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As with 2021, travel plans and exciting new adventures seem to be looking all the more realistic. Although Covid certainly hasn’t left us, borders have opened, processes to travel have been refined, and already thousands have reacquainted themselves with that unique feeling of visiting and experiencing somewhere new.

And whilst plans have had to have been put on hold, cancelled or cut short, as ever here at Not In The Guidebooks we have been scouring the earth for more offbeat destinations, local experiences and authentic things to do, to bring to you for your 2022 travel inspiration.

Here is just a selection of the new ground we have broken, of the new destinations we have on offer, so that you can get dreaming of that next big holiday that we all, by now, deserve.

1.     Mexico

church and volcano in oaxaca mexico

Mexico isn’t just a country of stunning gold-sand beaches, steaming jungles hiding ancient, atmospheric temples, breathtaking mountains and volcanoes, and lonely cacti standing in endless desert. For all its aesthetic beauty, and there is plenty of that, it speaks volumes that Mexico’s main draw lies in its culture, its cuisine, and its people.

When you visit Mexico prepare for some of the best food you’ve ever had; barbecued fish from smoky shacks on the beach, guacamole made fresh from ingredients that are as local as they come, fiery salsas and tacos like you’ve never eaten before, all washed down with ice cold beer in buzzing street side eateries or overlooking burning sunsets beyond idyllic bays.

But whether it’s hiking in the Yucatan, discovering local traditions and culture in Oaxaca or drinking in the once-on-a-lifetime spectacle of the Day Of The Dead, the thing you’ll be most struck by, and the thing that will stay with you the longest, is the lasting memory of warm, open hospitality you’d struggle to match anywhere else in the world.

2.     Greece

greek island and village

At the turn of the year, the minds of many of us turn to thoughts of white-sand beaches, azure seas and warm breezes, and nowhere will you find a greater abundance of all these things than in Greece. Throw in one of the most fascinating ancient histories on earth, evidenced by the crumbling yet beautiful temples, theatres and ancient cities dotted all over the landscape, and you have yourself an undeniably compelling travel destination.

But for those who look to get a little further off the beaten track, Greece can also be a country of great surprise and is full of local hidden gems. Quiet, family-run olive farms nestled in remote hillsides, beachside tavernas on small islands far from the crowds of tourists, and rustic villages where time seems to have stood still all await on an activity holiday in Greece.

After all, who hasn’t fantasised about escaping to Greece on an island hopping excursion in the Mediterranean, or exploring monasteries and capturing beautiful sunrises on Corfu, or tasting stunning seafood with crisp white wine, the smell of the sea wafting in on a warm evening breeze… just us?

3.     Mauritius

sunset on a beach in mauritius

A little emerald gem dropped in the midst of the sapphire Indian Ocean, Mauritius is a chance to enjoy some blazing winter sun and a unique blend of French, Creole, African and Asian cultures all on one island. A place many visit to simply lie on the beach or play golf, Mauritius has so much more to it if only you know where to look.

You can hike through dramatic coastal mountain ranges, swim under waterfalls, ride horses through lush forests, abseil and scramble your way through plunging canyons, taste local wine in gorgeous vineyards, and get to know the unique, authentic cuisine born out of a weave of multiple cultures and palettes.

One thing is for sure in Mauritius, if you’ve come expecting big beachside resorts and a commercial experience, you’ll get far more than you bargained for. And as you drink in an Indian Ocean sunset from your eco-lodge in the mountains, you’ll probably feel that warm, smug glow that you really have found yourself an experience most people know nothing of.

New 2022 Adventures

Discover Greenland

Greenland

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Cyclades Islands Hopping

Greece

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Fjords & West Coast Road Trip

Norway

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Cool Cuba

Cuba

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4.     Greenland

mountain and town in greenland

The phrase goes something like, “when you’ve run out of places to visit, go to Greenland”. It makes sense. When it comes to tourism, Greenland is certainly not on many next-destination lists, and you’re unlikely to meet many people who have ever set foot on this huge island.

Which makes it the perfect place for Not In The Guidebooks. And with towering, barely explored mountain ranges, huge glaciers, awe-inspiring fjords, epic wildlife like killer whales, polar bears and pilot whales, and no end of unforgettable experiences to get you back in touch with nature like foraging, fishing and kayaking, it’s a playground for the more adventurous traveller.

What will most likely stay with you the longest though is just how remote, how wild, Greenland feels. As you watch icebergs calving into the ocean, or the midnight sun dipping behind the horizon of huge ice sheets and distant mountains, you’ll realise you’ll probably never get this sense of being so far from civilisation ever again.

5.     Cuba

classic car in havana cuba

When it comes to unique travel destinations, there are few places that can match up to the infuriating, beguiling, addictive hold that Cuba boasts. So much more than just a Caribbean island, Cuba challenges you and charms you, and draws you in with 60s cars and peeling colonial grandeur, lush, forested mountains and sunny coffee plantations, the sounds of music on every street corner and lashings of rum.

For many tourists, the maddening public transport, the bizarre charade to get wifi and the often hit and miss cuisine can leave them with a somewhat mixed view of their time. With Not In The Guidebooks, you can now really get under the skin of this little communist outpost in the Caribbean, and learn to see the country as the locals do – and at its very best.

From joining locals on a bike tour into the lush countryside, rolling cigars and drinking incredible coffee on rural plantations in Viñales, to trying incredible local cuisine and dancing the night away on the cobbled streets of Trinidad, prepare for Cuba to get its hooks into you, and make you sorry that you ever have to leave this magical country and its people.

6.     Norway

fishing village in lofoten

Norway is a country that, seemingly, just gets more and more spectacular as you round each bend. From the mighty west coast and its jaw-dropping fjords, to the mountainous spine of the Lofoten Islands, one thing you’re never short of in Norway is another opportunity to capture a magnificent view on your camera.

And with cutting edge culture and cuisine in cities like Oslo and Bergen and a proud heritage still visible in the Viking longhouses that dot the countryside, Norway is as much as a cultural treat as it is an outdoor one.

That being said, the draw of the natural landscape is properly magnetic in Norway. A huge, outdoor playground that offers world-class hiking, climbing, kayaking, cycling, skiing and more, it’s the perfect place to get outside, and revel in the impressiveness of your surroundings.


Here at Not In The Guidebooks, we work hard to bring you the most authentic, off the beaten track experiences we can, so that you can see the places most tourists don’t, and discover a destination as it should be – through the eyes of a local.

From driving the Iceland ring road to relaxing on an island paradise in Vietnam, learning about life on an eco-farm in Costa Rica to snowshoeing in the Pyrenees, there is no end to the variety of different experiences, tours and holidays we offer, so that you, whatever your interests, can create memories that last a lifetime.

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