10 Travel Destinations Where You Can Avoid Tourists

You might think avoiding tourist traps is impossible, but it’s possible to have an amazing travel experience without fighting off the crowds. Before your trip, research attractions online and filter reviews for keywords like “skip the line,” VIP tickets, time slots and reservations.

Also, look for attractions that publish crowd calendars that estimate the times of year when they’re busiest.

1. Kefalonia

Kefalonia’s emerald-blue water, hidden coves and cool caves will enchant even the most experienced travelers. Those seeking spiritual reprieve can visit the island’s numerous monasteries and temples.

For a day trip, head to the serene neighbouring island of Ithaka. This island is secluded and peaceful and you can spot dolphins and turtles here. Stunning pastel perfect Assos is a must-visit, as well as the Venetian castle’s ruins and some incredible viewpoints over this picturesque town.

2. Edinburgh

Edinburgh has big-ticket attractions, like its grand castle and famous festival, but this Scottish capital also offers up a quirky mix of neighborhood gems. Consider coming in spring or fall, when pubs are lively but crowds are fewer.

Though crime rates in Edinburgh are low, you should always exercise caution and keep your valuables close. For a safe and immersive experience, look for tours led by local guides.

3. Aberdeen

Known as the “Silver City,” Aberdeen is a destination with sophisticated cultural attractions. Explore museums, gardens, and historic buildings, or venture out into the highlands to discover castles and sublime golf courses.

Located near the harbor, the Tolbooth Museum is one of the oldest in town. It includes the original guillotine blade that was once used here! You can also see bottlenose dolphins leaping off the coastline.

4. Newfoundland

It’s possible to avoid crowds in Newfoundland, especially outside of the major city of St. John’s. Here, kids will love learning about Viking culture at the only confirmed Norse settlement in North America.

Stunning views of icebergs are on offer in Twillingate where you can also visit Auk Island Winery to try wines made from iceberg water. Or, enjoy some luxury at Fogo Island Inn.

5. Maui

Hawaii’s second largest island is known for pristine beaches, the dormant Haleakala volcano, surfing culture and whale-watching during the winter. Get off the beaten path by driving the Road to Hana and discovering red and black sand beaches, waterfalls and sacred pools.

Go “up country” and explore a collection of small towns on the slopes of Haleakala that offer farm tours and a different way of life. Sample malasadas and try to spot spinner dolphins.

6. Vinohrady

Vinohrady is a green neighborhood in the heart of Prague. Its parks like Riegrovy Sady and Havlickovy Sady offer a relaxing escape from the city’s busy streets.

The neighborhood’s architecture is dominated by Art Nouveau and Neo-Renaissance styles. It was also home to Czech writer Franz Kafka’s parents.

The highlight is the Church of St. Ludmila, designed by Slovenian architect Joze Plecnik. The square, named Námst Mru (“Peace Square”), hosts bustling outdoor markets and is overlooked by the neo-Gothic Church of St. Ludmila.

7. Toronto

A city as big and bustling as Toronto has its fair share of crime. But staying in safer neighborhoods and keeping a Bounce luggage storage service nearby will help you avoid being a target of petty criminals.

When summer hits, kids and adults get twitchy in anticipation of the CNE (Canadian National Exhibition). This two-week carnival of rides and unique foods is a fun experience for the whole family.

8. London

London is a city full of iconic attractions, but many travelers miss out on hidden gems. Visit Hampstead Heath for its curved pathways and sweet rose gardens, and be sure to snap a photo at the Prime Meridian Line – the reference point for all world time measurements.

If you want to avoid queues at the British Museum, come on a free Tuesday or during the winter when school children are out of class. Then you’ll find a quieter, more peaceful place to explore!

9. Bath

Bath is a beautiful English town with honey-colored Georgian architecture that makes visitors feel as if they’ve stepped right into a Jane Austen novel. It’s the only city in the UK designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

The best place to stay is the Walcot neighborhood, which has trendy bars, on-trend restaurants and a lively Saturday flea market. You’ll also find a number of independent boutique hotels in this area.

10. Venice

Venice is one of the world’s most iconic cities, a dream destination that conjures up visions of show-stopping architecture and romantic gondola rides along canals. But, even when mobbed by crowds, it’s still possible to lose yourself among the maze of narrow streets that reveal church-topped art-covered churches or mesmerizing vistas.

Stay in the San Marco sestiere for an easy walk to the city’s heavyweight attractions, or Dorsoduro to be close to the museum-rich Grand Canal. Or, choose Cannaregio for the centuries-old Jewish ghetto and synagogues.

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