• 9 February 2020

What comes to mind when you think exotic? White sandy beaches, palm trees, turtles and whale sharks, maybe a tropical jungle almost untouched by humans?

We have discovered so much more. From magical sinkholes in the ocean to soaring forests of bamboo and moonscapes formed from volcanic eruptions.

Here at Expat, we are always adding to our bucket list, and we love to hear about yours! Have you always wanted to visit Japan, Morocco, or even Fiji? Let us know below so we can see which of these exotic vacations should be added to the Expat Explore tours family next.

1. Arashiyama Bamboo Forest, Japan

If this is a place that is renowned in the statement “pictures don’t do it justice”, then you can just imagine what it would feel like to stand in this towering forest of bamboo. Found on the outskirts of Kyoto, Japan. 

This exotic destination is a place of sheer enchantment set amidst the bamboo stalks, monkeys and shrines. Find yourself gazing up with a sense of other-worldly perspective that you can only feel deep in your gut!

A bridge leading into the beautiful Arashiyama Bamboo Forest
A bridge leading into the beautiful Arashiyama Bamboo Forest
2. Forest of Knives, Madagascar

These razor-sharp vertical limestone rocks in Madagascar (an island off the coast of South Africa), are also known as Tsingy, in Malagasy. This means “the place that one cannot walk”, and there is no doubt as to why. 

These magical formations long outdating humans on this planet are a case of sheer mother-earth magnificence, and wildlife thrives here! Due to 200 million years of heavy tropical rainfall erosion, these limestone formations are as exotic as they come and are really something to behold! 

Hiking through the Forest of Knives in Madagascar
Hiking through the Forest of Knives in Madagascar
3. Dubrovnik, Croatia

The Republic of Croatia is an exciting exotic destination on the Adriatic Sea. Dubrovnik particularly is a walled old town that is known as the ‘Pearl of the Adriatic’ which was once a rich and powerful state and today feels like a living museum that makes for the best exotic vacation. 

Discover the numerous baroque churches and medieval marble streets, lined with quaint cafes and trendy bars and restaurants. Dubrovnik is a great holiday destination that feels like a piece of paradise on Earth with loads of cultural history and incredible architecture all within the iconic city walls. It’s also a great stop to explore on an exotic sailing trip in Croatia.

An aerial view of the famous Old Town in Dubrovnik
An aerial view of the famous Old Town in Dubrovnik
4. Easter Island, Chile

This mystical destination is located hundreds of miles off the coast of mainland Chile. Easter Island is an exotic destination on the bucket list of many travellers. There is a vast amount of exploring to be done in such a small stature of just 63 square miles.

Here you’ll discover volcanoes, beaches, wild horses and the famous “Easter Island heads”, which are Moai statues that have confounded explorers and archaeologists for centuries.

Famous Moai statues at the Rano Raraku volcano on Easter Island
Famous Moai statues at the Rano Raraku volcano on Easter Island
5. Taha’a, French Polynesia

An island filled with banana, watermelon, and coconut that smells like vanilla?! Count us in! The amazing work of Mother Earth has created an island that is shaped like a flower and smells like vanilla pods, and we’re not even kidding. 

Her fertile valleys are a natural greenhouse for Tahitian vanilla orchids, which are in abundance on Taha’a. There is so much to see and do on this exotic island! The natural scenery is awe-inspiring and travellers are able to hike the incredible valleys and ascending slopes discovering all the magical and diverse flora and fauna on the island.  

Bungalows on the island of Taha'a
Bungalows on the island of Taha’a
6. Cappadocia, Turkey

This magical moonscape found in the stunning Cappadocia region in Turkey was created by volcanic eruptions that have resulted in rock formations and caves that are completely surreal. This geological oddity is a sight to see and definitely one of those exotic vacation spots that need to be added to the list! You will get the opportunity to visit this phenomenon on a tour through Turkey.

Entrance to the ancient underground city in Cappadocia
Entrance to the ancient underground city in Cappadocia
7. Bagan, Burma

These beautiful other-worldly temples were built by the Kings of Bagan between 1057 and 1287, and are one of our truly gloriously unsullied exotic destinations. More than 2,000 Buddhist monuments tower over the green plains below in such an incredible way and are truly an archaeological spectacle to experience.

Famous temple in the archaeological zone in Burma, Bagan
Famous temple in the archaeological zone in Bagan, Burma
8. Sossusvlei, Namibia

This part of the Namibian desert is a visual immersion in incredible sand dunes and clay pans for as long as the eye can see.  Sossusvlei is one of the most exotic places in the world, with surreal dead acacia trees contrasting the salty floor of the pans and ever-changing dunes that flow with the Earth.

The biggest dune in the Namib Desert in Sossusvlei, Namibia
The biggest dune in the Namib Desert in Sossusvlei, Namibia
9. Lake Atitlan, Guatemala 

This beautiful lake has found itself locked in between three towering volcanoes in the Guatemalan highlands of the Sierra Madra mountain range. It’s one of those exotic trips that is defined by peace and tranquillity. Lake Atitlan offers an exquisite backdrop for yoga, hiking, and kayaking with mesmerizing scenery all around. 

View of San Pedro volcano from Lake Atitlan
View of San Pedro volcano from Lake Atitlan
10. El Yunque Rain Forest, Puerto Rico 

Another of the great exotic travel destinations! El Yunque is the only tropical rainforest in the US, covering more than 28,000 acres and getting more than 200 inches of rain annually. The rainforest is known for its biodiversity and has the perfect exotic spots for discovering the incredible spotted tree frogs and exotic flora and fauna.

A waterfall in El Yunque Rain Forest
A waterfall in El Yunque Rain Forest
11. Machu Picchu, Peru

This incredible Incan citadel is set high in the Andes Mountains above the Urubamba River valley in Peru. They were built in the 15th Century and then later on abandoned, and have since become an exotic travel destination.

Renowned for sophisticated and intricate dry-stone walls that have fused giant blocks together, seeming impossible without the use of mortar. These fascinating buildings boast astronomical alignments and incredibly picturesque panoramic views in a mystical and other-worldly manner. You can visit this incredible sight ona  tour to Peru.

Machu Picchu ruins voted as one of the new 7 wonders of the world
Machu Picchu ruins voted as one of the new 7 wonders of the world
12. El Nido, Palawan, Philippines

Another of the best tropical exotic vacation spots, Philippines’ last frontier boasts marble cliffs and aquamarine lagoons filled with exotic colorful fish. 

That’s not all, off this incredible beach you’ll also find lush mangrove forests, cascading waterfalls and ancient caves, making El Nido the perfect place for that next exotic vacation. 

Kayaking in El Nido Palawan
Kayaking in El Nido Palawan
13. Adams Peak, Sri Lanka 

This spectacular natural conical landmark is a pilgrimage attraction of Sri Lanka and a perfect destination for your next exotic vacation.

Hike up Adam’s Peak and you’ll feel like a giant amidst the clouds as you look down on the wondrous landscape of Sri Lanka filled with lowlands and evergreen forests. It’s also a great option if you’re looking for affordable exotic vacations.

Famous Buddha statue at Adam's Peak
Famous Buddha statue at Adam’s Peak
14. Taveuni, Fiji 

A list of exotic vacation spots just doesn’t seem complete without adding Fiji. Taveuni is one of the 300 archipelago islands and offers the feeling of complete peace and isolation, surrounded by welcoming culture and scenic national parks. 

The waters are full of soft coral that is often luminous and houses a vast array of fish, turtles, sharks, and whales. A diver’s paradise and a get spot for an exotic vacation.

Coral reef at Taveuni Island in Fiji
Coral reef at Taveuni Island in Fiji

This planet that we are lucky enough to call home is so full of awe and wonder that it’s hard to imagine such incredible exotic trips we can fill our lives with. This list is just the tip of all there is to experience and marvel at in planning for your next exotic vacation! Join us one of our amazing group tours, because travel is better together to explore the world. 

Questions & Comments

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