Destinations to watch in 2013
(Photo: Doonagore Castle, Ireland via Shutterstock)
Here's a great New Year's resolution: Travel more. We've looked into the 2013 crystal ball and found destinations to dazzle in the year ahead. Find out why you're invited to the Emerald Isle, how the City by the Bay is making the most of its waterfront, and which country is set to make a dramatic solo debut into the European Union next year.
These 10 picks will inspire your travel adventures and finally give you a New Year's resolution you can stick to.
Irish by ancestry or simply in spirit? Then you're invited home for The Gathering Ireland 2013. This yearlong celebration of Ireland and its people includes festivals, concerts, clan gatherings, and special sporting events. With more than 70 million people around the world claiming Irish descent (including 44 million Americans), this is shaping up to be the ultimate family reunion.
An entire year devoted to welcoming travelers is clearly an ideal time to visit. Want to go big? Join the revelry on St. Patrick's Day in Dublin. Ready to sing and dance the night away? Head to the Temple Bar TradFest. Take a more introspective journey and explore the ghost towns that remain as legacies of the diaspora, or trace your own family roots across the rolling hills of the island. Still sporting an Irish name, say, McKenna, Fitzgerald, or Gallagher? Then you can even join one of the clan gatherings that will take place all over the country next year.
(Photo: Gilles Martin-Raget)
2013 is shaping up to be the year of the waterfront in San Francisco. The already popular stretch between the Bay Bridge and the Golden Gate is getting some high-profile additions. Pier 27 will be the center of the action for the America's Cup events (the Louis Vuitton Cup from July 4 through Sept. 1; the America's Cup Finals between Sept. 7 and 22; and the Red Bull Youth America's Cup in August and September). After serving as the America's Cup Village, Pier 27 will become the new James R. Herman Cruise Terminal.
Spring at Pier 15 brings the opening of the newly relocated Exploratorium. The influential hands-on science museum will open on April 17 with a massive new space that has 600 exhibits and 1.5 acres of public outdoor space. In early summer, the Aquarium of the Bay literally brings new life to Pier 39 with the opening of its river otters exhibit. To top it all off, the western span of the Bay Bridge debuts a 1.8-mile long light sculpture in March, and the long-awaited new eastern span is tentatively set to open on Labor Day 2013.