Are you tired of uploading pictures of your to go-to place in the world under the #Wanderlust? Do you wish to just take off on an adventure without fretting about the expenditures involved? We all wish to at some point seek new places that we often include in our bucket lists and explore the world. However, there is always a slight (read: BIG) issue of short listing places that fit under your budget as well. Here is a list of 25 amazing and economical places in the world that are worth a visit.
A colourful country rich in culture and heritage, India is a must visit for all those who wish to taste a slice of history. From the gorgeous beaches of Goa to the golden city of Jaisalmer, India has a lot to offer. There are many pilgrimage places in the country as well as many ancient palaces and other places such as the Taj Mahal in Agra, and the Gateway of India in Mumbai for eager tourists to explore. Besides this, India is also known for its varieties of food with multiple cuisine options from all the states.
Japan is a country that is a unique fusion of modern-day innovations and ancient traditions. The Japanese Alps, Kanazawa, Nara, Chubu-Sangaku National Park, Osaka National Park, the Island Shrine of Itsukushima, Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park, Imperial Palace and Mount Fuji are some of the most exceptional places to visit. Kyoto is known as the cultural capital of the country as it houses most of the Buddhist shrines and temples in the country. One of the best times to go to this culturally rich country is during the spring time especially to witness the Sakura Bloom, an event to experience the cherry blossom trees in full bloom. Further, Japan is also known for its authentic flavours and while you are there, make sure to try the local delicacies such as sushi, ramen and udon, the Japanese soba, onigiri as well as the Japanese cheesecake which is known for its unique texture and flavour.
South Korea is one of the most unexplored countries in the world and it houses a host of UNESCO heritage sites as well. This country is known for its delicious food, K-Pop, ancient temples as well as its natural beauty. While in Korea, you must visit Seoul to explore the shopping district of Gangnam, Dongdaemun Design Plaza, Gyeongbokgung palace, Jogyesa Temple, Lotte World and the N Seoul Tower which offers a breathtaking panoramic view of the city. Other places to visit in South Korea include Busan which is famous for its pristine beaches and temples such as the Beomeosa Temple and Jeonju which is known for its historical places as well. On your visit you must indulge in delectable Korean cuisine such as Kimchi, Bibimbap, Japchae, Bulgogi, Sundubu-jjigae and Naengmyeon among others.
An often overlooked tourist destination, Vietnam is a beautiful country known for its cities, Buddhist pagodas and beaches. When in Vietnam, you must visit Phú Quốc, the Marble Mountains, go hiking at Fansipan or go kayaking in the Ha Long Bay. Vietnamese food is very unique in flavour with its use of ingredients such as soy sauce, coconut milk, lime, tamarind and cane sugar in its food. Some of the cuisines to sample in this country include, Banh Mi Thit, Pho, Goi Cuan and for dessert opt for something unique such as Che a sweet dish which is prepared from sticky rice and beans.
Known for its beaches, volcanoes and Komodo dragons, Indonesia is one of the most spiritually exotic places one could visit. Jakarta, Yogyakarta, Ubud, Lombok, Denpasar and Malang are some of the most prominent places to visit in the country. Some of the famous Indonesian foods include Gado-gado, ayem goreng, sambal, bakso and gudeg.
Kenya is one of the best places to visit if you want to go on an adventure. It is known for its rich wildlife, safaris and reserves such as Masai Mara, Amboseli, Tsavo, Samburu, Buffalo Springs and Shaba National reserves. The food like the place is adventurous as well with dishes like Pilau, Mukimo, Irio, Githeri and Maharagwe.
Nepal is best known for its sacred and historic tourist attractions such as the Boudhanath Stupa, Pokhara-which is surrounded by some of the highest mountains and is also a gateway to the Himalayas. One can also do various activities such as trekking on the Himalayas as well as the Annapurna region. Other tourist attractions include Mahendra Gufa and the Pashupatinath Temple. Some of the famous foods of this country include Sel Roti, Samay Bhaji, Chatamari, Momo cha and Dhido.
A great place for nature lovers with its zoos and scenic locations, Sri Lanka is a great getaway place which is culturally rich as well. Some of the best places to visit here are the Pinnawala Elephant Orphanage, Dambulla Cave Temple, Adams Peak, Yala National Park and Sigiriya Rock Fortress. The cuisine of Sri Lanka is quite influenced by South India and Indonesia as some of the staples in the meals include rice, coconut and spices. Kottu, Hoppers, Polos, Pol Sambol and Gotu Kola Sambol are some of the dishes you must try while in Sri Lanka.
Thailand is known for its tropical beaches specifically in Pattaya, the Phi Phi island and Khao Lak opulent royal palaces such as the Grand Palace in Bangkok, ancient ruins and ornate temples such as in the city of Chiang Mai and Ayutthaya. Thai cuisine is all about balance and detail and consists of potent aromatic components with added spiciness as seen in piquant dishes such as Tom Yum Gung, Pad Thai, Khao Pad, Jim Jum and Som Tam.
Dubbed the ‘shopper’s paradise’, Singapore is great for people who love to shop and eat as well, as it offers great shopping deals, exceptional fine dining experiences as well as luxury hotels. Pulao Ubin and Jurong East are some of the places you must visit here as well as stopping by the Merlion, taking a walk along Orchard Road and visit the Marina Bay islands. Singaporean cooking is derived from elements based on Indian, Chinese and Western traditions. Laksa, Char Kuay Teow, Fried Carrot Cake, Roti Prata and Ice Kacang are some of the delicacies to try in Singapore.
South Africa is home to some of the most luxurious private game reserves and lodges. It is rich in wildlife with many attractions such as coral reefs, shark diving, dragon backed mountain ranges and white water rafting among others. Kruger National Park, Lion’s Head, Cradle of Humankind, Big Hole and Boulders Beach are some of the most breathtaking places to visit. Some of the most famous meals in South Africa include Cape Malay Curry, Malva Pudding, Chakalaka and Pap, Babotie and Melktert.
One of Asia’s most beautiful secrets, Laos is a country where you can experience quiet scenic views, go hiking on mountains, take adventures in dense forests and witness picaresque waterfalls. Some of the most striking places to visit here include the World Heritage listed French colonial town of Luang Prabang, Vientiane , the Bokeo Nature Reserve, Vang Vieng and Phonsavan/the Plain of Jars among others. When in Laos you must try foods such as Khao Piak Sen, Khao Jee, Tam Mak Hoong, Yall Dib as well as the French food available there.
Known for its modern day architecture and skyscraper-studded views, China is a country that also boasts of historical places such as the Forbidden City, the Summer Palace, Terracotta Army, the Yellow Mountains in Huangshan, visit the Giant Pandas in Chengdu and the Bund in Shanghai among many other spectacular places. Xiao Long Bao, Samsa, Yang Mei, Ma Po Tofu, Rice Noodles and Chow Mein are some of the famous foods that you must try.
While Beirut and Tripoli are beautiful, there is more to visit in Lebanon than its two major cities such as the Temple of Bacchus, Baatara Gorge waterfall, Cedars of God, and the Sidon Sea Castle as well. Some of the most famous Lebanese cuisines to sample are the Baba Ghanoush, Manakeesh, Falafels, Fattoush, Shawarmas and the Koftas.
Dubai is a place famous for luxury shopping places, ultramodern architecture as well as its nightlife. Among the most famous landmarks of Dubai are the Burj Khalifa as well as the Dubai Mall and the Dubai Museum. One of the most fun places to go to is the Dubai Aquarium which house over 140 species of fish and the Jumeirah Beach as well. Some of the best exotic dishes to have here are the Manousheh, Iranian Sangak, Al Machboos, Tabbouleh, Kousa Mahshi, Fatteh and the Shirin Polo.
The island nation, Taiwan, is known for its Chinese temples and hot spring resorts as well as its night markets. You must visit Taipei, Taipei 101, Jiu Fen Old street, Kenting National park, Sun Moon Lake, Leofoo Village Theme Park and Guanziling Hot Spring. Taiwanese cuisine is mostly influenced by Chinese and Japanese cooking techniques and is all about aromas and Asian flavours and the best foods that reflect this fact are Taiwanese noodles, Mochi, Smelly Tofu, Slack season Danzai noodles, Gua Bao and the Bubble Teas as well.
The Seychelles is an archipelago of 115 islands in the Indian Ocean and is known for its beautiful beaches, dense jungles and UNESCO listed nature reserves. It is a place for every tourist to fulfil his/her tropical island adventures such as going hiking, diving, snorkelling or surfing as well at some of the best places there such as Mahé Island, Praslin Island, Cousine Island, Bird Island as well as Moyenne Island. Influenced by African, British, French, Indian and Chinese cuisines, Seychellois cuisine is predominantly seafood which makes use of spices such as ginger, lemongrass, coriander and tamarind and some of the famous foods include octopus and smoked fish salads, the red snapper, bonito and banana in coconut milk.
Maldives is a tropical nation in the Indian ocean which is famed for its beaches, blue lagoons and coral reefs as well and is great for anyone who is a water sports enthusiast as you could get to indulge in sports such as diving, surfing and snorkelling at places such as Sun Island, Banana Reef, Alimatha Island, HP Reef and Filhalhohi Island. Maldivian cuisine is also called Dhivehi cuisine and is based on ingredients such as coconut, fish and starches and some of the dishes to watch out for are Bis Keemiya, Boshi Mashuni, Huni Roshi, Garudhiya and Saagu Bondibai.
Influenced by Malay, Chinese, Indian and European cultures, Malaysia is known for its beaches and rainforests. Some of the places to explore in the country include Kuala Lumpur, Kuching, Legoland at Johor, Port Dickson and Sipadan and also go hiking in places such as Mount Kinabalu, Niah National Park and Cameron Highlands. Mee Goreng Mamak, Nasi Kerabu, Kuih, Laksa, Popia Basah are some of the famous Malaysian dishes to try.
Easily one of Europe’s most visited countries, Portugal is affordable, is great weather wise and also houses major attractions in the country from vast farmlands to medieval cities and lush vineyards and has a lot to offer. Some of the major places to visit here are Coimbra, Lisbon, Sintra, Lagos, Porto, Madeira and Cascais. Heavily influenced by Mediterranean culture, Portuguese cuisine includes a range of flavours with the use of spices such as piri piri, black pepper, cinnamon, saffron and herbs such as garlic and parsley. Some of the famous dishes of Portugal to look out for include Arroz de Tamboril, Bacalhau and Cataplana de Marisco among others.
A country comprising of a rich heritage of traditional dance, music, costumes, and crafts with Greek, Slavic, Ottoman, and Persian influences, Bulgaria is a place worth visiting for its beaches, historical places as well as the ski resorts between its borders such as Borovets, Seven Rila Lakes, Vitosha, Sunny Beach and Marvelous Bridge as well. Bulgaria is famous for its quality vegetables and a varied range of spices and some of the local foods to try here include Banitsa, Kebapche, Shopska Salata, Musaka and Iyutenitsa.
With interesting attractions such as Havana, Varadero, Santa Clara, Trinidad and Guardalavaca, Cuba is one of the best places to visit to explore and to unwind at what with its beaches and other monument places as well as its iconic cuisine which is a blend of Native American Taino food, Spanish, African, and Caribbean cuisines. A blend of Native American Taino food, Spanish, African, and Caribbean cuisines, Cuban food includes delicacies such as Frita, Elote, Paella, Churros, Croquetas and Plantains.
Greece is majorly known for its sparkling white beaches and ancient sites and the most famous spots to visit in the country include, Santorini, Mykonos and Delos, Acropolis and Delphi. Amygdalota, Baklava, Dolmadakia, Gyros, Moussaka are some of the best traditional Greek food that you must eat while in Greece.
Stunning landscapes, pristine beaches and exotic temples is what Cambodia is comprised of. Some of the best places to visit here include Angkor Wat, Angkor Tham, Kampot, Kratie, Sihanoukville, Koh Ker, Koh Rong and Phnom Penh. Khmer Red Curry, Fish Amok, Nom Banh Chok are all among the famous cuisines of Cambodia.
Hawaii is renowned for its landscapes, waterfalls, tropical foliage and beaches with gold, red, black and even green sands and the best places to explore here include the island of O’ahu, Maui, Lana’i and the Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park. While in Hawaii, you must try the local food as it incorporates various styles of food that reflect the diverse food history of settlement and immigration in the Hawaiian Islands. Spam Musubi, Manapua, Poi, Poke and Acai bowls are some of the famous foods of Hawaii.
(As Compiled by Prerna Mistry)