No list would be complete without Lonely Planet’s ‘number one country to visit in 2019’, Sri Lanka.
“Sri Lanka is certainly having its moment in the spotlight,” says Teresa Richardson, Managing Director of The Travel Corporation in South Africa.
Formerly known as Ceylon (as in the tea) Sri Lanka is an island nation found in the warm Indian Ocean south of India with the Maldives a little way south-west. Previously the getaway of choice for intrepid explorers, Sri Lanka is set to welcome an influx of travellers in 2019.
Joy Niemack, a South African who visited the country in September 2018, describes the mountainous scenery as truly beautiful and fantastic for hiking. “The people are friendly, things at the markets are cheap, as is transport,” she says. However, she recommends Sri Lanka is best explored as part of a group.
Best time to visit: December to March for trips in the west and south coast, and April to September for anywhere along the east coast.
Untainted by human interference, Antarctica is much the same as it was when the explorers of the Golden Age of Antarctica Exploration sought to conquer its peaks, islands and unforgiving ice-shelves over 100 years’ ago, says Natalia Rosa, Director of Big Ambitions, a specialist travel content marketing consultancy, who visited the area in November 2018.
“The landscape is other-worldly, larger than life and majestic at every turn. You won’t be able to pull yourself away from your surrounds: towering snow-capped mountains, beryl-blue glaciers and icebergs, and ice floes that dot expansive bays,” says Rosa.
Best time to visit: It depends on what wildlife you most want to see. In January, penguins begin hatching, while February and early March are usually the best months to view whales.