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Five off the Beaten Track Budget Travel Destinations

budget travel destinations - mostar

Consider heading to these countries to escape the crowds and enjoy experiencing an authentic culture without worrying about breaking your minuscule budget.

Nepal

budget travel destinations

Home to snow-covered peaks, forested plains, and serene mountaintop lakes suspended above the clouds, Himalayan Nepal is a dream budget travel destination. Although Nepal was never colonised, English is also widely spoken.

A country still recovering from a recent natural disaster of colossal proportions , tourism is once again on the rise, and is extremely cheap by western standards. After your flights, the most significant costs for budget travellers are likely to be visas, which range from 20-100 USD, and trekking permits and fees. Guides can also be found quite cheaply. If you are not interested in trekking, then the country offers a range of other outdoor activities, mountain biking across the Annapurnas, whitewater rafting, or ‘spiritual’ activities like yoga and meditation.

Living costs themselves are very low. Food is cheap, street food stalls sell a range of foods, mainly with Tibetan, Indian and Thai origins, and simple budget accommodation is available from up to 5 USD a night.

 

Bosnia

budget travel destinations - mostar

Famous primarily for its involvement in the wars that accompanied the breakup of Yugoslavia, this small secluded corner of Europe has far more to offer than one might think. Despite the presence of landmines in some areas, the country is far from a war-torn wasteland, and harbours a unique Islamic religious culture.

Explore the Labyrinthine alleys of the cobbled old towns of Sarajevo and Mostar, where Ottoman, Byzantine, Roman and Balkan, styles merge. Drink ritual coffee from an intricately hand-engraved copper pot, and delve into the history of a land that lies at the ancient crossroads of European civilisation.

Do all of this without the crowds of tourists that often accompany such magnificence.

Bosnia and Herzegovina, as it is formally known, is also home to a range of natural wonders,  including a portion of the snowcapped Dinaric alps and a short stretch of coastline that is home to Neum: A seaside town that is much cheaper and less crowded than its Croatian counterparts but still has a range of seafood restaurants and even occasionally plays host to Dolphin visitors.

 

Armenia

Mount Ararat, famous as the resting place of Noah’s ark,  above the Yerevan skyline.

On the frontier of Europe and Asia, Armenia is a landlocked country cradled by mountains that  borders Turkey, Iran and Russia.  From arid valleys, to lush forests, marshlands and meadows, the country encompasses a range of biomes that play host to rich biodiversity, including a  variety of migratory birds.

Not only is it biologically diverse, but culturally also has alot to offer. Mozt of which is centred on the deeply historic capital of Yerevan. This is a compact and walkable city with great cafe culture, and as Armenia was The world’s first officially Christian country, plenty of churches and monasteries to gaze at in wonder.

Tourism has been growing in Armenia since 2000, and is likely to only increase. It might be wise to check it out before the hordes descend..

 

Malawi

budget travel destinations - malawi

Characterised primarily by an enormous and majestic lake that stretches down through the country,  Malawi is known as the Warm Heart of Africa” because of its reputation for friendlness and hospitality.

Along with being relatively cheap, it has a geographic diversity that allows for a rnage of activities, all contained within what is quite a small and compact country.

This means you can climb mountains, relax on the beaches of Lake Malawi, or explore the relaxed capital of Lilongwe all within a few hours of eachother. (check this on g maps)

Best of all, the country is not (yet) overcome with tourism, so there still remains a chance of authentic connection with local communities.

 

Bolivia

budget travel destinations - bolivia

Landlocked, but a geographically diverse land of rivers, waterfalls, mountains and canyons,
Bolivia is one of the cheapest countries to visit in Latin America, and has lower numbers of tourists than its more developed neighbours. Although most visitors will have to pay for a visa, the costs of food and accommodation are very low, making it a very affordable destination.

As the Tourist infrastructure is not nearly as developed as neighbouring Ecuador, the country retains an authentic charm, and is home to the most indigenous population of South America. It also offers great opportunities for birding, sandboarding, and wildlife viewing in some of the national parks, home to jaguars tapirs and pumas.

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