With Memorial Day announcing the start of the summer travel season this weekend I thought it might be interesting to look at where I see Americans plan to travel during their summer vacations. Here are my top ten international summer travel destinations for 2019. You may want to use this as you build your travel “bucket list”.
10. Denmark –
Denmark is beloved for its marine culture and I must say the world’s friendliest people. Put Copenhagen on your list for a fun and friendly start to many summer cruises of the Baltics and Russia. Copenhagen is the perfect hub to visit both the Baltic states and Europe as it is just a few hours train ride from many countries.
9. Greece –
Greece is back baby! After 10 long years of suffering through the economic crisis, tourists are now returning to one of the most historic areas in the world. Athens is the hub but the islands of Santorini, and Mykonos are hot, hot, hot. If you only have time to visit one island then be sure to hit Santorini. I have traveled the world and never seen water as clear and blue as in Greece.
8. Canada –
Canada is a very popular choice and is one of the great value vacations this year. For every 3 US dollars, you get 4 Canadian dollars. WOW! My favorite city is Vancouver and it is the departure city for many Alaska cruises. Butchart Gardens is just a ferry ride away from Vancouver and is one of the top tourist attractions in Victoria, British Columbia. My favorite tour in Canada is a train ride through the Canadian Rockies from Calgary to Vancouver on the Rocky Mountaineer. Obviously being our next door neighbor that we can drive to makes Canada even more affordable. Plus, I have never met a Canadian that I didn’t like.
7. Ireland –
Ireland is always one of our favorite destinations. Its legendary visual drama, whitewashed lighthouses perched high above the Atlantic, paint-box colorful villages, prehistoric stone-age ruins, and fairytale castles are all accented by the music of Celtic generations. You have never lived until you taste a pint of Guinness in the homeland. It is almost like a milkshake. My favorite place to stay is Dromoland Castle in County Clare. Driving the Dingle peninsula is the best way to see the real Ireland.
6. Germany –
Germany is one of my favorite destinations. The food, the castles, wineries and of course the best beer in the world (sorry Belgium). Cruising the Rhine River is also on the “hot list”. Frankfurt is the capital but Munich is much more fun. This is a great country to drive in as you can visit all the cool little towns like Heidelberg and Regensburg, a medieval UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of Germany’s oldest towns.
5. Africa – South Africa and Kenya –
South Africa is often on peoples “bucket-list” of destinations and is especially popular among adventure travelers who like it for its safaris, scenic beauty, and authentic experiences. Once you have conquered Europe then Africa is a logical next travel step. Cape Town is my favorite city to visit and you will be amazed at how much there is to see and do there. Kenya is amazing and famous for its safaris.
4. Chile –
This one may surprise you but I am seeing many Americans looking to South America for their next adventure. I am traveling to Santiago, Chili for the first time in July. Virtuoso’s “Hot List for 2019” shows that reservations for Chile were up an amazing 410% for the year. My guess is that many people who have done Lima, Peru to visit Machu Picchu will pick Chile for their next South America adventure.
3. France –
France has had a tough year with the tragic fire at Notre Dame Cathedral, terrorism, and politics. However, it is always one of the top destinations for Americans. I love Paris in the springtime (song), summer, fall and winter. Paris is such an amazing destination with landmarks such as the Eiffel Tower, the Louvre and the shopping along the amazing Champs-Élysées. And if you have never been to the south of France it will knock your socks off. The French Riviera is so cool and even better are the medieval towns like my favorite, Saint-Paul-de-Vence, a commune well known for its modern and contemporary art. Normandy is also hot this year and a natural for Americans.
2. The United Kingdom –
The recent Brexit has caused the British Pound to drop like a rock and now is the best time in a decade to visit our friends in Great Britain. Despite the drop in the Pound things are still not “cheap” in the United Kingdom. London is, of course, the giant destination that Americans flock to. It is one of the easiest destinations for Americans to visit as they speak the same language and share much of our history, both good and bad.
1. Italy –
Italy is magical. It is always at the top of our list for Americans. Start in Rome and then you add Florence, Venice, Milan and you already have hit a home run. Then you keep adding the amazing places of Capri, the Amalfi coast, Lake Como, Pisa, Naples, and Cinque Terre and Portofino along the Italian Riviera and the list goes on and on. Italy is the one place on earth that once you visit you will always want to come back. My favorite place to stay is Castello del Nero Hotel & Spa just outside of Florence in the Tuscan countryside.
Please call one of our friendly travel advisors at 402-435-8888 to help you find the perfect vacation in 2019. For a list of all our escorted tours in 2019 and 2020 please CLICK HERE.
Join our once-in-a-lifetime Passion Play Tours in 2020!
One of the best trips I have ever taken, was in 2010 to follow the Passion Play in the village of Oberammergau, Germany. The play takes place every 10 years only and we have open spots on two of our departures: June 3-13, 2020 and September 23 – October 3, 2020. Join us as we travel through Bavaria but also to Salzburg, Vienna, Budapest or Prague with our favorite tour guides, Birgit and Stefanie. Call or email Beth today at our friendly group department, 402-435-8888 or GroupDepartment@executivetr
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