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Top regions and countries to visit in 2019


GALLERY: Australia’s Red Centre has been named alongside places such as the Scottish Highlands, Northern Peru, Russia’s Far East and the Catskills in the US in Lonely Planet’s new guide to the top travel destinations for 2019.

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The latest in a series of annual publications, Lonely Planet’s Best in Travel 2019 lists what the publisher’s staff and “travel geeks” consider the top 10 countries, regions, cities and best-value destinations, chosen for their “topicality, unique experiences and ‘wow’ factor”.

Australia’s Red Centre is listed fourth in the top regions (see images below), which also include Piedmont, Italy; The Catskills, USA; Northern Peru; Scotland’s Highlands and Islands; the Russian Far East; Gujarat, India; Manitoba, Canada; Normandy, France, and Elqui Valley, Chile.

“At the spiritual heart of Australia’s Red Centre is the country’s most recognised natural wonder, Uluru,” Lonely Planet says.

“In 2019, this sacred site is finally closing to climbers, almost 150 years after explorers decided to ‘conquer the rock’. Instead, visitors will find that this World Heritage site – recognised for its outstanding natural and cultural values – conquers them.”

Other Australian places which rate a mention in the guide include The Tasman luxury hotel in Hobart, as one of the best new places to stay, and Laura at Point Leo Estate on the Mornington Peninsula, as one of the best new food experiences.

“These are the places to experience in 2019”, says Lonely Planet’s spokesperson Chris Zeiher.

“They might be coming into their own, celebrating a once-in-a-lifetime event or simply have been overlooked for too long – whatever the reason, now is the time to plan a trip.”

Lonely Planet’s Top 10 Countries for 2019 are:

  1. Sri Lanka
  2. Germany
  3. Zimbabwe
  4. Panama
  5. Kyrgyzstan
  6. Jordan
  7. Indonesia
  8. Belarus
  9. São Tomé and Príncipe
  10. Belize

The photos below illustrate Lonely Planet’s Best in Travel 2019 top 10 regions for 2019 (reproduced with permission from Lonely Planet © 2018).

Catskills: The road slices through Minnewaska State Park Preserve. Photo: © ricardocostaphotography / Getty Images

Elqui Valley: Witnessing daybreak over Elqui Valley from Las Campanas Observatory. Photo: © Alberto Ghizzi Panizza / 500px

Normandy: The island commune and abbey of Mont St-Michel. Photo: © Kanuman / Shutterstock

Gujarat: The intricate sculptures of Rani-Ki-Vav stepwell in Patan. Photo: © davidevision / Getty Images

Manitoba: A polar bear negotiates the ice of the Hudson Bay coast in Manitoba. Photo: © Robert Postma / Design Pics / Getty Images

Northern Peru: The crystal lakes of Llanganuco Valley are flanked by the Andes. Photo: © Makasana / Getty Images

Piedmont: The elegant city centre of Turin, Piedmont’s urban core. Photo: © Marco Saracco / Getty Images / iStock Photo

Red Centre: A kangaroo road sign on the Stuart Highway in the Australian outback. Photo: ©totajla/Shutterstock

Russian Far East: The Transfiguration Cathedral during a winter sunset in Khabarovsk. Photo: © Konstantin Baidin/Shutterstock

Scottish Highlands: The sea stacks at Mangersta puncture the Lewis coast. Photo: © fstophotography / Getty Images


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