10 Travel Destinations for People Who Hate Crowds

For those looking to get away from it all, the last thing some people want to do is go to a place packed with people and fast-paced activity. Even a beach holiday, which sounds relaxing, can become a nightmare when you're surrounded on all sides with sunbathers, loungers, towels, coolers, and volleyball games. So if you're no fan of crowds, but desperately want to escape, here are 10 destinations worth checking out.

1. Negril, Jamaica

With a population of just under 7,000, Negril is a widely dispersed beach resort in Jamaica. And despite travel magazines consistently naming it one of the top 10 beaches in the world, it's still very far from a crowded destination. The beach itself is over four miles long, and that alone makes it a tough one to fill with crowds. There are also a variety of activities to keep you busy over your vacation, if the beautiful beach gets to be too much for you. Snorkeling, diving, and cliff jumping offer the more adventurous holidaymakers a chance to live a little. There's also an all-inclusive resort on the beach, plus other boutique places to stay that cater to those who want a more exclusive experience.

2. Amelia Island, Florida

Mention a Florida vacation to anyone, and they'll usually chime in with Miami beaches, or Orlando (and Disney). But there is a place in Florida, hiding away, that is far from the overcrowding of those typical spots. Amelia Island is enchanting, with over 13 miles of beaches, plus incredible scenery, wildlife, dining, fishing, boating, and so much more. Tour the website and one thing you'll instantly notice is how quiet and peaceful everything looks. Not a lot of hustle and bustle. The beaches are almost deserted. Even the festivals are way less crowded than the average event, should you decide to venture to one. Overall, you'd have to go out of your way to hit a large crowd on Amelia Island. Hopefully, this hidden gem stays that way.

3. Folly Beach, South Carolina

Located on Folly Island, there are many words that come to mind when describing Folly Beach. Charming, open, remote, tranquil, peaceful, refreshing, and comfortable, are just a few that barely scratch the surface of the place locals call "the Edge of America." The beaches are wide open, there a long piers to walk along, local shops to peruse, and plenty of hotels and inns to accommodate your needs. Activities include surfing, kayaking, paddle boarding, fishing, picnicking, camping, and bicycling. It's not exactly the city that never sleeps, but that's kind of the point.

4. Upolo, Samoa

There are few places that live up to that idyllic Hollywood vision of a tropical beach paradise; Upolo, Samoa, is one of them. Immaculate white beaches, crystal blue water, tall palm trees, beach huts, and waterfalls, make Upolo a feast for your eyes. And fortunately, not too many eyes, as this blissful destination is rarely in anyone's top 20 places to go and visit. You can take advantage of that, and get away for some peace and quiet that will be the envy of others… once they see your photos on Facebook. You'll find incredible fresh food in the market on Fugalei Street, you can take up diving, and even venture into the rain forests.

5. County Donegal, Ireland

Lonely Planet has described County Donegal as"a county of extremes: at times desolate and battered by brutal weather, yet in turn a land of unspoiled splendor where stark peaks and sweeping beaches bask in glorious sunshine."

Anyone who has ever traveled to this part of Europe knows that the bad weather will always play a part in the vacation at some point. But for those wanting to avoid crowds, and take in a beautiful slice of Irish charm, County Donegal is perfect. Some of the sights worth taking in include Donegal Castle, Banba's Crown, Magheraroarty Beach, and Fort Dunree. Kick back in one of the local, uncrowded pubs, and indulge in a real pint of Guinness as you take in the peace and quiet.

6. Most Areas of Guam

I can speak from personal experience, as I visited my wife's family in Guam several years ago. My reaction was simply, "How is a place this beautiful not packed with tourists?" If you don't know it, Guam is a U.S. island territory in Micronesia, and it's a tropical paradise filled with the whitest beaches, palm trees, and crystal clear water. Visit places like Asan, Talofofo, and Ritidian Point, and you can find yourself on a clear stretch of beach that feels like Hawaii, but looks like a scene from Robinson Crusoe.

The weather is hot and humid, but you will soon get used to that. And once you've paid for the flight, the accommodations and food are very affordable. Traditional Chamorro food is delicious, and there are influences of Japanese, Filipino, and even Jamaican flavors. This is an incredible place for people who want the island paradise without the crowds and tourists. You will also find some of the most welcoming and friendly people anywhere in the world. If you want to avoid the crowds, avoid Tuman Bay — that's the center of Guam's tourism industry.

7. New Braunfels, Texas

Imagine a place where Texan and German cultures coexist in perfect harmony. That's New Braunfels, a town in Texas that was founded in 1845 by Prince Carl of Solms-Braunfels, Germany. For the locals, it's nothing special to see German billboards and street names, but for those tourists who come to stay, it can be something of a surprise. There are a variety of activities for vacationers here, including tubing down the river, paddle boating, the Wurstfest, and Schlitterbahn Waterpark. There's also plenty of wildlife, the largest caverns in Texas, and spooky ghost tours. Some will call it quaint, or even unremarkable, but if you want a relaxing, uncrowded vacation, give it a try.

8. Mindanao, Philippines

The second largest island in the Philippines (Luzon holds the top spot), Mindanao has some of the most stunning scenery and natural wonders that you will ever see on vacation. Take Maria Cristina Falls, a waterfall that powers a hydroelectric plant, giving Mindanao most of its electricity. It's sometimes known as the "twin falls," and at over 320 feet high, surrounded by lush trees and vegetation, it could be at home in a King Kong movie. Aside from the tropical rain forests and jungle adventures, you can also indulge in Bangus Fry fishing, snorkeling, mountain climbing, and swimming with whales. And once you arrive, your money will stretch far. For example, one liter of high quality Tanduay Rum costs just 45 pesos; at the current exchange rate, that's around 96 cents.

9. Rotorua, New Zealand

Nicknamed "New Zealand's Coolest Hot Spot," the big draw for people who've done their research are the hot springs of Rotorua. The volcanic activity has created natural hot-water attractions such as Te Rata Bay (Hot Water Beach) and Hells Gate Mud Bath, which has been used for generations by Maori to ease joint and muscle pain. Aside from the geothermal delights, you can also partake in cycling adventures, lake and river activities, fishing, hunting, golf, hikes, and scenic flights.

10. Huacachina, Peru

It's got sand. Lots of sand. And, it's got water. But this is no beach vacation. Huacachina is a desert oasis located in Southern Peru, and offers dune buggy rides and sand boarding for those who like adventure far from the masses. Located five hours south of Lima, you will stay in a paradise surrounded by ancient mountains of sand in every direction. Private tour packages are available, and you can also be taken outside of the oasis to other parts of Peru. But chances are, once you're here, away from everything, you'll want to stay.

What are some other perfect destinations for people who hate crowds? Share with us!

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