Forget Japan, New York, or France. This is the year to take the road less travelled. Here are five destinations to whet your wanderlust
1. Komodo, Indonesia
Yes, there's more to Indonesia than Bali, and Komodo is one of the country's best-kept secrets. If Komodo dragons freak you out, you might want to stay away — the island is home to more than 4,000 Komodo dragons. For the brave souls that dare to venture forth, you'll be rewarded with spectacular dive spots, beaches with pink sand, and treks backdropped with stunning landscapes.
2. Transylvania, Romania
The fabled home of Dracula has propelled this Eastern European destination to fame, but few realise that some of the most intriguing castles in the region are to be found here. Do like the locals and knock back a shot (or 10) of palincă, a fiery brandy made from plums. While you're here, take a dip in thermal springs that purportedly heal everything from arthritis to cardiovascular conditions.
3. Los Glaciares National Park, Argentina
If you're hunting for glaciers, you don't have to head to the ends of the world. This UNESCO World Heritage site located in Argentina is a veritable kingdom of continental ice. Think 2,600 square kilometers of ice fields which play host to 47 major glaciers. Prepare to whip out your cameras for the Perito Moreno Glacier, which stands tall at 60 meters.
4. Nuwara Eliya, Sri Lanka
When in Sri Lanka, many head straight for the balmy coast of Galle, but cooler climes await at Nuwara Eliya for those who bother to make the trek up the mountains. Perched high above sea level, the sight of rolling tea plantations greet you as you sip on some of the finest teas the country has to offer. Some plantations allow you to pick your own tea leaves which you'll later enjoy in a hot cuppa along with freshly baked scones.
5. Jaisalmer, India
Far from the madness of Delhi, this fairytale city occupying the heart of the Thar Desert is home to magnificent sand dunes (best experienced from the back of a camel), a massive fort built from yellow sandstone, ornate mansions, and centuries of royal aplomb. Retail therapy comes in the form of mirror-worked skirts, hand embroidered jootis (footwear), and intricately crafted silver jewellery.