The Cool List: celebrating the reasons to travel in 2020

The Cool List: celebrating the reasons to travel in 2020

Plotting your travels for the year ahead? Then look no further. Reflecting a growing appetite for responsible and authentic travel, our Cool List is replete with reasons to travel and with nations bouncing back from trying times, cities launching new cultural attractions, and pioneering destinations throwing open the doors of innovative hotels.   

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Travel's new philanthropists

These days, luxury travel is as much about hands-on engagement with a destination as it is opulent escapism, and increasingly that means conservation and community.

What they're eating in Beirut

Topped flatbreads, heritage grains and Armenian cuisine are all on the menu in the Lebanese capital.

Stories from the Arctic Coast Way, Iceland's epic new road trip

Trace the very edge of the world on a new road trip around Iceland’s northernmost reaches. Here, long summer days spent exploring element-blasted peninsulas and fjords rich in marine life are teamed with stays in cosy fishing towns swirling with stories.

Into the Okavango Delta: a portrait of Africa’s wildest conservation destination

Recent droughts in Botswana's 100-mile-wide alluvial fan have brought together conservationists, local people and new safari concessions in fresh efforts to help protect its life giving headwaters

Travel's new philanthropists

These days, luxury travel is as much about hands-on engagement with a destination as it is opulent escapism, and increasingly that means conservation and community.

WHAT'S NEW

A neighbourhood guide to San Diego

The beaches might be the biggest draw but the Southern Californian city’s diverse ’hoods are equally alluring, with hippy hangouts, activist culture and Mexican-inspired cuisine waiting to be discovered.

Vienna: how to experience the Capital of Music in 2020

The Austrian capital is hitting all the right notes as it gears up for a year of tuneful celebrations.

Where to mark 100 years since Prohibition

A century after the nationwide booze ban, there are still plenty of ways to discover the illicit allure of the Prohibition era.

Is your travel photography ethical?

Fines are now being issued to tourists in Kyoto who photograph Geishas without their consent. Are we entering an era where common sense must be enforced?

Food

Sour, salty, sweet: getting a taste for Filipino cuisine

From spit-roasted lechon pork to vinegar-soaked adobo stew, the stars of Filipino food are beginning to make their mark on big-city menus the world over. And the best way to get to know this cuisine is by exploring the capital, Manila.

Where to eat the world's best tiramisu

Whether you’re after a classic tiramisu or a daring interpretation, these are the top spots to try it in Italy and the UK.

Sami specials and succulent elk fillets: a taste of Swedish Lapland

In Sweden’s northernmost province, meals are fresh, hearty and ultra-local, whether you’re dining by an open fire or at a chef’s table.
National Geographic Traveller (UK)
March 2020
The Cool List: celebrating the reasons to travel in 2020
By National Geographic Traveller
Reflecting a growing appetite for responsible and authentic travel, our Cool List is replete with nations bouncing back from trying times, cities launching inspired new attractions, and pioneering destinations throwing open the doors of innovative hotels.
Photograph by Getty Images

In this issue,we see the return of the annual Cool List: 20 destinations that are making a name for themselves this year. From Cumbria to Panama, Brisbane and Pakistan, we’ve scoured the globe for 2020’s most interesting destinations.

From hiking trails and emerging culinary hubs to luxury lodges and landmark attractions, it’s a list that gives you plenty of inspiration close to home, as well as further afield. Reflecting a growing appetite for responsible and authentic travel, the Cool List is replete with nations bouncing back from trying times, cities launching inspired new cultural attractions, and pioneering destinations throwing open the doors of innovative hotels.

Plus, go off-grid in the lush jungles of Guyana; discover the majesty of Sri Lanka’s elephants; explore rock churches in Ethiopia’s dramatic Gheralta Mountains; and spend a long weekend in Bergen.

Read more in the March 2020 issue — SUBSCRIBE TODAY
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Read more in the March 2020 issue
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What's on

The National Geographic Traveller Food Festival 2020

Experience the world through food and travel.

Travel Geeks: Italy food and drink — 27 February 2020

From cacciatore to cannoli, get the lowdown on Italian cuisine for your next gourmet getaway from our expert panel.

Travel Geeks: natural Japan — 12 March 2020

A country of islands, mountains and diverse climates, Japan offers a wealth of natural wonders. Join us as we discuss where to go and how to do it.

Photography

National Geographic Traveller Photography Competition 2020

The prestigious annual competition is back and open for entries. Have you got what it takes to win?

What to expect at Disney's new Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge theme park

The Force has never been stronger, and a new stateside offering is taking family travel to starry new heights.

Rat-tail radishes and hooker chives: what to eat in Chiang Rai, Thailand

The time-honoured recipes of Thailand’s northernmost state draw on the natural bounty of its mountains and the ancient traditions of its indigenous peoples.

How to spend a weekend in Bergen, the gateway to Norway's fjords

Bounded by mountains and sea, Norway’s second city is arguably its most picturesque and welcoming. Its timbered facades and medieval harbour ooze old-world charm, its cuisine is creative, while the surrounding wilderness is ripe for exploring.
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Discover the sea trails of the Baltic region of Blekinge, Sweden

During a visit to Skåne, take a detour to the neighbouring Blekinge archipelago, which invites adventure-lovers to hop from island to island, seek out rare wildlife and explore long-distance walking trails.
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Hiking, paddling and outdoors cooking: discover forest bathing in Sweden’s Skåne region

Switch off and strike out to the serene forests of this southern province, where you can join tours combining mindfulness and nature.
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Head off on a biking adventure in Skåne, Sweden

Glide along the serene Sydostleden biking trail in the far south of Sweden to discover quaint towns, a wild coastline and welcoming locals.
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Meet the makers: the flavours of Skåne

In Sweden's southernmost province, travellers can drink homemade smoothies made from foraged fallen fruits and lick ice cream flavoured with just-plucked saffron. We meet the makers behind some of the region’s best produce.
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Go village-hopping on a road trip through Skåne

There’s no better way to discover Sweden's rosy-cheeked outdoors and outstanding foodie scene than on a road trip through the country's spirit-raising southernmost province.
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Top 10: unmissable stops along the Skåneleden hiking trail

Explore this long-distance trail in Sweden's Skåne region, winding beneath ancient beech trees and along lonely beaches. It’s a place to wild camp, forage for berries and stumble across sites far beyond the tourist trail.

The six travel books to read in 2020: Stanfords reveals its Travel Writing Awards shortlist

The shortlist for the Edward Stanford Travel Writing Awards, organised by travel book and map store Stanfords, has been revealed. Here, the bookshop shares what made these six reads stand out.

The real city that never sleeps: discovering nightlife in Madrid

From dancing ’til dawn at megaclubs to catching a film at a revamped cinema, the only way to really discover the Spanish capital is to stay up late.

A city guide to Riga, Latvia's thriving capital

With a medieval old town, art nouveau touches and vestiges of a Soviet past, the Latvian capital is a patchwork of a city that bears marks of its former occupiers. But a more modern Riga, of cocktail bars and high-rise hotels, is weaved in too.

Sri Lanka: the secrets behind Asia's mightiest elephant migration

In every dry season, elephants gather in Minneriya National Park in their hundreds, creating one of the planet’s greatest natural spectacles.

The surprising science behind in-flight meals

Malaysia-based airline AirAsia has opened a restaurant in Kuala Lumpur that sells its in-flight meals. But why does food often taste so different in the skies?

Newfoundland and Labrador: Where Cosmopolitan Meets Ancient History

Explore the 565-million-year-old mysteries of Newfoundland and Labrador.  

Surprising and unique Canadian fall experiences

Search for polar bears, take epic hikes among 10 million trees, camp under starry skies, and discover a distinctly different Canada.

Unique ways to experience Canada in the spring

There are many experiences that you can only have in Canada in the springtime, from encounters with puffins against a backdrop of shimmering icebergs, to urban festivals celebrating tulips or outine, to glorious hot springs in the Rocky Mountains.

Making cultural tracks in Italy’s Dolomites

If the thought of skiing the same slopes for a week bores you, try a guided ski safari through the Dolomites where even novice skiers can explore a variety of lodges, historic sites and ski in/ski out museums.

Where the National Geographic Traveller (UK) team are travelling to in 2020

The National Geographic Traveller team are always dreaming about where next to head next. Here are the destinations heading up our wishlists for 2020.