According to the World Youth Student and Educational (WYSE) Travel Confederation, millennial travelers now make up 20% of international travelers around the world. Breaking the mold of a traditional tourist, millennials are traveling younger, longer, and with more expectations than ever before.
Whether they’re students on their first trip abroad, backpackers on an around-the-world trip or a group of friends on a weekend getaway, many millennials are looking for authentic experiences, money value, and different ways to constantly connect with their world, both online and off. With this criteria in mind, here are ten top destinations for millennial travelers – which countries have you been to?
What used to be a backpacker secret is now firmly placed on the tourist trail – and for good reason. Nicaragua is Costa Rica’s more affordable neighbor offering incredible scenery and activities, along with a range of accommodation options. While the country may be more visited than in the past, visitors can take advantage of the sights and activities laid out for tourists as well as still discover lesser-known spots on their own.
Affordable accommodation? Check. Beautiful scenery? Yep. Cheap and delicious street eats? 24/7. Free Wi-Fi everywhere? They have that too. Thailand is a popular destination with visitors of all ages, but hits all the millennial must-haves perfectly. Not only is the country an intriguing and exotic place to visit, but an excellent introduction to Southeast Asia with an established backpacker trail.
Though not as wallet-friendly as Thailand, Australia is the perfect place to grab a group of friends for a road trip, soak up the sun, and spend plenty of time outdoors. Cities like Sydney and Melbourne have young, active communities, and the country also offers a working holiday visa to people of many nationalities under the age of 31.
Incredible food, friendly people, and an unbeatable mix of history and hedonism, make this country a must-see. While much of the rest of Europe can put a dent in your bank account, Greece still provides visitors with a wide range of destinations, activities, transportation, and accommodation options that won’t break the bank. The country’s islands and party scenes are also some of the best around.
From coastlines on both the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans, to tropical foothills, and the mountainous Andes, Colombia is a stunner. It is also boasts a number of adventure activities, nature getaways, and is a country for millennials to take it slow in, soaking up the nation’s culture and coffee scene.
Another Southeast Asia favorite is Indonesia, home to more than 17,500 islands, around 1,000 of which are permanently inhabited. With so many places to explore, and a low cost of living, millennials can experience a tropical getaway while still connecting with the culture and locals.
While millennials can’t travel through the U.S. quite like some other countries – it’s too spread out! – there are still plenty of places to check off that bucket list. New York City and Las Vegas, though pricey, are big draws for younger travelers to spend a few days and a road trip down the West Coast will take travelers through a number of iconic towns – Seattle, Portland, San Francisco – filled with personality. Budget options and sharing services are also widely available for those who want to make their dollar stretch further throughout the trip.
Dazzling coastlines, medieval towns, mouthwatering food, and hundreds of islands, Croatia is becoming a fast favorite. With fewer crowds and lower price tags, the charming country offers millennials a different Mediterranean destination than what most are used to.
A country that tends to draw in young, adventurous travelers, Peru is filled with unique sights and attractions. Of course, colorful Cusco and the mystical Machu Picchu are all-time favorites and superb spots for millennials to connect with travelers from around the world.
Who can say no to late night tapas and dancing until dawn? As the third most visited country in the world, Spain’s global appeal is undeniable. With places like Ibiza and Majorca drawing in the party crowds, cultured-filled towns like Granada and Toledo, and buzzing cities like Barcelona and Madrid, the country has something for everyone. While it’s not as cheap as some of the destinations on this list, it’s still much more affordable than many other European counties.