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A new year means new travels. But where are you going? Will you head back to your favourite spots or try somewhere new? Is it a beach vacation or a snow holiday? Whatever your preference we know the top 10 destinations that should be on your list for 2016.
Looking to fly somewhere cheaper to make your Australian dollar stretch further? Then look no further than Bangkok. Often considered “backpacker city”, kids will also love the giant shopping malls, the world’s largest street market and rooftop waterparks which cost as little as AUD$3.
If you love the beaches of Thailand then Langkawi is a perfect fit. Closer to Thailand than Malaysia, this beautiful series of islands is a one hour flight from Kuala Lumpur. Spend relaxing days on the tropical beaches, or take a boat tour of the mangroves and enjoy affordable, tasty local food.
Perhaps not-so-new on anyone’s travel list, but a must-visit destination for 2016 is beautiful Bali. Once you’ve had your fill of shopping in Kuta, or relaxed on a beach in Nusa Dua, head to Ubud for much-needed time out. Enjoy a leisurely hike over Tjampuhan Ridge, savour delicious and healthy cuisine, take a few yoga classes, and then spend the afternoon in your own villa, laying by the pool or simply enjoying a soothing massage.
The Australian dollar is not doing so well against the US so why not head to its northern neighbour? This beautiful location offers some of the most scenic landscapes you will find anywhere in the world, from tranquil lakes to majestic glaciers and endless mountains. Not to mention bears, eagles and elk. Go in winter for a snow vacation or head there in the summer for a challenging hiking trip.
The newest place on everyone’s radars, with help from popular ABC TV show, Nashville. This family-friendly city is the perfect size for easy exploring in one week. Visit the popular Coyote Ugly bar or Bluebird Café, and enjoy Honky Tonk (live entertainment) almost anywhere. Kids are welcome in most nightspots before 6pm and country music centric attractions will fill up your days.
3 days or 3 weeks, Chicago’s little big city will keep you very busy. Kids are going to love the never-ending list of attractions from the Shedd Aquarium to the Alder Planetarium or the Field Museum during it’s cold winters. But if you are touring the city in the summer the free city zoo is a must, as well as a walk around Millennium Park and the infamous “Bean”.
Give the kids a dose of American history with a visit to Mount Rushmore or see how mountain sculptures are made with a visit to Crazy Horse. Enjoy a drive through the Badlands, or dig into prehistoric archaeological finds at the Mammoth Hot Springs. Not a typical holiday spot, but one that offers a diverse range of attractions.
Everyone has seen the classic Santorini photos, but our favourite Greek island was Kythnos. It’s small and local, with the same amount of splendour that the bigger islands offer, but without the crowds. Plus the food is out-of-this-world delicious.
Heading to Europe? Then consider Croatia, another country where your money will stretch further. Split is a gorgeous coastal city with a sizable shopping mall that will make you feel at home, but also a historic town centre dating back centuries to make you feel part of this city’s remarkable story.
An easy flight from Australia and usually direct, Dubai is a stop of luxury indulgence. Take the kids on a desert safari, spend days upon days in Dubai Mall with its aquariums, KidZania and Sega World, or head over to Atlantis The Palm to waterslide with sharks!