20 Places Every 20-Somethings Should Travel to Before Turning 30

The 20s is the age that one should make the most of.

In most cases, people are just out of college or university or a young professional with considerably less responsibilities to hold one down. The age of 20s is the decade that shapes the character of a person to a great extent.

If you’re in your 20s, don’t lose valuable time. Get out, travel, meet people, gather experiences, have fun – these days are never going to come back to you again.

To help the free 20s spirit, we have compiled a list of must-visit places below.

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1. New York City – USA

This is a predictable choice but definitely, deserves to be on this list. We haven’t heard of any 20s something who doesn’t love New York. The nightlife is one of its kind in the world and definitely to be tried out.

Enjoy nature at Central Park during the day while looking onto the concrete jungle or take a walk down the Wall Street where lives of millions across the world are shaped.

New York is where dreams are made and you deserve to experience it to know the importance of dreams.

New York City

2. Amsterdam – Netherlands

And while we are talking of partying, how can we miss Amsterdam. Well, the city is known for its debauchery but that’s not why it has made it to this list. Amsterdam has enormous party options for everyone to paint the night young.

The city is extremely beautiful and has innumerable historical sites and art museums to explore. Don’t forget to visit the beautiful tulip gardens while you’re there.

Amsterdam Tulips

3. Santorini – Greece

A small blue and white beach town set at the backdrop of jet blue sea and light blue sky with white clouds – travel cannot get better than this. Santorini is one of the most photographed towns in the world and a must-visit place for an active Instagram user.

From magnificent Greek architecture to lovely beaches, Santorini is the dream destination for many. From the black volcanic Perissa to the lovely beaches like Kamari beach and the red beach, Santorini has a lot to offer. The boundary curves around a giant lagoon which gives a spectacular view of the setting sun.

And while you’re there, do explore the excellent cuisine and the delicious choice of wines and the town has to offer.


4. Lapland – Finland

A place we’ve all read in our Geography books while growing up, Lapland deserves a visit during winter in the 20s. More so because the harsh climate makes it difficult to be visited later.

Experience a day when the sun does not rise – we’ve all wondered what it must feel like, haven’t we? If you get to see the northern lights, you can definitely have a story to tell your grandkids. A must-visit place from our side.


5. India

Well, we tried to name one place in India that you must visit, and then decided to keep the country itself. Start in your 20s because chances are that you will fall in love with it and come back again and again.

From the breathtaking, the Himalayas in the north to coastal Kerala in the south, from the royal Mughal Rajasthan in the west to the Gangetic plains in the east, India has the most diverse culture that is ready for you to explore.

Do remember to include the Taj Mahal in your itinerary. It is recommended to be visited on a full moon night – a spectacle that will remain in your mind forever.

Taj Mahal

6. Nashville – USA

No other place has the balance of urbanization and culture the way Nashville has. Hire a bike and cycle around the town experiencing the rich culture of the city during the day. Experience unique neighborhoods, innovative bakeries and breweries and outstanding bright murals.

The city is a heaven for a selfie lover. At night, dress up and head out for a party, bar, club or restaurant. Since the 1920s, Nashville’s music scene has been extremely popular. If you love music, this is the place for you.

7. Tiger’s Nest Monastery – Bhutan

Well, this is definitely a place for the fittest. Climb up about a kilometer (0.62 miles) uphill to visit this one of its kind monastery precariously located on top of a cliff. Bhutan itself is a must-visit place for people of any age – there’s a lot to learn from this country.

Tiger’s Nest Monastery or Taktsang is definitely something you’ll be proud of once climbed.

Visit the beautiful town of Paro located about half an hour away from Thimpu, the capital city of Bhutan. The monastery is located near Paro. And once you have visited Paro, don’t miss Thimpu, Punakha, and eastern Bhutan.

We are sure you will be left with nothing but happiness after visiting this country which measures the national health of its people by Gross National Happiness and is considered to be one of the happiest countries in the world.

Tiger’s Nest Monastery

8. Corsica Island

Corsica brands itself as the ‘nearest of the faraway islands’. Blessed with a coastal climate all year-round, Corsica offers a diversity of nature like no other.

The heritage of this place is unique with both a daytime leisure activity and night time pleasure options. Explore the island during the day or take advantage of the diverse open-air activities it has to offer.

Help yourself to its unique food options and the diverse music scene while you sip on some delicious local wines.

Love shopping? Well, you won’t be disappointed here.

9. Banana Pancake Trail – South East Asia

Go boundary-less with this trail in South East Asia tailor-made for backpackers. Travel across the well-known countries of South East Asia like Nepal, India, Myanmar, Bangladesh, Thailand, Malaysia, Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam etc while tasting the delicious and cheap banana pancakes that they have on offer.

Give your eyes a treat of the lush green coastal geography while giving your tummy a culinary treat of not just pancakes, but outstanding coastal food.

The variety of nature and food in all these countries is surely worth every penny spent – which will not be very high considering the favorable exchange rates.

10. Machu Picchu – Peru

The remnant of the old Inca civilization on a high plateau is a must-visit place for anyone who loves history. Build in the 15th century, you will be amazed to know that the entire structure is built only of limestone and not a single brick has been used.

While you can go via train, if you are a hiker, trek the route to gorge on some astounding natural delight the Amazonian region has to offer. There are no vehicles to walk around the region. Do remember to carry comfortable walking shoes to explore the area easily.

If you have time in hand after watching the main Machu Picchu, take a walk to the Sun Temple. It is worth a visit.

Machu Pichu

11. Ibiza – Spain

Spain offers excellent traveling options for anyone. But when you’re in your 20s, Ibiza is a must-visit place. This Mediterranean island has put itself on the party map of the world.

While the stunning beaches, unique bistros, and innumerable yoga retreats attract tourists all the year round, but from June to October, Ibiza turns into the party hub of Europe.

A little word of wisdom, visit Ibiza at the end of September when the season is about to finish. The crowd will be much more less.


12. Salar de Uyuni – Bolivia

World’s largest salt flat definitely deserves a visit in the 20s.

11,000 square kilometer of land containing 10 billion tons of salt can be explored in 3 to 4 days by cars through pre-booked tours. This will definitely be one of the most picturesque trips you have ever taken.

Salar de Uyuni

13. Bioluminescent Dinos – the Maldives

Explore the Indian Ocean like nothing you have ever imagined. The dark water is illuminated by innumerable bioluminescent creatures commonly called pyridinium Baha mense.

These are dinoflagellates or dinos which emit a blue light when disturbed by a breaking wave – a fairy tale spectacle worth experiencing.

Maldives Islands

14. The Wave – Arizona

The stunning wave rocks of Arizona is an example of how smart nature is. The place actually became popular after the picture was used by Microsoft as one of the windows 7 wallpapers. You have to experience it on foot and 20s something is definitely the best time to do it.

Mostly, the trek starts from the Wire Pass Trailhead located in the North Coyote Buttes area of the Vermilion Cliffs National Monument.

A word of caution – do take a guide even if you have the best hiking GPS. There are a lot of places nearby. A guide can show you around.

15. Marrakech – Morocco

Soak in some middle eastern culture by visiting Morocco. From markets to mosques, gardens and palaces, Marrakech has a lot to offer. The exchange rate is extremely favorable and so the vacation will not dig a hole in your pocket.

You can mostly walk on foot except for two must-do things – a camel ride on the Sahara and a balloon ride over the desert.

Include a Saturday in your trip itinerary to visit a local farmer’s market. There is nothing better to soak in the Moroccan culture than this, trust us.

16. Great Wall of China – China

This UNESCO World Heritage Site is deteriorating fast and needs to be visited as soon as possible. This 5500-mile wall made in the Ming Era needs to be explored on foot and enjoyed while it lasts. The wall is steep and very very long. So explore as much as you can, don’t injure your legs.

You can head to Beijing, the capital of China after visiting the Great Wall. Beijing has fantastic authentic Chinese cuisine on offer for you to explore.

Great Wall of China

17. Havana – Cuba

Cuba is a milieu of rich culture, great cuisine, vintage cars, history and baseball. Spend some quality time in Havana while exploring the unique cuisine especially the delicious sandwiches, catching a game or visiting the magnificent churches or museums.

At night don’t forget to dance till your feet hurt!


18. New Zealand

New Zealand, the southern-most island country of the world is known for its scenic beauty. Queensland especially has a lot to offer for the 20s something young adult. Go hiking, paragliding, mountain biking or bungee jumping.

Or simply take a walk in the vineyards, a visit to New Zealand is worth every penny spent. Love extreme adventure? Head to the Kawarau Gorge Suspension Bridge and take a plunge from one of the world’s first bungee jumping sites.

The recommended places to visit in New Zealand includes Bay of Islands, Auckland, Waiheke Island, Milford Sound, Christchurch, White Island, Waitomo Glowworm Caves, Queenstown, Te Whakarewarewa Geothermal Valley and the Franz Josef Glacier.

New Zealand

19. Hanoi – Vietnam

Vietnam is a must-visit place in South East Asia. The comfortable coastal weather, unique food, and stunning natural beauty provide a great vacationing place for people all over the world.

Take a tour of the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum, go temple hopping at the Ho Chi Minh city, stroll the old quarter – Vietnam will take you as close to nature as possible. The city has innumerable lakes, parks, shaded boulevards and more than 600 temples and pagodas for a traveler to explore.

Sunrise in Hanoi

20. Oktoberfest in Munich

Well, last but not least is a destination best visited with a group of friends. You don’t love your beer if you’ve never been to the Oktoberfest. And it is not just a beer fest, it is a festival with outstanding food options on offer and various other entertainment.

The entire town turns into something else during this time – it is a must-visit destination for obvious reasons.

And remember, it starts in September, not in October. It is a 16 to 18-day folk festival which starts mid or late September. More than 6 million people attend it every year so book your accommodation and tickets early.

Photo credit: wolfworld

So, what are you waiting for?

Pack your carry-on backpack and leave. Those office files can wait till you’re 30 but your life can’t. The world is waiting for you.

Karlis Kikuts

Karlis Kikuts

Coffee addict. Digital nomad. Solo traveler and blogger. Camping and hammocking enthusiast. Tiny book worm. In other words, the guy behind independentwolf.com