16 off-beat destinations for the intrepid traveller

"Вопрос не в том, кто мне разрешит, а в том, кто сможет мне запретить." Айн Рэнд ©
Время на прочтение: 4 минут(ы)

We have cast around the planet for those cities that matched up to our New Nomad criteria – those places that aren’t on every traveller’s map, that aren’t suffering from destination fatigue, but contain enough intrigue and curiosity to satisfy any craving for urban adventure and escape. We wanted cities that hadn’t sold out to overwhelming invasions of visitors, that had kept their personality and authenticity intact, that hadn’t become museum pieces but were lively, engaging places where you can meet creative local people and get a sense of your location. These are the places that may very well be on everyone’s lips in three years’ time…

  • 16 off-beat destinations for the intrepid traveller

    1. Lagos, Nigeria

    One of Africa’s liveliest creative scenes, with ART X Lagos, October Fashion Week and multiple Afrobeat stars. The Wheatbaker hotel hosts rotating art shows; try Nok for ramped-up street food.

  • 16 off-beat destinations for the intrepid traveller

    2. Kiev, Ukraine

    It’s got that industrial-edge thing going on, like Berlin 20 years ago. Get a room at Bauhaus-style Bursa, order borscht and a beer at Kanapa by star chef Yaroslav Artyukh, go on a graffiti safari.

  • 16 off-beat destinations for the intrepid traveller

    3. San Luis Potosi, Mexico

    Heard of it? Didn’t think so. While most visitors are heading to Mexico City, this former gold- and silver-mining town attracts domestic visitors for its baroque Templo de San Francisco de Asis.

  • 16 off-beat destinations for the intrepid traveller

    4. Aalborg, Denmark

    This one-time industrial hub in the sunny north is now at the forefront of urban sustainability, reviving its waterfront with architectural hits. Take the train from Copenhagen to avoid flygskam (flight shame).

  • 16 off-beat destinations for the intrepid traveller

    5. Dakar, Senegal

    This art-centric capital – its Biennale is back in 2020, and check Créas I Am gallery for its upcycled work – is also Africa’s best surf destination. The Beku Si hotel from Bantu Wax adds extra cred.

  • 16 off-beat destinations for the intrepid traveller

    6. Launceston, Tasmania

    As the island heats up, its second city has sophisticated tours through vineyards and a lively boutique-spirits scene. Step out with Wukalina Walk, Tasmania’s first Aborigine-owned guide project.

  • 16 off-beat destinations for the intrepid traveller

    7. Yerevan, Armenia

    Following Armenia’s own Velvet Revolution, post-oligarch Yerevan is a playground of retro-cool Soviet architecture and galleries. Stay at the Alexander, eat at Sherep, hike the new Transcaucasian Trail.

  • 16 off-beat destinations for the intrepid traveller

    8. Pristina, Kosovo

    The city, which toasted Kosovo’s 11th anniversary by adding new air routes, will host the nomadic Manifesta art project in 2022. There’s a refreshing lack of sights, but a hot café culture – try Lulu’s.

  • 16 off-beat destinations for the intrepid traveller

    9. Cuenca, Ecuador

    It’s an off-grid trifecta of what we all want now: a gorgeous UNESCO World Heritage Site, drop-the-phone-and-stare beauty in the surrounding El Cajas National Park and wild rainforest hiking trails.

  • 16 off-beat destinations for the intrepid traveller

    10. Lahore, Pakistan

    More Mughal architectural hits than Delhi or Agra, but hardly any of the Western visitors. Direct flights to Islamabad and improved security are putting it back on the travel map (book with Wild Frontiers).

  • 16 off-beat destinations for the intrepid traveller

    11. Salvador, Brazil

    The country’s Afro-Brazilian epicentre has palm-studded coastlines and candy-coloured villas; now it’s giving Rio a run for its reais with a shiny subway and an Art Deco–style hotel.

  • 16 off-beat destinations for the intrepid traveller

    12. Zadar, Croatia

    Everyone goes to Dubrovnik; far fewer find this coastal spot (stay at Hotel Almayer), which is also the gateway for the Kornati Islands: an uninhabited, lunar-like landscape that forms the Med’s last wilderness.

  • 16 off-beat destinations for the intrepid traveller

    13. Ponta Delgada, Azores

    The whitewashed capital of the neon-green volcanic archipelago is at the heart of a budding design- and eco-conscious local hotel movement, led by Sul Villas.

  • 16 off-beat destinations for the intrepid traveller

    14. Jodhpur, India

    Quite literally the frontier city for the Thar Desert, yet often bypassed for Jaipur and Udaipur. Its old town is being restored, but with locals in mind, while the 10-room Rohet House hotel opens this autumn.

  • 16 off-beat destinations for the intrepid traveller

    15. Songkhla, Thailand

    Thailand’s creative crowd are heading to this small city near the Malaysian border, where trad shop-houses are being turned into cool cafés. Visit The Apothecary of Singora concept store.

  • 16 off-beat destinations for the intrepid traveller

    16. Kansas City, Missouri

    This soulful locale just got its first designer hotel, Crossroads. But it’s the Americana – BBQ, blues, denim (see Vogue favourite Baldwin) – that give it appeal when so many other US towns have been hipsterfied.

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