2023 is here and we are now ready to explore the world! With the pandemic that has been keeping us in the comfort of our homes for a couple of years, now is the perfect time to pack your bags, step out, and fill out your passport by seeking new adventures at different places.
Be it visiting a new place, or revisiting your favorite destinations, there’s always something new to explore in every part of the world. Ranging from unbelievable sceneries, great food and culture, to a place that is filled with history, here are the top 10 destinations to visit this year, voted by you.
Voted as the country that appeals the most in terms of tourism, Japan is a destination that is known for its unique culture, history, and natural beauty for tourists. This east Asian country is more than its sushi and ramen, as it is also home to some of the most interesting cities and attractions for you to visit.
During your trip, the bustling capital of Tokyo is a must-visit and the country’s most popular destination as you can find the interesting modernness of the city and places to shop. Opting for a different experience? Immerse yourself in the natural beauty of the island of Hokkaido or do a culturally immersive trip to Kyoto.
There are also popular attractions and activities that you cannot miss, such as UNESCO’s World Heritage site of Mount Fuji to do some hiking, the beautiful Fushimi Inari Shrine, to visiting one of Japan’s traditional seasonal festivals. Involving yourself in Japanese culture could also be an interesting option, be it by relaxing in an Onsen or attending an Anime fair, there’s always something for you in Japan.
Located partly in both Asia and Europe, this transcontinental country offers a rich history and cultural attractions that are unique to Turkey while giving Muslims the comforts of a home with its Muslim-friendly facilities such as halal restaurants, mosques, and halal-friendly hotels. Turkey is the perfect place to visit for people that are searching for everything in one place as it also boasts a charming community and scenic views.
As the most populated and culturally diverse city, Istanbul is the most popular destination in Turkey. Istanbul is also home to some of the historical landmarks and architectural marvels in the Islamic world, such as Hagia Sophia, the Blue Mosque, and Topkapi Palace. Other popular tourist destinations for you to visit within Turkey are the city of Cappadocia - known for its fairy chimneys and hot air balloon rides, and Antalya - for some time on the beach, scenic views, and well-preserved ancient ruins.
Before ending your trip, try out some of the Turkish local delicacies such as baklava, kebab, and köfte while sipping on a cup of Turkish coffee. Visiting the markets such as the Grand Bazaar will also be the perfect way to seek traditional crafts for some gifts and mementos.
This island nation needs no further introduction or explanation on why it is the perfect dream destination for some of you. With clear blue waters, white sandy beaches, picturesque landscapes, and luxurious resorts, Maldives is a popular tourist spot for people from around the world.
Located in the Indian Ocean, the Islands of Maldives are perfect for relaxation and water sports activities. Untouched colorful coral reefs, exotic fishes, and a wide variety of marine life made it the perfect destination for some scuba diving, snorkeling, and even whale and dolphin watching. Jet skiing, kiteboarding, and other extreme sports are also available for people seeking more adventurous and heart-thumping activities. Island hopping is also a popular choice as there are a bunch of beautiful islands and beaches for you to enjoy sunsets.
Stay in on some of the most luxurious resorts over the water and enjoy the amenities that most of the accommodation offer. You can also enjoy some of the freshest seafood and there’s no need to worry about halal food as there are plenty of choices for you to enjoy.
If you are familiar with Korean culture, then it would probably be the perfect introduction for you before visiting the country. Filled with both historic sites and more modern technology and entertainment, South Korea also boasts some of the best food and natural attraction.
Seoul will be a great way to start your trip, while Jeju Island and Busan could be next up on your list. One of the most popular attractions that you should check out is Gyeongbokgung Palace, Bukchon Hanok Village, and other popular tourist spots.
For you who’s into K-Drama, visiting filming sites and even trying food that you see on screen is also possible here! Be it kimchi or bibimbap, you can always find the halal versions in Muslim areas such as Itaewon or Ansan. Before returning to the comfort of your home, make sure to pack up some fashion or even skincare items as they are known for it!
With unique wildlife and natural beauty, visiting Australia is an experience of a lifetime. From kangaroos to beautiful cliffs, Australia also owns some of the best cities to visit. Sydney as the state capital of New South Wales is known for its international population, metropolitan area, and iconic landmarks such as the Sydney Opera House. You can try to make friends with other non-human friends such as kangaroos and koalas on Kangaroo Island.
Natural attractions are definitely the main highlight of your visit, as it is home to some of the most beautiful scenery within the destination. The Great Barrier Reef and Daintree Rainforest in Queensland, the Blue Mountains in New South Wales, Uluru in the Northern Territory, and The Great Ocean Road in Victoria, are some of the best wonders that should be included in your trip itinerary.
While surfing is fun and seeing iconic landmarks or nature could be pleasing, Muslims should also fulfill their Islamic obligations even during their travels. Fortunately, halal restaurants, mosques, and other supporting facilities are just a step away for you to visit and there are a lot of them in Australia.
While mostly known for its technological advancements, Germany could also be a destination to visit as you can expect some of the most picturesque sights to see and enjoy. Berlin with its historical landmarks and vibrant culture is where you should first step foot at. While Berlin’s charm as a big city might not catch your attention, the city of Heidelberg might interest you with its picturesque scenery that radiates an old town feel.
You can also visit some of the most interesting attractions such as Neuschwanstein Castle with its Disney-like feel, or the Rhine River that are known for its view. Germany also hosts some of the most interesting annual festivals for you to enjoy food and shop around such as Oktoberfest. Also try to visit some of the world-renowned museums and The Black Forest that are known for its hiking trails, skiing activities, and you guessed it, for a slice of the best traditional black forest cakes.
Located in a tropical region, Malaysia is famous for tourists, especially Muslims for its delicious foods, variety of attractions that you can enjoy, Muslim-friendliness, and an interesting blend of cultures. Kuala Lumpur or the capital is known for its diverse street food scene and iconic landmarks such as the Petronas Twin Tower. If you're more into islands then Langkawi, Penang, and Tioman are the best choices for you, boasting their beaches, colorful and historical landmarks, and water leisure activities respectively.
As Malaysia is also home to the most culturally diverse population, halal foods and restaurants with authentic tastes with Malay, Indian, and Chinese as the main influences are also easy to find. Try some of the best nasi lemak or laksa, and visit some of the Mamak stalls for some Malay-Indian meals.
Beautiful beaches, delicious foods, and a vibrant lifestyle made Thailand attractive to most of our readers. With Bangkok as its capital city, you can expect a lively community combined with extensive history and great street foods that are interesting to experience. Phuket, Koh Samui, and Koh Phi Phi are the best islands for you to visit for their beaches and clear waters. Chiang Mai could also be the perfect destination for you to visit ancient temples and some of the best traditional markets and festivals.
Make sure to try some of the best Thai cuisines such as Pad Thai, Som Tam, and Tom Yum Kung. As the Muslim presence in Thailand is also growing, halal versions of these flavorful cuisines are also easy to find. Although visiting the Grand Palace and temples could be interesting, shopping in Thailand is also an activity to do as you can find anything from traditional crafts to designer brands at an affordable price.
Known for its interesting cultural heritage, iconic landmarks, and diversity, the United Kingdom is also one of the popular destinations in Europe. Starting with a traditional English breakfast and ending the day with a cup of tea, your trip to the UK will be filled with relaxing experiences.
Some of the most known destinations for tourists are located in London, such as Buckingham Palace, the London Eye, the Westminster complex, and the Tower of London. Other interesting destinations to visit are Stonehenge in Wiltshire, the Roman Baths in Bath, Loch Ness, and the city of Edinburgh. With its rich history, you can also visit many of the castles located all over the UK to admire the beauty and imagine the history that exists and is made in it.
With so many delicious dishes and sweet desserts to try, Muslims shouldn’t fear to do a culinary journey in the UK as there are a lot of halal restaurants located in the UK. Mosques and Muslim-friendly facilities are easy to find during your trip, making the UK one of the top 5 non-OIC countries to rank in GMTI for its Muslim-friendliness.
With over 9 million kilometer square and 50 states, the USA is a country filled with great landmarks, sights to see, and cities to visit. The most popular destination in the USA would be New York, as it is home to some of the most well-known landmarks such as the Statue of Liberty, Central Park, the Empire State Building, Times Square, and even Niagara Falls. New York is also the right place to witness some of the best shows and shops, so make sure to drop by during your visit and enjoy a show or two.
While New York might be the most popular destination, other cities and regions in the USA are also worth visiting! Visit the natural wonder of the Grand Canyon in Arizona or the Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming. Opting for something aside from natural attractions? Then the Golden Gate Bridge in San Fransisco, museums, and other fun festivals might catch your interest.
This concludes the Top 10 Destinations to Visit in 2023 that are voted by you. Whether you’re seeking some relaxation or adventure, these destinations will always have something for you to explore. As traveling opportunities increase and this year might be the perfect time to hop on a plane and go on an adventure, which one among these destinations you are planning to visit for your next trip?