By Chris Bonds
Every year a handful of tourist destinations emerge as the hotspots, the places where everyone wants to be. They can be ‘new discoveries’ or destinations that have been on the tourist map for ages, but received a new lease on life. As we wind down 2007, we take a peek at the places that are destined to become the most sought-after holiday locations this year.
Prague has been on the hotspot radar for a number of years, but finally makes it onto the A-list as new designer hotels, restaurants and clubs transform it into Europe’s capital of cool. Nearly two decades since the end of Communist rule, the city of a hundred spires has acquired a new level of sophistication and style. And the best news of all is that Prague is still a great value-for-money destination, where you can experience the charm, history and tradition of other European capitals without spending a fortune.
CAPE TOWN, South Africa
When it comes to beautiful cities, few can match this gem at the tip of Africa. What other city can boast a magnificent mountain, beautiful beaches, sweeping vineyards and architectural gems? Add to that the friendliness of the Cape’s diverse population, the African sunshine and amazing value for money.
With soccer’s World Cup heading for South Africa in 2010, everyone will discover the city’s delights. Among the tantalising activities on offer in this city is a cable-car ride to the top of Table Mountain, wine-tasting in the vineyards of Stellenbosch and Paarl, sun-bathing with supermodels at exclusive Clifton Beach and dining at tiny restaurants in the city’s Moslem Quarter.
DUBAI, United Arab Emirates
If you’ve been enthralled by the fabled cities of the past, here’s the chance to visit the growth of one of the miracle cities of today. Only a few decades ago, few people could have imagined that Dubai would become the wonder world that it is today and that Dubai hotels would rival the top hotels on the planet. It takes a special breed of developer to conceive what this city in the United Arab Emirates seems to have achieved remarkably effortlessly.
Dubai is truly a dream city where the impossible has been made possible. A golf course in the dunes? No problem! Vast shopping centres and skyscraper office blocks? Consider it done. A ski slope in the torturous heat? Why not? For hotel buffs, Dubai is heaven. Here you can choose from all the world’s top hotel brands, but it is the local developers who have pulled out all the stops. Who has not heard of the Burj al Arab, considered the world’s only seven-star hotel?
About the Author
Peter Graham is a consultant for HotelTravel.com – a leading international online travel information and hotel reservations service offering discounted hotel rates in top destinations world wide. Visit http://www.hoteltravel.com for additional travel information.