The best part about traveling is when you can fully enjoy those special nuances about your dream vacation destination. We’re going to bet that you’ve never heard a friend express his/her excitement about seeing an overcrowded Mayan ruin while on vacation in Mexico; or spill the amazing details about missing out on a sold out sunset cruise in Lake Como, Italy, as part of their destination wedding celebration. Unfortunately, high tourist season has its drawbacks, but it’s an obstacle you can tackle when you consult a trusted Vacation travel agent, who can help you avoid the crowds when planning your next trip. But first, here are some things you should consider before locking down specific dates for your dream getaway, including how to be strategic about where to go and when.
Explore Alternate Options to Must-See Sights
Most travelers flock to popular destinations such as Machu Picchu and Angkor Wat because they are jaw-dropping sights that you have to see to believe. But when planning your next vacation, you should consider visiting places that are as equally amazing and give you more breathing space. For example, instead of visiting Taj Mahal in India, consider a trip to Humayun’s Tomb, another awe-inspiring example of Mughal architecture. It’s thought that this may have inspired the design of the other more famous and crowded site located 124 miles away. For outdoor and nature lovers, Canada’s National Parks are usually a nice alternative to the overcrowded parks in the US. Explore the Canadian wilderness on your own with a fraction the crowd.
Consider a Vacation in an Underrated Spot
Expand your travel horizons and consider off-the-beaten-path honeymoon or destination that most of your friends may question, but after your trip, they’ll be asking you for travel tips to these less-traveled destinations, such as the Faroe Islands in Denmark. This overlooked spot is known for its soaring cliffs, beautiful coastlines and its only Michelin-starred restaurant, Koks Restaurant. Ask one of Vacation’s expert travel agents why Nordic country is irresistible if you enjoy exploring unparalleled natural wonders.
Post-winter thaw, hip Montreal and stunning Vancouver can be crowded with tourists, but vacationers should consider Toronto and take a tour with a local guide to explore one of these multicultural cities and must-see sights such as the Little Italy, Chinatown, the Distillery District, CN Tower, Hockey Hall of Fame and High Park. On the other side of the Atlantic, Ljubljana – the capital of Slovenia – serves up the canals, castles and lots of green space. An alternative to other European cities, Ljubljana has plenty of café terraces, alternative clubs and arty hangouts for travelers looking for immersive experiences with the locals.
Stay in a Local Neighborhood or Suburb
With the growth of boutique hotels and homestays, travelers don’t have to stay in the city center anymore. Get a different perspective away from the casual tourists and explore neighborhoods that make a city unique. For example, if you’re traveling to Amsterdam, consider staying the city’s vibrant districts such as artsy Westerpark or diverse Indische Buurt. You’ll quickly learn why the Venice of the North is more than the Red Light District.
Heading to London? Every neighborhood is like a mini-city. One of our expert travel agents can help you find a place to stay in one of London’s neighborhoods like hip Hackney or creative Camden. And don’t worry, you can still get out and explore by riding the Tube, for the quintessential London experience.
Visit Popular Destinations During the Off-Season
A travel agent can be essential to put your mind at ease during the trip-planning process. They can also help you determine the best times to visit popular destinations when they’re not swarming with tourists. That’s right, they’ll offer the best times to visit after the crowds have gone! Explore the beauty of iconic destinations such as Venice, Italy, by skipping the summer and visit in the fall. Just remember to pack a jacket, but it’ll be worth the space you’ll have to step back and fully enjoy exploring this historic city.
Visiting Turkey during the shoulder season allows you to soak up the sun at a coastal resort or hit the hip neighborhoods in sprawling Istanbul to avoid the stress of the big crowds. And if you’re contemplating a trip to South Africa, visit the country during the low-season without the hot weather and you may be lucky enough to reap the rewards of discounted safaris and less-crowded wineries. Your glass of Pinotage will taste better with fewer people around.
Inspired by this article and want to speak with an expert travel agent about how you can plan an unforgettable vacation without the crowd? Let one of Vacation’s on-call travel experts match you with a travel agent, who can customize the dream itinerary that you deserve.