If high school seemed intense for you, college will get even more overwhelming. That's why a gap year might be just what you need to recharge, rest, and relax. Moreover, a gap year presents an opportunity to travel and immerse themselves in new cultures, which can broaden your perspectives and help you become more well-rounded.
If you are wondering which places are the best for a gap year, our article can help with your decision-making.
Australia is an ideal destination for students looking to take a gap year, as it offers a unique mix of culture, beauty, and adventure. Students can experience the country's diverse landscapes, cultures, and attractions while also taking advantage of the numerous educational and career opportunities available. Even those who are not fluent in English can pursue courses there, and in case you need help, you can also pay for research paper in English to submit assignments.
Moreover, Australia also has working holiday visas that help students a chance to find paid work while traveling in the country. Gap years spent in Australia can give students a chance to explore their independence, gain valuable work experience, and take part in activities such as volunteering and internships.
France is another country that has a working holiday visa for young students. It's valid for one year - however, this visa is offered only to students from countries where France has this working holiday arrangement. However, even otherwise, students can apply for a long-term visitor visa; the main downside is that they won't be able to work.
Nevertheless, France is renowned for its rich history, art, architecture, cuisine, and fashion. Taking a gap year in France can provide students with the opportunity to learn about and experience this cultural richness firsthand.
Japan also has gap year programs for those seeking to do internships, volunteer, or simply travel. As you would know already, this beautiful country has plenty of natural and cultural sites to explore, from ancient temples and shrines to modern cities.
Japan also offers many activities and experiences that you won't find anywhere else in the world, from sumo wrestling to participating in a tea ceremony. And, of course, another reason to opt for Japan for your gap year is the delicious food - there are many different types of cuisine to try, from sushi and ramen to yakitori and tempura.
India is an incredibly affordable destination for a gap year. You can easily cover India on a budget, allowing you to stretch your money further. Moreover, India is home to some of the most stunning and diverse landscapes in the world. From the snow-peaked mountains of the Himalayas to the luscious greens of Kerala, you can explore a variety of cultures and customs.
Additionally, India is also one of the most culturally rich destinations in the world. Whether you're exploring the street food of Delhi or savoring a traditional thali in a rural village, you'll be sure to have an unforgettable culinary experience. Furthermore, the majority of people in India also speak English, and you will have no difficulty finding a job.
Another Asian country suited for a gap year is Thailand. Like India, Thailand is a relatively inexpensive country to live in, making it a great place for budget travelers. You can easily find accommodation for a fraction of the price you would pay in other countries.
Thailand is also a great choice for those who prefer beach destinations. This country is home to some of the most beautiful beaches in the world. Moreover, it is also fairly easy to get around Thailand with a moped or bike. The country is also convenient for solo travelers, with accommodation easily locatable.
6. Costa Rica
With breathtaking beaches and rainforests, Costa Rica is one of the most stunning places on earth. It is also a good choice for students who prefer a more laid-back experience. The place has an abundance of natural beauty and a wide variety of activities. From exploring tropical rainforests and stunning beaches to learning Spanish and immersing in the culture, students will find no shortage of things to do.
Additionally, Costa Rica is a safe and welcoming country with a well-developed infrastructure, making it easy to get around and explore. Finally, Costa Rica is affordable, making it a great choice for those looking to stretch their gap year budget.
7. United States
The United States is another country that is a good choice for a gap year. The country boasts a unique culture and history, ranging from the Revolutionary War to the Wild West and modern art.
And despite the many depictions in popular media, a firsthand experience of the US will likely challenge preconceived notions. For foreigners, there is plenty to explore in the US. If you are already in the US, you can consider a gap year as an opportunity to travel to new states and discover parts that remain unexplored.
8. South Africa
South Africa, nicknamed the Rainbow Nation, is frequently recognized as one of the world's most culturally diverse countries. While on a gap year in South Africa, you are likely to meet people from a broad range of ethnicities, as well as other nations from across the globe.
While you can get by using English, you will still be able to immerse yourself in many different languages. South Africa is also excellent in terms of internship or volunteering opportunities.
Sweden will be best suited for those who like the cold. Nevertheless, it is surrounded by endless forests, gorgeous natural beauty, and of course, beautiful cities. And unlike many other European countries, English is widely spoken in Sweden.
Sweden also has many job opportunities for foreigners, especially in Stockholm. The country is also quite safe for solo travelers.
When it comes to adventure, Peru is the perfect destination for a gap year. The country is home to the world-renowned Machu Picchu, which attracts millions of visitors every year, including students. In addition to visiting this iconic site, you can also explore archaeological ruins, hike through the Andes Mountains, and visit open-air markets to experience the local culture and cuisine.
Aside from this, students can also find a variety of volunteering programs in Peru that provide valuable experience while making a difference in the local communities. Another advantage is the opportunity to study Spanish, which is the official language of the country.
What Makes a Good Gap Year Destination?
Now that we have discussed the most popular places for a gap year let us tell you what to consider when making your choice.
Choose what you want to do
Some students might prefer to do volunteer work during their gap year, while others might opt for immersing in a new culture. However, there might also be many students who are unsure of what they want to do. In this case, it is best to opt for a place that gives you access to a wide range of activities.
While you might be thinking that you want to try a new food culture, bear in mind that you won't be visiting the place for just 2-3 days. If you are planning to stay in a country for a long time, make sure that you like and can tolerate the food - otherwise, the gap year might turn out to be a bad experience.
The convenience of commuting
Unless you plan on buying, you will have to rely on public transportation. So, it is important to consider how you plan to commute. If looking to rent a vehicle, you should also ensure that it is affordable.
If you want to work during the gap year, it is important to ensure that there are ample job opportunities for foreigners, along with appropriate visas. As we noted above, countries such as Australia, Japan, and France have specific visa programs targeting students on a gap year. You can also consider the possibility of studying online and using some of the best assignment writing services to get done with your studies faster. This way, you might not need a visa to work.
Considering that most gap year travelers have a limited budget, it is also advisable to research the expected expenses in a particular location.
Finally, and most importantly, ensure that the chosen place is safe for foreigners. It would also be smart to educate yourself about the common scams to avoid them.
The timing for taking a gap year is quite flexible, as it can be pursued at any point in time. Although the most typical time frames for taking a gap year are either between high school and college or after completing university studies, it is important not to feel constrained by these options.
Taking a gap year, no matter the place you choose, can help you return to school with a fresh perspective and improved focus. And the chances are that this can lead to better academic performance.