.
7. Bangkok, Thailand
If shopping and eating are high on your list, a getaway to Bangkok is a must-do. It’s rich in good food, bustling markets, hidden bars and affordable massage parlours to melt away your stress. We’re sure you’re already familiar with Chatuchak Weekend Market (and its 15,000 street stalls). But you’ve also got to make time to survey its gritty, lesser-known corners.
Pop down to Talad Noi, a hipster haven full of cafes and funky graffiti walls. Or explore the alleyways of Soi Nana for late-night drinks with friends. While you’re quenching your thirst on gin-based tipples at Teens of Thailand, we’ll be at Jodd Fairs trying on cute clothes and stuffing our faces with Yaowarat grilled buns.
8. Lucerne, Switzerland
We can’t get enough of Lucerne’s picturesque scenery that looks straight out of a postcard. This city in Switzerland is home to gorgeous buildings, towering mountains and pristine lakes. Start your journey at the Chapel Bridge that spans across the Reuss River. Its attached water tower was built in the 14th century and is the oldest preserved building in Lucerne.
Next, venture through the Old Town’s charming cobblestone streets, medieval buildings and shops. Admire attractions like Jesuit Church – one of the most beautiful churches in the city – and Glacier Garden, a series of grottoes and underground tunnels formed thousands of years ago. End off with a boat trip on Lake Lucerne, a body of water surrounded by the lovely Swiss Alps. It’ll truly be an unforgettable adventure.
9. Langkawi, Malaysia
Looking for a travel destination that’s closer to home? Langkawi in Malaysia is perfect for you. This archipelago of 99 islands is known for its sandy beaches, lush rainforests and myriad outdoor activities.
Go jet skiing on Pantai Cenang Beach and perk up on refreshing drinks at its nearby bars and restaurants. Then, hop on a boat tour of the island to observe wildlife like sea turtles, monkeys and eagles. Before the day ends, take the cable car up to the Langkawi Sky Bridge for breathtaking views of the Andaman Sea.
Crystal clear waters and white sandy beaches await you in the Maldives. This beautiful country in the Indian Ocean brims with unique charm and character. Of course, it’s no secret that it’s the top destination for snorkelling and diving.
Check in to a luxury resort for the ultimate pampering getaway. We recommend signing up for activities like sunset cruises, island-hopping tours and relaxing spas for the full Maldivian experience. If you’ve got the time (and money), reserve a seat at Subsix. This unique restaurant and bar offers amazing music, delicious food and drinks while you’re submerged 10 feet underwater.
So, which travel destination have you set your sights on in 2023?