You’ve probably heard the news.
Updated your app.
Told your friends.
And are currently planning your next big trip.
If you’re not booking flights you may have missed a pretty big announcement:
WeSwap has gone global!
That’s right, you can now use WeSwap in any country, anywhere in the world, wherever Mastercard® is accepted.
This opens up so many new possibilities to use your WeSwap Card that we have hand-picked the best places to visit in 2018.
So grab your passport, sunglasses and WeSwap then pick your favourite from below.
1. Buenos Aires, Argentina
From Valentine’s Day 2018 you can fly direct from London Gatwick to Buenos Aires with Norwegian Airlines. This new Gatwick route is around £200 cheaper than flying from Heathrow with British Airways. Here at WeSwap, we like cheaper, and a £200 saving means more world-famous Argentinian wine, more steak, and more tango lessons!
Argentina’s Capital offers an experience like no other, bursting with creativity, art, dance, and colour. The city rarely sleeps, it starts late, ends early and is generally a little crazy. The fusion of South America and European influence has meant it has some of the best food, art scene, and nightlife across the whole continent. Visit the brightly coloured neighbourhood of La Boca, watch a football match at La Bombonera, or wander the many parks and museums. Then drink wine, mate, and Fernet with locals before being blown away by the cuisine and parties.
This year’s European Capital of Culture Valletta (alongside Leeuwarden) is not holding back on the celebrations. With 140 projects and 400 events planned throughout the year, Malta is definitely a top destination for 2018. The 16th-century citadel is small enough to walk around but is packed with history and architecture. Many of the buildings have been restored to an incredible level resulting in fortresses and palaces to marvel at. Whether you spend time gazing at the stunning interiors of St.John’s Cathedral, visiting some of your favourite Game of Thrones filming locations, or enjoying one of many theatres and art performances you can be sure of perfect weather as Malta enjoys around 300 days of sunshine!
Cobble streets, coffee, and chocolate, oh and volcanos, don’t forget the active volcanos. Antigua is a picturesque and charming town filled with colourful colonial houses, museums and churches all set to the backdrop of 3 fiery volcanoes. Due to the town’s popularity card use is widespread as are ATMs making it a great place to use your WeSwap card. Spend your days strolling the streets, visiting the vibrant and chaotic markets like Mercado de Artesanías or Mercado del Carmen and relax after with some of the best coffee in Latin America. For the more adventurous a 2-day hike up Acatenango provides you with a chance to camp on the side of the volcano and get a sunset and sunrise to remember. If two days is too much (you are supposed to be relaxed on holiday) then nearby Pacaya Volcano provides breathtaking views with just a few hours walking and the possibility of seeing lava from one of Guatemala’s remaining active volcanoes.
4.Seoul, South Korea
With the 2018 winter Olympics hitting the slopes on February 9th South Korea is in the spotlight, a welcome change from the usual news of its northern neighbour. 2018 makes it a great year to visit Seoul. For those attending the Olympics, there is a high-speed train from the capital to Pyeongchang that takes under an hour. Seoul is a real mix of old and new with Buddhist temples, palaces and skyscrapers adorning the streets. Try the amazing food, soak up the culture, discover secret gardens and if you want to get out of the city head to Nami or Jeju Island.
5. Seattle, Washington, US
From May 2018 you can fly direct from Manchester to Seattle for just £179.99. This new route makes Seattle a great destination for deal-savvy WeSwappers looking to explore the US. Seattle has a blend of urban excitement surrounded by rural adventure giving you two holidays in one. Visit famous places around the city like the space needle, pike place market, and Chihuly Garden and Glass or venture further to the wineries in the northwest, Mt.Rainier or Discovery Park. It won’t take long to realise why Seattle’s nicknamed the Emerald City.
White sand beaches, tropical jungles and a slow pace of life make Belize the ultimate getaway. The people are friendly, the currency is simple, and English is the official language making Belize a very stress free destination for this year. For divers and enthusiasts, Belize boasts the 2nd largest coral reef system in the world, not to mention the infamous sinkhole. For those looking to relax then Caye Caulker, Hopkins, and Placencia offer a Caribbean paradise at amazing prices. If you go in June make sure you attend a “staff favourite” – Lobster Festival.
With a lake that covers 20% of the country, rolling grasslands akin to the Scottish Highlands and opportunities to see the “Big 5”, Malawi is a massively under-visited country and we think that should change! This landlocked country in southeastern Africa is quite “off the beaten path” making it attractive for travellers seeking something unique. Lake Malawi is the third largest in the continent and is a UNESCO world heritage site. It has unspoiled beaches, is safe for swimming, snorkelling and scuba diving and has an incredible array of wildlife. For safari fans, Liwonde National Park and Majete Wildlife Reserve should satisfy your craving, whilst Nyika National Park in the north is set in an incredible landscape of rolling hills. Finish your night under clear star-filled skies and it won’t take long to fall in love with this hidden gem.
From a city of poverty to a city of culture, Matera has had quite the transformation over the past 70 years. Not too long ago the people of Matera were living in cave-like dwellings without running water or electricity until the prime minister Alcide De Gasperi moved the inhabitants into newly built homes outside the Sassi. A move that many families were not happy about. The city was empty for years until a revival in the late 80’s subsidised by the government encouraged people to move back and start opening bars, shops, and restaurants. Now a UNESCO site and popular choice for blockbuster movie locations Matera is firmly on the map. With the arrival of Airbnb, the once impoverished caves are now a hotspot for travellers looking for a new experience. Chosen to be the European Capital of Culture 2019 Matera is a great place to visit soon as some fear it could become a new tourist trap like so many Italian Cities.
One of Mexico’s most vibrant and diverse regions is a WeSwapper must for 2018. Oaxaca (pronounced wah-haw-kah) was once inhabited by a dozen indigenous groups which have left it as one of the most ethnically diverse states in the country. From the world-famous surf, turtle nesting and beachfront hotels of Oaxaca’s coast to its museums, markets and cuisine in the Capital, this region is one of Mexico’s finest. Spend days exploring the ruins of Monte Alban, or the many churches dotted around the city, then relax with a coffee, or by sipping Mezcal into the evening. Our “Staff Pick” is the spectacular Hierve el Agua, a series of mineral springs and rock formations of calcified mineral waterfalls. Don’t forget to bring your swimwear for this spot of natural beauty.
These remote Indian islands are relatively unknown, undiscovered, and until recently underserviced. Now thanks to new direct routes from Chennai and 3 other major Indian cities along with a new beachside hotel opening in March the Andaman Islands are becoming an appealing choice for this year. Commercial fishing has been banned for the past 40 years and so these 300 islands welcome some of the world’s most unspoiled coral, beautiful coastline and perfect beaches. For diving fans, the Andaman Islands give you a chance to see many species unique to the area and an ecosystem that exists in ash beds and cooled lava. Others may take up some kayaking through mangrove forests or just lounge around on one of the hundreds of untouched beaches. Perhaps the new honeymoon destination for 2019.
July marks the centenary of Nelson Mandela’s birth and South Africa will be celebrating his legacy in a big way throughout the whole of 2018. Learn the country’s and Mandela’s history at the Apartheid Museum, Constitution Hill, and the Mandela Museum. Then visit the places that impacted his life like Robben Island, Mandela House and Liliesleaf Farm. Alongside the history and this year’s centenary South Africa offers a wealth of attractions; hike table mountain, safari round Kruger or Pilanesberg National park, visit the vibrant city of Johannesburg or escape to the Winelands. South Africa is a place for adventure, incredible landscapes, pristine white beaches and Penguins.
What are your holiday plans for 2018? Leave a comment below and let us know.