As coronavirus cases continue to multiply , it’s easy to consider waylaying your travel plans. Yet, unless the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) advises otherwise, there’s no reason not to make the most of your annual leave and jet off on your planned holiday. If your upcoming holiday does come under the FCO’s list as coronavirus-hit destinations, it’s time to start re-planning your holiday ASAP.
1. Instead Of China – Visit Peru
Swap one wonder of the world for another, by skipping the Great Wall of China during the coronavirus outbreak for Machu Picchu in Peru instead. Both countries are home to some of the world’s oldest civilizations – China’s Zhou dynasty and Peru’s Incas – which makes for some incredible temples and places of historical significance. Peru’s natural wonders include its Rainbow Mountains , the Peruvian Andes and Lake Titicaca, while its cities offer a heady mix of gastronomic delights and a hedonistic nightlife.
2. Instead Of South Korea – Visit France
South Korea’s Seoul is one of the world’s most exciting fashion capitals – and France boasts the perennial home of style, Paris. While tourists will discover temples, tantalizing street food and industrial-style buildings in Seoul, Paris is home to some of the world’s most famous structures (Eiffel Tower, the Louvre, Arc di Triomphe), its architecture is forever ‘grammable and its food is worth the Eurostar trip alone.
3. Instead Of Italy – Visit Malta
While the southern parts of Italy – the likes of Rome, Capri, Sicily and the Amalfi Coast – still have the green light to visit, news that Italy has closed all schools and universities until mid-March means another sun-soaked trip should be on the cards. Malta, with its rich history, glistening seas and 300 days of sunshine per year, has (so far) not reported any cases of coronavirus. Temperatures at this time of year hover around a balmy 17C, and the golden-hued city of Valetta is a UNESCO World Heritage Site which further earned its stripes as the European Capital of Culture for 2018.
4. Instead Of Iran – Visit Ethiopia
Iran is home to some of the world’s most beautiful landscapes, from the UNESCO World Heritage listed Dasht-e Lut desert with its expansive salt plains to the Badab-e Surt with its steep blood orange-hues terraces and natural springs. Ethiopia in eastern Africa offers similarly stunning landscapes – the village of Dallol lies 134 metres below sea level, with sulphuric acid fields like a mountainous medley of neon yellows and greens.
5. Instead Of Japan – Visit New Zealand
Japan has been the go-to destination for the better half of the last decade – as a new generation of tourists discover a country of cultural importance, where the locals are friendly and the scenery awe-inspiring. Its popularity has only been heightened after hosting the mens Rugby World Cup last year, which makes New Zealand a suitable alternative for anyone looking for a bucket-list holiday. Swap Japan’s renowned mountains for New Zealand’s Southern Alps, its temples for Māori marae’s and its katsu chicken for fish and chips on the beach.