Holidays in 2019 are no longer far away so it’s time to start thinking about where you want to travel in the new year.
For those looking for travel inspiration, ABTA has revealed its top destinations to watch for 2019.
Research from ABTA (Association of British Travel Agents) reveals that, in the next 12 months, 46 per cent of people are likely to visit a country they’ve never been to before. What’s more, over half (53 per cent) are likely to visit a new resort or city.
These are the best destinations to discover next year according to ABTA.
Holidays: ABTA reveals the best destinations for 2019
Where to go in 2019
Bulgaria has always been a favourite for holidaymakers looking for good value breaks in the lively resorts along the Black Sea; Sunny Beach, Golden Sands and the UNESCO world heritage town of Nessebar. In the winter, visitors flock to the ski resorts of Borovets, Bansko and Pamporovo for their relatively easy slopes and very good value pricing.
This year, Bulgaria will be in the spotlight as the ancient city of Plovdiv takes centre stage as the European Capital of Culture.
Denver is an increasingly sophisticated and cosmopolitan city with a great restaurant scene. Its inhabitants are particularly proud of the large number of “brewpubs” in their city.
The Rocky Mountain National Park and the land around Pike’s Peake are the best places to view the spectacular, unspoiled landscapes of this dramatic state.
Durban, South Africa
Durban, South Africa’s third largest city, will be easier to reach in 2019 with British Airways launching direct flights from the UK.
Durban’s harbour area buzzes with bars, restaurants and vibrant nightlife. It is also the gateway to the province of Kwa-Zulu Natal and the mountains and landscapes of the Ukhahlamba Drakensberg.
Holidays: ABTA reveals the best destinations for 2019
Colorado: The Rocky Mountain National Park is best to view the spectacular, unspoiled landscapes
Galicia boasts great seafood and dramatic coastlines. It has a number of historic cities, which are well worth a visit, but the star is undoubtedly Santiago de Compostela which, for centuries, has been one of Europe’s main pilgrimage destinations.
Another city to visit is La Coruna, which is situated on a beautiful sandy bay and home to a 2000-year-old, perfectly preserved Roman lighthouse, named Hercules Tower.
Tens of thousands of sports fans will be joining the millions of tourists heading to Japan as the country hosts the Rugby World Cup in Autumn 2019.
Travelling to many of the host venues, already well served by incredibly efficient, state of the art bullet trains will be even easier as British Airways has announced it will launch direct flights to Kansai airport near Osaka from spring 2019.
The capital Tokyo mixes the ultra-modern, with cutting edge design, fashion and architecture, with the ancient legacy of thousands of years of Japanese tradition and culture. Japan also has plenty of ski resorts, with the most popular located in Hokkaido – here you can visit resorts such as Sapporo, Niseko or Furano for amazing dry powder.
Holidays: Galicia, Spain boasts great seafood and dramatic coastlines
In 2019, cultured holidaymakers will be heading to Jordan after easyJet and Ryanair launched new flight routes.
Jordan’s jewel in the crown is the ancient Nabatean city of Petra, carved out of solid rose-red rock, only accessible through a narrow winding passage. Jordan is also home to two very different seas; the super salty Dead Sea, where you can happily bob around in its mineral-rich water and the diver’s paradise of the Red Sea with its stunning coral reefs.
The Atlantic island of Madeira has been welcoming discerning visitors for years, attracted by its mild climate, rugged beauty and lush countryside.
The island is also increasingly gaining a reputation for adventure and activity holidays, with mountain biking, canyoning and climbing in its dramatic, landscapes, which include snow-covered mountains ‘picos’ in the winter. Madeira is crisscrossed by mountain trails known as ‘levadas’ which offer unrivalled trekking opportunities, some passing through lengthy tunnels or over deep canyons.
Poland has more destinations with direct flights from the UK than mainland Spain, and adventurous holidaymakers are increasingly using this exceptional connectivity to explore this country’s historic cities and often unspoiled and beautiful countryside.
Poland is a large country with a varied landscape dotted with lakes, medieval castles, red-bricked fortresses and ancient wooden churches. Krakow remains the jewel in the crown, but other cities, which are well worth a visit, are the capital Warsaw, Lodz, Lublin, Poznan and Wroclaw.
Holidays: Poland is a large country with a varied landscape dotted with lakes and medieval castles
Thessaloniki – a vibrant, lively city has achieved something of a renaissance following the award-winning redevelopment of its waterfront. This area of Greece is ancient Macedonia; birthplace to Alexander the Great. This Macedonian heritage is spectacularly evident in the incredibly well preserved UNESCO world heritage sites of Philippi and Vergina.
Those looking for sun, sea and sand should head to the three-pronged peninsulas of Halkidiki, which has some of the best beaches in Greece.
Under a new reforming Government, travelling to Uzbekistan has become much simpler, with relaxed entry requirements, easier access to currency and greatly improved transport links.
Uzbekistan is one of the fabled countries of the Silk Road, for centuries the main overland trading route from the East to the West. Samarkand contains some incredibly beautiful buildings covered in intricate carvings, mosaics and tiles, including the Gur Amir Mausoleum, Bibi Khanym Mosque and the Shah-i-Zinda complex.
The journey time to Western Australia has reduced somewhat, following Qantas’ introduction of a non-stop, 17-hour flight to the state’s capital Perth, in 2018.
There is so much to see and cover in this enormous state, but a trip to Purnululu National Park and one of Australia’s greatest natural wonders – the densely packed Bungle Bungle range – will leave visitors with unforgettable memories.
The state has seemingly endless dramatic coastlines where you can view whales, dolphins and the world’s largest fish, the whale shark. It even has its own answer to the Great Barrier Reef, the Ningaloo Reef, situated off the central Coral Coast.