The 5 Most “Criminally Underrated” Travel Destinations

If you’re a well-traveled person, you might find that it becomes increasingly difficult to find compelling destinations that you’ve never seen before.

Or maybe you just want to cross an item off your “bucket list” but want to avoid the tourist crowds by going someplace unique.

Whatever your reason for wanting to avoid the cliche destinations like Istanbul, Rome, and London, this article may give you some new ideas that you may have slipped past your radar.

Why Visit Lesser Known Destinations?

The world’s most popular travel destinations are popular for a reason: they have a lot of history and great cultural sites to see.

Provided that you keep your money safe while travelling, the barriers to traveling are getting increasing lower. It seems that everyone and his uncle has been to Europe or China.
But you don’t want to be Mr. Regular Joe Traveller…

You want to have a unique story to share–one that you can use to impress even the most well-traveled tourists.

The solution?

Go someplace awesome that few people ever go. Here are a some ideas…

5 Most Underrated Travel Destinations

Destination #1: Indonesia (other than Bali)

Bali is a very popular destination for tourists but most people forget about all the great sites in the rest of the company.For example…

Volcanoes…

Segara Anak from the Crater Rim
Segara Anak from the Crater Rim: Photo Petter Lindgren/ CC BY-SA 3.0

Crazy cities in Java…

5 Most Underrated Travel Destinations: Borobudur Temple, Indonesia
Borobudur Temple: Photo on Flickr by wahyu mahendratama / CC BY-NC 2.0

Jungles in Sumatra and Borneo…

5 Most Underrated Travel Destinations: Borneo jungle
Borneo jungle: Photo InteractiveJungle.com

…and great food!

1200px-Soto_ayam
Soto ayam: Photo Sakurai Midori / CC BY-SA 3.0

Destination #2: Ecuador (Chimborazo Región)

Although Ecuador is a fairly popular tourist destination, the beautiful Chimborazo region is woefully underappreciated.

5 Most Underrated Travel Destinations: Chimborazo Volcano Ecuador
Chimborazo Volcano, Ecuador: Photo Martin Zeise / CC BY-SA 3.0

The key highlight of this region is the magnificent Mt. Chimborazo. The summit of Mt. Chimborazo is known for being the point on the earth’s surface that is furthest away from the earth’s center.

Ecuador Chimborazo
Ecuador Chimborazo: Photo Kilobug / CC BY-SA 3.0

Destination #3: Colombia

Most people who visit Colombia go to places like Bogotá, Medellín, Cartagena and Tayrona. But here are some of the great spots in the country you may have overlooked…

Bahía Solano:

5 Most Underrated Travel Destinations: Columbia Bahia Solano Beach
Bahia Solano Beach, Columbia: Photo CreativeLunatics.com

Popayán:

Torre del Reloj Popayan
Torre del Reloj Popayan: Photo Carlos Felipe López Cerón / CC BY 4.0

Destination #4: Bulgaria

Bulgaria was once a popular cheap beach destination but for whatever reason has fallen out of fashion. You’ll rarely hear about anyone going anywhere other than Varna.

This is a shame because Sofia is quite a lovely capital…

5 Most Underrated Travel Destinations: Orlov Most Square Sofia
Orlov Most Square, Sofia: Photo Boby Dimitrov / CC BY-SA 2.0

It’s also a great place to going skiing and snowboarding:

Skiing Bansko
Skiing Bansko: Photo Richard Till / CC BY-NC 2.0

Destination #5: Belgium

If you love beer, you’ll definitely want to visit Belgium.

Belgium is home to six of only ten authentic Trappist breweries in the world.

(“Trappist beers” are beers that are brewed in monasteries under control of Trappist-Cistercian monks. The income from beer sales supports the monks and the monasteries charitable works. “The Westvleteren XII” was recently ranked as the top beer in the world on RateBeers.com.)

Belgian Beers
Source: BelgaBeers.com

While you’re enjoying your beer, you can visit Dinant — perhaps the most scenic area in Belgium.

5 Most Underrated Travel Destinations: Dinant
Dinant: Photo Jiuguang Wang / CC BY-SA 2.0

How to Pay for Your Trip

The ideal thing to do if you’re a traveling enthusiast is to have a special savings account set up for travelling. You can let the money accumulate throughout the year and you can use a travel rewards card to save up enough points to cover a good portion of your airfare.

However, if you’re still a little strapped on cash but still want to see the world, you may have some work around options.

For example, if you’re a student you can get your trip paid for by teaching English.

Or if you’ve been in the military you may be able to get discounted airfare and other perks.

Otherwise, you’ll have to get a little creative in coming up with the funds for your travels.

What do you think?

What’s your favorite “secret” travel destination? Are there any other destinations you felt deserved to be on this list? Comment below to let me know!

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