If you’re trying to figure out where to go for your next vacation, you’ll find a lot of inspiration in TripAdvisor’s list of Destinations on the Rise for 2015. We’ve got six lists, actually. We’ve pinpointed those places in both the United States and the world—as well as in Europe, Asia, South America, and the South Pacific—that have seen the greatest increase in interest and positive feedback from the TripAdvisor community, year-over-year.
Personally, I want to get to these rapidly improving or lesser-known locales as quickly as possible—before everyone else hears the buzz and heads there too. Here’s how I’ll use what’s on the list as inspiration for my own travels over the next year:
Most of the international destinations are warm-weather spots suited to a winter trip. Many are on the beach—and most are surprises: The Asian destinations on the rise, for instance, are not what you find in typical Asia itineraries. The up-and-coming place in Cambodia is not Angkor Wat or Phnom Penh but the seaside resort of Sihanoukville. Next time I go to Asia, I’ll consider peppering a greatest-hits itinerary with an on-the-rise spot such as Da Nang, Vietnam; Ao Nang, Thailand; or Naha, Japan. If you’re sticking to the U.S. this winter, two of the top destinations on the rise are the Gold Rush-era ski town of Telluride, Colorado, and, on Hawaii’s Big Island, Waikoloa, on the still-authentic Kohala Coast.
Many of the U.S. destinations on the rise are coastal—and warm enough to choose for a shoulder-season spring vacation. Think Pompano Beach, Florida; Gulf Shores, Alabama; and, though it might not be bikini weather yet, Nags Head, North Carolina. Many people go to Europe in springtime rather than summer (it’s less crowded with tourists, the weather is better, there are more cultural events drawing locals), and not-your-usual-fare coastal options to consider would include Limassol, Cyprus; Bodrum City, Turkey; Cadiz, Spain; and Giardini Naxos, on the island of Sicily.
The great majority of the top destinations on the rise, in both the United States and the world, are on the water—either sea or river—and thus there’s relief from the summer heat. In the U.S., vacation spots that could be a nice alternative to the usual summer suspects are the throwback beach town of Wildwood, New Jersey; the resort playground of Traverse City, Michigan; and another coastal throwback playground, Avalon (on Catalina Island), California.
Because so many of the top destinations have warm weather, you can head there in the fall for one last gasp of summer when prices are lower. In the U.S., consider a jaunt to Prescott, Arizona—a hub for outdoors enthusiasts, with five lakes and plenty of hiking trails—or Knoxville, Tennessee—on the Tennessee River in the foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains. Most international destinations on the rise are options in the fall, including such surprises as Hurghada, Egypt, and Eilat, Israel, both Red Sea playgrounds that are sunny year-round.
Which up-and-coming destination is on your bucket list? Tell me below or, better yet, join us on Twitter next Wednesday, December 10, at 12:00 noon Eastern Standard Time, for our #DestinationsOnTheRise #TripAdvisorChat.