Lonely Planet Best in Travel list 2023: Manchester only UK city in this year’s must-visit destinations list

Manchester has been named as one of the best destinations in the world to learn by travel experts, Lonely Planet.

Manchester has been named as the best city to learn in the world for 2023 by Lonely Planet, making it the only UK city to make the travel guidebook’s annual Best in Travel list. The city has been described as "the best home in the world" for locals and a "brilliant place" to visit for everyone else, joining  the list with previous winners New Mexico (USA), El Savador (El Savador), Dresden, (Germany), Marseille (France), and fellow UK location, Southern Scotland.

The travel experts divided the best getaways into five categories, based on the experiences each of the destinations offer; Eat, Journey, Connect, Learn and Unwind, in an effort to inspire holidaymakers to embark on remarkable adventures loaded with local knowledge.

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Described as “an accessibility-friendly destination”, Manchester has also been praised for its sustainability, with many city landmarks opening its doors to the public next year. The highlights include the reopening of Manchester Museum and the expansion of Manchester Jewish Museum, which makes Manchester one of the must-visit places.

Factory International, a cultural hub that will open next June, is also one of the assets highlighted by travel experts, since it will open next year with immersive Matrix films-themed dance, music, and visual effects directed by Danny Boyle. The National Trust’s project to turn the historic Castlefield Viaduct into a green walking trail is also featured by Lonely Planet.

In Lonely Planet’s ‘Eat’ category, the capital of Peru, Lima came out on top, as it is described to be a “gastronomical delight centuries in the making”, with the perfect place for fresh seafood and to explore Peruvian cuisine. “This destination should top every foodie’s travel list.” Also made the list are Umbria (Italy), Fukuoka (Japan), Kuala Lumpur (Malaysia), Montevideo (Uruguay) and South Africa.

Lonely Planet recommends visiting Nova Scotia in Canada under the ‘Journey’ category, stating that the best way to see the "postcard-perfect communities" is to take a journey, driving between beach villages. Travellers are also recommended to experience hiking the trails, lounging on the beaches or even tucking into gigantic lobster suppers just like the locals. Other destinations featured on the list include Bhutan, Parques Nacionales Naturales Colombia, Istanbul to Sofia Train, Western Australia and Zambia.

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Meanwhile, people who are wishing to ‘Connect’ with unique local scenes were directed to Accra, Ghana, for its “buzzing art-centric” atmosphere. It says: “The capital’s hot, sticky streets are perfumed with sweat, fumes and yesterday’s cooking oil.” Also making the same list are Albania, Sydney (Australia), Guyana, Boise (USA), and Alaska (USA).

Manchester has been named as the best city to learn in the world for 2023 by Lonely Planet, making it the only UK city to make the travel guidebook’s annual Best in Travel list

Wrapping up the 30 world’s best destinations is the ‘Unwind’ category with Dominica being included in the list. Not to be confused with the Dominican Republic, Dominica is a lesser-visited island in the Caribbean. However, it is now buzzing with tourism as it is served by direct flights on American Airlines from Miami and the opening of a luxury resort in 2019 by Swiss grand hotel chain, Kempinski.