There are so many wonderful places to visit in the world! It can be tough choosing where to take the family for a big annual vacation.
Each year, National Geographic has a list of the best places to visit around the world. They chose these travel destinations based on themes everyone can enjoy, from food festivals to photography adventures. We decided to highlight destinations from their lists with ornaments that represent the best reasons to travel there!
See the locations and ornaments below from National Geographic’s top travel destinations over the years and don’t forget to take a look at our whole vacation Christmas ornaments category for the perfect keepsake to represent your travels this year.
1. Nashville, Tennessee
Nashville is a well-known hotspot for country music, with concerts and music festivals all summer long. Even if you’re not a country music fan, so many people gather here to share up and coming music of all kinds. Many of these events are free, while others require reservations and last days at a time.
2. Guizhou Province, China
Growing in popularity thanks to a growing global demand for technology, Guizhou has become the home of building facilities for big brands including Apple and Huawei. Of course, all this attention has made it far easier to access and move around. If you happen to find yourself in Guizhou, be sure to check out the traditional villages, where things move in a stark contrast to the fast-paced, high-tech world of the companies operating there. National Geographic specifically calls out minority groups including the Dong, Miao, and Bouyei. They also recommend visiting in April and May, taking the high-speed train for the best travel experience.
3. Seattle, Washington
The west coast is always a joy with plenty of outdoor recreational activities. Many people travel to Washington for hiking, boating and camping, but National Geographic features Seattle for the city’s artwork on display over the summer. For any vacation-goer that catches one of Washington’s rainy days, there’s the Seattle International Film Festival and many exhibits to visit at the Seattle Art Museum.
4. Magdalen Islands, Canada
As a perfect destination for travel during February and March, the Magdalen Islands in Canada are ripe with unmatched beauty and ice-cold spectacles, ideal for the nature lover who doesn’t mind wearing a few extra layers. If you go, National Geographic recommends trying one of the liveaboard boat expeditions that will guide you through the region, giving you a chance to experience a bit of everything, from adorable harp seals to sea ice so thick, you can walk on it!
5. San Juan, Puerto Rico
There are so many beautiful landmarks to visit in Puerto Rico. The homes here are all pastel colors, and the architecture includes very old religious monuments and cemeteries. If your family enjoys learning about history, the island includes giant military bases and forts dating back to the 16th century.
6. Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona
A classic American travel destination, Grand Canyon National Park is like nothing else. If you’ve never been there, rest assured, the photos don’t do it justice. You really need to go! Perfect for an autumn adventure, the Grand Canyon National Park is a haven for hikers, RVing, outdoorspeople, and explorers who love to explore, drinking in some of the finest natural sights the country has to offer. Whether you take a tour or choose to venture out on your own, there’s no question that a trip to the Grand Canyon is one that will stay with you in your memories for the rest of your life.
National Geographic featured this travel destination for its food, including a wine and food festival happening now, and a brewfest in the second half of June. I personally think Hawaii is such a lovely destination for its beaches, and there have been so many couples who have traveled here for their marriages and honeymoons.
8. Puebla, Mexico
Just great for a trip any time of year, Puebla is brimming with historical sites and ornate baroque architecture. Traditional, yet traveler-friendly, Puebla is a fantastic way to experience Mexico as it was meant to be experienced, still allowing you to take a break from your daily adventures to relax in one of the more modern hotels that have popped up throughout the city over the last several years.
9. Cocos Island, Costa Rica
If you’re looking for a beach trip but really want to travel for the excursions, the sea life around Costa Rica is very special. Snorkelers and divers enjoy an array of Pacific fish that gather here, including many saltwater predators, such as hammerhead sharks, tiger sharks and whale sharks. This may not be on everyone’s bucket list, but if you love unique tropical ecosystems, there’s no place like Costa Rica!
10. Mendoza Province, Argentina
Scenic and beautiful, lush with sights to see and things to do, Argentina’s Mendoza province has everything a seasoned traveler could hope for. From the iconic Andes mountains to sun-soaked vineyards with unbelievable food and drink, it’s an easy choice for those seeking a more relaxing getaway. The spring tends to be the best time to go, with National Geographic highly recommending the many wineries scattered about the region.
If you didn’t find the ornament you were looking for, be sure to check out our full vacation & destination ornaments category. We also collect ornaments from around the world and are sure you can find just the right one to reperesent your journey. Did you know we hand-personalize every ornament you choose for free? You also receive free shipping when choosing 5+ ornaments!
Are you traveling anywhere special this summer? Tell us in the comments below!