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Thessaloniki New ‘Happening’ City Break Destination, ABTA Says

Thessaloniki, northern Greece. Photo Source: @Thessaloniki Travel

Thessaloniki, northern Greece. Photo Source: @Thessaloniki Travel

The Association of British Travel Agents (ABTA) has included the northern port city of Thessaloniki among its 12 destinations to watch for in its 2019 list.


Taking into consideration a series of factors including new flight routes, major events and celebrations as well as value for money, ABTA experts have independently selected the destinations expected to win over the crowds in the coming year.

ABTA highlights Thessaloniki’s vibrancy, noting that the city has undergone a renaissance of sorts thanks to the award-winning redevelopment of its waterfront. The birthplace of Alexander the Great, Thessaloniki has plenty to offer visitors in terms of history thanks to its Macedonian heritage on show at the well preserved UNESCO World Heritage Sites of Philippi and Vergina.

At the same time, the city offers plenty of opportunities for sea and sun lovers in Halkidiki, home to some of Greece’s best beaches.

Porto Koufo village in Halkidiki. Photo Source: Halkidiki Tourism Organization

Porto Koufo village in Halkidiki. Photo Source: Halkidiki Tourism Organization

Besides Thessaloniki, the ABTA list includes Bulgaria and the ancient city of Plovdiv as it takes center stage as European Capital of Culture; Costa Rica; Denver, Colorado; Durban, South Africa; Galicia, Spain; Japan, which will be hosting the Rugby World Cup in autumn 2019; Jordan; the island of Madeira; Poland; Uzbekistan; and Western Australia.

“This year’s 12 destinations to watch showcase the diversity available to UK holidaymakers, including a range of vibrant cities, rich cultures, incredible countryside and stunning beaches – all readily accessible from the UK,” said Victoria Bacon, ABTA director of Brand and Business Development.

Meanwhile, according to ABTA’s Travel Trends 2019 report, 46 percent of travelers are likely to visit a country they’ve never been to before in the next 12 months, while more than half (53 percent) said they would be visiting a new resort or city.

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