The New York Times just released a list of the top places to go in 2013, Here 26 of these up and coming travel destinations are highlighted for prime places to travel to this year.
At the top of the list is the comeback kid. After many years of it's capitol city being moved to "Brasilia" and the major financial and business center of Sao Paulo, Rio De Janeiro is once again claiming the limelight. With the World cup due to be held there in 2014, and the site of the 2016 Olympics , the city is prepping for a huge comeback. Rio's claim to fame historically has been Carnival, a huge festive party taking place in March. Now with an oil boom and the impending events of 2014 and 2016, the city is once again coming to the forefront. The artistic world, it's symphony, and great beaches are an attraction in itself, so this could be the year to get out your dancing shoes and buy that new bathing suit for a trip down south.
Falling in second place is Marseille France. This Mediterranean town is now receiving spotlight attention as a up and coming place. A culturally diverse melting pot and ancient port on a vast sea, it is now becoming a huge place for contemporary art and avant-garde celebrations and performances. The 2,000 seat le Silo, once a granary has been restored in a huge panoramic theater. Containing up to date installations and what is known as J!, which formerly was a hangar on the old port will now be the host of many events. So you might want to polish up on French Etiquette for a journey in culture and art.
Central America in the past has been a continent that has survived wars and revolution. Once being a stronghold for these rebellions, Nicarauga comes in third has a must place to go in 2013. The country is vast in nature reserves, national parks and glorious lakes. Surviving war-times and now losing that image, the country is coming to the forefront of eco tourism. Now booming in the eco-lodge business, finally the country is getting the attention it deserves as one of the next great destinations. Coastal towns of San Juan del Sur and Madera's have new lodges such as the Aqua Wellness Resort on the high end. Also not to overlook are the Corn Islands where many ex patriates are escaping to. An increasingly high end food scene is having it's own version of the extreme makeover and many of the world's top chefs are flocking to the nation. For nature lover's and bird watchers you might want to head to the Bosawas Biosphere Reserve, a lush tropical hilly rainforest with abundant wildlife and plants. The Reserve under the protection a conservation area is well worth the visit. Lake Nicarauga has charming villages and is the equivalent to Guatemala's more known Lake Aitilan, With Active volcanoes there is surely a place for the adventurous at heart to discover to gems. Whatever your taste, the country is sure to be a glorious and surprising escape from the usual commercial choices of destinations.
West Africa is a place that some only dream of, Now Accra, the capital city of Ghana, a place where mostly business travelers have been to, is quickly rising to popularity for Tourism. With a growing economy and considered one of the safer African destinations, one of their popular hotels, The Movenpick Ambassador (whose poolside bar features waiters on roller skates) is gaining status quickly. New upscale hotels such a the Marriott will feature a casino, and packed beaches are drawing people to this city. Here you can taste some local faire such as tomato-smothered Tilapia and banku, a fermented yeast paste that apparently tastes better than the sound of it, all you need to do is wash it down with some of the local beer, Star.
Landlocked in the South Asia in the Eastern Himalaya's, the Kingdom of Bhutan comes in fifth place. This Buddhist Kingdom, is a role model for the sustainable traveler. Tourist fees go towards the balance of preservation and revenue. Even though tourism is not something the country focus's on, it is also not discouraged. In striving to maintain that balance, there are new projects that are helping to make it more accessible. With only one airline that services the country , there are daily flights from Bangkok, New Delhi and Singapore. With an emphasis on Eco-Travel, more new lodges are opening up and the beautiful national park of Phobjikha Valley, an eco-tourism hub and home to endangered black-necked cranes. With an untouched countryside, and the charm of it's temples, Bhutan is gaining it's rightful place in the world has a destination to travel to.
See below for a list of additional destinations that rank among the up and coming it spots to hit in 2013:
7.) Houston, Texas
9.) New Dehli
14. Hvar, Croatia
18. Vernazza, Italy
20. Ningxia, China
22. Oslo Norway
25. Burgos Spain
26. Lens, France