Top 2021 goals you need right now
If you can go, why not go to a country that needs your support?
Author: Tariq Engineer
It’s no secret that tourism makes up a large part of the economies of many countries. Since travel is impossible for most people during the COVID-19 pandemic, so many nations around the world have lost essential income simply because of a lack of visitors.
When you’re ready to start planning your first post-COVID trip, choose a country that really needs you. Whether you want to laze around on the beach for some time or like the idea of escaping the crowds to explore a lesser-known area, there are plenty of wonderful destinations with tourism industries that are in dire need of a boost. To inspire you, we’ve selected some of our top 2021 travel destinations that will not only amaze you, but also give you the opportunity to support local communities.
Spain is one of the European countries hardest hit by the low visitor numbers caused by the pandemic. The tourism industry accounts for 10 to 12 percent of total GDP. When you book a vacation to Spain later this year, not only will you get a firsthand experience of this beautiful nation, but you will also be able to support the local restaurants, hotels and hospitality workers.
If you want to avoid the crowds during your trip, avoid the busy cities and coastal areas by going off the beaten track to northern Spain. The beautiful region is blessed with a dramatic mountain backdrop and is known as the birthplace of delicious, full-bodied La Rioja wines. Spend your vacation peaceful walks in the wilderness or indulge in socially distant wine tasting tours. Enjoy some of the best Spanish wines in one of the many vineyards in the La Rioja region. There are several charming villages in the region such as San Millán de la Cogolla, and you can wander through numerous exquisite cathedrals.
Vineyard in La RiojaTraditional tapasPark Güell in Barcelona by architect Antoni GaudiLaguardia Village
Croatia is another European nation that relies on tourism for at least a tenth of its GDP. The sun-drenched country has a wide coastline and is dotted with fascinating cities, each with its own personality. Thanks to Croatia’s many beautiful inland and seaside landscapes, you will find it to be a top destination for COVID-19 friendly outdoor activities in 2021. Plitvice Lakes National Park, halfway between Zagreb and the coast, is known for its brilliant blue waters, waterfalls and lush forests that are home to all kinds of adorable wildlife.
Alternatively, the beautiful Goriska Brda wine region in neighboring Slovenia is known for its local gastronomy. The lush hills between the Alps and the Adriatic are dotted with vineyards and picturesque historic villages. Treat your palate to a glass of crispy Rebula wine paired with a rustic dish like Staqis – a traditional fish soup.
Old town of DubrovnikPublic art installationsPlitvice LakesSailing tours along the coast
As one of the most beautiful beach destinations in the world, it’s no surprise that Fiji attracts tens of thousands of tourists every year! Unfortunately, the pandemic has prevented many visitors from getting to Fiji’s spectacular coastlines, meaning the economy has been particularly hard hit. After the past year, many of us are looking for a haven in a tropical paradise. If you want to support the local economy in Fiji while still keeping your distance from your fellow travelers, heading to one of the lesser-known, remote islands is a great solution.
The island of Taveuni is a true oasis due to its nutrient-rich volcanic soil and one of the most fertile places in the region. It is a hotspot for bird watching and trekking in the green countryside. Enjoy the scenery with a quiet stroll in Bouma National Heritage Park or challenge yourself with a dauntless hike to Mt. Uluiqalau or Des Voeux Peak – the two highest peaks in Fiji!
Secluded island paradiseYasawa Islands divingNavala VillageExploring the inner forest
Mauritius is another top 2021 travel destination blessed with golden sandy beaches, luxury hotels, and a truly welcoming culture. Like many countries in the Indian Ocean, tourism accounts for 6 to 10 percent of Mauritius’ total GDP. Post COVID-19, plan a COVID-19 trip to enjoy sun, sea, and relaxation.
The island is full of peaceful rural areas full of tropical flora and fauna. Stay on the coast or book an inland rainforest escape where you will find the Black River Gorges National Park, with its rolling hills and lush valleys. You can even combine your vacation in Mauritius with an unforgettable African safari. Observe the wildlife in their natural habitats in South Africa or Kenya before taking a direct flight to Mauritius for a few days in paradise.
Le Morne Brabant peninsulaIsland cruisesUnderwater exploration on a sub-scooter5 star resorts in Mauritius
Mexico is a country known for its vibrant culture, tempting cuisine, and miles of sandy beaches. It is consistently one of the top destinations for a sunny short vacation in 2021. It is also heavily dependent on tourism for a good part of its GDP. In fact, the industry in Mexico is estimated to employ nearly 2.3 million people! With many running out of valuable income in 2020, now is the time to support the national and local economies by planning an exciting vacation to Mexico. Why not go a little further instead of venturing to popular destinations like Cancun?
Located near the Mexican border with Guatemala, Palenque is a must-see for anyone fascinated by Mayan history. Nestled in the heart of the rainforest, it teems with beautiful UNESCO World Heritage temples, many of which have yet to be fully excavated. If you dream of a beach vacation, Campeche is a quieter, yet equally idyllic alternative to some of Mexico’s busiest resorts. In addition to gorgeous views over the turquoise Gulf of Mexico, the fortified coastal city is dotted with UNESCO landmarks, from pastel-colored mansions to a huge limestone cathedral.
Palenque ruins, YucatanHierve el Agua, OaxacaHacienda Puerta, Campeche
Let us help you help out with these top 2021 goals. Talk to one of our experts about booking your first big trip to a country in need of a tourism boost! For more information on how we support local communities, see our Responsible Travel Promise.
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