Top 10 Places to Travel in 2019


courtesy of Murdock Travel

Stephanie Frias, Journalist

Where should you plan a trip in 2019? Check out these 10 places that are celebrating major anniversaries and cultural events this year.


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Matera, courtesy of The Guardian

  The city of Matera, Italy is composed of a network of caves inhabited since the Paleolithic era. For decades, the caves were uninhabitable and unsanitary. Matera was unknown to much of Italy, the city hid its people living in poverty. Carlo Levi, an Italian painter, exposed the inhabitants of the caves. Later that year the government passed laws forcing everyone into modern buildings. For the last few years, businessmen have started renovating these caves to make hotels like the Sextantio Le Grotte della Civita (The Caves of the People). This year, Matera is crowned as the 2019 European Capital of Culture, a nomination by the European Union (EU).   


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Taj Mahal, courtesy of The Guardian

  Agra, India had a year-long restoration that polished its marble domes and turrets for the Taj Mahal. If you want to see the newly renovated Taj Mahal, planning a trip between November and March would be the best times, right before monsoon season.


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Bauhaus Archive, courtesy of The Guardian

  2019 marks two important anniversaries for Berlin; the centenary of the Bauhaus and 30 years since the fall of the Berlin Wall. The Bauhaus Archive is a museum of design that collects art pieces, items, documents and literature which relate to the Bauhaus School, one of the most influential schools of architecture, design, and art of the 20th century and puts them on public display. The famous Bauhaus is currently being restored, but a temporary space will host exhibits for the centenary.

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Berlin Wall, courtesy of The Guardian

   The Berlin Wall was a concrete barrier that divided Berlin from 1961 to 1989. During the early years of the Cold War, west Berlin was an escape route for thousands of East Germans that fled the West. For this cause, the Communist East German authorities built a wall that surrounded all of West Berlin. It was thrown up overnight on August 13, 1961. The Berlin Wall was brought down in November 1989, marking this year its 30 anniversary.


  Savannah, Georgia, known for its charming squares and weeping willows, is celebrating its 40 anniversary of its Savannah College of Art and Design. Travelers who want to know what this is all about, now have two new options: the Perry Lane Hotel,and Luxury Collection of designs by SCAD students, and the Alida,Savannah,Tribute a Portfolio Hotel, a new boutique.


  There’s never a bad time to visit Copenhagen,Denmark but 2019 brings new reasons to plan a trip. Bjarke Ingels, a Danish architect, Copenhill project is ready for completion. The project is a power plant with a ski slope, hiking trail, and a climbing wall on its roof. The building is equipped to transform 400,000 tons of waste per year that will provide heat for 150,000 families and low-carbon electricity for 550,000 people. The Museum of Copenhagen will reopen with a renewed focus on the city’s history and architecture.


  For Singapore, this year marks the bicentennial of its Changi Airport that recently revealed its new terminal that is equipped with new options such as self-service check-in and automated bag drop. The Raffles Hotel Singapore is set to reveal a top to bottom renovation by Champalimaud, an interior designer.


  Van Gogh was Arles, France claim to fame. Consider going in 2019 to be among the first to see the new Arles. The new building of École Nationale Supérieur de la Photographie (National School of Photography) will open in September 2019, in December the Museon Arlaten; a museum dedicated to the ethnography of Provence; will reopen, and three buildings by Annabelle Selldorf; an architect and founding principal of Selldorf Architects; on the LUMA Arles campus are already open.


  For art lovers, 2019 is the year to pack your bags and travel to Japan´s remote Seto Inland Sea to experience the Setouchi Triennale. The Setouchi Triennale is a modern-day art festival held every 3 years. It features artworks of over 150 artists from Japan and overseas. The triennial will take place on the islands of Naoshima, Teshima, and Megijima. It lasts for eight months with three main sessions; the spring session runs from March to mid-April, the summer session runs from mid-July to early September, and the autumn session runs from October to early November.


  After the hurricanes of last year, the Caribbean is making a comeback, St. Barth’s island was one of the islands hit the hardest, with numerous houses, luxury resorts, and buildings destroyed. Resorts like the Villa Marie Saint-Barth are already opened, but other hotels like Le Guanahani and Eden Rock St. Barth´s are set to open in the fall.


  This year Liechtenstein will be celebrating its tricentennial of its principality.  Festivities will be held all year long. Works from the Hilti Art Foundation, carnival processions in Malbun, and athletic competitions will be some of the festivities taking place. The kickoff party will be held on January 23 and a special exhibit at the Landes museum will open in February. The exhibit will provide historic insight of the country during the period of 1712-1772, the period of self-realization for Liechtenstein.


  This year has many cultural events for many countries, making them more popular. Which countries or destinations do you have for this 2019?