The world is full of amazing places to explore, but some of them are more popular than others. While there is nothing wrong with visiting famous landmarks and tourist hotspots, sometimes it can be more rewarding to venture off the beaten path and discover some hidden gems that are less crowded, less expensive, and less known. Here are some of the most underrated travel destinations around the world that deserve more attention and appreciation.
Hill Country, Texas, United States
The United States is a huge country with many popular destinations, but one of its most underrated regions is Hill Country in central Texas. Hill Country is a scenic area that features rolling hills, rivers, lakes, and caves. Hill Country is also known for its rich cultural heritage that blends German, Mexican, and cowboy influences. Hill Country has many attractions for travelers who are looking for a relaxing and authentic experience, such as wineries, barbecue joints, live music venues, antique shops, and historic towns.
Australia is one of the most popular destinations in Oceania, but there are still some regions that are overlooked by many travelers. One of them is Gippsland, a rural area in Victoria’s eastern corner. Gippsland has some of Australia’s most diverse and stunning natural attractions such as Wilsons Promontory National Park, which has pristine beaches and rugged mountains; Ninety Mile Beach Marine National Park, which has one of the longest uninterrupted beaches in the world; Croajingolong National Park, which has rainforests and sand dunes; Buchan Caves Reserve, which has limestone caves with stalactites and stalagmites; and Walhalla Historic Township, which has preserved buildings from the gold rush era.
Tsitsikamma National Park, South Africa
South Africa is a country with diverse landscapes and wildlife, but one of its most underrated gems is Tsitsikamma National Park, which lies along the Garden Route on the southern coast. Tsitsikamma National Park is a protected area that covers 80 km of coastline and 30 km of forested mountains. Tsitsikamma National Park offers stunning views of the Indian Ocean and the Storms River mouth, as well as activities such as hiking, bungee jumping, ziplining, kayaking, and snorkeling. Tsitsikamma National Park is also home to some of South Africa’s endemic flora and fauna, such as fynbos plants, knysna loeries, and cape clawless otters.
Mongolia is a landlocked country in North Asia that has some of the most amazing landscapes and nomadic culture in the world. Mongolia is one of the least densely populated countries in the world, with vast expanses of grasslands, deserts, mountains, and lakes. Mongolia offers travelers a chance to experience a different way of life that revolves around nature and animals. Mongolia also has some unique attractions such as Ulaanbaatar, which is the capital city and the cultural hub; Gobi Desert, which is one of the largest deserts in Asia and home to rare wildlife such as snow leopards and Bactrian camels; Lake Khövsgöl, which is the largest freshwater lake in Mongolia and a sacred site for Mongolians; and Naadam Festival, which is a national celebration that showcases Mongolian sports such as wrestling, archery, and horse racing.
Lake Bohinj, Slovenia
Slovenia is a small country in Central Europe that has stunning natural beauty and rich history. One of its most underrated attractions is Lake Bohinj, the largest lake in Slovenia. Lake Bohinj lies within Triglav National Park, which covers most of Slovenia’s Julian Alps. Lake Bohinj offers spectacular views of the surrounding mountains and forests, as well as opportunities for swimming, boating, fishing, hiking, biking, and skiing. Lake Bohinj also has several cultural attractions nearby, such as Stara Fužina Museum, which showcases traditional alpine life; Savica Waterfall, which is one of Slovenia’s most iconic waterfalls; and St. John Baptist Church, which is a 700-year-old church with frescoes and a stone bridge.
Chile is one of South America’s most diverse countries, with mountains, beaches, and deserts. But one of its most underrated cities is Valparaíso, a port city on the Pacific coast. Valparaíso is famous for its colorful hillside neighborhoods, which are decorated with murals, graffiti, and street art. Valparaíso is also known for its bohemian vibe and cultural scene, which includes museums, galleries, festivals, and nightlife. Valparaíso is also close to some of Chile’s best wine regions, such as Casablanca Valley and Aconcagua Valley.
The Caribbean is full of beautiful islands that cater to all kinds of travelers, but Anguilla stands out as one of the most underrated ones. Anguilla is a British territory that has some of the best beaches in the Caribbean, with soft white sand and turquoise water. Anguilla is also known for its laid-back atmosphere and friendly locals who welcome visitors with open arms. Anguilla has a rich cultural heritage that reflects its African, European, and indigenous influences. Anguilla also has a diverse culinary scene that ranges from fine dining to street food.
Albania may not be on your radar when you think of European destinations, but this Balkan country has a lot to offer for travelers who are looking for something different. Sarandë is a coastal city in southern Albania that boasts some of the best beaches and archaeological sites in the region. Sarandë has a Mediterranean climate and a vibrant nightlife scene that attracts locals and tourists alike. Sarandë is also close to some of Albania’s most fascinating attractions such as Butrint National Park, which contains ancient ruins from various civilizations; Ksamil Islands, which are four small islands with crystal-clear water; and Syri i Kalter, which is a natural spring with an intense blue color.
Norway is a stunning country with breathtaking scenery, but most visitors tend to flock to Oslo, the capital city. Bergen, on the other hand, is a charming coastal town that offers a different perspective of Norwegian culture and nature. Bergen is known for its colorful wooden houses along the historic harbor district of Bryggen, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Bergen is also surrounded by majestic mountains and fjords that offer plenty of outdoor activities such as hiking, biking, kayaking, and skiing. Bergen is also home to some of Norway’s best museums and art galleries.
Historic Villages of Shirakawa-gō and Gokayama, Japan
Japan is one of the most popular destinations in Asia, but there are still some hidden gems that are worth exploring. One of them is the historic villages of Shirakawa-gō and Gokayama, which are located in central Japan’s mountainous region. These villages are famous for their traditional farmhouses, which have steep thatched roofs that resemble hands clasped in prayer. These roofs help protect the houses from heavy snowfall in winter. The villages have been designated as UNESCO World Heritage Sites for their unique architectural style and cultural value.
These are just some of the most underrated travel destinations around the world that deserve more recognition and appreciation. If you are looking for something different and adventurous for your next trip, you might want to consider visiting these places. You will not regret it!