To mark the arrival of a new year we asked the team at Total Management Travel to share the destinations at the top of their 2020 travel wish lists. From the edge of North America to the shimmering Pacific Ocean, these are the places to go according to the experts.

Osaka, Japan

Anna Louise Dennis, Senior Leisure Manager

With the 2020 Olympics on everyone’s mind, Japan is undoubtedly one of the year’s top destinations of choice. Japan’s second-biggest city, Osaka, could be compared to a miniature Tokyo – albeit slightly easier to navigate, but with just as much to explore. The city is full of hidden Buddhist temples and historical streets juxtaposed against modern skyscrapers and multi-storey arcades. One thing certainly not to be missed is the food; Osaka is well-known for a wide range of local delicacies like takoyaki, okonomiyaki and butaman. Moreover, Osaka is extremely well connected meaning you can hop on the 200mph bullet train and visit any number of local sites or cities in no time at all.

 

Cuba, Caribbean

Daniel Hayward, Director of Travel Operations

Cuba is the Caribbean hot spot captivating visitors from all over the world with its culturally-rich cities, serene countryside and beautiful beaches. The most popular spot on the tourist trail is Havana, the country’s colourful, cobble-stoned capital that hums to the beat of live music. East of Havana on Cuba’s south coast is Cienfuegos, a nautical city known for its French-meets-Caribbean influences and magnificent mansions. Beach enthusiasts can’t miss Caradero, a resort town on the Hicacos Peninsula, offering a 20km stretch of white-sand beaches and clear blue waters.

 

Porto and the Douro Valley, Portugal 

Anna Louise Dennis, Senior Leisure Manager

For the perfect multi-stop getaway for 2020 pair the vibrant city of Porto with Europe’s most underrated and picturesque wine region; The Douro Valley. Full of old world charm, Porto’s cobbled streets are bursting with traditional wine cellars, hip rooftop bars and lively restaurants serving fresh seafood straight from the harbour. Once you’ve had your fill of city life, take a sleepy train through the valley and into the heart of the wine country. The Douro Valley is exceptionally beautiful and a listed World Heritage Site, filled with endless vineyards, walking trails and quaint villages.

 

Auckland, New Zealand

Kyale Braithwaite, Senior Travel Manager

New Zealand’s ‘City of Sails’ is a must-visit for anyone looking to venture to this far-flung corner of the world. The country’s largest and most populous city, Auckland is where the urban and natural collide, offering endless things to do and places to see. Waiheke Island, a 40-minute ferry ride away from the CBD, is an idyllic spot to soak up the sun and sample local wine. Fine food is aplenty with world-class dining destinations all around the city; aim for Britomart, Ponsonby Central or Wynyard Quarter for an array of options. And of course, what most travel all this way for, rest assured knowing that quintessential Kiwi nature is never far away; Cornwall Park, Long Bay Regional Park, and Auckland Domain are just a few verdant spots within easy reach of the city centre.

 

 

Haida Gwaii Islands, Canada

Laila Forrester, Senior Travel Manager

Haida Gwaii is a 150-island archipelago situated 100km off the coast of British Columbia. Formerly known as the Queen Charlotte Islands, the remote and wild isle is a true paradise for nature lovers. Popular sites include Sgang Gwaay, an ancient Haida Village known for the carefully carved totem poles that guard from the water’s edge, and Gwaii Haanas National Park, which is teeming with unsurpassed natural beauty and history.

 

Muscat, Oman 

Rebecca Hales, Travel Manager

Now that Abu Dhabi and Dubai have had their time in the spotlight, it’s time for neighbour Oman and the capital of Muscat to take centre stage. Framed by the glistening Gulf of Oman and towering mountains, the whimsical capital offers the best of cultural and natural wonders. Whether it’s exploring the city’s grand mosques, like Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque, trekking through the Wadi Shab canyon or snorkelling off the Dimaniyat Islands, Muscat has something for everyone.

Borneo, Malaysia

Laila Forrester, Senior Travel Manager

Borneo is the third largest island in the world (behind only Greenland and New Guinea), and tops the list as the largest in Asia. As a result, the sprawling Indonesian island boasts both wildlife, city and beaches. Island-hop your way around Tunku Abdul Rahman Marine Park, marvel at the wildlife with a safari through the area surrounding the Kinabatangan river, and explore the up-and-coming capital of Kuching.

Saint Petersburg, Russia

Daniel Hayward, Director of Travel Operations

The perfect destination for a city break, this former capital has survived autocracy, revolutions, a world war and multiple name changes to give way to a city that respects history and celebrates culture. Today’s visitors should head to Hermitage Winter Palace, once the official residence of the Russian Tsars and now a remarkable museum; the famed Mariinsky Theatre, a cultural institution that’s seen performances from Tchaikovsky and the Mariinsky Ballet Company; and Rubinstein Street, a strip of bars, restaurants and cafés offering local gastronomic delights.

 

Get in touch with our travel managers to start planning your 2020 adventures. Competitive rates, exclusive benefits and amenities apply.