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Lisbon's Baixa © Pixabay
Lisbon's Baixa © Pixabay

The Two Surprising Cities Everyone’s Desperate to Visit This Fall – and They Couldn’t Be More Different

Picture of Nina Santos
Updated: 20 September 2017

The two colorful cities charming travelers lately have less in common than you may realize. Retro yet vibrant, the only telltale signs that time hasn’t stood still in Havana and Lisbon are the worn buildings with stories in their very appearances. Bright with motley neighborhoods, surrounded by beautiful beaches, and marked with unique histories and cultures, these two capitals may seem like two peas in a pod, but they are as different as the Caribbean and Europe, literally.

More wanderlusters are booking trips to Havana and Lisbon than ever, but for two very different reasons. Havana’s surge in popularity may have begun when the USA resumed flights to the Cuban capital after more than five decades, but Cuba’s weather, coastline, friendly locals, and Havana’s classic vibes (including classic cars) may have continued to push that popularity to greater heights. Even the recent tug back on the travel reigns hasn’t seemed to deter American travelers from seeking out this tropical hot spot that has been entertaining Canadians and other international travelers for longer.

Lisbon is the other capital that is continuing to climb the tourism charts year after year. Incredibly budget-friendly, safe, and easy to explore, it is attracting tourists from all around the world who are looking for good weather and beautiful scenery. An extra light has been shone on Portugal’s capital as a creative and entrepreneurial hub, as well as a culinary center, and it has become a top destination to move to.

As different as salsa and fado, ropa vieja and bacalhau, or a classic Chevy and a Smart car, these two amazing cities do have one big characteristic in common: they know how to show their visitors a good time.