Travel trends are changing and evolving by the day. I mean, in a world that has never been so connected, it is inevitable that travelling is bound to get easier and cheaper over time. Couch surfing has well integrated it’s way into most backpackers itinerary. Whether you’re planning on couch surfing your entire trip, or just a couple of spots along the way, it means that you’re bound to find easy and flexible accommodation. Even better, you’ll have access to your very own tour guide who will show you all the hidden gems of your city of choice. So leave behind the contikis and forget AirBnB, couch surfing is the future. So, here is the top five destinations to hit up if you’re keen to make a couch your bed for a few days, or weeks, or months.
#1 Groningen, The Netherlands
When you think about The Netherlands, your mind instantly thinks Amsterdam, the booming capital filled with underground parties, open minded citizens and of course the famous red light district. But if you’re looking for a youthful city filled with free spirited people and an abundance of bikes, then Groningen is the place to be. It’s one of the happiest cities in Europe and there is 10000 hosts ready to welcome you on their couch. Be ready to absorb the real Dutch culture, from the Martini Tower to Goudkantoor. And no need to worry; there are plenty of bars and parties to hit up as well, with the house and techno scene thriving.
#2 San Francisco, California
Easily one of the most innovative and progressive cities of America, San Fran is the perfect place to couch surf. You’re bound to meet interesting people, ready to show you around the historical city, filled with natural beauty and of course great nightlife. There are over 30000 couch hosts so finding a place will come with ease. Plus, there is always plenty of events on throughout the year, so it doesn’t matter whether you hit up the city during peak season or not.
#3 Phnom Penh, Cambodia
Phnom Penh has grown to be one of the most international cities in South East Asia. Home to many expats and volunteers, there is no denying you’ll meet a like-minded traveller in the Cambodian capital. Even better, the locals are super friendly and always open to housing and showing people around. The Khmer people have big hearts and even bigger stomachs, so get ready to eat at some of the best markets in the city. And be sure to visit Royal Palace while you’re there. A must do on the list.
#4 Marrakech, Morocco
What better way to experience Morocco than with the locals. It’s no surprise Marrakech is on this list, the incredible old-world city is surrounded by beautiful natural surroundings and home to some of the friendliest people in the world. You’ll be swept away with local tradition here, exposed to unique architecture, heaps of markets and lots of incredible food. It’s the perfect city for a detox, with some of the finest mint tea in the world brewed here. There are over 10000 couch surfing hosts in the city, plus plenty of Facebook groups where you’re bound to find a local host and guide.
#5 Medillin, Columbia
Situated in a narrow valley surrounded by the peaks of the Andes, this South American city is bustling with industry by day and ready to party by night. Medillin is defined by two things; food and dance, so you’re guaranteed a good time when you’re backpacking through this cultural haven. There are over 15000 people ready to welcome you with open couches, so you’re guaranteed to immerse yourself with a local guide. And for any Narcos fans out there, well be sure to jump on a Pablo Escobar tour while you’re in the city.
Image Sources: Midday, Unsplash, SSH, Conde Nast Traveller, TRVL, Mokum Surf Club.