It’s Time to Rethink These Misunderstood Destinations

What’s your image of Crete, Sicily or Thailand?

Destinations can be very different to their reputations or stereotypes. Destinations evolve and hide surprises. And often the negative images are caused by just one place, when in reality there’s much more to explore.

So is it time you rethink these misunderstood destinations?


A destination for super yachts and private jets, yet much more than only a jet-setter destination. Most visitors stick to the north, which is only one island image.

There’s an entire island to explore. Sardinia is not just beach flopping and shopping around Costa Smeralda.

We love how you can combine two worlds here, the glamorous hotspots and traditional island life.


Tourist masses and ugly overdevelopment. That’s true on parts of the north coast, where it’s difficult to find many charms. But what about the south?

Crete delivers all the highlights of a Greece holiday. Remote beaches, ancient history, traditional culture, and many real wow moments.

Most visitors to Crete only see their resort and the tourist strip. It’s easy to explore something else, something new, especially all around the south of the island.


Why the obsession with a war that ended in 1975? That’s old news. Vietnam has a new atmosphere and some superb new hotels as well.

A large country with 54 ethnic tribes and a travel experience to be tailored to every visitor. Vietnam is paradise for explorers.

Sailing in Halong Bay, hiking the rice paddies, meeting photographers, and getting inside a country that looks forward, not back. Oh, and Vietnam is exceptionally beautiful.


Parts of the Algarve in Portugal are just like the stereotype. Crowded package tourism with nothing exclusive or particularly special. But it’s a very big region though, with a wild cliff-lined coastline hiding private and exceptional places.

Family resorts like Martinhal Sagres Family Resort and VILA VITA will have you rethinking the Algarve as a potential family holiday destination.

Travelling around Portugal is really easy, so the Algarve can combine nicely with experiences in Lisbon or Alentejo for a longer summer trip.


It’s dangerous and you will be roughing it. That’s simply not true. Some people think lions will greet them on the airport runway. Africa is not that wild and countries like Tanzania, Kenya and Botswana are perfectly safe.

There’s a new wave of contemporary safari lodges that will blow you away. Africa always had the wildlife and experiences. It’s added accommodation to rival the very best in the world.

Roughing it? You’ll be treated better in Africa than most places in Europe. And lodges like Singita Kwitonda and Angama Mara will blow you away with their quality.

Dominican Republic

It’s the Caribbean’s most visited country, with very busy beaches and underwhelming resorts. That’s the Dominican Republic you’ll find around Punta Cana.

The Dominican Republic is big and away from Punta Cana it’s a different world. This is a real explorer’s destination, made accessible by new properties like Amanera.

This should be a serious consideration for your winter sun or any holiday in the Caribbean.


You’ve already been there. You already know it. Or at least you know about it from friends. The Maldives is just as good as your expectations. What’s changing is the Maldives as a wellness destination.

JOALI Being is re-defining and re-imagining the archipelago, as a place to get healthy rather than only a place to eat, drink and do nothing in paradise.

This is a good example of how all destinations evolve over the years and add new experiences to regular visitors.


Been there, done that. Or at least everyone else has. Spain just isn’t a very cool destination any more, or so goes the typical impression. The Spain most people experience isn’t cool, nor trendy. But look beyond the ugly resorts.

Flamenco, tapas, wine tasting, local festivals, Basque culture – Spain is packed with the experiential and all the best things are nowhere near the popular resorts.

There’s a new focus on top accommodation in Spain as well, like the Rosewood Madrid, new properties in Barcelona and boutique options in Andalusia. Maybe it’s time to rethink Spain.

Rethinking Your Holiday

All destinations are different. There are new hotels, hotspots, experiences and places to explore. And some iconic hotels or destinations simply aren’t as good as they were a few years ago.

That’s why it’s so important to leverage specialist knowledge for every trip. We personally inspect hundreds of hotels and destinations every year and we partner with the very best local operators in every country.

So you can set the trends rather than follow what everybody else does.

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