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Airbnb has trending destinations that stretch across the globe.. From beach destinations to mountain getaways to urban hubs, they all have one thing in common: There are some epic places to rent in each one. Here’s the lowdown on where to find the best Airbnbs in the most popular destinations on the site.
Kaikoura, New Zealand
The small south island town of Kaikoura is a household name nowadays but not for the right reasons. Kaikoura was badly hit by a 7.8-magnitude hurricane, and subsequent tsunami, in November 2016. Things are on the up now, though, and the country’s Coastal Pacific Railway just reopened after a two-year closure. You can contribute to the local rebuilding efforts with your tourist dollars by making Kaikoura part of a New Zealand itinerary. You likely won’t be alone. Year-over-year searches for lodgings in Kaikoura are up 210%, and Airbnb bookings are up nearly 300% since the tragic quake. If you’re up for making the journey that far down under, some stunning rentals are available.
Kaikoura has a range of rentals available, from trucks converted into tiny homes to a house with beer bottles built into the foundation. If rustic chic is more your style, there’s also this imported Mongolian yurt right on a farm where you can go watch and feed the animals.
Check out more listings in Kaikoura here.
Puebla is the new destination in Mexico for those who want something a little different from the sun-seeking Mayan Riviera experience. Just a few hours drive from Mexico City, this large cultural hub was traditionally visited on a day-trip from the capital. Yet with a 206% increase in Airbnb users adding Puebla to their travel wish lists, things are about to heat up. Featuring colorful row houses, delicious food, and 365 churches, you won’t be short on photo-friendly settings. Plus, the regional Talavera pottery can be bought as a reminder of your time in the region. If you’re interested in history, make sure you add a visit to Cholula to your itinerary. It’s considered the oldest city in America.
Puebla is an incredibly cost-effective destination with comfortable accommodation available for around $50 per night — such as this beautiful apartment in a 17th-century building. To stretch your budget further, many lofts are also available to rent for around $30 a night.
Check out more listings in Puebla here.
While the last few years have seen a growing interest in Tbilisi, the capital of Georgia, 2019 is Batumi’s time to shine. This seaside resort on the Black Sea had long been a popular spot to vacation for members of the former Soviet Union. These days, it has a wider — and more Western — appeal. With a 200% year-on-year increase in searches for accommodation in Batumi, you’ll want to visit this emerging hotspot before it loses its local charm. There are only 160,000 permanent residents and lots of development, so make sure you check out the lively Old Town before it’s too late.
Despite its growing reputation as a resort getaway, prices for Airbnbs in Batumi are incredibly affordable. Seriously, where else in the world can you get a (nearly) beachfront apartment for less than $20 a night? On the other hand, if you’re looking for your very own piece of Soviet kitsch, this mansion house is suitable for up to 10 guests — and comes with an ornate indoor pool and some pretty awesome decor. What more could you ask for?
Check out more listings in Batumi here.
The coastal region of Normandy in western France has held a special place in the hearts of historians, being the location of the famous Normandy landings. 2019 will be the 75th anniversary of these landings and may be part of the reason that year-on-year bookings are up 229%. However, Normandy has a lot more to offer than war stories. The Normans have had an indelible mark on history, from the Bayeux Tapestry to the beautiful abbey of Mont St-Michel, with countless churches and cathedrals in between. With a laid-back pace of life and a selection of fine cheeses to boot, Normandy is your go-to for a peaceful getaway.
Normandy offers a spectrum of Airbnb possibilities. Whether you’re looking for a full-blown castle for you and numerous friends or something a little cozier, there are plenty of options — including homes near the famous coastline.
Check out more listings in Normandy here.
If you’ve heard of this town in China, chances are, you’ve flown through it. Home to XiamenAir, the port city exhibits some of the charm of Old China, but many people flock to the city to see Kulangsu island. Deemed a UNESCO heritage site in 2017, it exhibits a fusion of architectural styles, combining sandy beaches with European-style mansions. Historically, it was an important site for Sino-foreign exchange. These days, you can pick up some delicious seafood on the traffic-free island, visit the world’s largest piano museum, or see some of its 600 heritage buildings. With a 283% increase in bookings through Airbnb over the last year, you won’t be the only visitors seeking a slice of Xiamen.
The good news is that Xiamen has a massive range of accommodations available. Whether you want a budget-friendly stay in the city or a gorgeous modern lodging on Kulangsu itself, there is something to suit everyone.
Check out more listings in Xiamen here.
Great Smoky Mountains, USA
With a huge diversity of wildlife and some of the most beautiful waterfalls anywhere in the United States, the Great Smoky Mountains are the country’s most-visited national park. Originally established in 1934, the park — well known for its foggy mornings — consists of a long ridgeline of forest on the border between North Carolina and Tennessee. Whether you want to see black bears, wander the extensive forests, camp in the wilderness, or swim in a waterfall, the secret is out. Searches for accommodation in the area are up 190% year-on-year.
Check out more listings in the Great Smoky Mountains here.
Another Silk Road destination that’s gaining a reputation is Uzbekistan, which last year loosened up its visa regulations. This resulted in a huge increase in travel interest. The country saw a 165% increase in wishlist additions on Airbnb. Khiva, Bukhara, and Samarkand were all important stops on the former trans-continental trading route. Tashkent, on the other hand, was completely destroyed in the 1960s and rebuilt in the typical Soviet style. Thanks to reasonable train connections throughout the country, a week’s stay can encompass several cities, meaning you can experience 12th-century mosques, towering minarets, and brutalist Soviet architecture all in one trip.
Airbnb is relatively new to Uzbekistan but has established an interesting range of options. If you dig deep enough, you’ll find some gems. Go for comfort in a beautifully appointed art studio in Tashkent or get your Yurt on in the Kyzylkum desert for a true Uzbek experience.
Check out more listings in Uzbekistan here.
Although Taipei retains its perpetual charm, travelers are starting to look beyond Taiwan’s capital city to the rest of the island. There’s definitely something in the water with a 100% increase in wishlist addition for the Taiwanese provinces over the last year. Whether it’s visiting the beautiful old street in Daxi in the Taoyuan region, with its traditional storefronts, or trying tasty tofu delicacies, the lesser-known provinces of Taiwan have a lot to offer. Taitung, a sleepy coastal town, is another popular choice, offering a beautiful array of scenery and outdoor adventures including being a surprisingly exhilarating surf hotspot.
In Daxi, you can chill out in a traditional Taiwanese Minsu complete with a comfortably large bed and an epic balcony view — and your hosts can even help you whip up a mean kiln-baked pizza. In Taitung, you can stay in the unique UFO house and grab a bike to explore the local fields surrounding the property.
Check out more listings in Taiwan here.
Speaking of surfing hotspots, did you realize that Accra is one of the best surfing destinations in Africa? With a 163% increase in bookings here, the capital city of Ghana, a few people have apparently figured it out. This destination on the West African coast is not for everyone. Its sticky, heaving streets have been known to tire even the hardiest of travelers. For those willing to stick it out, though, you’ll have an experience to remember. Whether it’s checking out the aforementioned beaches, local seafood delicacies, or thriving fashion scene, this city certainly never sleeps.
If you’re looking for a gorgeous designer property to rent, you’re in luck. This amazing home — at less than $110 a night — includes breakfast each morning in tranquil surroundings. If you’re looking for something a little more personal, you can stay with the friendly Gidi and Gladys in their family homestay, complete with pet rabbits and assorted birds.
Check out more listings in Accra here.
If you’re keen on ramen, you need to visit the Wakayama prefecture in Japan, just an hour from Osaka. Ide Shoten’s Wakayama ramen was once voted Japan’s most delicious store, and the city has seen a spate of visitors ever since. Maybe that’s why the city has seen a 128% rise in year-on-year bookings. That said, the increase could also be due to Wakayama’s stunning scenery, which includes the Kumano Kodo hike. The hike was originally a pilgrimage route that led to three major Japanese shrines: Hongu Taisha, Nachi Taisha, and Hayatama Taisha. If you’re into experimental cuisine, you can even have a go at cooking your egg in the local onsen (hot springs).
Airbnbs in Japan tend to be of the traditional (read: spartan) variety, but there are a few variations on this theme. This beautiful homestay includes an organic breakfast and dinner each day and is set amongst mountain terraces. For a luxury experience, this beachfront house on the border of South Osaka and Wakayama (sleeping 14) should fit the bill.
Check out more listings in Wakayama here.
Buenos Aires Province, Argentina
We’re not talking about the famous Argentinian city but rather the province spanning the Atlantic Coast, which is becoming increasingly popular with Airbnb users. With bookings up 188% year-on-year, the province offers a variety of scenery, from mountains to sea, along with the activities that each landscape offers. Many travel to visit the Paraná Delta from the city of Tigre. Meanwhile, the beach region — stretching from San Clemente del Tuyú to Carmen de Patagones — attracts millions of primarily domestic tourists each year. With the peso losing value against the US dollar, Argentina offers a cost-effective destination with delicious wine and food to boot.
Architectural delights abound in Argentina, and this beautiful minimalist wooden home is no exception. If you’re looking to get back to nature, this eco-cabana should fit the bill — but still includes the comfort of air-con and Netflix, of course.
Check out more listings in Buenos Aires Province here.
A version of this article was previously published on January 8, 2019, and was updated on February 11, 2021, with more information.