Must-See: Top Travel Destinations Around the World in 2012What are the top travel destinations around the world for 2012?
, Lonely Planet
, CNNGo ,Travel & Leisure
, USA TODAY
, Budget Travel
, and Frommers
all listed their top travel destination picks for this year.
Which destinations did they all recommend? We examined their lists and found the destinations that made more than one of the above top destinations lists - the crème de la crème
of 2012 top destinations:
: A northern Portugese city settled in the 9th century, its center is a UNESCO World Heritage site. It made the top places to visit list in 2012 for Lonely Planet
, Travel & Leisure
and USA TODAY
[caption id="attachment_5202" align="aligncenter" width="640" caption="Photo by: b00nj"]
: The quarter-final and semi-final games of the 14th UEFA European Football Championship (Euro 2012 from June 8 - July 1) will be held in Warsaw. Recommended by CNNGo
and Budget Travel
[caption id="attachment_5204" align="aligncenter" width="635" caption="Photo by: Shalom Alechem/Wikimedia Commons"]
: The land of Aloha makes the list of top places to watch in 2012 for USA TODAY
also recommends Hawaii, specifically Pearl Harbor, citing the 50th anniversary of the USS Arizona Memorial in May 2012.
[caption id="attachment_5228" align="aligncenter" width="640" caption="Photo by: photobunny (via Flickr)"]
: whether it's Calgary
, recommended by CNNGo
(July is the 100 year anniversary of the Calgary Stampede, the "Greatest Outdoor Show on Earth") or the Bay of Fundy in Nova Scotia
, recommended by Frommers
for its incredible tides (the highest in the world) or Toronto
recommended by Travel & Leisure
("able to double as New York City on film") or simply Eastern Canada
suggested by Budget Travel
or Muskoka, Ontario
which National Geographic
describes as "the heart of Ontario's cottage country...true wilderness," Canada makes everyone's list.
[caption id="attachment_5209" align="aligncenter" width="600" caption="Photo by: Randy Craig, All Canada Photos/Alamy"]
: As the host city of this year's Summer Olympics (July 27 - August 12), London makes the hot destinations to visit list in 2012 for CNNGo, USATODAY, Lonely Planet
and National Geographic
. Already the city has spent $15 billion to spruce itself up for the upcoming games (source
[caption id="attachment_5210" align="aligncenter" width="600" caption="Photo by: Dagmar Schwelle, laif/Redux"]
: Lonely Planet
gives a spot to Cadiz
, in Southwestern Spain, on its top 10 cities in 2012 list. National Geographic
both recommend Girona
in Northeastern Spain. National Geographic describes the region as "sunshine laced wilderness."
[caption id="attachment_5211" align="aligncenter" width="640" caption="Photo by: DMWyllie"]
- while Budget Travel
recommends travel to Athens
and Travel & Leisure
recommends the region of Messenia
, "the westernmost finger of the hand-shaped Peloponnese peninsula, filled with sun-drenched valleys, Byzantine churches, and sandy dunes that border the crystal-blue Ionian Sea," National Geographic
includes on its list the mainland
of Greece, with its rugged terrain and secluded monasteries.
[caption id="attachment_5214" align="aligncenter" width="600" caption="Photo by: Reiner Harscher, laif/Redux (Roussanou Monastery)"]
: National Geographic
refers to Panama as an "Eco-Wonderland" with stunning nature and a rich indigenous culture. The country also makes Travel & Leisure's
hottest destinations list this year.
[caption id="attachment_5218" align="aligncenter" width="640" caption="Photo by: Rita Willaert"]
Land of the Maya: Frommers
includes the Yucatán Peninsula
on its top destinations list for 2012. Budget Travel
recommends visiting Belize
for travelers looking to connect with the Maya civilization. USA TODAY
takes a broader approach and includes on its list of destinations to watch in 2012 Belize, Guatemala, Honduras
, and Mexico
. National Geographic
suggests travelers looking for a Maya connection visit Guatemala,
- a town where almost the entire population is indigenous and which lies 3 hours from Guatemala City.
[caption id="attachment_5221" align="aligncenter" width="635" caption="Photo by: archer10 (dennis) via Budget Travel"]
added to their list of top 10 destinations the 'model green city' of Fukuoka, Japan
, located on the island of Kyushu
about 550 miles west of Tokyo. USA TODAY
included the entire country of Japan
on its list of destinations to watch in the coming year.
[caption id="attachment_5223" align="aligncenter" width="640" caption="Fukuoka, Japan. Photo by: Goodbye Country (Hello Nightclub) via Flickr"]
: National Geographic
and Lonely Planet
both include Muscat, Oman
in their list of top destinations for travelers to visit in 2012. Lonely Planet describes the city's inhabitants as "still genuinely interested to see visitors, so much so that first-timers might have the odd feeling of returning to the house of an old friend."
[caption id="attachment_5222" align="aligncenter" width="640" caption="Photo by: erkan.pinar (Flickr)"]
Voila - the top 11 destinations for 2012 as selected by National Geographic, Lonely Planet, Travel & Leisure, USA TODAY, Budget Travel, and Frommers.
Which one's on your list?
Guimarães by b00nj: http://www.flickr.com/photos/b00nj/5310477775/sizes/z/in/photostream/
Warsaw by Shalom Alechem/Wikimedia Commons: http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Warsaw_-_Royal_Castle_Square.jpg
Hawaii by photobunny: http://www.flickr.com/photos/photobunny_earl/176870667/sizes/l/in/photostream/
Muskoka, Ontario by Randy Craig, All Canada Photos/Alamy: http://travel.nationalgeographic.com/travel/best-trips-2012/#/botw-main-gallery-muskoka_41329_600x450.jpg
London by Dagmar Schwelle, laif/Redux: http://travel.nationalgeographic.com/travel/best-trips-2012/#/botw-main-gallery-london_41326_600x450.jpg
Spain by DMWyllie: http://www.flickr.com/photos/diegowyllie/1939657702/sizes/l/in/photostream/
Roussanou Monastery, Greece by Reiner Harscher, laif/Redux: http://travel.nationalgeographic.com/travel/best-trips-2012/#/botw-main-gallery-greece_41324_600x450.jpg
Panama City by Rita Willaert: http://www.flickr.com/photos/rietje/2342855343/
Caracol, Belize by archer10 (dennis): http://www.flickr.com/photos/archer10/2214364048/in/photostream/
Fukuoka, Japan by Goodbye Country (Hello Nightclub): http://www.flickr.com/photos/clarkece/4756773968/sizes/l/in/photostream/
Oman by erkan.pinar: http://www.flickr.com/photos/21712342@N07/5259941413/