Andrew Goff / @ 4 a.m. / Our Culture

(VIDEO) NO MORE COMPLAINING, HUMBOLDT: Lonely Planet Says We Live Smack Dab in the Middle of 2018’s Top Travel Destination


Slow going getting your grow op permitted? Quick! Throw a cot in the corner of your greenhouse and AirBNB that thing! We’re having guests. 

 

But why? Shh. This is a big deal. Lonely Planet, the largest publisher of travel books you buy pre-globe-trot then tragically forget to pack, announced today its annual Best in the US list of our great nation’s “most compelling” vacation destinations. And it’s good news for us! Move on over, 2017 chart-topper Asheville, North Carolina, because LP’s “travel experts” have declared “California’s Redwood Coast” all the rage for 2018. We rule.

Why do we rule so hard? Well, Lonely Planet suggests that travelers might enjoy “towering forests of giant redwood trees that you might recognize from blockbuster film franchises such as Star Wars and Jurassic Park” and notes that “[w]ith Redwood National Park turning 50 this year, travelers can get their share of shinrin-yoku (forest therapy) and experience Humboldt County’s quirky new shops, oysters and brewpubs.” (Here.)

Quirky new shops?

Anyway, 2018’s gonna be super. Allow Lonely Planet to further pump you up for this year’s list — and read the rest of the Top Ten (we edged out Boise?)— in the no-longer-embargoed release below.

(Also, feel free to weigh-in on Cincinnati’s fifth place ranking in the comments even farther down):

 

Each year, Lonely Planet asks its community of travel experts – in-house editors, researchers on the road and locals on the ground – to decide on the most compelling destinations to visit in the year ahead. This year marks the eighth annual Best in the US list.

For 2018 Lonely Planet named California’s Redwood Coast the number one destination in the country to visit in 2018. Located four hours north of San Francisco, this picturesque region spans 175 miles of coastline and is home to towering forests of giant redwood trees that you might recognize from blockbuster film franchises such as Star Wars and Jurassic Park. With Redwood National Park turning 50 this year, travelers can get their share of shinrin-yoku (forest therapy) and experience Humboldt County’s quirky new shops, oysters and brewpubs.

“This is a huge endorsement from one of the world’s top travel brands,” Eureka-Humboldt Visitors Bureau Tony Smithers said. “We’ve always known that the Redwood Coast is one the most special places on Earth. We’re honored and glad to see that Lonely Planet and others are starting to see it too.” 

The bureau worked extensively with Lonely Planet to prepare for the announcement. It assisted with research before the final selection, provided promotional Humboldt images and video, coordinated an advance media trip for Lonely Planet staff, and organized the grand prize sweepstakes (see below). To help local businesses take advantage of the news, it will provide promotional Lonely Planet’s Best US Destination window decals upon request.

Lonely Planet’s Best in the US 2018:

# # #

  1. California’s Redwood Coast – “Lose all track of time (and cell signal)”
  2. Boise, Idaho – “What cool looks like before the rest of the world has figured it out”
  3. Chattanooga, Tennessee – “Meet the New South!”
  4. Florida’s Space Coast – “Get a taste of outer space on earth”
  5. Cincinnati, Ohio – “A new chapter for the city’s artistic icons”
  6. Midcoast, Maine – “One word says it all: ‘Ayuh’”
  7. Richmond, Virginia – “Flipped from humdrum to happening”
  8. Kentucky Bourbon Country – “The state’s distilling heritage runs deep”
  9. Minneapolis, Minnesota – “In the spotlight for this year’s Super Bowl”
  10. Southeastern Utah – “Quintessential Americana road-trip country”

# # #

“These are the places American travelers should know about in 2018,” said Lonely Planet US magazine managing editor Alexander Howard. “The US is packed with timeless, well-known destinations, but if you’re looking for something different to shake up your travel plans this year, this list will get you inspired. Some of them are cities on the rise, or that challenge our expectations, while others offer unique experiences you can’t find anywhere else.”

The list is available online and features video and a chance to win a trip to Humboldt County to experience California’s Redwood Coast.


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