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Adventurer’s Dozen: The 12 Best Places to Visit in 2019

Made a resolution to travel more in the new year? To help refine your bucket list, we asked Toronto-based travel company G Adventures to share their picks for the best places to visit in 2019.

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Japanese templePhoto: G Adventures Inc.

Best Places to Visit in 2019: Japan

Japan has always been a hot spot for Canadian travellers, and it’s about to get even more popular: it plays host to the Rugby World Cup in 2019 and the Summer Olympics in 2020. Not a fan of big crowds? Skip Japan’s more popular sites and wander off the beaten path: visit the treasured castle of Matsumoto and learn about samurai culture, explore the quaint city of Hagi by bicycle, or settle in at a community homestay to truly immerse yourself in the local culture.

Don’t miss the 10 best street foods across Asia!

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Mosque in UzbekistanPhoto: Shutterstock

Best Places to Visit in 2019: Uzbekistan

In 2018, Uzbekistan relaxed its visa entry requirements by introducing a new e-visa for 51 countries, including Canada. G Adventures has seen a 72 per cent increase in travellers to Uzbekistan over the past five years, and interest in exploring the Central Asian nation shows no sign of slowing down. It’s no wonder: stunning architecture, historical significance and friendly residents make Uzbekistan one of the best places to visit in 2019. Here are more places you’d never considered visiting—but should!

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Wild monkey in SenegalPhoto: G Adventures Inc.

Best Places to Visit in 2019: Senegal

Merging important histories with stunning landscapes, Senegal is a wondrous part of Africa that’s seldom explored. Learn about daily life in a local Wolof village or get time to relax on sandy beaches: the choice is yours! Fortunately, West Africa is recovering from a dramatic dip in tourism following the Ebola crisis of 2014, and G Adventures is leading the way by introducing land-based trips in Senegal and its neighbouring country, The Gambia.

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Cherry blossom tree in TaiwanPhoto: Shutterstock

Best Places to Visit in 2019: Taiwan

Recently proclaimed by The New York Times as “Asia’s most food-obsessed country,” ample appetites and eager explorers are a match made in heaven in Taiwan. Just off Asia’s typical tourist trail, its vibrant culture shows through its bustling metropolises, awe-inspiring natural landscapes and mouthwatering night markets. Embark on these unique experiences alongside newfound friends that have equally ambitious plans to see and do it all.

Here are 10 places in southeast Asia you need to visit in your lifetime.

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Northern Sri LankaPhoto: G Adventures Inc.

Best Places to Visit in 2019: Sri Lanka

Seeking to satiate your spontaneous spirit? A sailing tour around the north coast of Sri Lanka might be for you. Visit remote islands with deserted beaches and small fishing villages, experience Tamil traditions with lunch in a local’s home, and tour Delft Island to learn about Sri Lanka’s Dutch colonial history. There’s plenty of time in between for swimming, snorkelling, stand-up paddleboarding, and kayaking to complete your experience on the water.

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Salt flats in BoliviaPhoto: Shutterstock

Best Places to Visit in 2019: Bolivia

Expect the unexpected on an adventure through Bolivia, a country experiencing a surge in popularity due in part to its stunning landscapes and the rich cultural heritage of its indigenous populations. Explore the historic capital of Sucre and sky-high La Paz, experience life at a traditional hacienda, and watch the sunset from atop the sweeping Uyuni Salt Flats.

These are the best places to visit, according to your zodiac sign.

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Iguana in Galapagos IslandsPhoto: Shutterstock

Best Places to Visit in 2019: Galápagos Islands

Visiting the Galápagos’ north and central islands is like seeing your favourite nature documentaries come to life. On this unique destination, you can spot red-footed boobies at El Barranco, snorkel around underwater craters, and visit the Charles Darwin Research Station to spot giant tortoises. When it comes to confronting the growing crisis of ocean plastics, the eco-archipelago is helping lead the charge by banning plastic bags, plastic straws and non-returnable single-use plastic bottles.

Check out one of these 10 best places to see exotic animals.

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Petra in JordanPhoto: G Adventures Inc.

Best Places to Visit in 2019: Jordan

With year-over-year traveller growth of 71 per cent for G Adventures, it’s probably safe to say that Jordan is back, mainly as a result of stability in neighbouring Egypt. See Petra’s stunning tombs and monasteries carved into rock walls, and learn about Bedouin culture during an overnight stay in the desert. Your Instagram account won’t know what hit it.

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Couple walking in IcelandPhoto: G Adventures Inc.

Best Places to Visit in 2019: Iceland

Winter is coming, and so is enthusiasm for destinations in the storied North as the final season of Game of Thrones will again cast its filming locations into the spotlight. Iceland is no exception. The otherworldly landscapes of this island nation offer perhaps the closest thing one can have to an out-of-body travel experience. From the the mosaic-like architecture of Reykjavik to the stunning black-sand beaches of Reynisfjara, the country’s beauty offers the perfect sanctuary from daily distractions back home.

Bask in the beauty of majestic Iceland with these 10 attractions.

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Spice market in EthiopiaPhoto: G Adventures Inc.

Best Places to Visit in 2019: Ethiopia

The Horn of Africa has been in the news for all the right reasons: a new peace accord between neighbouring Ethiopia and Eritrea offers strong potential for improved prosperity and tourism for both countries. Tucked in between the Middle East and Africa, Ethiopia sits in the middle of these distinctive regions and yet takes on a cultural mosaic and aesthetic that’s tangibly distinct. Think Christian churches hewn from solid rock, green peaks, and fascinating cities where luxury sports cars and assorted livestock hang out together in perfect harmony.

This country is the fastest-growing tourist destination in the world.

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Vineyard in ItalyPhoto: G Adventures Inc.

Best Places to Visit in 2019: Italy

In May 2019, Italy will celebrate the 500th anniversary of artist Leonardo da Vinci’s death, and a host of Renaissance-themed celebrations are planned throughout the country. Despite some of its main sites coming under pressure by overtourism, there are still plenty of lesser-visited regions to explore, including Capalbio, a remarkably well-preserved medieval town on the coast, and the nearby island of Monte Argentario in the Tyrrhenian Sea. Hitting destinations off the tourist trail, you’ll truly explore Italy like a local.

Don’t miss Italy’s most beautiful small towns and lakes.

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Mountains in Patagonia (Argentina)Photo: G Adventures Inc.

Best Places to Visit in 2019: Patagonia (Argentina)

The Patagonia region’s geological wonders border vast open spaces that beckon both adventure junkies and soul-seekers from all over the world. Healthy meals let you savour the finest local flavours, while hikes, kayaking, and horseback riding give you a taste of Mother Nature’s boundless potential for beauty. In July, visitors to the Patagonia region of Argentina will also be treated to a solar eclipse on the second day of the month.

Next, check out these 15 natural wonders you’ve never heard of.