Five Destination Dupes That Rival Their Popular Counterparts

As summer approaches, travelers are seeking escapes that provide luxury and tranquility without the overwhelming crowds of the most popular destinations. Enter the trend of ‘destination dupes’—hidden gems that offer the same allure as their well-trodden counterparts but with a more serene and exclusive ambiance for travelers to experience this season. Below, you’ll find a curated selection of these alternative destinations, each promising a distinct yet reminiscent experience.

Whether you’re dreaming of Mediterranean vistas, lush wine country, serene beaches, majestic fjords, or an exotic island getaway, these hidden gems provide the same allure as their more famous counterparts but with fewer crowds and more opportunities for authentic exploration. Pack your bags and get ready to discover a new favorite destination this summer.

destination dupes

Destination: Amalfi Coast, Italy

Dupe: Cavtat, Croatia

Swap the bustling Amalfi Coast for the serene coastal town of Cavtat in Croatia. Cavtat offers stunning Mediterranean views, charming cobblestone streets, and delicious seafood without the tourist throngs of Amalfi or even the Croatian town’s close-by, more cosmopolitan neighbor of Dubrovnik.

Nestled between the quaint streets of the historic small town and the unbroken blue of the Adriatic Sea, Hotel Supetar Cavtat of the Adriatic Luxury Hotels collection features 16 spacious, stylish, and individually designed rooms with Mediterranean soul. Each room in the meticulously renovated 1920s three-story private villa reveals a distinctive touch of style with soothing color palettes and intricate detailing. Designed to offer rest and relaxation, rooms feature stylish furniture, sophisticated fabrics, and garden or sea views just steps away from the charming waterfront promenade. Antique furniture pieces are paired with modern finishes, while rich fabrics and bespoke artwork add a sense of sophistication. The hotel also houses a Mediterranean restaurant, a wine bar featuring local and international wines, an artist-in-residence program, a garden, and a pool.

 

Destination: Napa Valley, California

Dupe: Mendoza, Argentina

Trade the vineyards of Napa Valley for the equally exquisite wine country of Mendoza, Argentina. Mendoza boasts world-class wineries, stunning Andean backdrops, and a vibrant culinary scene. Travelers can indulge in luxury at SB Winemaker’s House & Spa Suites, a bespoke estate created by Argentina’s renowned female winemaker, Susana Balbo, and her daughter, Ana Lovaglio Balbo. This boutique hotel features seven spa suites with integrated in-room spa amenities, a restaurant showcasing bold Argentinian flavors, a specially curated art collection, and impassioned programming, including horseback riding and custom wine blending. The spa menu offers a sensory journey inspired by Mendoza’s cultural heritage, with luxurious mud wraps infused with red wine and hydrating treatments enriched with grape polyphenols.

destination dupes

Destination: Puerto Vallarta, Mexico

Dupe: Riviera Nayarit, Mexico

Instead of the bustling beaches of Puerto Vallarta, opt for the tranquil shores of Riviera Nayarit. Just north, this area offers a more laid-back vibe only a few miles away, with Sayulita, a Pueblo Mágico known for its vibrant surf culture, and San Pancho, a cultural gem recently recognized for its artistic and community achievements.

Travelers can opt to stay at the Grand Velas Riviera Nayarit. With a backdrop of the picturesque Sierra Madre mountains, the beachfront resort features 267 ocean-view suites, some with private plunge pools. Six restaurants, four of which have received AAA Four Diamond awards, offer distinguished cuisine and presentation, gourmet culinary experiences, and impeccable service. Other features include a three-tiered pool with different temperatures, a fitness center, 24/7 in-suite service, water sports, tennis, a Baby Concierge, a Kids’ Club, and a state-of-the-art Teens’ Club. Velas Resorts offers unparalleled all-inclusive experiences with luxurious accommodations, world-class service, and award-winning amenities.

Destination: Galápagos

Dupe: Mauritius

Travelers can escape to the breathtaking island of Mauritius, located off the east coast of Africa, where they can witness rare wildlife like the Aldabra giant tortoise and vibrant pink pigeon and explore remote landscapes. Mauritius allows nature lovers to seek adventure in an ecologically sensitive environment. Travelers can opt to travel with HomeExchange Collection, an exclusive community for like-minded travelers to meet, share, and exchange their luxury homes. With access to more than 5,000 luxury homes in over 85 countries, HomeExchange Collection ensures that travelers feel at home anywhere in the world, guided by their host’s advice and locally curated travel recommendations.

destination dupes

Destination: Switzerland

Dupe: Norway

Swap the mountains of Switzerland for the majestic fjords of Norway. Travelers can enjoy outdoor activities like hiking and kayaking, explore charming towns, and dine on exceptionally local cuisine in the Scandinavian country. Travel curator Up Norway is committed to sustainable tourism and authentic Norwegian experiences, offering bespoke itineraries tailored to an individual’s preference. The company takes pride in offering experiences off the tourist trail and offers access to sites and stories that would be a challenge to discover otherwise. Their partners are native Norwegians who take pride in serving local cuisine, showing off their vibrant culture and breathtaking nature. Up Norway’s trips focus not on standard city tours but on getting people out into the country’s stunning landscapes and in contact with the local people. Curated accommodations include not only boutique hotels but also stilted log cabins, lakeside yurts, tent igloos, and a renovated lighthouse: cozy places where you’re hosted by the owners and introduced to the local culture and traditions.

Ideal for summer travel, Up Norway’s Coastal, Rural, and Urban Norway Journey takes travelers along the Golden Road of the Trøndelag region and then onto the remote island community of Veiholmen before ending the trip in urban Trondheim. All along the way, this journey allows travelers to engage with local communities and delve into Norway’s nature, food, soft adventure, and more. Highlights include rowing in a traditional Viking-style boat, cheese and cider pairings, food as art, unmatchable views, kayaking around a remote archipelago, Polestar car rental, and more.

Sierra Vandervort

Hey there 👋 I’m Sierra – welcome to my website!

I’m a writer, yoga teacher, and community builder located in the PNW.

I’m here to help you connect to something bigger, find your tribe & live in total abundance!

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