Why tourism is on the rise in remote cities like Kaikoura, Xiamen, Puebla

2018-12-12 12:00 - Marisa Crous
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Not so slick in the city? Visit the secluded coast or dabble in some countryside dwelling instead. 

Recently, Airbnb revealed its 19 top destinations for 2019, and some interesting destinations made the cut. Based on a combination of Airbnb search, booking and wishlist growth data, the online hospitality service found that people are increasingly more interested in sustainable and authentic tourism.

A lot of travellers are also heading to disaster zones, like those destinations affected by earthquakes and wildfires. Many, in an effort to help bump up its struggling economy. 

Now, I for one (and I'm sure many others feel the same), tends to avoid areas plagued by tsunamis and wildfires. Yet, the thought-process for travellers opting to visit these destinations is probably something along the lines of: "Would lightening really strike twice in one spot?"

READ: Popular travel hubs affected by disasters and if you should go there in 2019 

An interest in remote places like off-the-beaten-path towns like Kaikoura in New Zealand, which experienced a 7.8 magnitude earthquake in 2016, has shown a whopping 295% growth in Airbnb bookings over the last year. 

According to Great Journeys of NZ, Kaikoura is THE marine life destination of New Zealand, where people are sure to spot an array of sea life and, particularly, giant sperm whales. 

Xiamen in China, a port city and aviation hub has upped 283% in stays booked. One of its main drawcards being Kulangsu, a pedestrian-only, vehicle-free island just off the coast.

Zero traffic? Sign us up.

Then there is Puebla, which is a 3-hour drive from Mexico City in Mexico. This year it saw a 220% increase in searches and a 206% increase in wishlist inclusions from bookers.

With over 300 churches, this colonial city is also known for its food as many travel here just to take cooking classes offered by locals. 

Some of the other destinations that made this list:

Normandy, France

Great Smoky Mountains, United States

Buenos Aires, Argentina

Accra, Ghana

READ: New ultra-modern airport terminal in Ghana: An African airport with world-class standards


Outer Hebrides, Scotland

Wakayama Prefecture, Japan

Catskill Mountains and the Hudson Valley, United States

Santa Catarina State, Brazil

See the rest of the list and data here. 

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