Time to make your 2019 travel plans! From visiting the roof of the world in the Himalayas to exploring the Arctic Circle landscape, unique adventures await

For 2019 travel ideas, head off the beaten path and experience something unique that offers memories of a lifetime.

Rugby World Cup 2019 in Japan

Along with the exciting World Cup experience, there are some must-do experiences in Japan within easy access of the stadiums. The event will kick off on September 20, 2019 and sees 20 nations play 48 matches over six weeks at 12 venues; from Sapporo in the north to Kumamoto in the south, before the final takes place at the Yokohama Stadium on 2 November 2019.

Visit the historic samurai temples in seaside town Kamakura; best known for The Great Buddha of Kamakura which featured in Rudyard Kipling’s poem of the same name. Or easily reach Mt Takao by train for hiking through a sacred site of Buddhist mountain worship. Located 50 minutes from Tokyo’s Shinjuku district, the hike takes around 2 hours from start to summit, which on a clear day offers views of the iconic Mt Fuji.

Planning to catch a match in the wild northern island, Hokkaido? Sapporo is Japan’s fifth largest city and offers a unique history influenced by Ainu culture, and is named as the birthplace of Japanese beer. Two hours by train from Sapporo, Lake Toya’s altitude and latitude offer fans the unique chance to see the changing autumn leaves, a nationally celebrated spectacle on a par with cherry blossoms.

mount fuji Japan

Mount Fuji. Photo via Travel Local

Uttarakhand – Abode of the Gods

Nestled in the Himalayas, Uttarakhand is one of the most beautiful ecotourism destinations in India. Think picture-perfect hill stations, snow-capped peaks, charming villages, serpentine rivers, the sound of waterfalls and serene lakes. There’s no experience that compares with the serenity, rugged beauty and hospitality of the Himalayan state.

With plenty of adventure options, authentic and immersive homestays, excellent food and wildlife, there’s much to experience in Uttarakhand. And the government is taking great steps towards sustainability for a greener future.

Uttarakhand is a popular choice for trekkers around the world as it is home to Nanda Devi, the second highest peak in India. It is also the yoga capital of the world. Where else will you find such inner peace? 

uttarakhand-villages

Uttarakhand landscape

Experience a total solar eclipse in the Southern Hemisphere

On 2nd July 2019 a total solar eclipse will take place for two minutes over the southern hemisphere, only visible over a narrow band of central Chile and Argentina. The total eclipse can be experienced in the coastal plains of Northern Chile, the lesser-known winemaking regions of San Juan, Argentina and the outskirts of Buenos Aires.

Select Latin America has a five-day ‘Chile & Argentina 2019 Eclipse’ tour which includes travel to La Serena, the Elqui valley, Limari Valley, the Cruz Sure and La Silla observatories, as well as visiting the port city of Coquimbo which boasts some of the clearest skies in Chile.

solar-eclipse

The total solar eclipse. Photo: leoleobobeo via Pixabay

New hiking trail in Chile connects 17 national parks

The Patagonia region is renowned for some of the world’s most stunning sights. Now, the Chilean government has launched a new hiking trail known as the Route of Parks connecting 17 national parks (featuring 28.4 million hectares of protected parkland) through the Patagonian wilderness from the city of Puerto Montt down to Cape Horn – and, at 1,700 miles, it has become the world’s longest hiking trail.

best green travel destinations 2017 Patagonia

Patagonia. Photo: Miguel Vieira via Wikimedia Commons

 

Greenland for hiking the Artic Circle Trail

The charming country of Greenland is the world’s largest island but it also has the lowest density of human population. With a vast ice sheet at its centre, it’s a pristine landscape of rugged mountains with glaciers, fjords and wildlife. Also, it has a fascinating Viking and Inuit heritage.

It can’t get much more exciting than hiking the 160 km backcountry trail between Kangerlussuaq and Sisimiut (takes about 9-11 days). The Arctic Circle Trail, a land of one hundred lakes, is the sublime wildnerness that every travel lover will fall in love with. No cars. No buildings. No stress.

Kangerlussuaq greenland

Photo: Greenland Travel via Flickr

Uzbekistan for the Silk Road experience

This Central Asian gem relaxed its visa rules in 2018 and introduced hassle-free e-visas, making it one of the coolest 2019 travel destinations. Central Asia’s only high-speed railway runs from the capital Tashkent to Samarkand in two hours, and onwards to Bukhara – a Silk Road Railroad of sorts.

Uzbekistan was freed from Russian rule in 1991. Three of its cities  – Bukhara, Samarkand and Khiva – were important stops on the ancient Silk Road route. Route: Tashkent, Khiva, Kunya Urgench, Ashgabat,Mary/Merv, Bukhara, Samarkand, Ferghana, Osh, Bishkek.

uzbekistan

Samarkhand. Photo: Kalpak Travel via Flickr

Hope your 2019 travel plans promise to be life-changing!

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