Where should AFAR readers go in 2017? That was the question I asked our team six months ago, when we started planning and developing the January/February 2017 issue. Led by Associate Editor Aislyn Greene, we opted for a wildly ambitious approach: AFAR’s first full issue devoted to where to go in the year ahead. These 100 destinations have been pitched, analyzed, debated, and, finally, edited into a wanderlust-inducing jigsaw puzzle to explore here.
These places are notable for one or more reasons: new hotels; new cultural institutions; more accessibility for American travelers. We decided to go big and go home with a list of 16 destinations in the United States that our staff has visited recently and recommends from personal experience.
But we didn’t stop there. Rather than being wholly didactic, we also wanted to hear from you, our readers, about the trips you’re dreaming about for 2017. Our premier Travelers’ Choice Awards demonstrate your wide range of travel preferences and styles. Click here for the full list of nominees and winners.
A note about the cover of our January/February 2017 issue (at left): Since the November 2015 attacks in Paris, we’ve heard that occupancy rates at hotels all over the city are way down, and that travelers—especially those from the United States—are staying away. Paris is one of our favorite cities, and we believe that now is a better time than ever to revisit the City of Light. Hear directly from writer and resident Lindsey Tramuta about how Parisians have rebounded with a new sense of resolve. Then book a trip.
What's my number one destination? Last summer, I read a story in the New York Times that stuck with me. Skala Sikaminias is a small fishing village on the Greek island of Lesbos. It garnered attention for the hundreds of thousands of refugees from the Middle East and Africa who were rescued from small boats by its 100 residents. Since then, the local economy—highly reliant on tourism—has been gutted. I believe that we should act with our tourism dollars and support communities when they need it the most. Which means Skala Sikaminias tops my 2017 list.