If you’re a travel addict like we are, you’re sure to have your own travel bucket list for 2018. But with the world offering so much magnificence to see and do, deciding on the best places to travel in 2018 for us was quite a task! So we decided to ask some of our favorite Muslim travel influencers to tell us which destinations were on top of their travel bucket lists for 2018 and why. We loved hearing their opinions on the best places to travel in 2018 and we were absolutely delighted that they were so varied. Here’s what they had to say!
Zaid and Huda are a Muslim power couple residing in the United States. Having visited over 50 countries, they have set their sights on Iran and Oman for 2018. On asked why these two countries are at the top of their travel bucket list for 2018 - as they are not as commonly mentioned in most individuals’ bucket lists - this is what they answered:
‘Both countries are underrated in our opinion, as each of them have so much to offer: rich history that goes back thousands of years, authentic culture, gorgeous palaces, gardens and natural landscapes, spectacular mosques, and of course, wonderful and hospitable people.’
And boy are they right!
Iran is home to some fascinating museums and galleries, architectural marvels and even a number of UNESCO World Heritage Sites such as the beautiful Golestan Palace, Susa, Persepolis and the Jameh Mosque of Isfahan. From the historic Persian Garden of Eram to the vibrantly coloured Nasir ol Molk Mosque, to bustling bazaars, and the ski slopes of Shemshak, the attractions that Iran offers will leave you in awe and definitely out of time!
Oman’s varied and diverse landscapes have made it an up-and-coming tourist spot. Offering some of the best scuba diving sites in the world, stunning historical forts, pristine beaches, rich greenery and wildlife, and not-to-be-missed desert camps, Oman sure gets our vote for one of the top places to visit in the world this year!
Let’s also not forget that with both destinations being predominantly Muslim, finding Halal food and places to offer your prayers will not be a problem at all!
From exploring his home country, to experiencing the best of what the Big Apple had to offer, and even joining us on a trip to the Philippines, Malaysian influencer Mohd Nasrul Faiz Abu Azal has travelled the world. Cape Town and Marrakesh are the two destinations on his travel bucket list for 2018. Here’s why:
‘Apart from the fact that I love animals and I have been watching Animal Planet with my father for years when I was growing up, I have never been to the African Continent so I would like to tick it (Cape Town) off my bucket list.’
Regarding Marrakesh, ‘I once watched a documentary about Marrakesh and what attracted me most is its street food! Since I’m a foodie I would love to go there and experience it myself - plus, I don’t have to worry about its Halal status!’
Both, Cape Town and Marrakesh are immensely gorgeous destinations. Rich in culture, home to breathtaking sites, and more importantly, Muslim-friendly!
Yunita Tri Ratna Meliani’s recent adventures have been in destinations like South Korea and Turkey, and this year she hopes to pay France and Venice a visit with her husband, mostly because of its beautiful architecture and romantic scenery.
France has long been one of the best honeymoon destinations on earth as well as one of the most popular tourist destinations amongst families. Home to iconic attractions such as the Eiffel Tower and the Louvre, exquisite cuisine, and charming landscapes, the country has much to offer. France does house a sizeable population of Muslims, so finding Halal food and mosques in most major cities will be possible.
People from all over the world are drawn to picturesque Venice, said to be one of Italy’s most popular attractions. With canals instead of streets, and historic buildings sure to keep you distracted for hours, this floating city sure gets our vote too! It is also worthy to note that although finding Muslim-friendly facilities such as Mosques and Halal restaurants in Venice will be difficult, it won’t be impossible.
Danes, having already been to Bali, really got into it and told us exactly why Nusa Penida - an island found to the southeast of Bali - is on her bucket list, and what she’d like to experience there.
‘The island in the southeastern region of Bali’s Klungkung Regency has many coral reefs, cliffs and hills that make the atmosphere on this island unique and exotic . Some of the tourist attractions are: Broken Beach, Angel's billabong, Crystal Bay, Atuh Beach, Goa Giri Putri and Hutan Tembeling.
Nusa Penida is located between two beautiful islands named Nusa Lembongan and Nusa Ceningan, so if I go to Nusa Penida, I can visit the other two islands, and experience the three islands’ spectacular scenery.
Nusa Penida offers many things for me to explore. Nusa Penida not only offers beauty that is still natural, but also the beauty of cultural customs and the local wisdom of the people, which are three things that cannot be separated from Bali.’
Indonesia is one of the best countries to visit in Asia (according to who/why?), and although Bali is a famous must-visit destination, we love that Danes has the lesser-known Nusa Penida on her bucket list for 2018! Exploring the unexplored definitely appeals to us!
Residing in Singapore, Atikah Amalina is an English & Literature teacher, a social activist for women’s empowerment and an avid traveler. She has been to places like Seoul, Tasmania and Edinburgh, and for 2018 here are her destination goals:
‘Two places I would like to visit in 2018 are Cairns and Xi’an. I love diving and diving in the Great Barrier Reef in Cairns has been a dream for the longest time! I’ve also always wanted to experience the majesty of the terracotta warriors! InshaAllah, my path will lead me to these 2 places this year!’
Said to be the gateway to the Great Barrier Reef, the perfect destination for adrenaline junkies and those into all things outdoors, we think Atikah couldn’t have picked a better destination than Cairns! Australia also happens to be a great destination for Muslims. Find out the best places to visit, shop, dine and pray in our guide to Australia.
China’s Xi’an is a history buff’s dream spot. With ancient stories sure to keep any visitor riveted, Xi’an is home to countless attractions - historical, cultural and scenic - and a Muslim Quarter with over ten mosques! You won’t have to worry about finding Halal food there either, so eat to your heart’s content! :)
Singaporean fashion and lifestyle blogger, Nur Fatiin picked Bali and Japan as the destinations she would like to visit in 2018:
‘I have been to Bali several times but it’s also a place I will never get tired of. This year, I can’t wait to be back in Bali because I will be going there with my husband for our honeymoon. I want to go to new and undiscovered places with him. We’ll create new memories at places I have been before. I have always wanted to go to the Land of the Rising Sun. To witness the sakura blossoms and to experience the weird and interesting paraphernalia that Japan has to offer.
Oh, Bali! Every time we even hear the word Bali, all we can think of is relaxing on a jaw-dropping beach, sipping a virgin mojito, surrounded by pure tropical bliss. Popular as a backpacking spot, as well as amongst honeymooners and even families, Bali manages to suit everyone’s requirements and budgets, while offering unlimited fun.
A mix of ancient and modern, Japan is sure to charm your socks off! Offering so much to see and do, no matter how many times you’ve been, you’re sure to never get tired of it. There are also numerous Halal-friendly tours being offered, such as the Halal Gourmet Food Tour Package to Tokyo, Japan, so it may be time to book your next vacation!