One night last year, my husband asked my mom and I where we’d like to travel next. My mom listed out 10-12 places. Then I said, yes to all of those and added another 8-10. My husband sat there wide-eyed that our lists were so long, but then started to realize he wanted to go to all of those places. I’m off to Nashville next week and we’re already planning a trip or two for the year, so here is my current wishlist of where to travel in 2019. Some of these seem more likely than not at the moment, but we’ll see where the year takes us…
1. Dubrovnik, Croatia
Apparently I visited Dubrovnik when I was the ripe age of about two, so I don’t remember a darn thing and I’m pretty sure it’s changed leaps and bounds since then anyway! The city is full, I mean FULL, of history. Not to mention, it’s a major hotspot for visitors around Europe. Many visitors show up for the beaches in the summer when it’s supposed to be beautiful but crowded. You might try just before summer or just after to avoid some of the crowds.
Once you’re there, visit the Old Town, walk the city walls, and enjoy those beaches and water activities. You can take day trips on the mainland or to the islands. And to commemorate the release of the last season of Game of Thrones this year, you can take a tour to see where they filmed so many of those stunning scenes!
2. Louisville, Kentucky
When I researched in Cincinnati for a few weeks during grad school, we took a day trip to Louisville, Kentucky. Since spending those few hours in the city, I’ve been dying to go back. Summer heat can be oppressive, but spring is lovely! You could see the Kentucky Derby in May if you’re willing to spend the money!
Besides the big race, however, the race course is always open to visit. And don’t miss the Louisville Slugger Museum, the Historic District full of Victorian Homes, or the variety of distilleries, including Bulleit and Peerless. Kentucky bourbon isn’t world famous for nothing!
3. Cotswolds, England
If you want a trip to the UK, but have already visited London and Edinburgh (absolute musts), take a trip to the Cotswolds in central England. Less than a two hour drive from London’s Heathrow Airport, the region is full of rolling hills, meadows, grand estates, and castles. Get ready to feel as though you’re in just about any English storyline. Stay in cottages from small and local to fairly glamorous. Try glamping or book your stay at a bed and breakfast!
The winter and early spring will be cold, so just bring your warm layers. If you’re nervous about driving on the other side of the road, I’d recommend renting a car that is automatic and just be patient. When you’re on the highways (usually divided), you won’t notice the difference much. In town, it’ll be a bit more work, but don’t get impatient or frustrated. Oh! And don’t honk or yell at other drivers, that is most certainly not acceptable in Britain!
4. Buenos Aires, Argentina
If you haven’t considered South America for a wonderful destination, you absolutely should. I visited Argentina and Chile twice in college and LOVED it both times. The culture is very laid back, the food delicious, and the cities and countryside stunning. Since it’s in the southern hemisphere, it’s a great place to visit around the holidays since it’s warmer and easier to get around. From California, the time change also isn’t too bad!
In Buenos Aires, make sure you eat as many empanadas as possible, take a tour to see the city, visit the famous Recoleta cemetery, and take a boat trip across to Colonia Del Sacramento in Uruguay where you can wander the cobbled streets, popping in and out of boutiques and restaurants. In the city, Caminito is fun for dance lovers and the Monumental de Nuñez is a mecca of sorts for soccer lovers. And if you have time, take a few days to spend time at an estancia or hacienca – a country estate where you’ll find peace and take in the traditional Argentinian lifestyle! Check out these top estancias in South America
5. Prague, Czech Republic
Time for a visit to Eastern Europe. Often we think of Western and Central Europe when we’re planning trips, but Eastern Europe is FULL of rich culture, amazing history and architecture, and tasty food! Prague is supposed to be the best city in the region and to have the best preserved architecture. What more do you need?
The downtown area is easily walkable, but known for being full of tourists, so stay outside of that popular part of town. There is a Hotel Kempinski in the city as well and prices look quite reasonable for a luxurious stay! Once you’ve sorted your hotel, walk the Charles Bridge, visit the Prague Castle, walk the picturesquely cobblestone street of Mala Strana, and go to the top of the Old Town Hall tower!