National Geographic Traveller (UK) has revealed ‘The Cool List’ of twenty ‘must see’ destinations from around the world. Listed at number four, Cumbria is the only English region included and rubs shoulders with the likes of Namibia, Slovenia and Baja California in Mexico.

The hotly anticipated list of countries and cities is revealed in the latest issue of the renowned travel publication, which will be out on Thursday 6 February, and is a source of ideas and inspiration for people across the globe. National Geographic Traveller also says the Cool List reflects the growing appetite for responsible and authentic travel.

In a year marking 250 years since William Wordsworth’s birth, the poet’s home county is described “as magnetic as ever”, with the Cool List praising “England’s most spectacular corner”. Wordsworth’s anniversary year is further highlighted with the upcoming £6.2million investment in his former Grasmere home, Dove Cottage, and the adjacent Wordsworth Museum.

Cumbria is also singled out for “the UK’s most exciting trio of restaurants”: The Cottage in the Wood in Whinlatter Forest, Allium at Askham Hall and The Old Stamp House Restaurant in Ambleside, which all recently won their first Michelin stars.

From Cumbria and Cairo to Panama and Pakistan, we’ve scoured the globe for 2020’s most interesting destinations,” says Pat Riddell, Editor of National Geographic Traveller. “It’s a list that gives you plenty of inspiration close to home, as well as further afield, highlighting hiking trails, emerging culinary hubs, luxury lodges and landmark attractions.”

What an accolade!” adds Rachel Tyson, Head of Marketing and Partnerships at Cumbria Tourism. The news also comes just months after Lonely Planet listed Hadrian’s Wall as one of its top ten unmissable experiences, so it’s fantastic to see another globally renowned travel publication recognise the fantastic range and diversity of what our county has to offer.

 “Readers of National Geographic Traveller are widely known as independently-minded travellers, which chimes perfectly with our desire to inspire people about the many hidden gems and lesser known locations across the county.

 “The Cumbria Tourism team recently worked with the magazine to highlight Cumbria’s coastline and we’re thrilled that they are again reinforcing our reputation as a world-class destination.”


The Cool List 2020 includes:

  1. Namibia
  2. Baja California
  3. Lebanon
  4. Cumbria
  5. Slovenia
  6. Wales
  7. Panama
  8. Brisbane
  9. Salt Lake City
  10. Yerevan
  11. Lyon
  12. Ethiopia
  13. Cairo
  14. Los Angeles
  15. Puerto Rico
  16. Pakistan
  17. Galway
  18. Vietnam
  19. Tel Aviv
  20. Rio de Janeiro 

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