Best places to see in 2016: reports

Tanzania (photo courtesy of Travel + Leisure)
Tanzania (photo courtesy of Travel + Leisure)

It is winter after all. The warmer-than-normal temperature won’t stay around forever. So what have you planned, in terms of vacation getaways, in 2016? If you haven’t given it much thought, we have digested so suggestions from two of the biggest travel magazines in North America: Fodor’s and Travel + Leisure.

Both lists highlighted some incredible destinations, including exotic beaches, major metropolitan cities, natural wonders, culinary adventures and a lot more.

Some of Fodor’s overseas top choices included:

SICILY: The largest island in the Mediterranean boasts a nascent wine scene that will surprise and delight any oenophile.

GUADELOUPE: You’ll find a blend of Afro-Caribbean customs and French style on these exotic tropical islands.

ABU DHABI: The capital of the United Arab Emirates offers luxury, adventure, and, soon, three major cultural institutions.

ST. HELENA: New flights allow you to experience one of the world’s most remote places.

GUAM: The furthest-flung U.S. territory is a tropical paradise waiting to be explored.

Georgia (photo courtesy of Travel + Leisure)
Georgia (photo courtesy of Travel + Leisure)

ECUADOR: This vibrant South American nation is so much more than a gateway to the Galápagos.

ADELAIDE: An under-the-radar Australian city for lovers of food, wine, and the arts.

FAROE ISLANDS: With stunning landscapes and an artistic scene that’s rich in Scandinavian cool, these remote islands are the new Iceland.

BAVARIA: If celebrating Oktoberfest in Germany is on your bucket list, 2016 is the year to do it.

FEZ: Move over, Marrakesh—this Moroccan city isn’t playing second fiddle anymore.

SAN SEBASTIÁN: One of Spain’s top culinary destinations is a 2016 European Capital of Culture.

CUBA: Extraordinary history and culture await on a fascinating island nation in the midst of sweeping changes.

LITHUANIA: A melting pot of European cultures that lures travelers with its beautifully baroque capital and striking white-sand beaches.

TAIPEI: A modern Asian megalopolis steps into the spotlight as World Design Capital. This Taiwanese city is more fun and less expensive than Tokyo and Hong Kong.

NORMANDY: A cradle of world history and French culture welcomes a revamped UNESCO site, Impressionism, and the Tour de France.

NEPAL: Join in the post-earthquake rebuilding efforts on voluntourism trips and by contributing much-needed tourism dollars.

PHILIPPINES: Some of the world’s best beaches and scuba diving await in Southeast Asia.

HAITI: The island nation’s vibrant culture and people beckon intrepid travelers as tourism quietly rebounds following its devastating earthquake.

Meanwhile, the editors at Travel + Leisure picked these destinations for your consideration in 2016.

Liège: Once a blue-collar paradise for coal miners and steelworkers, this Belgium city is the surprising new destination for art and food this summer.

Andaman Islands, India (photo courtesy of Travel + Leisure)
Andaman Islands, India (photo courtesy of Travel + Leisure)

Iberá Wetlands: Argentina is home to endless pampas, Patagonian desert, and the world’s second-largest wetlands, with an indigenous wildlife population that’s been drastically dwindling, until now.

Georgia: The origins of wine can be traced back to this region, which straddles the border between Europe and Asia.

Casablanca: Morocco’s largest city has emerged as the gateway between Europe and Africa—and not just for the corporate types moving into the upcoming Casablanca Finance City complex.

Chiloe: When LAN Airlines began flying in to a new airport in this Chilean coastal town several years ago, word about the island and its surrounding archipelago began spreading fast.

Borneo: This lush island (part Indonesian, part Malaysian) has long been known as the home of the endangered Bornean orangutan—and as one of Asia’s last surviving great rain-forest habitats.

Canouan: Want to go where the billionaires go to get away from the millionaires? That’s how some locals describe Canouan, a tiny island within St. Vincent and the Grenadines.

Zimbabwe: The crowds remain relatively small and the prices low for this exotic destination. But November’s opening of the Victoria Falls Airport, allowing for direct international flights, could change things drastically.

Siberia: If this vast stretch of arctic tundra and snowy forests in Russian territory seems a bit inhospitable, think again.

Placencia: Belize is still great for backpackers—much like Costa Rica in the 1980s—but certain areas have also become bona fide retreats for the well-heeled.

Tasmania: The opening of the groundbreaking Museum of Old and New Art, in 2011, was a tipping point of sorts for Tasmania.

Costa Rica: Few places have the biological diversity of Costa Rica, with its cloud forests, wetlands, and tens of thousands of unique species of flora and fauna.

Wales: It’s only recently that adventure travelers have mentioned Wales in the same breath as places like New Zealand and Utah.

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil (photo courtesy of Travel + Leisure)
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil (photo courtesy of Travel + Leisure)

Rio de Janeiro: The 2014 World Cup was merely a prelude to all that’s to come for this Brazilian city, which returns to the spotlight this year as the host of the 2016 Summer Olympic Games.

Zagreb: Croatia’s pretty capital of Zagreb—often overlooked in the shadows of the Adriatic Coast and islands—is blossoming as a destination.

Galle: Once a pit stop on the Spice Route for rowdy sailors, this Sri Lankan city is an easy, hour-long drive from Colombo.

Andaman Islands: Jacques Cousteau was dazzled by the coral reefs and marine life of the remote Andaman Islands in India when he visited the archipelago for his 1990 film Andaman: Invisible Islands.

Zanzibar: Its allure is hardly a secret. For centuries, waves of Swahili, Portuguese, Omani, and Chinese traders have left their cultural marks on the archipelago off the coast of Tanzania.

Ljubljana: With its café-lined streets and medieval architecture, you would be forgiven for mistaking Slovenia’s jewel box of a capital for Prague, save for one key distinction: the lack of tourists.

Taipei: Being chosen by both travel magazines for their ‘top destinations’ list, the Taiwanese capital is finally getting some recognition it deserves. For years, without fanfare or fuss, Taipei was known by travel insiders as one of Asia’s most compelling cities.

Aarhus: Denmark’s second city rarely gets a moment in the limelight, since its big sister Copenhagen takes much of the glory.

Bocas del Toro: The Isthmus of Panama is home to some of the purest natural beauty in Latin America: dense tropical rain forests, wide savannas, coral reefs bursting with aquatic life, and delightfully deserted beaches.

— this article is a digest of both Fodor’s and Travel + Leisure magazines.