The top destinations for 2024
Haven't planned your big trip for 2024 yet? Here are our top picks for your next holiday.
Every year brings new holiday trends, and 2024 is no different.
This year we're seeing even more love for new Eastern European city breaks. We're seeing some great exotic destinations get the attention they deserve. And we're seeing some bucket list trips get a lot more affordable as local currencies are down against the pound, so your holiday money will go that bit further.
Our old favourites are changing too. The troubles that the Greek islands experienced over the summer with extreme weather means the Greek mainland is getting more attention, and the growth of flight-free holidays means Luxembourg's castles and Switzerland's Ticino region are soaring in popularity. Plus there's the Olympics in Paris and the new Sphere in Vegas drawing eyes and visitors.
So we've rounded up the fastest risers, the places that are blowing up on social media, the new routes being pushed by travel companies and airlines and a few of our own favourite picks to give you everything from a long weekend to the bucket list trip of a lifetime. We hope you're looking forward to getting out there in 2024 as much as we are!
Bari | Italy
Fancy a slice of stunning Italian coastline for less? Bari's a great alternative to the pricey Amalfi Coast and the busy beaches of Sicily.
You'll find the Puglian capital perched on the Adriatic coast, and new Ryanair routes mean there's never been a better time to visit this under-the-radar city break by the sea. It's got everything you want from an Italian city – a historic old town, beautiful churches, delicious cappuccinos and world-beating cuisine. Local specialities include seafood, taralli and orecchiette (the cutest ear-shaped pasta you've ever seen).
Expect ideal sunbathing temperatures from May to October, with peak heat coming in July and August and lesser crowds in spring and autumn.
Italy travel guide
With bustling cities and stunning coastline you'll be hard pressed to choose just one place to visit in Italy.Hassle-free guide
Las Vegas | USA
Las Vegas isn't just gambling, extravagant resorts and all-around revelry (it's got plenty of that though, don't worry). Whatever your idea of fun is Vegas has you covered, and it's got a new trump card up its sleeve for 2024 – the Sphere.
Officially the most expensive entertainment venue in Vegas history and the largest spherical structure in the world, the Sphere is wrapped inside and out with high-resolution LED screens showcasing immersive performances within and mesmerising displays out to the Vegas strip. You can see The Sphere Experience, where you'll meet a real-life humanoid robot and experience the multi-sensory film Postcards from Earth in the stunning main venue bowl, plus U2 have added 11 new shows for January and February.
There'll no doubt be more shows added throughout the year, or you can just admire from afar – either way the Sphere's a sight you'll never forget. Visit Vegas in the shoulder seasons for smaller crowds and cooler, less desert-like weather – between January and March or September to November will do the trick.
Las Vegas Travel Guide
Whatever your idea of fun is, Las Vegas has got it. Best known for its dazzling casinos and larger-than-life shows, there's a lot more to Vegas than you might think.Hassle-free guide
Bali | Indonesia
2024 is a great time to visit Bali for an exotic break on the cheap. The Indonesian currency is down against the pound, so your holiday money will go a bit further and even help the local economy.
Why Bali? With beautiful beaches, lush tropical forests and scenic volcanic mountains, it's no wonder it's a health and wellness paradise perfect for yoga, spa treatments and quiet meditation. On the opposite end of the spectrum, the nightlife's great too. Either way you can expect a warm welcome – we'd head there in the dry season (May to September) when the weather will be, well, dry.
Coming in at 136th place, Indonesia scores poorly across the board on our Good Trip Index – the Holiday Extras guide to travelling ethically, sustainably and well. Bali tends to be more tolerant than the rest of the country, and even has a thriving LGBTQ+ scene, but it's worth doing your research and exercising caution as attitudes vary across the country.
The Holiday Extras Good Trip Index
The Holiday Extras guide to travelling ethically, sustainably and well in 2023.Have a good trip
Head on the family holiday of a lifetime and visit Santa in Lapland. Fly into Rovaniemi in Finland and make a beeline to Santa Claus Village – the kids (and grown-ups) will love meeting Father Christmas and his famous reindeer, which can take you on a sleigh ride right through the village.
Or, leave the kids at home and head further north in the Arctic Circle for the ultimate winter escape. Hunt the northern lights, stay in an igloo hotel, and try your hand at skiing, tobogganing, husky rides and everything in between. Just remember to bring your big coat.
If it's snow you're after, the middle of winter is your best bet. While it's never guaranteed you'll see the northern lights, head there between November and March for the best chance and keep your fingers crossed!
North Pole travel guide
You might not be able to get to the actual North Pole on your standard package holiday but our guide may be the next best thing. Pack your ice skates and bobble hat and dream up a magical winter break.Hassle-free guide
Bridgetown | Barbados
For an exotic adventure Bridgetown deserves a place on your 2024 bucket list. It's got some of the world's best sandy beaches and weather to match – no judgement if that's all you get up to while you're there, sounds pretty ideal.
But if you do decide to leave your sun lounger from time to time, the Barbadian capital will delight you with historic landmarks (it's even a UNESCO World Heritage Site), lively markets, live reggae and some of the best food in the Caribbean. Flying fish, cou cou and a rum punch anyone?
Travel between December and April to dodge the British downpours and soak up some winter sun.
Barbados travel guide
Barbados is a popular holiday destination thanks to its countless golden beaches (700 square kilometres' worth) and the welcoming resorts that frame the island. But there's so much more to Barbados than that.Hassle-free guide
Paris | France
As if there weren't enough reasons for you to visit Paris before, it's only hosting the 2024 Olympics!
The Olympic Games are running from 26 July to 11 August, and the Paralympic Games from 28 August to 8 September. The weather's sure to be nice and warm and the days nice and long, making it a great time for sightseeing. And you won't be short of sights to see – the Eiffel Tower, Arc de Triomphe, Louvre, Notre-Dame and nearby Palace of Versailles are some of the most famous tourist attractions in the world.
Paris travel guide
The 'city of love' is the perfect destination for a weekend of amour. Whether you're visiting the Eiffel Tower or on a culinary voyage, Paris surely won't disappoint.Hassle-free guide
Tivat | Montenegro
The Eastern European city break trend continues into 2024, with emerging destinations offering an affordable alternative to their Western European counterparts.
The first of three we're recommending is Tivat in Montenegro, which you'll find perched on the picturesque Bay of Kotor at the very south of the Dalmatian Coast. Jet2 have opened up new routes for 2024, making it easier than ever to visit this culturally rich city with pristine beaches and views over one of the world's most beautiful bays.
Head there in summer for ideal beach weather, dips in the Adriatic Sea and delicious Mediterranean dishes in seafront restaurants.
Nungwi | Zanzibar
For guaranteed year-round heat and a beach that's been named one of the most beautiful in the world many times, Nungwi is hard to beat. Plus TUI are flying there as a package, so you can get a proper exotic break as a relatively cheap package holiday.
At the northern tip of Zanzibar, an idyllic island just off the east coast of Tanzania, old meets new on Nungwi's Instagram-friendly coast as both swanky hotels and traditional wooden fishing boats can be seen cocktail-in-hand from your sun lounger. You'll want to get into the water while you're there, whether that's on a snorkelling session or to meet some dolphins.
Tanzania scores poorly on our Good Trip Index, particularly for LGBTQ+ travel. Same-sex sexual activity is illegal and homosexuality is frowned upon by a large proportion of the population, so it's important to be discreet and not display any public affection while you're out there. If you'd prefer to head somewhere more welcoming but equally warm, take a look at our ethical winter sun destinations.
Have a good winter sun trip
Want to get away this winter? These are our top picks for an ethical, sustainable and good trip to soak up some winter sun.Have a good trip
Ticino | Switzerland
Sitting at a more than acceptable number 2 on our Good Trip Index, Switzerland is a great country to visit for an ethical, sustainable and good trip.
Our pick of the bunch is Ticino, an Italian-speaking region in the south with breathtaking Alpine peaks and palm-lined lakes. Hop between charming towns and villages and take in the medieval architecture and blend of Italian and Swiss culture. Merlot is the grape of choice, in case you were wondering.
You should make a beeline to Verzasca while you're there and cross the Ponte dei Salti, a double-arched stone bridge straight out of a fairytale. And head there in Autumn – the red hues somehow make it even more beautiful.
The Peloponnese | Greece
Many of our favourite Greek Islands were in the news for the wildfires and floods that hit them at the height of summer. Some travellers are planning to visit during the off-season to avoid the extreme weather, while others are heading for the mainland.
Our recommendation is the Peloponnese Region in southern Greece.
Fly into Kalamata then head out and explore the peninsula. It's the stuff of myth and legend, with ancient temples, palaces and fortresses pretty much everywhere. The beaches are amazing too – Nafplio's difficult to beat, which is full of smart tavernas, well-preserved Venetian and Byzantine architecture and your choice of pebbles or sand to catch some rays on.
Greece travel guide
Greece is consistently one of the most popular destinations for UK holidaymakers. Its combination of history and culture, incredible food and beautiful landscapes make it irresistible to all kinds of travellers.Hassle-free guide
Bucharest | Romania
As promised here's the second Eastern European city break on our list – Bucharest, Romania's eclectic capital.
Okay, Bucharest is hardly under the radar like Tivat or (spoiler alert) the Polish Riviera, but it's still super cheap and there are lots of budget flights heading there in 2024. It's blessed with an abundance of historical sights, a charming old town, fascinating galleries and museums and buzzing bars and restaurants.
Head there in spring when the city's bounty of green spaces are at their greenest and the temperature is perfect for sightseeing.
São Miguel | The Azores
Already been to the Canaries about a hundred times and fancy trying somewhere different? Enter the Azores, whose lush greenery, volcanic craters, hot springs and dramatic coastline are more than a match for our favourite Canary Islands.
São Miguel is the largest island in the archipelago and is perfect for those wanting to get out in nature – whether your version of that is birdwatching, volcano hiking or chilling on the beach. Its mild climate means it's warm enough to visit year-round too, meaning there's never a bad time to take in the island's stunning natural beauty.
Georgetown | Guyana
British Airways has launched new routes to Georgetown in Guyana, meaning it's easier than ever to visit this overlooked South American capital city.
But why Georgetown? This unique English-speaking city is packed with colonial-era architecture to explore – St George's Cathedral is thought to be the world's tallest wooden building, and you can't miss the lively atmosphere of Stabroek Market. The food's great too – think yummy curries and pepperpot, a rich stew served for special occasions.
You may well have never considered going to Luxembourg. But if you love getting lost in historic European cities, exploring beautiful countryside dotted with cute little towns and villages and grand medieval castles, you're in for a treat.
Start in Luxembourg City for a classic European city break fit with a charming old town and architectural beauty, then head out to the countryside and go castle hunting. Vianden Castle is the pick of the bunch – one of Europe's best preserved fortified castles, its mountainous, tree-lined surroundings are stunning.
It's easy enough to fly to Luxembourg, but if you want to reduce your air miles you can get all the way there by train. Hop on the Eurostar from London to Brussels, stop off for a Flemish stew and a Trappist beer or two, then take the scenic rail route to Luxembourg. Head there when it's warm for vineyard tours and colourful countryside or in winter for skiing and festive markets.
Murcia | Spain
Corvera is up in our data thanks to newly opened routes, meaning more and more tourists looking for an alternative take on mainland Spain are discovering Murcia. The region has got everything you could want from a classic Spanish getaway without the crowds you might expect from more popular destinations, making it great for an authentic and more relaxed taste of Spanish life.
Murcia itself has a rich history and offers a blend of Moorish, Roman and Baroque architecture. Its historic centre is fit with a beautiful cathedral and the opulent Real Casino de Murcia, which is worth a wander through even if you don't fancy a flutter. Elsewhere you'll find beautiful beaches and seaside towns dotted along the Costa Cálida – visit Cartagena to explore the old Roman Theatre and stroll along the tranquil waterfront.
Spain travel guide
From the cultural hotspots on the mainland, to the volcanic Canary Islands and the stunning beaches of the Balearics – Spain has everything you need for every kind of holiday.Hassle-free guide
More people are trying cruises for the first time and finding out how much they love them. Not only is it a great way to tick off a bunch of destinations in one go, but you've got all that fabulous cruise luxury at your fingertips 24/7.
There are only so many places in the world where you can catch a Broadway show, enjoy dinner with a sea view, spend some time in a spa or water park, and then wake up in a totally different destination. Such is the magic of cruising. There's usually a packed itinerary of activities on board aimed at both kids and grown-ups, but if the thought of organised fun makes your every sinew cringe, don't worry as there's usually somewhere quiet you can hide away and relax.
Another big pro for cruising is that, when you cruise from the UK, there's no baggage limit – pack as much as you want!
Things you didn't know about cruises
Put these fascinating facts in your back pocket for the next pub quiz…Cruise facts
The Polish Riviera | Poland
There's a trio of cities on Poland's Baltic Sea coast that between them make up the Polish Riviera. Poland might not be at the top of your list for a beach getaway but you may be surprised. Sopot, Gdynia and Gdańsk all offer something a bit different, whether it's the charming gabled streets and 17th-century architecture of Gdańsk, the modern charm of Gdynia or the endless sandy beach of Sopot.
The weather can be surprisingly hot in the summer, but autumn is also a popular time to visit as it's less crowded and it's the perfect time of year to explore the countryside in its autumnal palette. Plus you're more likely to get better weather for windsurfing, which is a popular pastime in this part of Poland.
You might think this remote, tropical island would be a strain on the wallet, but it's relatively cheap in comparison to other long-haul destinations with a similar vibe. You'll love the exchange rate too.
It's roughly the same size as Ireland and sits to the south-east of India. The island boasts impressive safaris, the best cup of tea you'll ever taste, 8 UNESCO World Heritage sites and warm and wonderful weather.
Sri Lanka travel guide
With a tropical climate, miles of beaches and culture and history at every turn, Sri Lanka is a holidaymaker's dream destination.Hassle-free guide
Freiburg | Germany
Take a hop across the continent and into the 5th century with a trip to the most charmingest of German cities, Freiburg. In fact, Freiburg might even be the closest you'll ever get to stepping into an actual fairy tale, as it lies right on the fringes of the Black Forest which provided inspiration for the Brothers Grimm.
It's got some pretty impressive sustainability credentials to boot too, with an extensive public transport network which encourages visitors and locals to ditch their cars in favour of buses, trams or even bikes. Combine this with the natural scenery, green spaces and idyllic mountain streams that trickle through the centre and you've got a city right out of the past.
Germany travel guide
Germany is a country full of history and culture and whether you're enjoying the nightlife in the cities, celebrating Oktoberfest or skiing in the alps, you're guaranteed a great trip.Hassle-free guide
Nantes | France
This vibrant regional capital lies across the Loire River in France's Upper Brittany region. And it's easy to get to thanks to Ryanair's new direct flights. It's well within the Loire Valley so you can expect wine by the bucketful, particularly Muscadet.
It's not just for wine-guzzling grown-ups either, with Puy du Fou providing a theme park experience like no other. This unique attraction has a number of different areas each themed after a different period of history – from the Roman Empire, through the Viking age up until World War II. Fun and educational!
Another highlight of this quirky city is Les Machines de l'Île, a fascinating installation within the old shipyards. It's part steampunk, part whimsy and completely bonkers – if you've ever wanted to see a giant mechanical elephant this is the place to go.
France travel guide
Great wine, iconic landmarks and stunning landscapes. There are countless reasons why France consistently ranks as the most visited country in the world.Hassle-free guide