Destination Dupes - what are yours?

Travel Forums General Talk Destination Dupes - what are yours?

1. Posted by Peter (Admin 7207 posts) 4w Star this if you like it!

I came across this idea yesterday of Destination Dupes (dupes = duplicates). Basically, with overtourism being a thing and some destinations just being hideously expensive, what are good "duplicates" that can be considered instead. I thought it would be fun to tap the Travellerspoint hive-mind to think of some great alternative destinations for anyone considering one of the top destinations.

To get the ideas flowing, I'll post a list of destinations that are known to struggle with overtourism.

  1. Venice
  2. Machu Picchu
  3. Mallorca
  4. Amsterdam
  5. Angkor Wat
  6. Santorini
  7. Paris
  8. Bali
  9. Dubrovnik
  10. Phuket

If you know of any great stand-ins for these locations, please share. Or if you know of other destinations that are good stand-ins for well known hot-spots then add them too. Hopefully we can build a nice little list of ideas.

2. Posted by Sander (Moderator 6010 posts) 4w 1 Star this if you like it!

Amsterdam => Leiden, Delft, Utrecht: prettier canals, similar architecture, at least some art museums, much quieter

3. Posted by AndyF (Moderator 2906 posts) 4w 1 Star this if you like it!

Dubrovnik: closest analogue I know of is Kotor, Montenegro. Korcula and Split are similar examples of Venetian fortified cities though.

Amsterdam: Copenhagen's canals have a similar vibe. Or other places in the Netherlands like Amersfoort have lovely canal-lined streets and no tourists.

Here in the UK the Lake District has a reputation for overtourism, but it's really just the hot spots. If you're creative you can hike all day on the less popular mountains or around lakes without seeing people. Or there are "dupes" nearby: The Howgill Fells, the Forest of Bowland, and Arnside & Silverdale all have nice walking but the crowds whizz past on the motorway to the Lakes.

Our other hack for overtourism is: go early. We're early risers, so we've had the Doge's Palace in Venice to ourselves by being there at opening time, for example. (Admittedly we also chance it and go to places in low or shoulder season, which helps with the crowds too.)

[ Edit: Edited on 24 Jan 2024, 10:14 GMT by AndyF ]

4. Posted by irenevt (Travel Guru 1207 posts) 4w 1 Star this if you like it!

My Son, Vietnam instead of Angkor Wat. Beautiful temples in the jungle just on a smaller scale.

Maybe Hua Hin instead of Phuket. Actually I have not been to Phuket, but Hua Hin is a very pleasant Thai seaside resort.

[ Edit: Edited on 24 Jan 2024, 14:13 GMT by irenevt ]

5. Posted by BeateR (Full Member 266 posts) 4w 1 Star this if you like it!

Instead of Mallorca you could visit the neighbor-island Menorca, or one the Canaries, least visited there is La Gomera and El Hiello.

6. Posted by traveland (Budding Member 5 posts) 4w Star this if you like it!

I would try Prague again. Like that city with its buildings and great things for photography. Also food and pubs was great.

I liked London as well, went there over Halloween a couple of years ago. They have a big music store for piano players in London so maybe that was the main reason for me, but I was happily surprised over the city.

7. Posted by Teoni (Travel Guru 1892 posts) 4w Star this if you like it!

Santorini seems pretty easy. Just any other Greek Island cruise ships don't visit. There are so many islands in Greece and while they have unique characteristics I think they are still similar enough you could easily substitute the crowded islands for the less visited ones.

I think Bali would fall into the same category. Indonesia has many islands though I suppose if you're looking for wellness retreats or party atmosphere somewhere like Flores might to cut it for you. That is the trade of for less visited in Indonesia, the amenities will vary wildly.

[ Edit: Edited on 25 Jan 2024, 05:31 GMT by Teoni ]