Adventure awaits, post-pandemic.
Overseas travel plans may be cancelled in 2020 because of coronavirus, but National Geographic’s “Best of the World 2021” list will transport jet setters to dreamy escapes they can book when the time is right.
The list features 25 awe-inspiring destinations for post-pandemic travel encouraging readers to “Dream now, go later”.
“While the pandemic has brought our journeys to a standstill, it has not quieted our curiosity,” National Geographic editors said. “Ahead of a new year – with the promise of a return to travel – we are eager to share these 25 timely tales of timeless places that will define our future itineraries.”
The list highlights places across Europe, Asia, Africa, North and South America and island paradises Australian travellers may not have considered visiting before: Katmai National Park in Alaska, mountains and beaches in the Caribbean’s Dominica; hiking in Argentina’s Los Glaciares National Park and Spain’s Vitoria – also known by its Basque name, Gasteiz – to take in the sounds of emerging jazz artists.
There is one spot on the list that’s very well known to us: our very own Lord Howe Island, east of NSW, which is described by Nat Geo as a “last paradise in the Tasman Sea”.
Nat Geo’s roster of destinations is separated by five different categories including Adventure, Nature, Culture, Sustainability and Family.
The 2021 list features a special focus on cities and nations that are reportedly experiencing a racial reckoning and moving the needle on diversity and inclusion efforts.
Among them is Tulsa, Oklahoma, where the city is introducing Greenwood Rising, its new “Black Wall Street” history centre that will be a hub for speakers and events in the city’s Historic Greenwood District that was devastated by racial violence.
In no particular order, the destinations are:
Katmai National Park, Alaska: A vast icy wilderness in the shadow of a volcano
Dominica: A Caribbean island that’s a thrillseeker’s dream
Los Glaciares National Park, Argentina: A subantarctic forest where ice masses are actually growing
Svaneti Region, Georgia: A remote village famous for its warm hospitality
Tulsa, Oklahoma: A vibrant city reckoning with its racist past
Pueblo Nations, New Mexico: Where you’ll find the only Native American site designated as both a UNESCO World Heritage site and US National Historic Landmark
Guam: A US territory in the Pacific with a unique Indigenous identity
Gyeongju, Republic of Korea: An ancient kingdom packed with glittering artefacts
Vitoria-Gasteiz, Basque Country, Spain: One of Spain’s greenest cities with a rich culture of jazz music
Tonglu, China: A picturesque countryside along a river that’s inspired countless paintings
Isle Royale, Michigan: A lesser-known US national park where wolves and moose roam free
Cerrado, Brazil: South America’s largest savanna that’s considered the closest thing to a real-life Jurassic Park
Lord Howe Island, Australia: One of the world’s most isolated ecosystems that’s home to hundreds of marine species
Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada: Where you can see the Northern Lights shine 240 nights a year
Indigenous British Columbia, Canada: Where you can learn about more than 45 Indigenous nations dating back 10,000 years
Space Coast, Florida: Every would-be space explorer’s dream
England Coast Path, UK: At 4500km, this is the world’s longest seafront walking track
Hortobágy, Hungary: A cowboy capital in the Great Hungarian Plain
Transylvania, Romania: An old-Europe city that’s more warm and charming than the Dracula legend would have us believe
Denver, Colorado: A forward-thinking city that’s championing clean energy
Alonissos, Greece: A Mediterranean haven for seals and famous for an ancient shipwreck
Gabon: “Africa’s last Eden” where elephants and hippos stroll along the beach
New Caledonia: Many Aussies already know this is home to one of the most extensive reef systems in the world
Copenhagen, Denmark: A picturesque city where there are five times more bicycles than cars
Freiburg, Germany: A vibrant university town surrounded by lush woodland.
A version of this article originally appeared on Fox News and was reproduced with permission