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Singapore, Ireland, Lithuania in top 10 for 2015

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Lonely Planet names its yearly recommendations

No Nordic destinations have been named among Lonely Planet’s annual top 10 countries and cities to visit around the world this year. But there are plenty of ideas for travellers from Scandinavia.

Singapore is at the top spot in the country list. While not being overly descriptive, the guidebook publisher explains: “Singapore has an extra reason to party in 2015: it’s her Golden Jubilee. Since sealing its independence in 1965, Singapore’s heritage buildings, hawker centres, green spaces and shopping malls have lured travellers, but new developments have elevated the experience. First there’s Marina Bay, a new entertainment precinct, then there’s the new crop of swanky hotels, new attractions like the National Art Gallery and the Singapore Sports Hub, and more than a dozen metro extensions in development.”

Lithuania is a much closer destination, developing a reputation among tourists for fascinating city breaks, particularly to the capital Vilnius. Listing Lithuania at number three, the publisher says: “As of 1 January 2015, Lithuania will be the newest member of the eurozone, the final step on its journey from reluctant Soviet republic to fully fledged European nation. […] The Curonian Spit is one long line of gorgeous beaches, backed by Europe’s largest moving sand dunes. Then there’s Vilnius’ baroque old town, which earned Lithuania one of its entries on the World Heritage list.”

At number five on the list is ever-welcoming Ireland. “There’s a whole lot of love for the old country, which carries a burden of expectation skewed towards the sheep-on-the-road, thatched-roof image – slightly at odds with the modern Ireland of motorways and macchiatos,” Lonely Planet says. “Ireland is stunningly scenic, its traditions – music, dance, whiskey and beer – firmly intact. And this year is the year of the Wild Atlantic Way, a 2500km scenic drive that snakes its way round every nook and crook of the western seaboard from Donegal to Cork.”

Other countries on the 2015 list: Namibia, Nicaragua, Republic of Congo, Serbia, Philippines, St Lucia, Morocco.

Lonely Planet

[pictured: Cliffs of Moher, Ireland]

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