Vacations are supposed to be an opportunity to relax and escape the hustle and bustle of everyday life. However, if you choose a location that is a regular vacation hotspot, it will more than likely be overpopulated by tourists. For those that seek something less touristy, you first need to stop following the crowd when it comes to choosing your vacation destination. Secondly, consider something a little more off the beaten path that has yet to be discovered by masses of tourists. To help you decide the location of your next vacation, we have compiled a list of places around the world that are less traveled.

 

Why Sometimes it's Best Going off the Beaten Path

Just because a vacation is off the beaten path doesn’t mean it is any less interesting than the more popular hotspots. There are many destinations that are less crowded than its popular counterparts, but still have the attributes of a great vacation. If you want to escape the tourists and explore somewhere new, here is our compilation of 10 places you should visit off the beaten path.

 

Hainan Island, China

Hainan Island is located off China's southern coast and is a beautiful tropical island that is popular with Chinese and Russian tourists. It is still relatively unknown to other travelers, making it a suitable vacation for those who want a beach holiday that is not overcrowded. The Hainan Island features gorgeous beach resorts, an ancient Hainanese village, a volcano park and botanical gardens, so you'll never run out of things to see and do.

Hainan Island

 

Margaret River, Australia

When you think of all the notable places in Australia, Margaret River probably isn't a destination that comes to mind. However it is a fantastic location off the beaten path if you seek sand and surfing. This small town is south of Perth in Western Australia and features beautiful beaches, world class surf spots, craft breweries, wineries, boutiques, and gorgeous karri forests.

Margaret River Australia

 

Hocking Hills State Park, Ohio

If you enjoy outdoor activities then Hocking Hills State Park in Ohio is an ideal location to visit off the beaten path. The state park stretches more than 2,300 acres and is a great place to camp and hike. The most notable features in the park are the waterfalls and dramatic rock formations, including Cantwell Cliffs, Ash Cave, Old Man's Cave and Cedar Falls. Other activities you can do include biking, archery, fishing and hunting.

Hocking Hills State Park

 

Namibia, Africa

Even though Namibia is the fourth largest country in Africa, it is still not well traveled. If you have never been to Africa before, this is a great place to visit during your first time in this country. There is an abundance of wildlife in Namibia, with Etosha National Park having elephants, big cats and black rhinos, while Damaraland hosts Africa's largest population of free-ranging rhinos, as well as being a great place to see desert elephants and lions. Apart from wildlife, Namibia also has volcanic mountains, and the beautiful Namib desert which is the second largest desert in the world after the Sahara.

Namibia, Africa

 

Virunga Volcanoes, Rwanda

The Virunga Volcanoes are located along the borders of Rwanda, Uganda and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. If you enjoy hiking, climbing and mountaineering, you need to consider the Virunga Volanoes as the destination of your next vacation. You can hike up some of the volcanoes which aren't active and scale heights of up to 15,000 feet. Once up there you will be rewarded with spectacular sights of the wildlife in the area, including the endangered mountain gorillas, chimpanzees and elephants.

Virunga Volcanoes, Rwanda

 

Eugene, Oregon

Eugene is one of the cities found off the beaten path that caters to fans of the arts and the outdoors. It's also suitable for those who consider themselves a connoisseur of food and wine. This diverse city has many artisan and farmers' markets you can browse, urban wine bars which sell regional wines and numerous restaurants offering local cuisine. Once you've sampled some of the delights of Eugene you can work off the calories by riding a bike across the extensive city bike paths or even go for a run across one of the many running trails.

Eugene, Oregon

 

Lombok, Idonesia

Lombok is an Indonesian island east of Bali and west of Sumbawa. It's natural scenic landscape features gorgeous sandy beaches and mesmerizing waterfalls, but surprisingly it is not clustered with tourists. At Lombok you can choose to relax on the beach or be more adventurous and dive or snorkel in the reef. There are also some good surfing spots, and a sea turtle hatchery you can visit.

Lombok, Indonesia

 

Santa Barbara, California

Santa Barbara is a great alternative to Napa Valley, and because it is off the beaten path, this location is less frequented by tourists. The city features gorgeous scenery and is situated at the base of the Santa Ynez Mountains, which provides a dramatic backdrop. There are several local distilleries and urban wine tasting rooms in Santa Barbara and many restaurants, art galleries and shopping outlets. There's also the opportunity to visit the beach and take a kayaking tour around the Santa Barbara Harbor.

Santa Barbara, California

 

El Djem, Tunisia

El Djem is a small town in northern Africa which is home to impressive well-preserved Roman architecture. Its most notable feature is the world famous Roman amphitheater of Thysdrus, constructed in the third century, which could seat up to 35,000 spectators.  Although parts of the amphitheater are now crumbled, you can still explore the different levels of it, and there is also a museum in the town which contains a large selection of mosaics and a restored Roman villa.

Roman amphitheater of Thysdrus

 

Plitvice Lakes National Park, Croatia

Plitvice Lakes National Park is a stunning forest reserve located in central Croatia. The national park is a UNESCO World Heritage site, which features many beautiful and serene lakes, as well as breathtaking caves and waterfalls . There is also a range of wildlife at Plitvice Lakes including brown bears, wolves and 157 bird species, as well as 321 known species of moths and butterflies.

Plitvice Lakes