“Once a year, go someplace you’ve never been before” – Dalai Lama.
This ancient quote has been trending on social media recently. Why?
According to research, millennials are traveling a considerable amount more than previous generations. More than ever before, many are taking vacations to “off the beaten track” locations around the world.
All that exotic travel sounds expensive, but it doesn’t have to be! Keep reading for the best cheap holiday destinations for 2018.
Old towns, lagoon islands, salt pans, ancient fortresses, cliff top views and sandy surf beaches are some of the many places you can visit when heading to Portugal.
Accommodation varies in price. But there are many B&Bs, vacation rentals, or cheaper hotels to choose from.
If you head to a luxury 5-star, all-inclusive hotel, you’ll not only spend megabucks but you might miss out on the local experience. Go for cheaper accommodation and spend your time hanging out with the locals for an authentic experience.
Many budget airlines travel to Portugal, some even with regular bargains and deals, which means your flight might be even cheaper! To travel around, you don’t need your own car as there are plenty of buses and trains that run regularly at fair prices.
Seafood is famous in Portugal, generally cooked in the simplest of ways, yet with the most exquisite tastes. Go to local bistros and restaurants for an original taste of Portugal. These establishments will be a lot cheaper than many touristy hotels and restaurants.
And don’t forget to try the local Port wine for an authentic Portuguese beverage.
With popular tourist destinations like Greece going through financial instabilities, many are heading to Croatia instead. If you avoid peak season (July to August), Croatia can prove to be one of the best cheap holiday destinations to visit in Europe.
With historical architecture, waterfalls, pebbled beaches, mountainous coastlines and great nightlife, Croatia ticks many boxes for all kinds of travelers.
There are also many activities you can do–snorkeling, scuba diving, kayaking, hiking, zip lining and more. Croatia is also good for taking the kids, as there are plenty of fun things for them to do.
Cheap flights are abundant, and public transport is easy with many buses and ferries easily available.
The Mediterranean style food and local wines are both tasty and for reasonable prices. You’ll eat your way through your vacation if you decide on visiting Croatia.
Thailand has been a popular destination for quite a number of years. But it is still one of the best cheap holiday destinations, mostly because of the exchange rate.
Thailand is fun, energetic and full of culture. With historical palaces, tropical islands, caves, mountains and jungle safaris, there is a lot to do in Thailand.
There are nearly a hundred temples in Chiang Mai which you can tour freely. There are also many street markets with lots of bargains to be found.
When traveling from the USA, even though the distance is far, the flights are cheap. Travel within Thailand is also great for budget travelers with buses, trains, and trishaw taxis cheap and in abundance. Another option is hiring a bicycle or even a motorbike for exploring the area at your own leisure.
Food is extremely cheap, with good value buffets and sizzling street food available for just a few dollars.
In many other countries, the prices for 5-star hotels are extortionate. But one of the best things about Thailand is that you might be able to afford the luxury, because of the exchange rate and lower prices.
For example, an awesome luxurious place to stay is Howie’s Homestay.
Indonesia, although a long-haul destination, is extremely popular thanks to low travel costs and cheap activities.
Made up of thousands of islands, Indonesia is full of rich culture and beauty. Indonesia is very varied, with monkey jungles, religious temples, volcanoes, shipwrecks, and mountains. There are also many fun things to do, from snorkeling and scuba diving to white water rafting and quad biking.
Many backpackers choose Indonesia for its cheap accommodation, as there are many cheap hostels to stay in. If you want to upgrade to a hotel room, you generally won’t have to pay too much more either.
Return flights to Indonesia vary during the time of year but are generally under $500. Most of the main islands have buses to travel around, but a common method of travel is by ferry (from island to island).
Food in Indonesia is a similar price to many other Asian countries, such as Thailand. But the taste is obviously different wherever you go. The national dish is Nasi Goreng, which can be bought for just a couple of dollars.
Zanzibar boasts a variety of gorgeous attractions. From pristine beaches with coral reefs to spice tours and old forts, Zanzibar is an island full of beautiful contrasts which makes it one of the best cheap holiday destinations.
Although the flights may be a bit more pricey, your dollars will stretch far while you are there.
The cheapest and most convenient way to travel is using the “dala dala” which is a shared minibus/taxi. There are several around, and you’ll get a real authentic experience if you use one. It’s not overly expensive to hire a personal driver either when compared to other countries.
Accommodation can also be done on a budget, with many vacation rentals and hotels being great value for money.
Zanzibar has a variety of foods to try, and most are for seriously cheap prices too. Make sure to try their famous Pilaf rice and their meat kebabs. Don’t forget to try some sugar cane juice too!
The Best Cheap Holiday Destinations: Where Will You Go?
As you can see, you can travel the world and experience new cultures and lifestyles without breaking the bank.
Make sure to do your research, and use price comparison websites to find great deals on accommodation. Don’t forget to keep checking your flights as they will go up and down depending on the time of year.
And plan for activities, but don’t be scared to try something new. The same goes for food–head to where the locals go and experience the real deal!
BY DALE HARRIS