If 2017 was all about gorgeous landscapes, bucket list trips, the world's best beaches and traveling closer to home, 2018 is all about thinking outside the box for a great escape. The world is officially rethinking luxury travel, with people looking to explore the world now more than ever. Leave your presumptions about certain parts of the world at home and get your passports ready–these are the 18 top places to travel in 2018.
Why to go: Music-lovers should consider this north-German city a must-visit, thanks to the opening of the heavily-anticipated, decade-delayed Elbphilharmonie concert hall last year. Designed by Swiss architecture firm Herzog and de Meuron, the $850 million crown-shaped hall boasts some of the most precisely calibrated acoustics in the world, as well as awe-striking interiors that double as an art show. Formerly known as an industrial city, the Hamburg of recent years has developed into a hub of nightlife, bars, and restaurants, becoming Europe’s next big up-and-comer.
What to do: As long as you’ve got your ears in tune, head to the copper-domed St. Michael’s church, an 18th-century landmark where visitors can sit in on impromptu recitals during the daily organ-tuning, or travel up the spire for some Instagram-worthy views. Head over to the Gängeviertel, an ultra-artsy corridor of 19th-century buildings that house galleries, workshops, exhibitions, concerts, and social projects for the free-thinking ilk. Make sure to keep your calendar open on Sunday mornings, when the city’s legendary 300 year-old fish market is bustling. Here, you can grab a bite, listen to some live music, and pick up a few (non-fishy) souvenirs.
Pro tip: Reeperbahn, Hamburg’s red-light district, may raise a few eyebrows, but it’s also home to some of the best and most historic bars in the city–the Beatles even got their start in the district back in the ‘60s.