Europe & Britain | Inspiration

This surprising destination is our top pick for 2024

The promise of a new year opens us up to 12 huge months of adventure. We asked the question to our Trafalgar staff at HQ – where are you most excited to visit in 2024? And the response? Perhaps not what you expected!

We had four special destinations emerge as compelling contenders for the coveted title of our top pick for 2024. But there can only be one winner!

From the lush green landscapes of Vietnam to the timeless charms of Italy, each destination put forth has its own unique offering and reason to visit.

Florence skyline

But in 2024, standing head and shoulders above the rest – Norway emerges as the top choice for our well-traveled staff. The country synonymous with awe-inspiring fjords and the ethereal Northern Lights feels at once familiar and yet adventurous. 

Let’s take a look at the destinations our HQ staff put forward, and then look at the fjord-studded landscape of Norway to unravel the reasons why this Scandinavian destination outshines its competitors, making it the undisputed top pick for the year ahead.

Runner-up destinations for 2024

Italy always charms

From the ancient ruins of Rome to the art-laden streets of Florence and the romantic canals of Venice, Italy seems to be a perennial muse and is always on our list of top destinations for good reason.

“Italy for me! And specifically Florence for the food, wine and the architecture,” says Trafalgar’s Steve. “Pompei is also on the wish list for the historical ruins and I’ve always wanted to trek up Vesuvius.”

“I want to go to the Emilia-Romagna region of Italy for the incredible food,” says Jay. “There are a plethora of iconic ingredients and dishes that come from this region, and I want to sample the really good stuff. 

“Parmesan (my kryptonite) comes from there, as does Parma ham and balsamic vinegar. Authentic balsamic from Modena is so good, it can cost even more than Dom Perignon! 

“Also in Modena has an amazing restaurant that used to hold the title as best restaurant in the world – Osteria Francescana. There are so many fantastic restaurants there, and I want to go conquer them all.”

The country’s delectable cuisine, celebrated wines, and the warm embrace of its people add layers to the travel experience. Whether exploring the sun-soaked Amalfi Coast or immersing oneself in the artistry of Tuscany, Italy’s promise of la dolce vita is irresistible.

TAKE A TRIP: Best of Italy

Sizzling Spain in 2024 

Rich culture, flamenco rhythms, glorious weather and architectural wonders make Spain another destination on our eternal hot list. From the energy of Barcelona’s Gaudi masterpieces to the historic grandeur of Madrid’s Prado Museum, to the sun-kissed beaches of Costa del Sol, Spain has it all.

“This year it’s Madrid for me,” says Trafalgar’s Jamie. “I really want to discover the cultural scene of Madrid, I’m interested in La Movida Madrileña and discovering Madrid by night, but also heading into the more rural surrounding areas.”

The Spaniards’ zest for life can be found across the country, but there’s no better place to get to know Spain than in the capital. Here you’ll find a clash of Spanish culture as Spain’s different diverse regions bring their food and traditions to the big modern city.

TAKE A TRIP: Best of Spain

Oodles of noodles in Vietnam

“Vietnam! I can’t wait to eat delicious Vietnamese food at the source, from bo bun to bahn mi to a rich and hearty bowl of pho,” says Trafalgar’s Daniela. 

“I’m sure each dish tastes even better perched on a small stool at a night market. The scenery also looks insane, from the limestone karst mountains that shoot towards the sky, to lush rice terraces that snake across the hills, connecting quaint rural villages.”

Indeed, Vietnam is a destination that combines history, culture, food and natural splendor, making this destination a hot pick for 2024. Journey from the bustling streets of Hanoi to the tranquil beauty of Ha Long Bay. Discover ancient temples, a vibrant street food scene, and navigate the Mekong Delta’s labyrinthine waterways.

Vietnam promises authentic experiences, where tradition mixes with the energetic spirit of a nation on the rise.

TAKE A TRIP: Highlights of Vietnam

The hunt for Nessie in Scotland

With rugged landscapes, ancient castles, and mystical allure, Scotland emerges as a top choice in 2024. In this land of tartans and lochs, outdoor enthusiasts will find solace in the vast wilderness of the Scottish Highlands, and comfort in the historic charm of Edinburgh’s cobbled streets.

Trafalgar’s Ellie, who is based in the UK, says Scotland is her destination pick for 2024. “It seems like one of the easiest places to go, but I still haven’t visited. I want to experience Edinburgh and the Scottish Highlands to hunt for Nessie.

As the birthplace of many great legends and home to warm people and hospitality, it’s easy to see why Scotland is always on our minds.

TAKE A TRIP: Scotland’s Highlands Islands and Cities

Our destination pick for 2024

Drumroll for our 2024 destination please….

Chase the Northern Lights in Norway in 2024

From the majestic cliffs of Preikestolen to the charming streets of Bergen, Norway captivates with its pristine outdoor landscapes. But what sets it apart in 2024? The promise of the most spectacular Northern Lights display. 

“I would love to travel to Finland or Norway this year to see the Northern Lights,” says Victoria from Team Social. “Scientists believe that 2024 will bring the best auroras in 20 years!” 

Clearly she’s not the only one paying attention to the news about the Northern Lights being more vibrant than ever in 2024. The best place to see them is deep in the north, beyond the Arctic Circle where the lights will dance across the sky during long and dark winter nights.

Sophie echoed her thoughts: “Same as Tori for me either Norway or Iceland for the Nothern Lights.”

Bruno says: “Thumbs up for Norway!”

The best sightings are anticipated in Tromsø, known as the “Gateway to the Arctic,” during the winter months, especially from late September to early April. When darkness blankets the Arctic skies, the dance of the Northern Lights in Norway brings a magical lightness with its otherworldly spectacle.

TAKE A TRIP: Nordic Adventure

RELATED BLOG: The 12 best places to visit in 2024: The Ultimate Trafalgar Bucket List

What’s your top destination pick for 2024? Let us know where you’re planning to travel to in the comments… 

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