50 Best Places to Travel in 2017 ( part 2 )

Hampi, India

One of India’s most spectacular monuments will become newly accessible this year with the launch of a high-end resort in Hampi. When the 14th-century capital of the Vijayanagara Empire was constructed, in what is now the southwestern state of Karnataka, it was one of the largest cities in the world. The ruined settlement’s dazzling temples, monuments, and public buildings—strewn across a landscape of giant boulders, banana groves, and rice paddies—have long been a must-visit for dedicated Indophiles. But the town of Hampi has lacked world-class accommodation and infrastructure, making a visit less than luxurious. Now the new Orange County, Hampi offers a solution: 46 rooms spread across a palatial, Vijayanagara-inspired estate less than three miles from the UNESCO World Heritage site area. As Lucy Davis, director of India tour operator Banyan Tours, puts it, “the property is a game-changer for visitors to Hampi.” —Flora Stubbs



Scenic summer panorama of the Market Square (Kauppatori) at the Old Town pier in Helsinki, FinlandHelsinki, Finland

Finland celebrates 100 years of independence on December 6, 2017, but the parties will start much earlier—and many of them will be happening in Helsinki, the capital. The country’s gift to itself is a major new landmark: the sinuous Central Library, designed by ALA Architects to be Helsinki’s new living room (it will open in 2018). Sauna culture is a big part of everyday life in the city. The latest and greatest public one is Löyly, a contemporary geometric complex of wood designed by Avanto Architects. And on Sauna Day, which takes place twice a year, several unique private saunas, including one on a raft and another in a castle, open to the public. When it comes to a design-savvy place to stay, book a room at Lilla Roberts, at least until the summer opening of sister hotel St. George, a grand 150-room property in a 19th-century landmark building. —Gisela Williams



Honolulu1Honolulu, Hawaii

The tides are changing in Honolulu. Hawaii’s capital is becoming a cultural powerhouse—in 2017 it will host its first Biennial, which will attract artists from across the Pacific Rim as well as celebrate Hawaii’s own underrepresented artists. Check out the litany of installations, panel discussions, and performances from March 8 to May 8, when creative forces will transform sites like Foster Botanical Garden, City Hall, and Chinatown. But the cresting art scene can be found year-round. In the gritty Kaka’ako neighborhood, dozens of new Pow! Wow! murals saturate the walls of warehouses, construction sites, and burgeoning collectives-cum-galleries like Lana Lane Studios. Further proof the capital is becoming an arts hub: Even touristy Waikiki is changing, thanks to brand new art-centric hotel, Surfjack Hotel & Swim Club, which collaborated with local artists—from the restrooms’ custom bird-of-paradise wallpaper to the Matthew Tapia–designed graphic mural at the bottom of the pool that reads “Wish You Were Here.” —Jenna Scatena



Indianapolis, IndianaIndianapolis, Indiana

The city shattered expectations of Midwestern dining a couple of years ago with the opening of beloved brunch spot Milktooth, and the culinary scene has only gathered steam since then. In the fall, Indy hopped on the fried-chicken trend with Crispy Bird, a sustainability-focused joint from James Beard Award–nominated restaurateur Martha Hoover, while Milktooth’s Jonathan Brooks lent his expertise to the gastropub menu at the Owner’s Wife. This coming year, Sun King Brewery will open a 15,000-square-foot distillery in nearby Carmel. And with hotels in the works from 21c, Ironworks, and home-goods brand West Elm, Indianapolis is poised to become America’s next big destination. —Lila Battis



Jackson Hole, Wyoming

The total solar eclipse on August 21 will be the first in almost 40 years to be visible from the continental U.S., with a path of totality that slashes across the States from Oregon to South Carolina. For prime viewing, head to Jackson Hole—spectacular scenery, expansive vistas, and minimal light pollution make it an ideal vantage point. Once the two-minute main event is over, there are plenty of warm-weather activities to keep you occupied, from hiking the backcountry of Grand Teton and Yellowstone national parks to exploring Jackson proper (be sure to snag a pastry at Persephone Bakery and a chic, locally crafted souvenir at Made). —Lila Battis



Jebel Akhdar, Oman

A two-hour drive from Muscat, in the rocky contours of Oman’s Al-Hajar Mountains, is Jebel Akhdar, an area beloved for its astounding views, craggy wadis, and natural terraces. Come spring, a blanket of velvety pink damask rose blossoms shroud the hills with their romantic scent. From these blossoms, distillers produce soothing rosewater potions that are used in both spa treatments and cocktail menus. To best experience Jebel Akhdar, head to the recently opened Anantara Al Jabal Al Akhdar. The magnificent property is giving the region’s reigning boutique hotel, the Alila Jabal Akhdar, a run for its money. While both promise canyon-view infinity pools and post-hike pampering treatments, the Anantara’s splashy suites, six restaurants, and amenities (like a cliff-side private meal), are unbeatable. —Dylan Essertier



Skyline of the Old City at he Western Wall and Temple Mount in Jerusalem, Israel

Jerusalem, Israel

Typically more of a pilgrimage site than a sybaritic city, Jerusalem has now emerged as a culinary force to rival Tel Aviv. At the sprawling Mahane Yehuda Market, food-and-drink spots have popped up in produce stalls, many of which stay open long past sunset. The Jewish diaspora and Middle East merge at restaurants like Ishtabach—try the Kurdish shamburak, a pastry with brisket, potatoes, and chimichurri—and Machneyuda, known for its standout beef tartare with plums. Stay at the new boutique Brown Jerusalem Hotel, which will open soon in a restored Ottoman-era villa and serve drinks in an underground water cistern. —Sara Toth Stub



Jura, France

Concealed by Alpine peaks and rolling, wooded hills, Jura—France’s smallest wine region—has long been shielded from the swarms that descend upon Burgundy to the west and Switzerland to the east. But in recent years, the Jura’s highly idiosyncratic, oxidative wines have generated explosive interest, with bottles making regular appearances on sommelier lists at U.S. restaurants like Eleven Madison Park and the French Laundry. Thanks to the newfound attention, the secret of Franche-Comté’s remote gem—a medieval-era region perfect for gourmands and nature-lovers—is out at last. Oenophiles will want to visit buzzy vineyards like Domaine André & Mirielle Tissot; co-owner Stéphane Tissot is a dynamic, progressive vintner who produces one of Jura’s famous sherry-like vin jaunes. Pair them with the Jura’s rich, rustic cuisine and the regional specialty, wheels of raw-milk Comté cheese. Burn off the calories hiking, cycling, or skiing the miles of quiet trails that arc around steep mountain ridges, shimmering lakes, and primordial waterfalls. For lodgings, turn to Les Jardins sur Glantine, a charming B&B that also produces superb natural wines. —Christopher Ross



Tsuzumi-mon (Wooden Gate) at Kanazawa Railway StationKanazawa, Japan

This city on the western coast of Honshu has seen a boost in visits since a bullet-train extension shortened the trip from Tokyo to just 2½ hours. Go for the old wooden teahouses of the Higashi Chayagai district, the beautiful samurai residence in Nagamachi, and the contemporary art museum. Then have your pick of sushi that’s just as good as, and much cheaper than, what you’d find in Tokyo. Try it at Sentori, Kagayasuke, or Omi-cho Market—a favorite of sushi master Masa. For a truly traditional experience, head to the Noto Peninsula and stay in a Japanese farmhouse, where you can forage for wild mountain greens and mushrooms and dine by an indoor fire pit. —Selena Hoy



lucerne, switzerlandLake Lucerne, Switzerland

The city of Lucerne’s medieval charms continue to draw busloads of tourists, but neighboring Lake Lucerne is full of developments that entice visitors to venture out as well. Make your base the ultramodern Bürgenstock, a $480 million project that opens in mid 2017 with scenic lake views, four hotels, and a massive yet tranquil spa. From there, explore the craggy summit of Mount Pilatus—once thought to be a dragon den, it’s become more accessible lately (its popular cog railway will be included in the Swiss Travel Pass starting this year). At the lake’s southern arm, called Lake Uri, the 36-mile-long Gotthard Base Tunnel (the world’s longest train tunnel) opens for passenger service in December 2016—it has shaved 40 minutes off the trip from Milan. Hikers to the region won’t be disappointed either: the nearby village Engelberg has created the Buiräbähnli Safari, a two-night Alpine trek that utilizes farmer’s gondolas and aerial cable cars to visit remote farms, where you can sample cheese and Alpine butter. —Adam H. Graham


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source : http://www.travelandleisure.com/trip-ideas/best-places-to-travel-in-2017

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