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Perhaps the most exciting New Years’ resolution is to travel more. A wonderful (anonymous) quote tells us that, “We travel not to escape life, but for life not to escape us.” So, in the spirit of new beginnings, we share with you our bucket list of the best off-the-beaten-path places to visit in 2016:

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Quito, Ecuador

The capital of Ecuador, Quito makes our list because of its South American colonial architecture that exists with the robust development the city is currently undergoing. A city dotted by rolling green mountains, you’ll find picture-perfect landscapes around every alleyway bend. Looking for the perfect balance between modernity and history? Check out Casa Gangotena, a five-star historical hotel.

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Casa Gangotena is a boutique hotel in Quito, and its history stretches back to the time of the Incas.

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Kotor, Montenegró

Located in southeastern Europe, Montenegró is bordered by Croatia to the west and Albania to the southeast. Cruise ships have yet to overwhelm this the stunning city of Kotor, so 2016 is the year to go. Fall in love with the city as you wander through the maze of alleyways — we bet you’ll find it difficult to find a spot that isn’t postcard-worthy.best-off-the-beaten-path-places-to-visit-2016-kotor-2 best-off-the-beaten-path-places-to-visit-2016-kotor

Ngerulmud, Palau

Perhaps one of the most magical places on our list, Palau seems to be something out of a fairytale, or perhaps another planet. Located in the western Pacific Ocean, Palau is an island country with arguably some of the best scuba diving and snorkeling in the world. Perhaps the most irresistible is Jellyfish Lake, a special spot where visitors can take a dive with harmless, highly photogenic jellyfish. In the recent years, Palau has seen a dramatic increase in tourists, causing locals to be wary about the lack of environmental awareness — so please do your research before traveling or booking any tours.

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© Peter R. Binter / Wikimedia Commons

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Freemantle, Australia

We love Sydney (see our recommendations for our must-see’s in the city), but all too often, the rest of the country is left in the city’s shadows. That’s why Freemantle, an isolated harbor town, made our cut of the best places to visit this year. From the myriad of choices for live music to its craft beer breweries, beaches, and incredible food, this port city boasts a dynamic energy.

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© Chewy M / Wikipedia

Ready to get cozy? Check out this adorable Airbnb listing, available for only $59/night.

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Faroe Islands 

Regarded by the New York Times as what is perhaps the most remote location for avant-garde food, the Faroe Islands are packed with unique adventures for every kind of visitor. From hiking untamed mountains to exploring a diverse city life, the Faroe Islands won’t disappoint. For the foodie, be sure to check out Koks, an award-winning restaurant that stresses modern cuisine made from local, seasonal ingredients.

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© Vincent van Zeijst / Wikipedia
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© Erik Christensen / Wikipedia

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