I love reading the annual travel lists compiled by various travel websites and newspapers on top travel destinations for the year. While I don’t particularly care if a destination I travel to is considered a must see, I love reading these lists for inspiration on where to travel to and discovering places I might not have considered.
The New York Times list is one of my favorites. This year instead of their usual New York Times 52 Places to Go list they asked readers to tell them about the spots that have delighted, inspired and comforted them in a dark year and they have titled it “52 Places to Love in 2021.”
Update: Here is the newest list for 2023.
Here are their picks for places to love in 2021:
New York Times 52 Places to Go in 2021
1. South Wales, Wales
2. Saipan, Northern Mariana Islands
3. Kaliya Dhrow, India
4. Isfahan, Iran
5. The Llanos, Colombia
6. Siwa Oasis, Egypt
7. Montana’s ‘Golden Triangle’
8. The Camino de Santiago, Spain
9. Malpaís, Costa Rica
10. Dakar, Senegal
11. London’s St. James the Less Church, England
12. The Marrakesh Medina, Morocco
13. Nanda Devi Mountain, India
14. Laugavegur Trail, Iceland
15. Wadi Rum, Jordan
17. Kaohsiung, Taiwan
18. The Scottish Highlands, Scotland
19. Lake Michigan
20. Niansogoni, Burkina Faso
21. Asunción, Paraguay
22. South London Parks, England
23. Beirut, Lebanon
24. Siberia, Russia
25. Andros, Greece
27. East Haddam, Conn.
28. Yarra Ranges National Park, Australia
29. Bryce Canyon National Park, Utah
30. Huanchaco, Peru
31. Jimmy’s Beach, New South Wales, Australia
32. The University of Cambridge, England
33. Lahore, Pakistan
34. Svalbard, Norway
35. Alberta, Canada
36. Santa Rosa, Calif.
38. Ladakh, India
39. Hokkaido, Japan
40. The Hudson River’s Tappan Zee, New York
41. Northern Arkansas
42. Tagaytay, Philippines
43. Milford Sound, New Zealand
44. Córdoba, Spain
45. Gates of the Arctic National Park and Preserve, Alaska
46. Con Dao, Vietnam
47. Northern Kyrgyzstan
48. Table Mountain, Cape Town, South Africa
49. Turku, Finland
50. The Rawah Wilderness, Colorado
51. The Methow Valley, Washington
52. The World
This list is definitely more off the beaten path than previous lists. Some of these are already on our travel wish list especially Svalbard, Norway and Hokkaido in Japan.
Click here for the complete New York Times list.
To see the past lists from recent years here are the New York Times 52 Places to Go lists from 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2020.
I especially like number 52–The World. That sure makes it impossible for anyone to claim they left my favorite destination off the list.