“Our website is not about exploiting destinations,” David S. Miller, a senior editor at Matador Network, told Business Insider. “Matador and our brand has always been about travelling in a respectful way and trying to connect with local people.”
Which is why when they decided to take on the project, it wasn’t just the obvious destinations and festivals — Burning Man, Oktoberfest, and New York nightclubs — that made it into the book (though those are in there, too). It was also about finding places that were off-the-beaten track: Locales that were not only fun to visit culturally, but that also knew how to have a good time.
“In the end, I felt like we were able to tread a really nice line between showing the exuberance and partying, and connecting with people,” Miller said. “We also had natural humour with it without being fully salacious.”
Matador Network shared some of their editors’ top places to visit — keep reading to see where you need to get trashed with the locals.
Known for its young population and unofficial slogan 'Keep Austin Weird,' Austin is a diverse mix of college students, musicians, tech, and business people.
For those who want to party in this Texas town, Matador editors say to 'Start at Sixth Street, at the far eastern end of the street, and work your way west, drinking in as many places as you can and seeing how far you make it.'
Filled with gorgeous beaches and teeming with nightlife, Barcelona even has a bar that's dedicated to producing hundreds of different types of shots for only 2 euros.
As Matador's writer Sarah Briggs put it, 'Throughout the year, multi-generational party-seekers travel to Barcelona or BCN as cool people abbreviate it, many remaining to embrace the Mediterranean and the opportunity to nap on a daily basis without tan lines or scorn.' Enough said.
Everyone knows about the craziness that is Burning Man in Black Rock City, Nevada. The tents, the costumes, and the drugs are now a part of popular culture.
As Matador editor Josh Johnson writes, 'This is the type of scene you could parachute into stark naked and singing the Star Spangled Banner, and upon landing you would be absorbed by the great 50,000-person organism -- clothed, fed, and imbibed before your 'chute touched the desert ground.'
This capital city is easy to get to from all parts of Europe, and has an incredible history with phenomenal architecture and museums. It was once even known as 'Little Paris.'
What else will you find in Bucharest? Matador editors say: 'Meet liquored-up punks and follow them to the old Lipscani neighbourhood, once a center of Middle Ages trade, left derelict by the Communists, now in the process of good old Brooklyn or LA style gentrification.' Whoa.
Those hitting up Ibiza should forget they ever had a boyfriend or girlfriend. The Mediterranean city is known for its raucous nightlife in Ibiza Town on the southern shore and Sant Antoni to the West.
As Matador writer Larissa Coleman said, 'In the 1950s, hippies were drawn to Ibiza's postcard beaches. The rich and famous followed suit. Now, every flip-flop clad backpacker can be spotted shuffling to house music in Space.'
Mexico City has a ton of awesome things for tourists, be it the amazing and varied cuisines or massive amounts of shopping.
Plus, according to Matador editors, 'Mexico City has more than 20 million people and almost as many cantinas. If you're doing it right, you'll find yourself suddenly singing corridas with the locals.'
Celebrating Oktoberfest in Munich is essentially a no-brainer. The 16-day festival attracts more than 6 million people from around the world and has some of the best beer and German food.
Writing for Matador, journalist Jessica Peter puts it this way: 'Guys in little leather shorts and girls with healthy racks squeezed into corseted dresses. Start practicing now: Ein Maß bitte.'
New Orleans is known for it's nightlife, but especially when it comes to Mardi Gras.
'People may just associate Mardi Gras with titty flashing for beads, but there are all kinds of cultural layers, such as the Mardi Gras Indians,' Matador editors wrote. 'Stretching back to at least the mid 1800s, the 'Indians' of Mardi Gras pay tribute to Native Americans who helped African Slaves escape the bayou to freedom.'
If you can't make if for Mardi Gras, just make it down to New Orleans whenever.
It's only fitting that the city that never sleeps gets a spot on this list. Whether you're into the 'models and bottles' scene or EDM and house music, there's always a spot for New Yorkers to party.
According to one Matador editor, 'Every time I'm there, I feel simultaneously happy I don't live there but envious of people who do.'
Millions of tourists (especially backpackers) travel to Phuket, an island in Thailand with views of the Andaman Sea and off-beat beaches.
Matador editors say to 'make the most of Phuket, but after your logic reaches a point where you're like, 'If I just rent a beach chair, someone will bring me a coconut to wash down my Vicodin,' it's time to leave.'
The Quebrada de Humahuaca is a valley in the northern province of Jujuy, Argentina, whose population stretches back 10,000 years.
Because of it's history, native Andean traditions have mixed over time with Christianity, which has in turn created the Carnaval Humahuaqueña. Matador editors say the Carnaval is, 'a celebration of Pachamama (mother Earth) and el Diablo! If you are here during Carnaval, you're simply in the mix; there's no sidelines.'
Raglan may seem just like a small pastoral town, but as Matador writer Evan Timpy says, there are plenty of 'musicians, photographers, environmentalists, and free-thinking itinerants to get wasted with.'
Plus, Raglan is one of the few places in the world that has same-day access to snow and surf, with the largest ski area in New Zealand and world-class surf breaks.
Salar de Uyuni in Bolivia is one of the largest salt flats in the world, not to mention one of the most surreal destinations on earth.
Plus, according to Matador editors, 'There's a tradition among travellers to take tequila.' Alcohol plus crazy landscapes equals fun for everyone.
When you think of Israel, you may think of beaches, Jerusalem, and the Palestinian conflict. Partying doesn't usually come to mind.
But Matador editors insist that couldn't be further from the truth. 'As soon as you get there, you realise how much of a spirit of carpe diem rules the culture. Kids in Tel Aviv are extended a level of freedom far beyond mainstream society in the U.S.'
On the more low-key side for partying, Utila, Honduras is mostly frequented by divers and backpackers. The town is known for its amazing ocean life (including whale sharks) and kayaking.
Matador editors said: 'Utila, Honduras is basically the epicentre for dive instructors around the world, but the town is still totally chill, not yet blown out.' After a dive, kick back and drink with the locals before going out dancing.
This Canadian resort town is equally known for pampering spa services and awesome skiing and snowboarding. It's also known for throwing some epic parties.
Matador editors wrote: 'With the right snow conditions, Whistler is all time during the day, and then at night turns into a fucking hot mess of beautiful people with goggle tans and Volcom V-necks.' Sign us up.
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