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15 red hot destinations we are desperate to visit in 2017

15 red hot destinations we are desperate to visit in 2017

Where do you most want to visit in 2017?

Forget the January blues. Because there’s one cure that never fails: making travel plans for the year ahead.

Here, the Gay Star News editorial team reveal the destinations they’d most like to visit (or return to) in the year ahead…

ho_chi_minh

1 Ho Chi Minh City

My desire to go to Vietnam stems from an old boyfriend who worked for Vietnam Airlines and introduced me to their cuisine – particularly the tasty Summer Rolls – at a top traditional Vietnamese restaurant, Cay Tre, in Shoreditch, London. I chose to visit Ho Chi Minh City, over the capital Hanoi, because of its historical importance, playing a pivotal role in the Vietnam War, and my interest in the fall of Saigon, the city’s former name. Dan Beeson

new_york

2 New York City

I’m not going to lie. The main reason why I would love to go back to New York City is to see Hamilton. But other than that, I want to experience the food of a 1000 cultures, the sights from a million movies, and the billion things to see and do. Take me to the Big Apple, there’s a reason why you’re one of my favourite places on earth. Joe Morgan

cape_town

3 Cape Town

Whenever I see a picture of a stunning city and I don’t know where it is, it tends to be Cape Town. Set beneath Table Mountain, I want to experience the luscious views, busy harbor, and of course the notorious prison that once held Nelson Mandela.

madrid

4 Madrid

Madrid is the capital of calm, in my opinion. I began visiting the Spanish capital regularly – around twice a year – when I became good friends with married travel bloggers Two Bad Tourists. Each and every visit resets my relax-o-meter as quiet streets, basking rooftop bars and beautiful men bring me back to life. The incomparable tapas also fuels my soul. Dan Beeson

berlin_germany

5 Berlin

I’ve never been to Germany, but when I think of it, my mind always goes to Berlin. I love big cities full of restaurants, culture and history, so I think I’d like it. I want to see their museums and especially the Berlin Wall memorial. One of my bucket list things to do is to visit the infamous Berghain nightclub. It’s one of the edgiest nightclubs ever, and I’m sure it would be a great place to make some memories. David Calderon

san_francisco

6 San Francisco

San Francisco has been a dream travel destination of mine since I was kid. As I was growing up I saw it in various movies, and of course my childhood obsession TV show, Charmed. The iconic Golden Gate Bridge is a priority visit but now that I’m an older and LGBTI, I’m excited by the gay lifestyle in the City. From the world-famous parties and The Castro, I love experiencing different gay culture, and this is the perfect place for it. Lewis Peters

sydney

7 Sydney

Sydney is, perhaps, the most naturally beautiful major city in the world. It boasts a thriving LGBTI community, arts and culture, shopping and a dynamic food scene influenced by its diverse population. The spirit of adventure calls to you from Sydney, luring you into the Blue Mountains and beyond. Tris Reid-Smith

toronto_canada

8 Toronto

Toronto is a fantastic city to visit at any time of the year, but its annual Toronto Pride festival is one of the best LGBTI Pride celebrations in the world. Last year, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau was among those to take part. Other attractions include the world-famous and iconic CN Tower, the gay neighborhood around Church Street and Wellesley Street West, and day trips to Niagara Falls. Did we also mention how Canadians are super friendly and laid-back? David Hudson

london_skyline

9 London

It’s easy to think you’ve seen all of London, once you ticked off all the main sights. But there’s so much to be discovered beyond the London Eye or anything to do with the Royal Family – and even in Central London, one turn could mean you’re off the beaten (tourist) track, and en route to finding hidden gems the locals keep to themselves. Stefanie Gerdes

hong_kong

10 Hong Kong

I would start my day in Hong Kong with a brunch of dim sum as a leisurely way to absorb this fast-paced culture. Hong Kong offers a wonderfully eclectic mix of sights – everything from Ming and Tang dynasty art to the world’s longest moving walkway, to a friendly LGBTI scene. Tris Reid-Smith

salzburg

11 Salzburg

Modern design meets baroque beauty, all nestled against a backdrop other cities could be jealous of – that’s Salzburg in a nutshell. Between its historic and cultural riches (just think Mozart and The Sound of Music), its blooming student culture and the Alps on its doorstep, even the season doesn’t matter: there’s always something to do, see or taste. Stefanie Gerdes

chicago

12 Chicago

This shining star of US tourism was my favourite trip of 2016. It reminded me of everything I loved about New York City – amazing architecture, world-class cuisine – but the locals were far friendlier. It also has a gay village with the best name in the history of the universe: Boystown. Plus, the air is so fresh and clean because of next door Lake Michigan. I can’t wait to go back. Jamie Tabberer

sao_paulo_city

13 São Paulo

I’ve never been to São Paulo, Brazil’s largest city. But my boyfriend (who’s Brazilian) says it’s probably the gay-friendliest destinations in South America. It also boasts what’s reported to be the largest annual Pride festival in the world, with 3 million commonly attending, according to organizers. Jamie Tabberer

tokyo

14 Tokyo

Whenever you plan to visit, Japan’s capital city offers a truly out-of-this-world experience. Discover historic temples and shrines, beautiful parks, amazing cuisine and quirky cafes. Alternatively hang out in the more metropolitan Shibuya district – packed with designer stores and souvenirs. Just to remember to leave plenty of room in your luggage! A good time to visit is during the annual Tokyo Rainbow Pride, which takes place 29 April-7 May 2017. David Hudson

maspalomas

15 Gran Canaria

This list is almost entirely blockbuster supercities. But island of Gran Canaria (population 838,000) makes an equally strong statement when it comes to LGBTI tourism, as do the tiny party towns of Maspalomas and La Palma therein. Part of me thinks I’d hate it – but another, more honest part of me knows I’d probably love it. Mostly I just think it’s a crying shame that as a 30-year-old gay man working as a travel journalist, I haven’t been to what sounds like the gayest island on earth. It’s a rite of passage for all of us, right? Jamie Tabberer

Pictures: Pixabay