It’s a small world – or at least, it is if you limit your travels to the world’s most famous tourist destinations. Going shopping in New York and Paris; lazing around on beaches in Thailand, taking a trip to the Eiffel Tower in Paris, visiting Buckingham Palace in London…
They’re all worth a visit, but sometimes, places you’ve seen and heard so much about already can seem just a little underwhelming when you finally get the chance to visit them in person. And even if they don’t, if you’re a travelling enthusiast, you’ll quickly run out of places to holiday if you stick to tried and tested destinations. So try something truly out of the ordinary, and take a trip to one of these unusual cities – they offer something different, something new and exciting, and an experience you can truly call your own.
Sweden is rarely number one on any traveler’s itinerary – despite being one of the most inspiring places for creative people to visit. The Swiss have been on the cutting edge of design for many years now, and thanks to the interest in Scandi-style and Nordic noir, people are finally starting to open their eyes to what Sweden has to offer. So if you’re looking for a hip getaway, you can’t do much better than Sweden – but forget about Stockholm. Gothenburg is a cooler, cheaper version of the capital, and it’s the best place to pick up some Swedish fashion – trendy cafes, striking architecture and achingly cool one-off shops and markets abound. It’s also a gateway to the Southern archipelago – so you can ferry over to the remote islands wearing your new steals to snap the perfect Instagram pic.
It seems that everyone and their aunt has taken a gap year to India – so why spend a fortune on having the exact same experiences that everyone else you know has? Whether you’re a student looking for a slice of life or an adult seeking a city which can steal your breath away, Lahore is truly the hidden gem of Asia. Awe-inspiring Mughal architecture rubs shoulders with quirky cafes, bazaars, street-food markets and lush, beautiful gardens, making it a perfect destination for history-lovers, foodies and travelers seeking inspiration alike. Lahore is known as the cultural heart of Pakistan, so if you’re fresh off your flight from Toronto to Lahore, make Lahore Museum your first stop – then wander down to M.M. Alam Road (otherwise known as “food street”) to pick up some incredible eats. Anarkali Bazaar and Liberty Market is perfect for picking up some bargains – and then you can finish by viewing the Minar e Pakistan at sunset – the perfect day in Lahore!
Coober Pedy, Australia
Forget Perth and Sidney – this city is truly something out of the ordinary. Also known as “the opal capital of the world, this tiny city is famed for its below-ground residencies, which were built to protect locals from the sweltering heat. With scorching desert views and more than 70 opal fields, the town has underground hotels and even churches – so you’re sure to have a holiday you’ll never forget. The perfect trip for amateur photographers!
So don’t stick to the same old destinations year in and year out – take a trip to one of these fantastic off-the-beaten-track cities to earn your title as a true citizen of the world.