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35 Cities You Need to Explore in 2024

by AIFS Abroad
Three Global Cities - Sydney, Australia; Seoul, South Korea; Seville, Spain

It’s nearing the end of 2023, so it’s time to start thinking about your New Year’s resolutions. What better way to make a change than spending time in another country? There are so many incredible cities to visit and explore in 2024, but where should you go? AIFS Abroad offers multiple programs in a variety of fields for students and recent grads to study abroad or intern internationally, including each of the following.

Here are the best cities to visit and explore in 2024:

1. Stellenbosch, South Africa

Just 31 miles to South Africa’s capital city of Cape Town (which is easily accessible by train) lies this university town, famous for its oak tree-lined streets. In addition to Stellenbosch University — one of South Africa’s finest — it is also the country’s largest wine-growing region, with Stellenbosch Cabernet Sauvignon growing in international prestige. If you’re looking for a place to satisfy your intellectual curiosity as well as your taste buds, maybe a taste of Stellenbosch will wet your whistle next year.

Stellenbosch, South Africa
Stellenbosch, South Africa

2. Seoul, South Korea

If you’re a city-person, the capital of South Korea is a must-visit, as it’s the world’s fourth largest metropolitan economy, trailing only Tokyo, New York City and Los Angeles. We could go on and on about Seoul’s globally renowned historical sites, or the fact that it’s home to 15 Fortune Global 500 companies, including Samsung, LG and Hyundai, but we know the real reason why you might be interested in visiting Seoul — it’s the national hub of K-pop. Whether you’re a Blink, Once or NCTzen, you could be in the crowd of your favorite K-pop group in Seoul in 2024. 

3. Salzburg, Austria

As the birthplace of Mozart, the hills are truly alive with the Sound of Music in Salzburg (no really, the film took place and was shot here). If you really want to escape in 2024 and take a visit to one of the most unique European cities, Salzburg’s historic center is renowned for its Baroque architecture and views of the Alps. You too will be singing Salzburg’s praises if you study abroad or intern internationally here.

London, England
London, England

4. London, England 

As one of the world’s megacities, the capital of London has something to offer everyone, whether you’re there to take in its history, its renowned museums, or just happen to be obsessed with the Royal Family. In addition to it its allure as a tourist, it’s also an influential city in a wide variety of fields and industries, including art, entertainment, commerce, education healthcare, media, tech and communications. Sure, it can be a bit rainy compared to other cities, but it will also rain great opportunities upon you if you visit in 2024. 

5. Berlin, Germany 

It’s easy to forget, but Berlin was once a divided city. While the country’s vast and checkered history can be seen on nearly every block, it’s Germany’s future that is on the minds of young students and professionals here. Berlin’s economy is largely based on tech, creative industries, startups and media and you too could be contemplating your future while looking over the Spree River with ein Bier in 2024.

6. Budapest, Hungary 

It’s been a while since the Austro-Hungarian empire was in power, but as you gaze upon the authoritative Hungarian Parliament across the Danube River in Budapest, you’ll come to realize its impact. Whether you visit the city to take in its classical architecture or enjoy a dip in one of its 80 geothermal springs, Budapest is built for pleasure. If 2023 was a stressful year for you, make sure 2024 won’t be with a trip to Budapest. 

Ponte Vecchio in Florence, Italy
Florence, Italy

7. Florence, Italy 

Florence is a popular tourist destination in Europe, with tourists outnumbering the local population from April to October — but for good reason! Florence is believed to have the greatest concentration of art in the world, particularly Renaissance paintings and sculptures by Donatello, Michelangelo and Raphael. If you’re looking for inspiration for your next project or phase in life, perhaps take council from the masters in Florence in 2024.  

8. Milan, Italy 

Due to the international success of the houses of Armani, Prada, Versace, Moschino and Dolce & Gabbana, Milan has become known as one of the world’s fashion capitals. If threads aren’t your thing, Milan is also home to wonderful art exhibits in its own right, including da Vinci’s The Last Supper, featured in the church of Santa Maria delle Grazie. Either way, if you’re looking to live your best life in 2024, do so in Milan.

9. Rome, Italy

How often do you think about the Roman Empire? Well, as it was the cradle of Western civilization, it should be a lot. If you’ve ever wanted to traverse the same streets as the great scholars, artists and leaders of history, such as Trajan, Caesar and Nero, 2024 is your chance to do as the Romans do. 

Edinburgh, Scotland | AIFS Study Abroad
Edinburgh, Scotland

10. Edinburgh, Scotland 

The Scottish capital can best be described as “a little old, and a little new.” While its historic sites such as Edinburgh Castle and its numerous underground vaults reflect its novel history, events such as Edinburgh Fringe Festival and various EDM concerts look to the city’s continued evolution. If those all sound like a good time to you, say “aye” to Edinburgh as one of the cities you visit in 2024. 

11. Prague, Czech Republic 

Have you always wanted to visit Europe? Well, Prague is considered the “Heart of Europe,” due to its preservation of its cultural attractions despite the destruction of 20th century Europe. There’s Prague Castle, Charles Bridge, and the Prague astronomical clock. If you’re looking to experience an authentic Europe of old, Prague is your best bet in 2024. 

12. Cannes, France 

What was once a French fishing village has transformed into modern city with the relaxed attitude of a seaside resort. You’re probably most familiar with Cannes due to its world renowned film festival, which basically is the reason you’ve seen any movie outside ones by the big studios, but it’s also developed into a hub for tech and other types of companies. Maybe 2024 is the year you award yourself with a critically acclaimed visit to Cannes, one of Europe’s most delightful cities. 

13. Paris, France 

We most likely don’t need to twist your arm to convince you to study abroad or intern internationally in Paris. It’s Paris! The Louvre, the Eiffel Tower, there’s a reason why Paris has attracted artists from around the world, and why its reputation has earned its nickname as the “City of Art.” If it’s always felt inevitable, you’d end up in Paris one day, might we suggest 2024 as the year you finally see it. 

Grenoble, France
Grenoble, France

14. Grenoble, France 

Prefer the French countryside to the busy Parisian streets? Grenoble is known as the “Capital of the Alps” and is your gateway to the majestic mountains of Chartreuse, Belledonne and Vercors. If you’re someone who loves quaint cities and also being close to the outdoors, consider a visit to Grenoble, France in 2024.

15. Athens, Greece 

The votes are in, and it turns out the birthplace of Democracy has been a popular destination for young travelers for over 5,000 years in a row now! From the Parthenon to the cobbled streets of the Plaka, it makes sense that Athens has been one of the most visited cities in the world since antiquity. You too can marvel at its history in the year 2024.

16. Dublin, Ireland 

Looking to add a little bit of luck to your 2024? Dublin is calling, along with its rich cultural heritage and effortlessly inviting nature. There’s so much to see and do in this metropolitan hotspot. See what the craic is up with the Republic of Ireland’s capital. 

17. Galway, Ireland 

If you prefer a more quaint Irish experience, Galway boasts bustling medieval streets and waterways surrounded by some of Ireland’s most breath-taking natural scenery. It’s also famed for its traditional Irish music scene, colorful buildings, and cobblestone streets. Be someone’s Galway Girl in 2024. 

Limerick, Ireland
Limerick, Ireland

18. Limerick, Ireland 

The Irish are known for their theater, poetry, literature and music, which all convene in the city of Limerick like the center of a four-leaf clover. Even the town name has a connection to a certain type of humorous verse of five lines with AABBA rhyme scheme. While Ireland has so many incredible cities, we love a 2024 visit to Limerick for English majors and lovers of Irish culture in general. 

19. Maynooth, Ireland 

If you’re looking for a more intimate study abroad experience, we recommend you visit the university town of Maynooth in County Kildare in 2024. Surrounded by the gothic architecture of St. Patrick’s College, it’s the perfect place to hideaway and study peacefully. And when you’ve done your reading, there’s plenty of delicious eateries, bars and cafés to try! It’s also a stone’s throw away from Dublin, so you’ll have the best of both worlds at your fingertips.

20. Lisbon, Portugal 

Want to visit one of the oldest cities in the world in 2024? Not only does Lisbon have a long a varied history, having been ruled by everyone from pre-Celtic tribes, Phoenicians, and declared a city by Julius Caesar himself, but it’s also known for its beaches, many of which were awarded a Blue Flag. While you’re gazing out into the Atlantic, you can think about all the people throughout history who have gazed at that same horizon. 

21. Barcelona, Spain 

Spain’s second largest city of Barcelona is also one of its most cosmopolitan. It boasts a diverse performing arts scene, the Primavera Sound Festival and of course Camp Nou, where the world-famous FC Barcelona football team play. Join the roar of the crowd in and visit Barcelona in 2024. 

Alhambra, Granada, Spain
Granada, Spain

22. Granada, Spain 

Looking to reach greater heights in 2024? The Spanish city of Granada is perched between the dazzling white peaks of the Sierra Nevada mountain range. Foodies will appreciate Granada’s Arabic-Andalusian food, a unique blend said to have originated from a time between the thirteenth and fifteenth centuries, when Muslims, Jews and Christians lived together in peace.  

23. Madrid, Spain 

If your 2024 New Year’s resolution is to work on your Spanish, there’s no better place to do so than the city that hosts the Royal Spanish Academy, literally the authority on the language. And if your resolution is to take in more art, head on down to Paseo del Prado (aka the “Golden Triangle of Art”) where the trifecta of the Thyssen, Prado, and Reina Sofià museums will show you works from greats such as Picasso, Dali, Goya and Bosch. 

24. Salamanca, Spain 

The university town of Salamanca gives off a similar vibe as other European college cities such as Oxford or Bologna, so you’ll love a visit here in 2024. Its medieval architecture and vibrant student life making for a dynamic place to study or explore. Grab a hornazo (meat pie) and hunker down with a book in Plaza Mayor or one its lovely cafés to get ahead of your reading goals for next year.

25. Seville, Spain 

This Spanish city of Seville has a unique history. Founded by the Romans, it was also under Islamic rule, and then was its own independent city for a hot second — all before joining the Spanish Empire and serving as a gateway of the empire’s trans-Atlantic trade. As the home of flamenco, as well as plenty of tapas bars, this city is perfect for those whose one goal is to live that authentic Spanish lifestyle in 2024.

26. Valencia, Spain 

No matter how 2024 goes, make sure you give yourself some time to let loose. Las Fallas, a five-day continuous street festival held in Valencia in mid-March, is perfect for that. While many Spanish cities serve it, Valencia in particular is known for its delicious paella (simmered rice with meat). Like many other European hotspots, it’s also known for its nightlife, particularly its chiringuitos, bars set up directly on the beach! 

Aerial view of Buenos Aires, Argentina
Buenos Aires, Argentina

27. Buenos Aires, Argentina 

The Capital of Argentina combines the best of European and South American cultures, so you won’t want to miss a visit here next year. Another interesting binary about Argentina is that its northern tip of Argentina is less than 3,000 miles from the equator, while its southern tip is only 600 miles from Antarctica. Buenos Aires sits comfortably in the center of the country longitudinally, and very close to the coastline. If you predict your 2024 to be a year of contrasts, be sure to visit Buenos Aires.

28. San José, Costa Rica 

Costa Rica the most-visited country in Central America, most likely due to its national parks, renowned for their biodiverse rainforests. San José is the country’s central hub, with easy access to all the best nearby rainforests and all the best critters. Make 2024 the year of the tapir, the monkeys, the jaguars, or even the red eye tree frog with a visit to San José.

29. Viña del Mar, Chile 

The “Vineyard of the Sea,” Chile’s premier beach town of Viña del Mar is also known as the “Garden City” due to its palm tree-lined boulevards and beautiful parks. It’s also a great host for study abroad students, as it combines the safety and charm of a small community town with the modern luxuries of a city. If that sounds like the kind of balance you’re trying to reach in 2024, consider a visit to Viña del Mar.

30. Galápagos Islands, Ecuador 

You might be familiar with the Galápagos Islands from one of the most famous study abroad trips of all time — the one embarked upon by Charles Darwin. Discover for yourself the diverse ecology that so enthralled Darwin that he made one of the greatest breakthroughs in modern science. 2024 could be your Wildlife Era! 

31. New York City, USA 

What can we even say about the Big Apple that hasn’t already been said? No matter what your interests are, what field you’re aspiring to, what you want to experience or achieve in 2024, New York City has the best of it. Make 2024 your ‘numba one’ year in New York City, or fuggetaboutit!

32. Washington D.C., USA 

Manifesting 2024 to be about making moves? Living and working in the seat of America’s power sure is a big one! Whether you’re looking into getting into government work, communications, or non-profits, a visit to or internship program in Washington D.C. is the prime place to hone your skills. 

Skyline, Perth, Australia at Night
Perth, Australia

33. Perth, Australia 

If 2023 had you feeling down, maybe next year you should go down under. Perth is the capital of Western Australia, and there’s much to love about it. From its beaches (how does 8 hours of sunshine per day all year-round sound?), music and restaurant scenes, and general adventuring vibe, you’ll love a visit to of of the most dynamic Australian cities in 2024.

34. Sydney, Australia 

Australia’s oldest and largest city, Sydney, is also its most cosmopolitan and diverse. Shop in the Central Business District, take pictures along the shores of Bondi Beach, and then spend the evening at the world-famous Sydney Opera House. For a Sydneysider, this can all happen in just one day, so imagine what a few months can look like in 2024. 

35. Wellington, New Zealand 

Fun fact: the capital city of New Zealand also happens to be the windiest city in the world and could be the wind beneath your sails in 2024. Is whale watching, exotic bird watching or visiting glow worm caves on your 2024 bingo card? Well, if you’re planning on going to Wellington, they should be. Once dubbed the “Coolest Little Capital,” you’ll love exploring Wellington.

AIFS Abroad makes it easy to visit or explore international cities, no matter what your 2024 vibes are. Study or intern abroad!

Here at AIFS Abroad, we offer incredible program options in all the locations above. With inclusions such as tuition, housing, insurance, excursions and activities, on-site staff, and emergency support, you’ll have a stress-free global education experience. Don’t miss the opportunity to immerse yourself in a brand new city shed while earning college credits. Are you ready to make 2024 unforgettable? 

Pin image: "35 Must-Visit Cities in 2024" with background of Seoul, South Korea
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