I am completely confused this year and could use some help. I have traveled Europe every year. I usually go to Italy and then somewhere from there. This year, I have no idea where to go. I am looking for wildlife, beautiful beaches and activities and fun. The four places I had in mind were Thailand, Sri Lanka , Kenya or Cuba. I know Cuba doesn't really fit there but since I will be in Italy and have an Italian passport I thought I'd have less trouble. Can someone tell me where a single female (on a budget) should go. I'm not afraid, I travel alone always but it has always been Europe or Central America. If you have any other suggestions I'd appreciate it. I would be leaving from Italy in August for about two weeks.
Your Passport/Nationality is immaterial for visiting Cuba, they welcome everyone with open arms.
It's not a particularly inexpensive destination though, even on a backpacker budget a first timer is still going to want at least 40 - 50 EUR/day for a good time.
Oh ok well when looking for flights from the US it says always "restricted." I was told by others that you could not fly directly from here. But anyway any ideas about other places listed?
America still lives in the past where Cuba is concerned. The people are friendly and no hassle but the island is still a bit old fashioned as in faded elegance.
Kenya has safaris but they sometimes get attacked by violent robbers (which the country does not publicise).
Thailand is good but the time to go is November onwards. Like Sri Lanka, it has a monsoon season for much of the northern hemisphere's summer months. Go then and you can have dry days and very wet days.
I've had some 3 month stays in Thailand (Dec to March) and every day was hot and there was maybe 2-3 days with some rain in all that time, and an hour after it has stopped, it is gone without trace. Christmas day you can be on the beach or out shopping (as it's just another day there).
Thailand is about as safe as anywhere in the world these days and your money goes quite far there with cheap accommodation, food and transport. August is off season so you will avoid the crowds.
"... Oh ok well when looking for flights from the US it says always "restricted."...
That's because the US has had Cuba under a crippling Embargo for half a century. It's illegal for an American (or anyone residing in the US no matter what their nationality) to visit Cuba as a tourist, thus there are no commercial flights available for tourist travel departing from the US.
Cuba is the only country in the world that US State Department forbids American to visit as tourists. Few obvious American tourists is one fact of many that makes Cuba unique.
In any case, why would you want to transit through the US anyway? Simply fly direct from Europe.
South America seems to have everything you are after but in a 2 week time scale it will prob not too worth it (value for money) and i'm not sure if it is the safest place for a solo female backpacker.
Thailand looks good but is also a very common location, if your looking for something a bit different then Sri Lanka looks amazing in my opinion. Either way i'm sure you'll have a great time wherever you go.
As a further explanation regarding my, "why transit through the US" comment above...
You can fly with Virgin out of London, Gatwick. Probably the best airline from Europe. Out of Germany you can fly Condor from Frankfurt. They fly Thomas Cook, Boeing 767, so like a charter. Then there are loads of options with Air France via Paris, Iberia and Air Europa via Madrid, KLM via Amsterdam, Blue Panorama via Rome/Milan and Aeroflot via Moscow. (Almost always the cheapest option from Europe, but Aeroflot is not for everyone.)
Have fun wherever you go.
Your Passport/Nationality is negligible for viewing Cuba, they welcome everyone with start hands.
It's not a particularly affordable location though, even on a backpacker funds a first minutter is still going to want at least 40 - 50 EUR/day for enjoyable.
[ Edit: Sorry, no promos please. ]
Ok thanks guys.