LuckyTrip's Top 20 Destinations for 2020


Bye bye 2019, see ya never 👋

We’re bringing you our top destination picks for the spanking new year.

From sustainable travel to destination resets, here’s LT’s top 20 places to go in 2020...

Braga, Portugal

20. Braga

This Portuguese dark horse is narrow streets twisting round baroque churches. Students hang out in the elegant town centre and there’s new cafes and vibey bars popping up all the time.

Porto, who?

Don't Miss:
Juno - inspired by the pregnant teen film and the Roman goddess - is Braga’s best bar. It’s got creativity seeping out every crack.

Work your way up the three floors taking in vintage shopping, a yoga sesh, and the latest exhibition by an underground artist. Evenings are for listening to a gig and eating local food.

Galway City, Ireland

19. Galway

A Celtic pocket rocket famous for Claddagh rings and street performers - Galway is the European Capital of Culture for 2020. Come for a packed programme of cultural events washed down with a pint of the black stuff.

Don't Miss:
David Best (the guy who makes sculptures from recycled wood for Burning Man) will be showing new artwork and Margaret Atwood is getting involved in the Women’s Day March.

The can’t miss moment will be Homer’s Odyssey being read out on the beach. They’ll be using the Emily Wilson translation - the first by a woman.

Athens, Greece

18. Athens

Athens was up, then it was down, now it's on the up again. It's always had dreamy crumbly bits, but now - after years of civil unrest, recession, and riots - this Greek heavyweight has had a cultural revival.

New neighbourhoods have sprung up with alt-art scenes and authentic eats.

Don't Miss:
Head to the gritty Metaxourgeio neighbourhood for a mish-mash of graffiti sprayed buildings and neoclassical mansions. Sink raki by the road or hit up The Rabbit Hole - an arts performance space.

Calgary, Canada

17. Calgary

So you thought you knew Canada? Calgary's millionaire cowboys and wind-powered trains want you to think again…

Wild grasslands run into rugged prairie plains and the Canadian Rockies loom large in the background. This used to be cattle country but locals have swapped boots for brogues and cows for culture.

Don't Miss
Explore the outdoor art installations and wander 17th Avenue, then hit the blues bars on Music Mile and hunt for food trucks. You’ll also want to check out Calgary Stampede 2020 - a huge festival with live music and rodeo.

Ljubljana, Slovenia

16. Ljubljana

Fairytale castles, riverside cafes, and dragons (bridge) - Ljubljana is the Slovenian capital that just keeps giving.

Bring a Slovenian classic to the park or hang in a boujee riverside cafe. Ideal for eco-conscious travellers, there’s loadsa carbon-neutral ways to live it up in Ljubljana.

Don't Miss:
The Metelkova neighbourhood used to be the former Yugoslav army barracks but now it’s a playground for artists and creatives.

Street art and rainbow mosaics are spread over every wall and Gala Hala bar serves ‘bear blood’ shots… the bohemian vibes are strong with this one.

Granada, Spain

15. Granada

Flamenco dancing in the streets and a backdrop of the Sierra Nevada mountains - Granada is Spain’s steamy Moorish city. Most come just for the dreamy Alhambra Palace but they’re missing out on the Islamic architecture and old-school tapas bars.

Don't Miss:
Follow the sound of a strumming Spanish guitar to the ‘Zambra’ - Flamenco houses built into the mountainside. Inside there’s twirling dancers and Moorish home inspo. La Cueva De la Rocio is one of the best.

Bonn, Germany

14. Bonn

HARIBO is made here and Beethoven was born here… Bonn doesn’t need to prove anything to you. Still, it’s got show-off palaces, castles and elegant leafy streets with well-groomed parks.

2020 marks the big B’s 250th birthday. Expect a year-round line-up of orchestras, soloists, and conductors plus loadsa famous musical faces.

Don't Miss:
Beethoven only composed one opera and Theater Bonn is going to be staging it. Catch Fidelio from Jan 1st through to March. There are a handful of other installations and less formal concerts dotted around the city too.

Rijeka, Croatia

13. Rijeka

Nestled against the Adriatic, Rijeka is Austro-Hungarian architecture and Italian street names… with some Roman ruins and Croatian weather thrown in.

While everyone else fangirls over (very busy) Dubrovnik and Split, you’ll be saying “Zdravo” to Europe’s Capital of Culture 2020.

Don't Miss:
In preparation for 2020 street artists like Francisco de Pájaro have been let loose. Think, doodling all over crumbling walls and creating sculptures out of mattresses #upcycling. Head to Ulica Franje Račkog and Ružićeva Ulica for photorealistic murals from Sebas Velasco and Lonac.

Tokyo, Japan

12. Tokyo

Tokyo is where ornate brick-red temples and elegant pink blossom trees live next to dancing sex robots and jumbled shopping districts... Yep, the 2020 summer Olympics are going to be all kinds of good.

Don't Miss:
The Olympics are the big reason to visit in 2020. The first Asian city to host the Olympic Games, Tokyo pulled out all the stops last time. The medallist’s bouquets will be made using flowers grown in areas affected by the 2011 Great East Japan earthquake.

Lisbon, Portugal

11. Lisbon

As if the pastéis de nada (Portuguese tarts), retro trams, and vibey tapas bars weren’t enough - Lisbon’s giving you another reason to visit. It’s been named the European Green Capital City for 2020.

Don't Miss:
Intendente used to be a red light district until immigrants, artists, and hipsters (winning combo) got their hands on it. Now it’s one of the few places locals still outnumber tourists.

Walk round historic buildings with pretty patterned tiles, then head to a craft beer bar for local brews and all the petiscos.

Sibiu, Romania

10. Sibiu

Paris, Vienna, Florence… Sibiu? Romania isn’t everyone’s first thought for culture, but Sibiu has everything from high falutin’ opera to weirdo sculptures of melting egg yolks. It’s also a Medieval city with market squares, 15th-century towers and teeny cobbled alleys.

Don't Miss
Walk along the historical city walls before catching some live music and scarily strong ‘palinka’ (fruit brandy) in a cellar bar.

Head to Crama Sibiul Vechi for tradish Romanian food. Sculpted into the rock under the main square, goulash and cheese croquettes are served with local music.

Mumbai, India

9. Mumbai

Get swept along chaotic streets passing delicious smelling mango trees, screeching street food hawkers and kids playing ‘gully’ cricket in the street. You'll be spat out into a bazaar. Sit down. Have a chai tea, you'll be fine.

2020 is the year of adventure travel, and it doesn’t get more hectic than Mumbai. This is where Bollywood movie stars live in 27-storey mansions above sprawling slums and skyscrapers sit side by side with mountains.

Don't Miss:
Street artists at Kala Ghoda Pavement Gallery will do you a portrait, a leaf painting, or even a doodle on your train ticket for the low low price of £3.

For well-known artists head across the road to Jehangir Art Gallery - it's free entry, but you can't afford these paintings.

Baku, Azerbaijan

7. Baku

Mad architecture, volcanos that erupt mud and a UNESCO old city - Baku is Azerbaijan's little-known capital. Caspian sea meets desert, East meets West, and the architecture is a Parisian-Dubai mash-up.

The city is changing fast, get it in your eyeballs before the woodsy corners and tradish crafts are dwarfed by hi-rises.

Don't Miss:
Azerbaijani music has to be heard in context. Or not at all. Muğam is a traditional ‘caravanserai’ (Persian traveller’s inn) where you can get an earful of Azerbaijan's ethnic folk music.

Stunningly decorated with fig leaves and metallic artworks, go for dinner and a show and make sure to have a drink in the candlelit courtyard.

Pilsen, Czech Republic

7. Pilsen

Puppet shows, blueberry flavoured pints, abandoned paper mill-slash-art spaces… Pilsen’s always been a bit weird.

The beer spa’s gone down better than a cold Pilsner Urquell and local ‘comic opera’ sells out everytime it comes to the JK Tyl Theatre. Remember to fill up on the goulash before quenching your thirst.

It’s just an hour’s drive from Prague.

Don't Miss:
What’s better than seeing off a six pack on a Friday night? Bathing in one…

Germans started the trend back in the ‘90s after research about how good vitamin B is for your skin. The booze is heated to 35°C in a wooden tub and a pint is left chilling on the side. Bottoms up.

Cairo, Egypt

6. Cairo

Egypt shipped Tutankhamun and his buried treasures off on a world tour back in 2018, and the pharaoh is set to return home in 2020.

Don't Miss:
Cairo’s Grand Egyptian Museum has been years in the making. This state-of-the-art museum will have the world’s largest museum dedicated to one civilisation.

Geddit done.

Méribel, France

5. Méribel

So you thought the apres-ski life began and ended at Courchevel? Meribel is here to show you different. Wood cabins hunker down in pillowy snow and from your steamy jacuzzi you can see night husky rides.

British skier, Peter Lindsay, founded this resort back in ‘36, and Stage 18 of the Tour de France is passing through here in 2020.

Don't Miss:
Ozzly you’ll want to catch the mountain stages and hug a hot choc as cyclists with calves like bricks whizz by.

After you’ve ticked that off make sure you hit up Le Rond Point for the best apres-ski scene. Too many post-ski pints? Take a night off at the Cinéma du Mottaret - it screens arty French films (with subs.)

Atlanta, United States

4. Atlanta

Sure, the locals are a charming bunch, the sweet tea flows, and you're likely to hear a few "y'all's", but Atlanta’s no southern stereotype.

This is where Martin Luther King Jr was born and Civil Rights activists hung out in the Sweet Auburn District. Atlanta is the shiny new face of the South - she's progressive and cultured.

Don't Miss:
Butterfly seats and giant crayons… You’ve fallen down the rabbit hole in Atlanta. The BeltLine project has given a facelift to the old railroad corridor transforming it into a biking and running route - and a 22-mile art exhibition.

Keep your eyeballs peeled for Anna Gromova’s rainbow murals and JD Koth’s wigwams made from vine and rope.

Aarhus, Denmark

3. Aarhus

Weird ‘iceberg’ architecture, New Nordic cuisine, and culture to rival Copenhagen - Aarhus is stepping into the spotlight in 2020. Building on its success as the 2017 European Capital of Culture, there’s a thriving art and culinary scene.

Don't Miss:
ARoS is the art museum with a rainbow roof installation by Ólafur Elíasson. It’s got art from way back in the Danish Golden Age up to the present day.

After ticking off the museum head to Aarhus Street Food. This market operates out of shipping containers. Go to Grandma’s Kitchen for traditional Danish dumplings and Ølfred for a beer.

Tromsø, Norway

2. Tromsø

Tromsø is a hardcore night owl. It’s got the most pubs per capita in Norway and the Northern Lights put on a good strobe show.

2020 is the year for nomadic travel (apparently) and adventure. Tromsø is a big ol’ box ticker of a holiday.

Don't Miss:
You can sled on a reindeer or head to a midnight gig in the Arctic Church. The polar bear at Mack’s Brewery will day drink you under the table.

Braşov, Romania

1. Braşov

Medieval black churches, gothic spires, narrow alleyways... Braşov is horror film chic. This Romanian town is nestled deep inside a Transylvanian forest.

It’s glorious in sunshine but when the sun sets... Locals get their fangs round sugary street food sold from wagons and drink £1 pints in candlelit dive bars.

Don't Miss:
Hollywood, schmollywood. The real sign to get a selfie with is in the hills above Braşov. Perched on a rock in the Carpathian mountains, Rasnov fortress brings all the hikers to its yard.

It was built by knights as protection against invading Tartars and now it’s a museum and maze up in the clouds.