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Best places to travel in 2021 for an adventure

When it’s safe to travel again!

Are you looking ahead to travel destinations in 2021? You are not alone! Travel in 2021 is looking promising with COVID restrictions easing globally.

You might be wondering “will it be safe to travel in 2021?” or “should I even plan to travel in 2021?”. The travel industry is predicting a major rebound in 2021 after lockdowns and restrictions ease. 

It is hard to know when exactly it will be safe to travel again and we don’t really know if we will be able to freely travel in 2021. The signs, however, are looking positive and there is no reason why planning travel in 2021 should be off the cards.

If you are craving travel and adventure, we’ve done some research to make some travel predictions for 2021. Continue reading to learn our 11 top picks for the best places to travel in 2021 for an adventure. 

1. Road trip through the USA

Road tripping throughout the USA is an epic adventure on a grand scale. It is looking promising for 2021, in particular for American’s already residing in the USA. This is a great time to explore your own backyard with state borders opening up.

With plane travel and international travel becoming riskier, it looks like the great American road trip is in for a major come back. Destinations like Sedona, Joshua Tree, the Pacific Coast Highway and Arizona are all amazing picks for a USA road trip. Or go all out and explore the entire country from coast to coast.

travel in 2021

2. Van life in New Zealand

New Zealand is in a pandemic safe sanctuary in the southern hemisphere and our second 2021 travel destination. While New Zealand has strict border controls to keep the virus out, it’s likely to become an option to travel for Australians with cross border ‘travel bubbles’ in the talks.

Fingers crossed it will be safe for the borders to be fully opened once again. This safe haven is one of the top places in the world to explore isolated and untouched nature. With the pristine Alps and lakes of the South Island to the volcanoes and wild beaches of the North Island. New Zealand is perfectly set up to explore every corner by van. Which is a much more pandemic safe mode of transport!

travel in 2021

3. Botswana

Has Africa always been on your list? 

Maybe 2021 will be the year you finally get to explore this incredible continent. Botswana is our top pick for Africa in 2021. Botswana has been least affected by the pandemic in Africa due to its rapid response to the virus. 

This makes Botswana a relatively safe and appealing option for travel in 2021 when restrictions have eased.

Botswana has many incredible lodges in the Okavango Delta and the Kalahari Desert. These are isolated in the epic African wilderness and offer full-board options for travellers.

travel in 2021

4. Melides, Portugal

Portugal has remained a safe haven for many during the pandemic. Melides is a great option to escape to for European travel in 2021. Melides, on the southwestern coast, is a hidden Portuguese beach spot, which is just starting to emerge from under the radar.

It is home to pristine sandy beaches and quaint Portuguese villages. It is located right in the middle of an untouched hillside village on the Alentejo coast. Melides is only just being discovered by travellers. Expect deserted beaches, vineyards, rice fields, cork oaks and very little else. 

Melides is Portugal's answer to Byron Bay or Joshua Tree but before travellers cottoned on to how incredible it is! This is a remote and creative haven for artists, far from the beaten travel path. Making this the perfect spot to dip your toes into for European travel in 2021. As a bonus, Portugal is one of the most affordable places to visit in Western Europe making this one of the cheapest places to visit in 2021.

travel in 2021

5. Slovenia

Slovenia is a beautiful mountainous country tucked between Croatia and Italy. Not only does Slovenia have incredible nature, but it is also home to world-class restaurants and wine. It is a country full of incredible beauty that is still relatively untouched and highly underrated. 

The secret is starting to get out and more travellers are beginning to flock to Slovenia to enjoy the beauty of places like Lake Bled, the old culture and incredible food. Slovenia has yet to be overrun with tourism, making this corner of Europe the perfect place to escape when it is safe to travel in 2021.

Expect turquoise rivers, glacier-fed lakes, soaring mountain peaks, wide-open and sparsely populated spaces and mountain crisp fresh air. Slovenia has some incredible hikes like the Slovenian Mountain Trail. The Slovenian Mountain Trail is the oldest hiking trail in Europe and links the country’s highest peak, Mount Triglav with a number of other Slovenian peaks in the Julian Alps. 

While Slovenia is starting to become a more popular hiking destination, it still gives you the opportunity to hike in complete solitude. 

travel in 2021

6. Austria

This is another great place to travel to in Europe in 2021. If you’ve been wanting to explore central Europe, there is no better time to go than in 2021 when borders are opened again. Austria is an epic destination, particularly for a skiing adventure in winter. Popular cities like Hallstatt and Salzburg were overrun by tourists but it is expected in 2021 these destinations will be enjoying a more quiet tourist season. 

There are incredible ski fields like St Anton which are usually jammed during the season with skiers and snowboarders. The 2020/2021 winter season is the perfect time to go to enjoy the slopes without all the queues!

travel in 2021

7. Sailing adventure in the Greek Islands

The Greek Islands are expected to be open for business again by the time summer 2021 rolls around. This might be a golden opportunity to experience the beauty of the greek islands safely on your own yacht and without the hordes of tourists in epic spots like Santorini.

Sailing is an adventure enough but there are also plenty of other adventures to be had in the Greek Islands. From diving through caves in Milos, to quad biking to the volcanic beaches of Santorini, climbing to hilltop churches for sunset in Ios, driving rugged roads to mountain top villages in Karpathos and so much more!

When it comes to sailing in the Greek Islands you can get a group together and organise a private chartertrip or join an organised sailing trip with a company like G Adventures. There is a Greek sailing trip for every preference and budget!

travel in 2021

8. Pulau Merah, Java, Indonesia

This little known corner of Indonesia is starting to be uncovered by keen surfers who have discovered this slice of paradise. While Indonesia still hasn’t opened its borders to foreigners yet, it is likely to be reopened in early 2021, making this off the beaten track destination perfect for a trip in 2021.

Pulau Merah, also known as Red Island, is a three-hour drive away from its more famous neighbour Plengkung. This underdeveloped island escape is drawing in travellers in search of deserted surf breaks. Expect to find pristine stretches of sand, terrible wifi and very few visitors. 

Pulau Merah has suitable spots for beginner surfers, advanced surfers as well as people just after a tropical island adventure away from the hustle and bustle of more popular areas in Indonesia. The hidden beach of Pantai Wedi Ireng can be reached on foot and the quiet Pura Tawang Alun Hindu temple makes Pulau Merah a wonderful place to do some soul searching without the crowds found in places like Bali.

travel in 2021

9. Morocco

Morocco is in Africa, yet it is so close to Europe you can see it from the coast of Spain! In terms of culture, food and landscapes, however, Morocco feels like another planet. The city of Marrakesh is sprawling with mazes of markets filled with spices, textiles, and ceramics so pack light!

For an adventure head to the hiking trails in the High Atlas mountains. Trek through remote Amazigh villages and mountainous pastures. Another huge drawcard to Morocco is a 1 or 2 day adventure into the most famous desert on Earth, the Sahara. Climb the endless sand dunes and spend the night in a traditional camp, under the star jewelled sky with camels right by your side.

10. Vietnam

Vietnam had an effective response to the pandemic, making it a top choice for travel in Asia in 2021. It is home to some of the most friendly people in the world and is full of lush mountains, tropical islands, ancient temples and arguably the best food in Asia.

Vietnam gives you the opportunity to explore the bustling streets of Hanoi, the beauty of Halong Bay by boat, to bike through epic mountains and to see the wonders of Hoi An. You will also get the opportunity to experience the history of the Vietnam war by exploring the war-damaged ruins of the Imperial Citadel in Hue. You can also visit the underground world of guerrilla warfare in the Cu Chi tunnels.

Whatever you do, don't forget to indulge in local beer, Bahn mi, big bowls of Pho and surprisingly delicious egg coffee!

11. Peru

Peru is the perfect place to go for an adventure of epic proportions in 2021. They enforced a very strict lockdown to combat the pandemic. This has been a disaster for local tourism but has made Peru a relatively safe spot. These are two great reasons to visit Peru in 2021 when it is safe to travel again.

There is so much to see and do in Peru. A visit to Peru could turn out to be one of the greatest adventures of your life! From doing the Inca Trail to exploring the depths of the exotic amazon forest and sleeping in the mud-brick huts on the shores of the lake in the sky, Lake Titicaca. Peru is home to some of the worlds most mystical ancient cultures, along with beautiful, boundless mountains and jungles.

There you have it!

Those are our picks for 11 epic places all around the world for you to go once it is safe to travel again. 

Always remember no matter where you are in the world, your own backyard is bound to have endless adventures for you to explore when borders are restricted.

Happy trails!