Backpacking through different countries can be one of the most rewarding and memorable things a person can do. Embracing foreign cultures and seeking out alternate lifestyles is a life-changing undertaking which everyone should aspire to experience.
However, finding the right place to travel to can be a difficult and scary process, and while value can be gleamed from traveling to any country in the world, some stand out more than others.
If you speak to people who have backpacked South America, Colombia is usually the destination they mention first. The vivacious locals and stunningly diverse landscapes earn Colombia a spot at the top of many people's favorites list.
Colombia's reputation as a dangerous place is becoming a thing of the past as word spreads of the incredible experiences to be had in the country. The mixture of vibrant cities and peaceful villages are connected by the inhabitants' zeal and lust for life, which is infectious to anyone who passes through.
From the iconic plains of the Serengeti to the idyllic beaches of Zanzibar, it's fair to say that Tanzania has some of the world's most incredible and awe-inspiring landscapes. Mount Kilimanjaro stands sentinel over this East African wilderness and welcomes visitors from all over the world.
With a low cost of living and endless list of things to see, Tanzania is an alluring prospect for backpackers. While the infrastructure isn't as developed as other countries on this list, the genuinely awesome natural wonders more than make up for it.
Thailand is a classic on the backpacking circuit for good reason. The great value for money, beautiful scenery, and ease of travel makes Thailand an ever-popular destination for travelers the world over.
From the culinary delights of bustling Bangkok to the paradise islands of the south to the temperate hills of the north, this Southeast Asian paradise has something for everyone. Even with the large number of tourists that visit every year, the country is so diverse that you can easily venture off the beaten path to find your own little slice of perfection.
Away from the party-goers' mayhem of Cancun, Mexico is an amazing destination for backpackers. The numerous coastal towns all have their own identity and sit on some of the world's most pristine beaches.
As you head inland, cities like Mexico City surprise and delight with their charm and sophistication. Wherever you go in this intriguing country, you're surrounded by the most delicious food you could ever wish to find.
With its communist past, Albania isn't always associated with travel and relaxation, but times they are a-changing. The 300-mile-long Albanian Riviera is host to some of the most unspoiled beaches in Europe.
Albania is also a lot cheaper than its Greek and Croatian near-neighbors, meaning you get a lot more paradise for your buck. However, with Albania's proposed entry into the EU, the tourists will not be far away, so get your flights book pronto.
The five countries listed here are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to amazing backpacking destinations. The delightful reality of travel is that, if you go in with an open mind, beauty can be found, friendships formed and memories made anywhere in the world.