Every year, Travel + Leisure spends months putting together a list of the best destinations to travel to. The publication surveys writers from around the world and consults their A-List travel specialists to get the scoop on the best beaches, up-and-coming towns, places for great food and drink, and more. Here are some select destinations from this year’s 50 Best Places to Travel:

Belfast, Northern Ireland

“With a growing array of open-air bars, arts venues, and restaurants, Belfast is quickly becoming an attractive destination for travelers. Stay at the design-forward Bullitt Hotel (inspired by the Steve McQueen film), which opened in October with casual, well-appointed rooms and complimentary grab-and-go breakfast granola. Check out arts organization Seedhead, which runs street-art tours and hosts pop-up cabarets around the city. The Michelin-starred OX and EIPIC lead the fine-dining pack, but also visit Permit Room, with its internationally inspired breakfast and locally roasted coffee. Noteworthy new nightlife spots include the Muddlers Club, a stylish restaurant and cocktail bar in the trendy Cathedral Quarter, and Vandal, a graffiti-adorned pizza place that turns into a late-night club, on the top floor of a 17th-century pub.” —Nell McShane Wulfhart

Cambodian Coast

“Cambodia has some of Southeast Asia’s most stunning islands, but getting to them has always been arduous (a flight to Phnom Penh, a four-hour drive, then a choppy ferry ride). Luckily, there are now direct flights into the coastal Sihanoukville airport via Ho Chi Minh City. That means a much smoother journey to the newest island escapes: the wellness-minded Six Senses on Krabey Island, where spa treatments are Cambodian-inspired, and the Alila eco-resort on Koh Russey, which has an emphasis on Khmer cuisine and community service. And if you want to spend some time in the capital of Phnom Penh before or after your island vacation, you can do that in style as well: Rosewood has announced plans to open there in early 2017.” —Stephanie Wu

Devon, England

Devon is best known for cream teas and surf beaches, but a raft of openings are elevating the county’s image with rarefied takes on the rural experience. The elegant Lympstone Manor has been reimagined by eminent chef Michael Caines, who will reopen it in 2017 as a 21-room hotel and restaurant. Design lovers can soon overnight at the Secular Retreat, a strikingly minimal property inspired by ecclesiastical architecture and designed by Peter Zumthor. And on the coast, the Art Deco Burgh Island Hotel has another groundbreaking design in the works: a suite that bridges the vertiginous gap between two rocky outcrops. —Emily Mathieson

Helsinki, Finland

Finland celebrates 100 years of independence on December 6, 2017, but the parties will start much earlier—and many of them will be happening in Helsinki, the capital. The country’s gift to itself is a major new landmark: the sinuous Central Library, designed by ALA Architects to be Helsinki’s new living room (it will open in 2018). Sauna culture is a big part of everyday life in the city. The latest and greatest public one is Löyly, a contemporary geometric complex of wood designed by Avanto Architects. And on Sauna Day, which takes place twice a year, several unique private saunas, including one on a raft and another in a castle, open to the public. When it comes to a design-savvy place to stay, book a room at Lilla Roberts, at least until the summer opening of sister hotel St. George, a grand 150-room property in a 19th-century landmark building. —Gisela Williams

Indianapolis, Indiana

The city shattered expectations of Midwestern dining a couple of years ago with the opening of beloved brunch spot Milktooth, and the culinary scene has only gathered steam since then. In the fall, Indy hopped on the fried-chicken trend with Crispy Bird, a sustainability-focused joint from James Beard Award–nominated restaurateur Martha Hoover, while Milktooth’s Jonathan Brooks lent his expertise to the gastropub menu at the Owner’s Wife. This coming year, Sun King Brewerywill open a 15,000-square-foot distillery in nearby Carmel. And with hotels in the works from 21c, Ironworks, and home-goods brand West Elm, Indianapolis is poised to become America’s next big destination. —Lila Battis

Jerusalem, Israel

Typically more of a pilgrimage site than a sybaritic city, Jerusalem has now emerged as a culinary force to rival Tel Aviv. At the sprawling Mahane Yehuda Market, food-and-drink spots have popped up in produce stalls, many of which stay open long past sunset. The Jewish diaspora and Middle East merge at restaurants like Ishtabach—try the Kurdish shamburak, a pastry with brisket, potatoes, and chimichurri—and Machneyuda, known for its standout beef tartare with plums. Stay at the new boutique Brown Jerusalem Hotel, which will open soon in a restored Ottoman-era villa and serve drinks in an underground water cistern. —Sara Toth Stub

Kanazawa, Japan

This city on the western coast of Honshu has seen a boost in visits since a bullet-train extension shortened the trip from Tokyo to just 2½ hours. Go for the old wooden teahouses of the Higashi Chayagai district, the beautiful samurai residence in Nagamachi, and the contemporary art museum. Then have your pick of sushi that’s just as good as, and much cheaper than, what you’d find in Tokyo. Try it at Sentori, Kagayasuke, or Omi-cho Market—a favorite of sushi master Masa. For a truly traditional experience, head to the Noto Peninsula and stay in a Japanese farmhouse, where you can forage for wild mountain greens and mushrooms and dine by an indoor fire pit. —Selena Hoy

Jackson Hole, Wyoming

The total solar eclipse on August 21 will be the first in almost 40 years to be visible from the continental U.S., with a path of totality that slashes across the States from Oregon to South Carolina. For prime viewing, head to Jackson Hole—spectacular scenery, expansive vistas, and minimal light pollution make it an ideal vantage point. Once the two-minute main event is over, there are plenty of warm-weather activities to keep you occupied, from hiking the backcountry of Grand Teton and Yellowstone national parks to exploring Jackson proper (be sure to snag a pastry at Persephone Bakery and a chic, locally crafted souvenir at Made). —Lila Battis

Paros, Greece

Kitesurfers have long made a playground of the breezy beaches of Paros, and no wonder: this sunshiny isle is a Cycladic triumvirate of sandy shoreline, history, and culture. Last summer the island debuted a new airport, opening it to larger aircraft and more vacationers. And the fishing village of Naousa, with its boxy white architecture and seaside tavernas, is increasingly sophisticated—check in to the modern, adults-only apartments of Porto Naousa or the elegant Seven Santa Maria, where six airy, all-white suites (and a separate villa) come with a private boat and skipper for exploring the island’s secret coves. —Emily Mathieson


There are beaches, and then there are beaches. This 115-island nation off Africa’s eastern shore has some of the world’s most beautiful white sands—and lavish new resorts, so you can experience them in style. On the private island of Félicité, Six Senses Zil Pasyon is paradise for honeymooners, with five open-air spa pavilions and a plunge pool adjoining each of the 30 villas, which face the ocean. Later this year, Desroches Island’s sole resort will become a Four Seasons: guests can stay in an airy, eclectic-chic beach suite or one of 11 palatial villas. Also ideal for families: the new Presidential Villa on Cousine Island. —Jacqueline Gifford

*Photo courtesy of travelandleisure.com