The World's Best Places to Visit in 2016/2017
With a world full of fascinating destinations, choosing the perfect vacation spot can present a challenge. That’s why we used U.S News expert opinions, user votes and current trends to compile this list. We hope these recommendations can help you craft your travel bucket list. Cast your vote below to help us determine next year's list. Here are the top 25 places to visit.
1. Great Barrier Reef
As one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World, the Great Barrier Reef holds a spot on every traveler's bucket list. Hugging the east coast of Queensland, Australia, the Great Barrier Reef extends from Cape York in the north all the way to Bundaberg in the south — a total of 1,250 miles. With roughly 3,000 coral reefs, 600 islands and 1,625 species of fish, the reef leaves its 1.6 million annual visitors enchanted.
The City of Light draws millions of visitors every year with its unforgettable ambiance. Of course, the divine cuisine and vast art collections deserve some of the credit as well. The gentle River Seine rambles through the city, flanked by stately museums, centuries-old churches, and blocks of Rococo- and Neoclassic-design architecture, further enhanced by charming trees and glowing streetlamps. Peppering the Seine's cobbled walks and graceful bridges are impossibly chic Parisians, probably on their way to the market, cafe or cinema.
3. Bora Bora
The small island of Bora Bora (just 6 miles long and more than 2 miles wide) overflows with beauty. Dormant volcanoes rise up at its center and fan out into lush jungle before spilling into an aquamarine lagoon. In fact, author James Michener, who wrote "Tales of the South Pacific," called Bora Bora "the most beautiful island in the world." The very definition of a tropical getaway, blissful Bora Bora abounds with luxurious resorts, sunny skies, warm waters and friendly locals.
This little city, tucked amid the Tuscan hills, casts a long shadow through history. The wellspring of the Renaissance, Firenze (or Florence) sheltered the powerful Medici family and inspired artists like Michelangelo (David) and Brunelleschi (the Duomo). If it weren't for the fashionable Italians and chic shops lining Via Tornabuoni, you might think you had traveled back in time to the 14th century.
"Animated" is perhaps the best word to describe Tokyo. Crazy about its anime, Japan's mega city is constantly buzzing with movement—feet clack down sidewalks, cars zoom along streets, subway trains hum below ground, ships cruise in and out. And yet bright lights and loud signs beg you to pause, to break your motion for just one second to pray (oops, we mean pay) at the altar of consumerism. This is a city that feeds on motion and progress.
Cusco, known as the archaeological capital of the Americas, is home to a storied history that included the rise and fall of the Inca Empire followed by the invasion of Spanish conquistadors in the early 1500s. Today, remnants of both eras share the narrow city streets creating a rare collision of Andean and Spanish styles that makes Cusco like no other place on earth.
The English writer Samuel Johnson famously said, "You find no man, at all intellectual, who is willing to leave London. No, Sir, when a man is tired of London, he is tired of life; for there is in London all that life can afford." More than two centuries have passed since Johnson's era, but his words still ring true. Life in London is nothing short of invigorating, and travelers find that one visit isn't enough to experience everything this two-millennia-old city has to offer.
Rome, the city of seven hills, enjoyed a mythic beginning. Romulus and Remus — twin brothers who were nursed by a she-wolf and fathered by a war god — reportedly founded the Eternal City. And although historians are a little skeptical about this epic entry into the world, most travelers are absolutely certain that there is something magical about Rome.
9. New York City
Cool, cosmopolitan, crowded, constantly evolving. The Big Apple blends big-city splendor with small-town charm. Amid Gotham's iconic landmarks and towering skyscrapers, you'll experience a vibrant culture permeating each of the city's distinctive neighborhoods and boroughs.
For many Hawaii vacationers, Maui is just right — offering a taste of just about everything the Aloha State has to offer, from impressive wildlife to intriguing history and culture. While on a visit here, you can shimmy alongside professional hula dancers, golf along coastal fairways, snorkel alongside five different types of sea turtles or simply lounge along some of Hawaii's most notable beaches.
11. Cape Town
Sporty, stylish, stunning, sociable… If Cape Town was a person, it would be that Hollywood starlet we all secretly envy. The Mother City is unlike any other destination in Africa, Cape Town stands as a glittering, metropolis juxtaposed with one of the world's most breathtaking natural landscapes.
Barcelona contains both the authentically historic and the wildly bizarre. This city by the sea seems to attract all types: the family, the adventurer, the couple, the backpacker, the culture lover — and more — with an almost overwhelming variety of things to do. You could stay for a few days, but chances are you'll need a whole week to explore.
Sydney is both a laid-back beachside town and a thriving metropolis that boasts some of the Southern Hemisphere's best surf, landmarks and activities. Sydney features something for everyone. It's no wonder this vibrant city down under is a natural choice for first-time Aussie visitors.
14. Rio de Janeiro
Known as the Cidade Maravilhosa (Marvelous City), this glimmering Brazilian metropolis has certainly earned its title. Resting at the mouth of a bay harbor, the city is lined with white-sand beaches, lush rainforests and surrounded by staggered green mountains. Rio de Janeiro boasts dramatic views from nearly every angle.
With dramatic peaks and pristine lakes, Yellowstone is an outdoor enthusiast's paradise. Multicolored pools swirl around hot springs; verdant forests weave past expansive meadows; and volatile geysers launch streams of steaming water toward the sky. Be prepared to share the trails with permanent residents like buffalo, elk and sometimes even grizzlies.
Yes, this Netherland’s city takes a lax look at women beckoning business in the Red Light District and "coffee shops" selling an unorthodox type of herb to a toking clientele, but these descriptions only scratch the surface. At some point, during an excellent Indonesian meal, a twilight canal-side rambling or a shopping excursion through the boutiques of Nine Little Streets, you'll realize – as many travelers have before you – that there's much more to Amsterdam than you might've thought.
17. Hong Kong
This territory, made of multiple islands, returned to China's possession in 1997 after more than a hundred years of British occupation. English and Chinese are the official languages; and the tiny nation has an independent judiciary system. In short, China and Hong Kong observe a "one country, two systems" policy that can have many foreigners scratching their heads. But don't question it. Just accept it and enjoy everything this territory has to offer.
The desert heat, the noisy streets and the sheer size of Cairo will leave even the most adaptable traveler with a serious case of culture shock. The constant bombardment of street vendors, the inescapable aroma of livestock and the seemingly chaotic way of life will joggle the senses.
19. Washington D.C.
With its marbled monuments and high-profile politicos, Washington, D.C., has long been saddled with a reputation as a stuffy government-driven town. Although government is still the sun around which this city orbits, the District also offers a host of renowned museums and interesting neighborhoods. And with a recent explosion of restaurants, cafes, boutique shops and clubs, D.C. is transitioning into a thriving cultural hub.
20. Grand Canyon
This is truly a natural wonder. For six million years, the Grand Canyon has expanded with the help of the mighty Colorado River, and for centuries, people from all over the globe have traveled to gaze out over its red and orange grandeur. Managed by the National Park Service and officially designated as a UNESCO World Heritage site, the Grand Canyon leaves its approximately 4.5 million visitors per year awestruck.
21. British Virgin Island
BVI for short, are some of the most exclusive and least developed islands of the Caribbean, but this only adds to their appeal. The resorts, villas, restaurants and other tourist attractions in this paradise are known to emphasize spare luxury over sprawling expansion, and they attract travelers with deep pockets and a love for sailing and seclusion.
Shangri-La, Elysium, Arcadia, Utopia and Bali are all synonymous with "heaven." The only difference between them is that you can actually visit Bali. Many travelers have never been to this Indonesian island. Yet, the word "Bali" conjures daydreams of the most fantastical landscape: towering volcanoes wrapped in a deep green canopy, sandy shores that fade into turquoise waters and curving coastlines crowned with staggered pagodas.
23. San Francisco
A jumbled collage of colorful neighborhoods and beautiful views, San Francisco draws those free-spirited types who have an eye for edgy art, a taste for imaginative cuisine and a zeal for adventure. It's really not surprising that songwriter Tony Bennett left his heart here: The city boasts jaw-dropping sights, world-class cuisine, cozy cafes and plenty of booming nightlife venues — there's no shortage of ways to stay busy here.
24. Argentine Patagonia
This region in the Andes Mountains is nothing if not enchanting. Cobalt lakes, azure-tinted glaciers, emerald trees, and turquoise skies stretch as far as the eye can see. In fact, Argentine Patagonia's vistas are so sweeping that Charles Darwin once described the region as "boundless."
Welcome to Budapest. To put it simply, if you haven't been here, it's time you make plans to do so. The city appeals to many: you can step out of a thermal bath into a nightclub (and then back into the bath). In a city that dates back to the Old Stone Age, visiting history buffs can take their pick between Roman, neo-Gothic, Renaissance and Ottoman architecture at sites like Castle Hill and Fisherman’s Bastion.
Source :Travel US News
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