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The Top 20 Trending Travel Destinations for 2020, According to Airbnb

News Insider Guides
by Eben Diskin Oct 14, 2019

Planning ahead for your 2020 travel is never a bad idea, especially when it comes to reserving your dream Airbnb before it gets booked solid. The first step, however, is figuring out exactly where to go, which can be a tougher proposition than it may sound. Luckily, Airbnb has done a lot of the work for you, using internal data to reveal which destinations are seeing the biggest increase in tourism. Many places on this year’s list made the list due to their sustainable tourism efforts, unique cultural offerings, or popular events they’ll be hosting in 2020. Based on year-over-year (YOY) growth in bookings, here are Airbnb’s top trending destinations for 2020.

1. Milwaukee, WI
729% YoY increase

Downtown Milwaukee, WI, skyline at twilight

Photo: f11photo/Shutterstock

Miluakee’s 729 percent YoY increase in popularity probably isn’t solely due to its hosting of the 2020 Democratic National Convention. The bar and restaurant scene, over 100 miles of bike lanes, and myriad cultural attractions have given Milwaukee a significant edge over the competition.

2. Bilbao, Spain
402% YoY increase

Photo: Belyay/Shutterstock

Bilbao is popular for its vibrant restaurant scene, architecture, and soccer club. It won European City of the Year in 2018 and hasn’t looked back since. In 2020, soccer fans can look forward to watching Euro matches here, as Bilbao will serve as one of the host cities.

3. Buriram, Thailand
383% YoY increase

Photo: lemaret pierrick/Shutterstock

Home to Thailand’s most treasured Khmer relics, Buriram is also well-known for its Phanom Rung temple complex. The province also hosted the MotoGP racing event at the Chang International Circuit in 2018 and hosts the Buriram Marathon each year.

4. Sunbury, Victoria, Australia
356% YoY increase

Photo: Nicole Patience/Shutterstock

Just northwest of Melbourne, Sunbury is popular for its wildlife, wineries, and Victorian architecture. In 2020, Sunbury will likely benefit from Melbourne’s hosting the ICC T20 Cricket World Cup.

5. Romania
298% YoY increase

Photo: Hurghea Constantin/Shutterstock

Romania made the list thanks to its well-preserved forests, ranking 15th in the world for ecosystem vitality. Its rolling green hills and rural village architecture certainly didn’t hurt either.

6. Xi’an, China
255% YoY increase

Photo: Joshua Davenport/Shutterstock

The home of the famous terracotta warriors — prehistoric clay soldiers discovered by farmers in 1974 — Xi’an is the capital of China’s Shaanxi province and a huge culinary destination. In 2020, the city is planning to introduce a new tourism program that will offer 30 evening tour routes through Xi’an, including night markets and performances.

7. Eugene, OR
212% YoY increase

Photo: Sean Pavone/Shutterstock

Eugene is known throughout the Pacific Northwest as an organic culinary hub and place of stunning natural beauty. Eugene has committed to going carbon neutral next year and is a popular destination for eco-friendly travelers.

8. Luxembourg
167% YoY increase

Photo: BAHDANOVICH ALENA/Shutterstock

Declared a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1994, the small European country of Luxembourg is known for its forested countryside, medieval castles, wine country, quiet villages, and unique culinary tradition.

9. Guadalajara, Mexico
158% YoY increase

Photo: Luis Alvarado Alvarado/Shutterstock

Guadalajara’s colonial architecture, and variety of museums and festivals, make it a perfect destination for anyone craving a dose of Mexican culture. The city is also spearheading an initiative to make public spaces more welcoming to pedestrians and cyclists.

10. Vanuatu
140% YoY increase

Photo: rob_travel/Shutterstock

Some may be familiar with Vanuatu as the setting of the ninth season of Survivor, but for everyone else, the archipelago 2,000 miles east of Australia is composed of over 80 islands and home to over 100 native languages. There’s plenty to do here, whether it’s volcano hiking, scuba diving, or just chilling on one of the many deserted beaches.

11. Cali, Colombia
137% YoY increase

Photo: Alberto Loyo/Shutterstock

Cali is the salsa capital of the world, and that’s probably the only reason you need to go visit. Apart from the salsa tradition, the city is a party and nightlife hub with a unique caleño culture.

12. Cape Canaveral, FL
136% YoY increase

Photo: athlux/Shutterstock

Along with its 72 miles of beachfront and several protected natural areas, Cape Canaveral is best known as the site of NASA’s rocket launches. In July 2020, it will be the launch site of the much anticipated Mars 2020 Exploration Program.

13. Aberdeen, Scotland
119% YoY increase

Photo: Susanne Pommer/Shutterstock

Called the “Granite City” because much of the city was built with gleaming white stone, Aberdeen offers visitors a lively restaurant scene, museums, castle ruins, and picturesque coastal scenery. Aberdeen may owe its spot on this list, however, to its efforts to drastically reduce carbon emissions.

14. Courtenay, BC, Canada
114% YoY increase

Photo: StaceyL/Shutterstock

Located on Vancouver Island, Courtenay is the ideal destination for those looking to fully immerse themselves in the outdoors. Filled with mountains, meadows, and small hipster villages, the small city is also making great strides toward reducing its greenhouse gas emissions.

15. Ubatuba, Brazil
108% YoY increase

Photo: Ernanni Bronzatto/Shutterstock

Widely considered the surfing capital of São Paulo state, Ubatuba has over 100 beaches and hosts several surf championships each year. For those who prefer to stay on land, there are plenty of hiking trails that take you through the Atlantic rainforest.

16. Les Contamines-Montjoie, France
108% YoY increase

Photo: Celli07/Shutterstock

This village situated between Chamonix and Megeve is the perfect destination for both mountain climbers and skiers — depending on the season. The village features farm buildings restored in the local Savoy architectural style, so if you’re looking for a classic alpine getaway, this is it.

17. Tokyo, Japan
103% YoY increase

Photo: Phattana Stock/Shutterstock

Tokyo’s recent rise in popularity is largely due to its hosting of the upcoming 2020 Summer Olympics. As part of the city’s preparation for the games, Tokyo has been reducing energy consumption and carbon emissions, and encouraging public transport and low-energy vehicles.

18. Kerala, India
95% YoY increase

Tea plantations and Muthirappuzhayar River in hills near Munnar, Kerala, India

Photo: DR Travel Photo and Video/Shutterstock

Given the state of Kerala’s beaches, lakes, mountains, waterfalls, coffee plantations, and views of the Arabian Sea, it’s no wonder it made the list of increasingly popular destinations. Kerala is also running a Responsible Tourism program that aims to encourage conservation efforts among both residents and visitors.

19. Malindi, Kenya
88% YoY increase

Photo: Lubo Ivanko/Shutterstock

Malindi is a historic port town perfect for divers, seafood connoisseurs, and wildlife enthusiasts. With a multicultural mix of African, Arab, and European residents, Malindi is one of the most demographically unique cities in Kenya. It’s also promised to plant two billion trees by 2021 as part of a new preservation initiative.

20. Maastricht, Netherlands
55% YoY increase

Photo: Harry Beugelink/Shutterstock

Maastricht has more historic buildings than any Dutch city besides Amsterdam. It’s also home to several museums and cultural events, even hosting TEFAF in 2020, one of the world’s largest art fairs.

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