Best gap year locations

The top 5 places for a gap year

Best gap year locations

For many British students, the gap year is a chance to relax, reflect and explore before beginning formal studies at university.

Whether travellers want to visit exotic destinations, find part time work in a new city or just relax with friends in a scenic destination, there are thousands of possible locations to see on your gap year. If you are looking for inspiration for an upcoming gap year of your own, consider one of these top destinations.

Sydney, Australia

Australia is without a doubt one of the most popular places for British students to visit on their gap years. There are plenty of reasons for this, starting with the fact that English is the native language, making it easy to be understood and get around. In addition, the reversed seasons in the Southern hemisphere mean that a winter gap year for UK citizens results in warm temperatures during an Australian summer. There is also plenty to do and see, with a giant territory waiting to be explored. Because of the size of the country, many students consider group car hire to get around from destination to destination. Car rentals  may not be typical for a backpacker's adventure, but it means you can see this amazing country in a whole new way. While there are world-famous sights like Ayers Rock  and the Great Barrier Reef  that should certainly be visited; Sydney makes for a great home base if you plan to stick around for a while.

Kuta, Bali

This is a famous beach destination known for the many backpackers, students and travellers who head there each year to relax and unwind. The warm Indonesian climate  and attractive scenery lends itself well to the laid back and relaxed vibe found on the island. There is plenty of very inexpensive accommodation located near the beaches, and it is the perfect place for those interested in surfing. As might be expected from a top gap year choice, there are plenty of busy bars and nightclubs, offering affordable drinks until the wee hours of the morning. For a longer gap year on a tight budget, Kuta  is a great choice.

Vancouver, Canada

This city in the Canadian province of British Columbia has long since been one of the most common places for students to go on their gap years. British citizens will appreciate being able to speak English, and it is a great place to settle down for a full year and find temporary employment. It is continually ranked as one of the most beautiful cities on earth, and is situated between the Pacific Ocean and the towering mountains of Western Canada. The atmosphere is certainly young and hip, and there countless opportunities to enjoy the nearby beaches, try hiking, or use public transport to explore lesser known areas in Canada. You are just an hour or two from amazing national parks and world class skiing in places like Banff  and Whistler .


Many recent graduates consider China for their gap year because of the great opportunities available for teaching English. Many companies are happy to hire someone who is a native English speaker, and you can easily find either part time or full time employment during your stay. In addition, it gives British citizens a chance to understand a different culture and way of life, and perhaps even learn Mandarin or Cantonese in the process. While major cities like Beijing or Shanghai are common choices, they are more expensive to live in than smaller rural towns.

Trans-Siberian Railway

For a trip that visits plenty of unique destinations, consider taking the Trans-Siberian Railway  from the Sea of Japan all the way to Moscow. Rather than spend an entire week on the train, get off at some of the incredible destinations along the way, spending a day or a few months in each location before catching the next train that comes through. Some of the amazing places you will visit include traditional Mongolian tribes, Siberian cities, Lake Baikal and more. There is no better way to experience a range of culture in one journey.

As you can see, there are countless possible destinations for a gap year. Remember while there are plenty of organized tours and employment opportunities that help you to get the most out of your journey, some of the best adventures happen when you plan your own trip. Enjoy one of these popular locations on your upcoming gap year for a wonderful experience you will certainly never forget. 

This article has been submitted by Steven Hampshire

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