2017 saw walkli mappers contribute hundreds of guided city walks in destinations all around the world. To cap off the year, we're counting down our 21 favorite. Here are the top 10! For #21-#11, check out Part 1.
Less grand than the Back Bay, less stodgy than Beacon Hill, and less flashy than the waterfront, Boston's South End and Bay Village neighborhoods have a character all their own. Enjoy small streets packed with local shops, fantastic food, community parks, and beautiful Victorian row houses with this great map by Boston Hostel. By the way, if you're staying at Boston Hostel, they have a live, guided version of this tour that you can join for free!
What we love about it: These neighborhoods - especially the South End - are favorites for locals, but often missed by tourists. Union Park is one of the most scenic streets in the whole city!
What else to check out: Boston is walkli's home town and we love to show it off. If you're visiting our city, we've got a bunch of great guides to help you explore the city. See them all here.
Kong Kong is one of the world's most densely populated cities, so sometimes it's nice to escape the crowds and go for an urban hike. Itchy Feet on the Cheap maps our a guide from an outlying small village and up into the hills of Sha Tin. Along the way you'll visit a columbarium, a temple with over 10,000 Buddha statues, and enjoy the greenery of Hong Kong along with its houses in the hills. See the map here.
What we love about it: Fresh air and a bit of a workout for the legs!
What else to check out: Itchy Feet on the Cheap lives in Asia and writes extensively about how to backpack around for cheap. Their blog has a lot of great info, and on walkli they've posted some great maps for Vietnam, which can be found in his profile . If Hong Kong is your destination of choice, the the rest of the walkli collection for the city here, including a great guide for exploring the city in search of delicious snacks!
We typically hear about Pamplona, Spain, once a year - at the running of the bulls. But the city has a lot more to offer visitors than a once-per-year spectacle. NomadWill guides you through the city with this detailed map, showing off more than 20 of his favorite spots ranging from small streets in the city center to the Fortress and Citadel on the city's northern and southern edges.
What we love about it: So much to see, but barely over 2 miles in length this map is really efficient for the traveler with limited time!
What else to check out: Is Pamplona part of a tour of Northern Spain? If so, check out guides to nearby Bilbao and Zaragoza (NomadWill's hometown). Or head a bit further and enjoy sunny Barcelona . If you're taking a more extensive trip through the country, we have more than 30 guides covering 15+ cities and towns, including popular destinations such as Madrid , Valencia , and Seville , as well as less visited cities like Cadiz and Toledo .
Want to see actual New York City and not just thousands of tourists? Then escape Times Square and head downtown to the trendy Chelsea and Meatpacking Districts, courtesy of Anna from Travel Outside the Box. From art galleries to fashion, to trendy eateries, you'll feel like real insider as you explore these neighborhoods! See the map here.
What we love about it: The High Line!
What else to check out: New York City has so much to offer and walkli has 15+ guides for the city to match any taste, from peaceful strolls in Central Park to shopping tours of SoHo. After you're done with New York, check out Anna's walkli profile for some inspiration for your next trip - we love her Seedy Tallinn , Hipster Oslo , and Healthy Ubud maps!
Estonia is known within tech circles as one of the most startup friendly countries on the planet - heck, they even teach every kid how to code! But this tiny country, and it's capital Tallinn, isn't so well known by travelers outside of Europe. A Couple on a Budget want to help change that. They take you on a tour of the best the city has to offer - from its charming and romantic old town, to some of the historically significant sites of Soviet occupation. See their map here.
What we love about it: At only two and a quarter miles, you don't have to travel far to see a lot. In fact, you could take it all in on a day trip from Helsinki...but we'd recommend staying a night (or two!).
What else to check out: Have a bit more time in Tallinn and want to see another side of the city all together? Check out Seedy Tallinn: Outside the Old City Walls . Or, try out the other Baltic capitals Riga and Vilnius - both well worth a visit.
Florence is an amazing city full of art, museums, and history. But what to do if you've got kids in tow? Not to worry, A Traveling Bond shares her experiences and recommendations for traveling with toddlers. This short 1.5 mile walk through Florence captures highlights of the city for both adults - Ponte Vecchio, Piazzale Michelangelo - as well as kids (the best gelato in Italy!).
What we love about it: It proves that exploring doesn't have to stop once you start a family!
What else to check out: A lot of contributors to walkli travel with kids - in fact, we even wrote a whole post about family-friend trips based on their maps. Here are some other cities to consider for family-friendly travel, per the walkli community: Brisbane , Marseille , Seville , Washington DC , Las Vegas , Singapore , and Bangkok.
Everyone has heard of San Francisco's famous neighborhoods, including The Castro and The Mission, but to really explore and understand them and their impact on the city and its culture you really need the help of a local. Billy, from BillysCities is here to help. He'll take you to the heart of the world's most famous gay neighborhood (and share with you some of its important history and figures) and then over to the adjacent Latino community in the Mission - home to some cool street art, food, and the oldest building in San Francisco. Make sure to carve out an afternoon to take it all in; see the map here.
What we love about it: It helps tourist break away from the crowds at Fisherman's Wharf to visit areas that have played a significant role in the city's - and the country's - history over the past 40 years.
What else to check out: San Francisco is a compact, but diverse, city so each day can feel unique. See what else the walkli community has posted for it here . Or, if you like Billy (and you should!) see his profile for his routes for exploring Berlin and Amsterdam - and be sure to check out his blog to keep up with his adventures.
Innsbruck is one of Europe's most picturesque cities, nestled right in the heart of the Alps. Travel writer Cindy Loe, from One Perfect Day In, shows you how to take in the city even if you're just passing through for a day on the train. From the grand Imperial Palace of the Hapsburgs to an ultra modern ski jump, have your camera ready for some stunning sights. Also, don't miss the cable car ride up for some stunning mountain views! See her map here.
What we love about it: Fresh mountain air!
What else to check out: Like cities with an elevated view? Check out guides for Cusco , San Marino , and Ubud . For more recommendations by Cindy, see her walkli profile with more than 20 maps for spending One Perfect Day In some of her favorite cities.
Let's face it, whether we like it or not Instagram has had a HUGE influence on the travel industry. But where do all those amazing shots come from? It's often difficult to know. Well Instagram star, Diana Millos wants to help you capture the same kinds of amazing shots that she did with her Porto Instagram Tour. With 19 spots over 7 miles you're sure to post a shot or two that will help you pick up a follower or two (not to mention make your friends jealous!).
What we love about it: Diana's maps help you make the most of your vacation and come home with photos that you could display at a gallery (or on your wall).
What else to check out: We actually have an entire post of Diana Instagramming Europe , but you can also find her maps in our Barcelona , Santorini , Paris , and Venice , collections.
Terry and Maura are the TravelKiwis. They've been married for more than 30 years and have spent the last 2 of those slow traveling around the world together. They call Bruges a 'must see' destination and their 3 mile walk around the city highlights why. On it, they'll show you the best spots to capture a perfect photo, their favorite local watering hole, and even where to find the history of chocolate (with samples!). Sounds like a perfect way to spend an afternoon!
What we love about it: Architecture, Beer, Canals, and Chocolate. What else could one ask for?
What else to check out: See our interview with the TravelKiwis here for some great inspiration, or check out their profile to see their catalog of more than 40 amazing maps for exploring the cities in which they've stayed. To keep up with their latest travels, check in frequently (or subscribe) to their blog .
That's it for 2017! Congrats to everyone mentioned on the top 21 list -and thanks to all of our other contributors who made walkli was it is today. We're looking forward to another big year of travel in 2018!
We're not out to change the world, just how you explore it. We're a community of travel experts sharing our hometowns and favorite cities with a focus on local experiences and seeing the 'real' city between the the major tourist sites. Want to contribute? See our step-by-step guide for getting started, or shoot us a note at firstname.lastname@example.org