With the worst of the winter weather now out of the way and most of us excitedly tapping our feet for some sun, there’s never been a better time to start thinking about your travel plans for 2019. Whether you’re looking for some summer sun or you want to explore a city rich with culture, food, and history, the world’s a pretty big place…. we’re sure you’ll find something!
Below, we’ve rounded up five fantastic travel destinations for 2019, and we’ve worked hard to select sustainable choices where you can have fun and unwind, all without damaging the environment. Read on to see our choices, and let us know your favourite in the comments.
Stockholm City, Sweden
The European city of Stockholm is one of the most beautiful in the world, with 95 per cent of the population less than 1,000 feet from a park or green space. In fact, the city was named the greenest in the 2010 European Green Capitals Award and has since been working hard to impress tourists and keep locals relaxed with stunning floral displays and natural wildlife.
Indeed, Stockholm is a very green city. All of its buses and trains run on renewable energy, and urban farming is hugely popular in the region, with families and businesses pruning their gardening patches and growing vegetables and fruits to eat and share with friends.
With 14 islands and 50 bridges, you can spend days on end exploring the side streets and shops that are dotted across the city, whilst the waterside Stockholm City Hall, Vasa Museum, and Skansen, an open-air history museum on the Stockholm island of Djurgården, are all great ways to spend an afternoon or two. There are countless boutique fashion stores as well as all of your favourite high street brands, and many eco-friendly hotels and B&Bs.
Cape Town, South Africa
If you’re fancying something a little warmer and more exotic than Europe, then you may want to consider Cape Town in South Africa, which offers endless natural beauties to explore, like Table Mountain (popular with hikers) and Boulders Bay, a place where you can see penguins roaming the beach. Yes, really! If you want to get away from the heat, then spend some time in the air-conditioned museums, art galleries, exhibitions and aquariums dotted around the city and spend some time (and some South African rand!) at V&A Waterfront. Oh, and if you want to be adventurous, explore Cape Town’s outer regions via train for something special.
Bushmans Kloof Wilderness Reserve, for example, offers 18,000-acres of stunning natural wildlife in the Cederberg Mountains, a couple of hour’s drive from Cape Town. There, you can see waste-water processing, sustainable farming and energy-saving schemes, as well as rock-art sites, many of which are more than 10,000 years old. It’s an incredible piece of history that, granted, might be a little way from home, but is certainly worth exploring in 2019.
Back to Europe, and this time a trip to the small European country of Slovenia. Again, whilst this may not be your first choice when looking to spend some time abroad, it’s another great option to consider if you’re looking for a sustainable destination for a relaxing break. Slovenia was named the world’s most sustainable country in 2016, leading the way in biodiversity, recycling and air quality. The country boasts a whole host of mountains, lakes, springs and seas, and its capital city, Ljubljana, should be your first port of call. As well as claiming to be the first city in Europe to be zero-waste, Ljubljana has natural gas buses and electric trains.
Whilst you’re there, spend time marvelling the Ljubljana Castle, which dates back to the 11th century, and book a boat ride down the Ljubljanica River, where you can spot The Dragon Bridge and Tromostovje, another famous arch bridge that’s great for Instagram selfies!
According to the country’s tourism slogan, Norway is “powered by nature” and it’s clear to see why. If you’re a fan of backpacking and want to take in some truly breathtaking sights, like the Northern Lights, then Norway as a country can make a great month-long road trip. If you’re short of time, then book into a hotel in its capital, Oslo, and see what’s on offer.
From The Vigeland Park and The Viking Ship Museum through to Oslo Opera House, The Nobel Peace Center and Holmenkollen Ski Museum, there’s something for everyone. Once all that’s done, spend time in Oslo’s shopping centres. From high-end department stores and fashion outlets like Langaard, Ferner Jacobsen, Steen & Strøm Louis Vuitton to sustainable craft and souvenir stalls like Norway Designs, Heimen Husfliden GlasMagasinet and I jobb gift shop, you’ll be spoiled for choice. And may need extra baggage on the flight home!
If it’s the sun you’re after, then Miami can offer it in bucketloads. In the centre of Florida, this city is one of the most diverse in the world, with its South Beach, Ocean Drive and Bayside Marketplace just three of the most popular tourist spots. On Lincoln Road Mall, you’ll find a bunch of boutique outlets and trinket shops, whilst the Venetian Pool, opened in 1924, is great if you fancy a dip and want to enjoy waterfalls, grottos and stunning tropical backdrops.
You may think that a big American city such as Miami is a major pollutant and bad for the environment, but you’d be mistaken. The Palms Hotel & Spa, for example, is one of the most eco-conscious hotels in the country, whilst the Sonesta Coconut Grove is a member of the Florida Green Lodging program, working to increase sustainability. If you want to be mindful of the environment, the hardest part is choosing which eco-friendly hotel or B&B to stay at!
There you have it - five of the best travel destinations to consider for 2019. Wherever you end up this year, don’t forget to stock up on eco-friendly clothing from Ultra Tee to ensure you look your best - and with free delivery on orders over £80, there’s no excuse not to!