Vacations are meant to be getaways. They're supposed to give us a chance to leave the real world behind for a while as we explore a place we normally wouldn't get to see. We spend time choosing our destination, booking flights and hotels, and planning everything out to have the best trip possible. You finally get to your dream location and realize that thousands of other people decided they had to be there too. You find yourself fighting crowds to get anywhere and waiting for hours to enjoy meals or sightseeing. By the time the trip is over, you've seen a lot of amazing architecture and scenery, eaten some incredible food, and made some great memories. But you may not feel as rested or relaxed as you would have wanted. You may feel that you would have enjoyed yourself a bit more if you had had some space and a chance to get away from the crowds. Do you dream of vacations that have you wandering down quiet streets, solitary beaches, or hidden trails that take you completely away from the crowds? Next time you plan a trip, look into destinations that may not be as well known tourist spots. You'll still get to enjoy your days in an amazing location but you'll have a lot more quiet time to really enjoy your trip away from your everyday life. You'll come home from these places more relaxed and with memories that won't be forgotten easily.
25 Colmar, France - Venice Charm Without The Crowds
When you think of stunning, ancient architecture and boat rides down canals, the first city that probably comes to mind is Venice. Venice is a gorgeous place to visit, but if you're looking for a destination that gets you away from the crowds, it's not on the top of the list. Instead, check out Colmar, France. This amazing city is located in the Alsace region of France, not too far from the Germany border. Nestled below the Vosges mountains, the climate is incredible.
This stunning Alsatian city is virtually unknown outside France, but many Parisians have discovered that this hidden gem offers world-class food, amazing vineyards, gorgeous museums. and true relaxation in a stunning setting that includes Old Town.
This part of Colmar is surrounded by canals that you can enjoy cruising. The city provides a perfect place to stay as you explore the wine region and other beautiful places such as Ribeauvillé and Strasbourg. Once you visit, you'll soon discover why this amazing city should be on your list of favorite destinations.
24 Perth, Australia - A Backyard Like No Other
Although Perth is a large city, it has a truly laid back atmosphere that allows visitors to relax and enjoy a break. Perth is perfectly situated, with an abundance of parkland, access to nearby bush as well as river and ocean beaches, to provide a wide array of scenery to you no matter what you are looking for. It offers a cosmopolitan atmosphere with bars, restaurants, and cultural activities that can keep you busy.
A great public transit system will let you get outside the city if you want to have a day to wander and get away from everyone. Perth is well known for its beaches, and once you set foot on one, you'll understand why. If bumming around in the Australian sun isn't your thing, you can also check out the museums, zoo, and aquariums that Perth is happy to provide. While Perth is a booming city with an amazing array of activities, you will still find ways to get away from the crowds and enjoy some peace and quiet. Let Perth offer you its hospitality, its warmth, and its culture. You will definitely enjoy a visit to one of Australia's gorgeous destinations even if you are looking for something more remote and relaxed.
23 Hamburg, Germany - Everything You'd Want, Without Swarms Of Tourists
Hamburg is a great city to visit if you're looking to get away from everything. This vibrant but laid-back city provides a great vacation destination that combines great music, theater, food and culture. But it also manages to maintain its reserved nature that allows people to take in the city at their own pace.
Hamburg has also earned a reputation for being a 'green' city, with an abundance of parks and canals that will allow you to enjoy nature as you travel this amazing city. You can also enjoy a concert at one of two concert halls in Elbphilharmonie or enjoy some of the museums like Kunsthalle Hamburg or the International Maritime Museum. If you're into architecture, make sure you see some of the gorgeous churches in Hamburg. After you tour this phenomenal city during the day, you'll have a chance to enjoy one of many great restaurants. You'll discover a great selection of meals from a worldwide assortment of cuisine.
Whether you are looking for a fun filled day of catching the great music and art scene or spending some time in the parks and along the canals, Hamburg can offer something amazing. Even if you don't want to mingle with big crowds, you can have a great vacation in this welcoming German city.
22 Grand Canyon North Rim - Don't Let Crowds Spoil Your Selfie
The Grand Canyon draws visitors from around the world daily. It's an incredible spectacle and experience that you will never forget. But most visitors find themselves at the South Rim of the canyon. This causes it to become very crowded during peak times.
However, this awe inspiring destination has something to offer those who want to take a less traveled road and see the sights from a different perspective. For those who prefer a much quieter visit to the canyon, the lesser known and more remote North Rim offers spectacular views without the crowds. The season is much smaller due to winter conditions that close the lodge and restaurants. Snow makes the roads particularly difficult between November and April, but the rim is open from dawn to dusk. Spend a few days at the Grand Canyon Lodge North Rim and take the time to truly explore the canyon.
Although the variety of activities in the North rim may not be vast, this remote location offers world class rafting, hiking, and camping for those that truly want to get away from it all. The lodge provides a comfortable and relaxing location to stay while you take the time to get to know the canyon in ways that most people never see.
21 Scottish Islands - Embrace The Wild Geography
If you have taken a trip to Scotland and want a chance to get away from everyone for some peace, make sure to check out the islands off the coast. Although one of the most well known, Isle of Skye, is not recommended as much due to being overrun with tourists, there are still several that offer the same charm and elegance with far less people. If you do decide to check out Skye, make sure to book a room in advance.
If you're seeking somewhere that hasn't been as noticed by the crowds, the Inner and Outer Hebrides provide some stunning scenery and accommodation for those that want to embrace the wild geography that Scotland can provide.
Going from the Inner Hebrides, where you can see the stunning architecture on Iona and Skye, to the Outer Hebrides offering the beaches of the Isle of Harris and the standing stones on the Isle of Lewis, you'll find that the islands off the coast of Scotland merit their own trip by themselves.
Take some time to enjoy the local cuisine, language, culture, and scenery that will draw you in the Gaelic history that is still very much alive here.
20 Hampi, India - Take In The History And Spiritualism... Slowly
Traveling across the globe to see the temples in India may not seem like an ideal vacation to some, but to others, the idea of witnessing these stunning and awe-inspiring places can seem like an opportunity of a lifetime. Hampi is the perfect place to combine the history and spiritualism with modern day conveniences as you travel.
Be prepared for it to be h0t in Hampi and dress accordingly. Take the day to investigate the ruins and the temples that can be found all over this ancient city. You can also check out the local museum and the bear sanctuary that are located in the city. After you have soaked up the history of the ruins, check back at your hotel and sample some of the local cuisine. If you are interested in more active pursuits, get in some rock climbing as well. Although Hampi is not a cultural metropolis, it is a warm and welcoming destination that will allow you to relax in a quieter and slower paced city.
You'll never forget your trip to Hampi and how much you were impacted by the culture of India. Leave the hustle and bustle of the modern Western world behind as you enjoy the peace of Hampi.
19 Liechtenstein - All Alps, No Fuss
This beautiful little country nestles itself between Austria and Switzerland and is one of the smallest in the world. But what it lacks in size, it more than makes up for in personality and culture.
This magnificent jewel offers a sense of peace and relaxation. Situated entirely in the Alps, you'll find that the country offers an abundance of hiking trails, biking, rock climbing, and breathtaking scenery. Thanks to the prime location, you'll also be able to enjoy world class skiing.
Take in the gorgeous lakes for swimming as well. Or wander though any or all of the museums that are located in this principality. Make sure you some time to go to the tiny but beautiful capital city of Vaduz. Although you won't be able to go in and tour it, Vaduz Castle can be seen from below. If you're not into museums or walking tours, take the train around the country and learn its history as you ride. You'll also be able to enjoy high quality food in the restaurants as well as a great nightlife.
For such a small country, Liechtenstein will truly provide an enormous welcome to any visitor. Whether you're looking for a quiet hike or a small gathering at a local restaurant, you'll get a great vacation.
18 The Most Serene Republic of San Marino - We Wanted To Keep This One To Ourselves
The Most Serene Republic of San Marino (or just San Marino, if you prefer) is a truly tranquil paradise. This gorgeous micro-nation, nestled in the Italian countryside, is a great place to enjoy a relaxing stay while soaking up the culture and history. The entire country has gorgeous architecture that will draw your eye all around. While you're sightseeing, make sure to spend a day or two in the capital to truly experience the history that surrounds you. Take the opportunity to visit any number of castles or citadels that can be found.
The cities are small enough to allow for walking tours along their medieval streets. There are also plenty of cafes and restaurants that cater to tourists along the scenic walkways. You'll be able to kick back and enjoy the view from one of the café terraces as you try the local cuisine.
San Marino will also offer all the nature lovers plenty of great options for getting some peaceful moments away from everyone. Located on the Apennine mountain range, you can enjoy hiking, cave exploring, and mountain biking. No matter what you are looking for in a vacation destination, San Marino has something to offer. With a great selection of hotels and restaurants, you'll be able to enjoy this country's amazing cultural heritage and stunning scenery.
17 Thessaloniki, Greece - Bar Boats? Don't Mind If I Do!
Thessaloniki is an incredible place that is full of living history. This ancient city will draw you in with all the Byzantine art and architecture that will pull you through the unbelievable past that this city has seen.
Thessaloniki has earned its reputation as a city that has a thriving nightlife and an amazing ability to cater to tourists. But you won't feel crowded in. With ruins and historical buildings to tour around just about every corner, you can spend time wandering this metropolis and feel at peace.
You'll also have the opportunity to try spectacular food at any of the many restaurants and cafes that will provide a look into the culinary background of this city. If you don't feel like walking around, you can also rent bicycles and enjoy the city on wheels. Don't forget to take in the scenery outside the city center, where you can enjoy hiking and rock climbing.
For something really different, check out the bar boats. There are several that offer short boat rides around the harbor while you sip away on your drinks. No matter what you're looking for in a vacation, Thessaloniki will draw you in with its Greek vibe and welcoming culture.
16 Lord Howe Island, Australia - Could You Survive Without Your Phone?
It's hard to imagine anywhere that will provide peace and tranquility when you're sharing with 400 other people. But for this small Aussie island, it's a good thing.Visitors toLord Howe Island are capped at 400 at a time to limit crowds and preserve the nature. Most of this island, located off the coast of Australia, is considered a permanent park reserve.
You won't have access to the internet or cell phones on this island, but you'll be surrounded by some of the most amazing nature you can imagine. Lord Howe Island offers world class diving and snorkeling as well as fishing. You'll also be able to bike, kayak, windsurf or paddle-board in the crystal clear water.
Luxury accommodations will pamper you as you are surrounded by clear water, breathtaking mountains, and rain-forests. Local cuisine is available in the restaurants that cater to a small amount of tourists each year. Enjoy the peace and quiet of a glass bottom boat ride that lets you see the unbelievable array of sea-life that surrounds the island. If you are really looking for somewhere that will let you step away from all the hustle of modern world, take a moment to consider Lord Howe Island. You'll never regret a trip to this modern day paradise.
15 Cumberland Island, Georgia, USA - Untouched Nature Is Waiting
Cumberland Island, a gorgeous barrier island of the coast of Georgia, will welcome you to stop and relax as you leave the hustle and bustle of the modern world behind. This small island offers some of America's most pristine beaches. You have to take a kayak or ferry and they limit visitors to no more than 300 per day. There is only one small inn on the island as well as some camping sites, but it's limited. If you want to take advantage of an overnight stay, you need to plan ahead. There are not a lot of activities to do on the island, but if you want to find somewhere that surrounds you with untouched nature and complete peace, Cumberland Island will provide it.
You'll have the entire day to relax on the beach or hike through the untouched forest. You might even get to see some of the wild horses that make the island their home. If you are lucky enough to book a room at the inn, you'll be treated to some sumptuous meals that vary from season to season. But the restaurant only caters to the guests. Cumberland Island doesn't offer a busy nightlife or a lot of tourist activities, but if you want to relax and unwind in one of the most untouched locations in America, start planning your trip.
14 Sedona, Arizona - Beautiful Night Skies Shine Over The Red Rocks
Sedona is an incredible city situated in the beautiful Arizona desert that is known attracting people from all walks of life. It has long been considered a hot spot for spiritual and artistic vacations and has some of the most spectacular scenery around. You can find plenty of open space as you explore the desert landscape. Take time to stargaze while you're there. Sedona has very little light pollution so the night sky just shines over the red rocks. Sedona invites you to relax and open your mind to the abundance of experiences that it provides.
Check out the artwork in the galleries that can be found throughout the city, immerse yourself in the sacred spaces and walk the labyrinths, and see the spiritual history of the area. After you have spent the day surrounded by the unique landscapes, you can make your way back to the city and take your pick of cuisine ranging from local seasonal foods to a variety of international flavors.
No matter what you want to do, Sedona will offer you the laid back energy you need to enjoy it. With museums, galleries and other venues, you won't have to look hard to find something to do. Let Sedona help you unwind and find your peace.
13 Ogasawara Islands, Japan - The 24-Hour Boat Ride Is Well Worth It
These remote but exquisite subtropical islands that are about 620 miles south of Tokyo will let you visit a truly unique environment. These islands are home to many plants and animals that are only found there. Although there are cities on two of the islands, internet and cell phone service are not always available. Despite the lack of modern services, these magical islands offer a vacation like no other. The two main islands, Chichijima (Father Island) and Hahajima (Mother Island), are the only two that are inhabited. Chichijima is the larger of the two and the more populated.
It takes about a 24-hour ferry ride from Tokyo to get there. Once you're there, you'll see that the trip is well worth it. You'll be surrounded by incredibly clear water that is filled with coral and sea-life. Even take the opportunity to get up close and personal with some snorkeling and diving.
For those that prefer to stay above the water, take in a whale watching or a dolphin watching trip. Fishing and kayaking are also available. You'll be treated to amazing local cuisine at the restaurants as well. Be prepared to stay for at least three days as the ferry doesn't run daily. You will feel you have stepped into paradise on these gorgeous islands.
12 Texas Hill Country - There's So Much More Than Just Desert In The Lone Star State
Anyone who lives in Texas will be able to tell you that the Texas Hill Country is truly stunning. This relaxing and beautiful region of the Lone Star State will show you how varied the scenery really is. Texas is a large state that has an amazing variety of ecology and regions. The hill country is a region that cuts across parts of West, Central and South Texas. As the name implies, it's where you'll find an impressive amount of limestone and granite hills. You'll find caverns, lakes and rivers hidden throughout the region as well. Summers in this destination can be very hot, which is why water activities are such a draw. You'll find places like Blue Hole in Wimberley or the Guadalupe and Comal Rivers that cut through New Braunfels, where you can swim, tube, or raft during the summer heat.
For history buffs, you can also take some time to visit a few of the oldest towns in Texas. Stop in Kerrville, Austin or Fredericksburg to see what makes this state stand out from its neighbors. Check out some of the restaurants to have Tex-Mex or barbecue as only Texas does it. No matter what type of fun you're looking for, whether it's playing in the water or antiquing through the historic towns, the Texas Hill Country will provide a warm, Texas size welcome that you won't forget.
11 Lofoten Islands, Norway - Experience The Incredible Midnight Sun
This amazing archipelago in Norway will provide an introvert an opportunity to get away from it all. Although the islands lie well within the arctic circle, due to the warm Gulf Stream, they enjoy a much milder climate than many countries in the latitude. No matter when you visit, Lofoten Islands are truly breathtaking.
During the summer months, you'll be treated to the phenomenon of the midnight sun. You can also see the amazing northern lights that will fill the sky overhead. This destination is any adventure lover's dream with options for hiking, skiing, fishing, ocean-rafting, scuba diving and surfing.
Make sure to check out the Viking museum that allows you to see the heritage of the area. You'll be able to try some of the Norwegian, Scandinavian and European cuisine that can be found at the myriad of restaurants that dot the islands. With this glorious Norwegian location being so remote, you'll not be inundated with a bunch of people that you have to share your vacation with. You'll be able to have your quiet time in your pick of hotels, cabins and other lodgings that will give you the chance to take in all that Norway has to offer.
10 Bologna, Italy - Everything About Italy That We Love, In Slow Motion
Most people think of Rome, Venice and Florence when they think of Italy. These cities are incredible, but can often be overrun with tourists. If you're looking for a great Italian vacation, but you don't want to deal with as many crowds, consider heading to Bologna. This gorgeous city is a great place to take in all that Italy has to offer without feeling crowded.
The slower, more relaxed pace of the city makes it a haven for travelers. The city center is ideal for walking tours and taking in the sights. Bologna invites you to immerse yourself in the culture and history of the city as you unwind. The heart of this city is its cuisine and its culture. Bologna is known around the world for its incredible cuisine. Food is such an integral part of the city that there are several activities built around them, including food tasting and cooking classes. You can also take in the museums and porticoes throughout the city. You can also tour the city and the surrounding countryside by renting bikes or taking walking tours. No matter what you decide to do, Bologna will pull you in with its warmth and hospitality without making you feel overwhelmed.
9 Utrecht, The Netherlands - The Perfect Pedestrian City
This amazing place is often overlooked when people are looking for vacation spots in the Netherlands, but for those who are looking for something a bit different, it truly is a hidden treasure. This stunning city offers canals that meander through the city center, creating a stunning background to the cafes and terraces that surround them.
Utrecht is a pedestrian paradise lined with beautiful, historic Dutch architecture that will draw you in as you admire it. There are plenty of guided tours around the city, but exploring solo can be just as rewarding. Utrecht embraces its history and culture with museums, churches and monuments that will help you understand this historic city.
If you want to experience a truly quiet stroll, check out the canals early on a Sunday morning. This is when the city is its quietest and you can relax during your stroll. Take time to sit and enjoy some scrumptious meals at the cafes or restaurants that have built up around the canals. You'll find food that represents palates from all over the world. You'll be able to enjoy the people of Utrecht but won't feel pressured to be engaged all the time. This amazing city lets you enjoy it at your own pace.
8 Valencia, Spain - With 2 Million Sq. Meters Of Garden, You'll Have No Choice But To Relax
Valencia is a port city in Spain that is fantastic for tourists looking for a more laid back destination. This city provides a perfect combination of activity and relaxation that makes it a great place to visit. The city proper is built perfectly for pedestrians and you can make a day of strolling down the sidewalks that are surrounded by beautiful buildings. Stroll through the markets and boutiques that are found all over the city. You can also rent bicycles that make getting around town easy and fun. If you're looking for a great meal but don't want to deal with crowds, stop at one of the sidewalk cafes and have a quiet brunch. Valencia is home to a great selection of museums and music venues as well as live festivals.
If you prefer the quieter setting of nature, make sure to check out the parks that can be found all over the city. Valencia prides itself on its two million square meters of gardens. The vibrant but laid-back feel of this city will let you immerse yourself in the Spanish culture. But it will never make you feel pressured or hurried. With amazing food, culture and scenery, Valencia will be a destination to remember.
7 Frankfurt, Germany - A Wunderbar Place To Wander
Frankfurt is a great city to explore and enjoy when you want a laid-back German vacation. The city isn't as busy or overrun as some of the bigger tourist areas like Munich or Berlin, so you'll be able to navigate yourself around and enjoy the history and culture of this amazing place.
Frankfurt is home to some incredible, historic buildings that you can see while taking the tram tour. It circles the city and offers you a great view of the area. You can also take in some of the galleries and museums that can be found all over the city. Take in some of the botanical gardens as well. During the summer, the city's parks and promenades become big hangout spots for the locals. Coffee shops and other local cafes have sidewalk tables where you can have a little R&R. If you like to stroll around and window shop, stop in at the indoor and outdoor markets. There'll be a huge variety of goods to check out, or you can just people-watch as you walk along. You'll find a variety of hotels and restaurants that will allow you to have your peace and quiet while you explore this city. No matter what you're looking for in a vacation, Frankfurt will welcome you.
6 Graz, Austria - You'll Feel Like You're In A Fairytale
Graz is not as well known as some of Austria's cities, but it should be. This stunning little gem offers incredible getaways for those that are not big on crowds. The city is not as well known as it doesn't have the glamorous history that its neighboring cities do, but it is well worth the visit.
For the nature lovers, the landscape that surrounds the city will make hiking a well-worthy activity. You'll be able to wander the streets of this picturesque city and enjoy the historic buildings. Make sure you visit some of the museums and galleries while you soak up the culture. One of the biggest draws of the city is Schlossberg. This stunning mountain lies in the center of the city and can be reached by stairs, lift or funicular. It also has a fun train ride that takes you into the caves and tunnels that are found throughout the mountain. The caves feature stunning tributes to the fairy tales of the region. While you're up at the summit, take the opportunity to have a great meal at Restaurant Schlossberg or Skybar Graz while looking over the stunning red rooftops of the city. The slower pace of this great Austrian city will allow even the biggest introvert to feel right at home.