The 5 coolest places you've probably never heard of.

March 03, 2015

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As the world becomes increasingly interconnected and international travel all the more common, it's hard to find new exciting destinations that aren't totally packed with tourists. Fortunately for us, there are still many awesome places in the world that are relatively unknown.  Here are a few of our favourites.

Máncora, Peru

Peru is known for the Inca site of Machu Picchu, but the country’s northern Pacific coastline also deserves mention. This area is sunny and spectacular and home to Máncora, a town with awesome surfing, pleasant weather, and ample dining and lodging options.

Peru - Don't forget your shades when visiting Máncora. A popular surfing spot and fishing port, it's sunny and warm year-round. One place to kick back and wet your whistle: DCO (say deseo—"desire" in Spanish).

Once a backwater fishing village, Máncora is now the coolest coastal town in all of Peru. Its laid-back, bohemian vibe gives it a friendly atmosphere that fits perfectly the lovely local landscape. The consistently good surf (all year round) draws a sun-bleached, board-toting bunch and lively nightlife keeps visitors busy after the sun dips into the sea in a ball of fiery flames. There are several smaller beaches nearby that are nice places to relax and watch the waves roll in. 

 

Mal País, Costa Rica

The sleepy beach hamlet of Mal País is billed as a surfer's paradise, and the surf is indeed exceptional. Get ready for tasty waves, creative kitchens and babes in board shorts and bikinis, because the southwestern corner of Península de Nicoya has all that and more.  In addition to the surf, the hills are dotted with stylish boutique sleeps and sneaky good kitchens run by the occasional runaway, top-shelf chef.



A 4-wheel drive vehicle comes in handy for navigating unpaved roads in this still mostly wild area, particularly during the rainy season. Though locals zip around on quad bikes and motorcycles transporting their surfboards.

Jost Van Dyke, British Virgin Islands

Named for an early Dutch settler and former pirate, rugged scenery and colorful folklore make up Jost Van Dyke.  With fewer than 300 inhabitants, and measuring roughly 8 square kilometers, Jost Van Dyke is the smallest of the four main islands of the BVIs.  But don't let this fool you. This little island has been dubbed the “New York of the Virgin Islands” because it offers so much nightlife — probably packs more fun per square inch than any other island in the BVIs.

Soggy Dollar Bar / JOST VAN DYKE, BRITISH VIRGIN ISLANDS

 

Home to the infamous Soggy Dollar Bar (which was named for a patron who reportedly anchored his boat swam to shore for a drink, and paid for it with wet cash), the Soggy Dollar is probably most famous as being the birthplace of the potent yet refreshing cocktail known as the Painkiller.

For the adventure seekers, why not rent a four-wheeler and explore the off-road? Or hire a boat and explore the neighbouring islands?  Whatever your fancy, JVD aims to please. 

Blagaj, Bosnia and Herzegovina

Bosnia and Herzegovina is one of a kind. It is a place that will stun you with her natural beauty, fascinate and inspire you with her rich cultural heritage, and touch you with her warm and genuine hospitality.

Blagaj, Bosnia and Herzegovina  Blagaj stands at the edge of the beautiful Buna river.

The signature sight in pretty Blagaj village is the half-timbered Tekija standing beside the surreally blue-green Buna River where it gushes out of a cliff-cave. Upstairs the Tekija's wobbly wooden interior entombs two 15th-century Tajik dervishes and attracts pious pilgrims.

Levanzo, Sicily

Levanzo is known to be the smallest of islands among the Aegadian islands in Italy. Known for its natural charm and beauty, Levanzo is surrounded by the blue green waters of the Mediterranean Sea along the north of Favignana close to Sicily.

Many people come here to spend some quiet moments away from the hustle and bustle of the city life and enjoy the scenic beauty of the island. The locals lead a very simple and peaceful lifestyle here away from the chaos.

Cala Dogana, Levanzo | 28 Towns In Italy You Won't Believe Are Real Places and that I need to see firsthand

The village is split into two sections by the majestic villa at its centre, which overlooks Cala Dogana and the strait between Levanzo and Favignana, scene of many naval battles. In each of the sections can be found a fantastic bar, with terraces that enjoy the same view as the villa. Sipping a coffee or fruit juice while looking down at the seagulls that endlessly circle over the harbour can be a magical moment that sums up what Levanzo is all about: the appreciation of nature far from the incessant rhythms of daily life.

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