With a new year comes a fresh start, and if you’re searching for destinations to explore, 2018 is filled with unique places you won't want to miss. Pack your bags and book a flight to one of these 12 spots around the world guaranteed to fulfill your wanderlust needs.
Following the Category 4 and 5 hurricanes that rocked the islands in late 2017, The Caribbean is making a comeback. Travelers will soon be able to revisit the Zemi Beach House, on the island of Anguilla, featuring a 300-year old Thai House spa. In addition, the Jewel Grande Montego Bay Resort & Spa celebrated its soft opening in September and invites travelers to experience tranquil and all-inclusive luxury. After the restoration of Virgin Gorda is complete, tourists can also once again visit Oil Nut Bay and experience the island’s famous sailing waters.
Setouchi Region, Japan
Looking to explore a hidden gem? The Setouchi Region of Japan is a breathtaking destination with rich culture, tradition and history. A four-hour train ride from Tokyo, this region includes seven prefectures and 350 islands filled with delicious cuisine, spectacular scenery, and plenty of adventure. The 2018 Cycling Shimanami Event in October may be the perfect opportunity to ride along the bike paths and immerse yourself in the incredible landscape of the city.
Paris, Eiffel Tower
If you’re planning a Parisian getaway this year, the City of Light has plenty of exciting stops to add to your itinerary. For the lover of the arts, visit L'Atelier des Lumières, the city's first digital museum of fine art, which will be on display in April. Another must-visit stop is for the sports fanatic: The Ryder Cup golf tournament.
St Augustine, Florida
St. Augustine, Florida is the ideal destination for couples looking for a romantic getaway or friends seeking a fun retreat. The oldest city in the nation is quickly becoming the “Charleston” of the Sunshine State thanks to new openings like The Collector Luxury Inn & Gardens and an array of small craft cocktail lounges that have been popping up all over. Guests can enjoy everything from the Fountain of Youth to Trolley Tours and the famed Nights of Lights holiday celebration until January 2018.
Foodies will want to visit Thailand in 2018, a culinary hot spot filled with new and traditional delicacies. From May 30 to June 1, the country will be hosting the 4th UNWTO World Forum on Gastronomy Tourism. Travelers looking to explore off-the-grid destinations should make sure to tour Trat, Chumphon, Koh Samet, Chantaburi, locations filled with awe-inspiring sights and beaches. For those looking for a more traditional experience, visit the Soi Kromluang in Chumphon, commonly known as “Pad Thai Road,” where visitors can try authentic local cuisine from pad thai vendors.
Fort Worth, Texas
Though it’s flown under the radar for some time, there are plenty of reasons to visit Fort Worth, Texas. From its unique culinary offerings to its extensive arts and culture district, this city is not just a must-visit all year round, but a must-watch destination for years to come. Travelers can take a trip to the Firestone & Robertson Distilling Co.’s new Whiskey Ranch, The Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth’s latest exhibit “The Octopus Eats Its Own Leg” or take in sights on the new TEXRail, a 27-mile commuter rail line that cuts out the need for a car.
It’s now possible to vacation like a celebrity without having to break the bank at the Finger Lakes Region of New York. Stay at the reopened Avon Inn, which has hosted famous folk like Katharine Hepburn, Henry Ford, and Tom Edison to name a few. The wine region has grown in popularity over the years and has become extremely affordable for those looking to sip on some vino and take in the countryside views. All year for 2018 is filled with openings and dining spots you won’t want to miss, including the expansion of the Craft Your Adventure Beverage Trail that includes 29 craft beer, hard cider, and spirit spots throughout the region.
While Nashville is best known for country music, the city is growing as an arts and culture center that will continue to flourish in the new year. Boutique Row, which includes four boutique hotels, is opening in the downtown Arts District on 4th Street between Union and Church Avenues. One of the hotels opening in early 2018 is the Fairlane, radiating a 1960s style. Visitors will almost marvel at the colorful murals aligning the city streets commissioned by the Nashville Walls Project, showcasing the work of the top street and graffiti artists.
Caroline Bay, Bermuda
Known for its beautiful beaches, tropical weather and endless water activities, Bermuda is the island destination you’ll want to visit this year. Thrill seekers can spend their vacation sailing, Jet-Skiing, watching a dolphin show, surfing, or scuba diving the crystal-clear seas. Slated to open next year, visitors may also want to check out the island’s newest resort community, Caroline Bay, containing a superyacht marina and five-star amenities for its residents and guests.
Lexington, Kentucky, is one of the most underrated Southern destinations, but definitely a must-visit location this year. With an array of openings coming, including a new boutique hotel and two historic distilleries, Lexington is quickly becoming a hidden gem of the South. In addition, visitors can enjoy more than 120 locally owned restaurants and take in impressive street-art murals by international artists.
Mexico City, Mexico
If you’re looking for a destination that includes all the travel essentials like shopping, art and culture, Mexico City should be on your bucket list. The travel hot spot has been named the World Design Capital for 2018 and it’s the first North American city to receive that honor. The program recognizes cities that successfully promote responsible economic, social, cultural, and environmental design and development. One location that showcases impeccable design work is the luxury department store, El Palacio de Hierro. Each floor represents a unique architectural twist and the department store also includes a miniature version of the iconic “El Caballito” sculpture by Sebastián.
Greater West Palm Beach, Florida
Downtown West Palm Beach is expected to be one of the most visited cultural locations of 2018, and artists around the world are transforming it into a creative outdoor museum worth the trip. New developments in the area include the Hilton West Palm Beach,Culture Lab and RH West Palm Beach: The Gallery at CityPlace featuring four floors of furnishings and a rooftop restaurant, to take in the surrounding views of the reimagined CityPlace, the districts outdoor retail center boasting interactive art installations, experiential shopping, entertainment, and more.