As we approach the year’s end, we’re already looking ahead to our travel planning for the new year. Photo: File

DURBAN - As we approach the year’s end, we’re already looking ahead to our travel planning for the new year. 

Based on a combination of Airbnb search, booking and wish list growth data*, we’re once again forecasting growing interest in more off-the-beaten-path regions, cities and towns to explore.

Ranging from a vehicle-free island off the coast of southeastern China’s Xiamen, to the site of Woodstock’s 50th anniversary celebration next year, Airbnb has found that most of our trending destinations are places where the increased “healthy,” more sustainable and authentic tourism will benefit residents and travellers alike. 

Promoting emerging locales like Accra, Ghana; supporting environmental sustainability in places like Calabria, Italy; and offering the chance to help rebuild communities after natural disasters, starting with the top-trending destination on our list: Kaikoura, New Zealand.

Here are Airbnb’s 19 trending destinations for 2019 along with a sampling of listings to stay in and Experiences to try:

1. Kaikoura, New Zealand

295 percent YoY increase in bookings

210 percent YoY increase in searches

2. Xiamen, China

283 percent YoY increase in bookings

3. Puebla, Mexico

240 percent YoY increase in searches

206 percent YoY increase in wish list inclusion

4. Normandy, France

229 percent YoY increase in bookings

120 percent YoY increase in searches

5. Great Smoky Mountains, US

191 percent YoY increase in bookings

190 percent YoY increase in searches

6. Buenos Aires Province, Argentina

188 percent YoY increase in bookings

176 percent YoY growth in wish list inclusion

7. Accra, Ghana

163 percent YoY increase in bookings

120 percent YoY increase in searches

8. Mozambique

156 percent YoY increase in bookings

160 percent YoY increase in searches

9. Outer Hebrides, Scotland

147 percent YoY increase in bookings

170 percent YoY increase in searches

10. Wakayama Prefecture, Japan

128 percent YoY increase in bookings

11. Catskill Mountains and Hudson Valley, US

100 percent YoY increase in bookings

130 percent YoY increase in searches

12. Santa Catarina State, Brazil

100 percent+ YoY increase in bookings

140 percent YoY increase in wish list inclusion

13. Batumi, Georgia

200 percent YoY increase in searches

14. Winnipeg, Canada

140 percent YoY increase in searches

15. Pondicherry, India

140 percent YoY increase in searches

16. Uzbekistan

165 percent YoY increase in wish list inclusion

17. Calabria, Italy

100 percent+ YoY increase in wish list inclusion

18. Andalusia, Spain

100 percent+ YoY increase in wish list inclusion

19. Taiwan

100 percent+ YoY increase in wish list inclusion

BUSINESS REPORT ONLINE