Chubby Diaries’ Top 5 Countries to visit for First Time Travelers!

Jeff Jenkins
Jeff Jenkins

Are you planning your first big trip overseas? Don’t know where to start? got you covered! Traveling outside of the States can be daunting for some and comes with a lot of obscurities. In my years of traveling, I’ve found some of the most economical and easiest ways to travel around any country.  To help you save time and easily plan an awesome trip, I’m sharing my Top 5 countries for first time travelers. **This list isn’t ranked in order**

As I mentioned in my previous postyour best life is just on the other side of your comfort zone! Why waste it on fear? Be courageous! Discover the amazing food, the different cultures and all the wonders that come with traveling the world! “I don’t always travel, but when I do I travel chubby!”


Arenal Volcano
Arenal Volcano

Are you looking to relax? Be in awe of the lush rainforest? Or be a big kid on an adventure? Then Costa Rica has you covered! Costa Rica, a Central American country that borders Nicaragua to the North and Panama to the South, is full of beauty, breathtaking rainforest, and Sloths! That wasn’t a typo.  Costa Rica is home to two of the six sloth species in the world! But I digress. Costa Rica is also home to the Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve, Arenal Volcano (pictured above), Manuel Antonio National Park, and Playa Jaco. The people are friendly. It isn’t difficult to rent a car or even navigate your way through the island. The resorts are fantastic, and the airbnbs give you a sense of Costa Rican living. You can take ATVs into the rainforest, get a bird’s eye-view of the forest floor as you Zipline through the canopy, explore with the monkeys (they’re everywhere) through one of many National Parks, or just relax on one of their gorgeous beaches! There are plenty of people in Costa Rica that can speak English and the language barrier is minimal. It is not hard to fall in love with this amazing country!


Italy is one of my favorite countries in the entire world! Most of the cities are made for tourists; so accommodations are ideal for a first time travelers. Italy has some of the most iconic cities Rome, Venice, Pisa, Florence, Milan, Sicily, and Naples. From its ancient cities and towns all over the country to its beautiful mountain landscapes near the Alps or Lake Garda up North, to its active volcanoes down South, Italy has it all.  The food is by far the best thing about traveling to Italy. You thought you had pasta or tasted the best pizza, well I’m sorry until you visit this country, you are missing out on incredible pastas and pizza!  Italians are full of energy and friendly. People welcome you with open arms and you won’t want to leave!


Germany is famous for a lot of things:  beer, food, sausages, cathedrals, castles, and Octoberfest. There is more to Germany like amazing art museums, a historic music scene, beautiful forests in the west, great cathedrals, outstanding views, and beaches in the North. Germans may have a serious look about them, but they are also some of the nicest, most helpful people I have ever met. Also, if you like beer – Germany is a must! Germany has 1,300 breweries that produce over 5,000 brands of beers. I say this all the time that “Germany is one of the most underrated countries in Europe.” Take advantage of all that Germany has to offer!


Jamaica, Jamaica! The home of the Famous reggae artist Bob Marley, dancehall music, breathtaking beaches and waterfalls that are to die for.  Hands down Jamaica has some of the most friendliest people in the world. They are so welcoming and their energy is contagious! If you haven’t had Jamaican food you are in for a treat when you visit. They are known for their Jerk chicken, Curry chicken, Ackee and Saltfish, and my personal favorite – beef patties! For me, Jamaica is “The Big Chill” and is totally the most relaxed and tourist friendly country on this list. You can go to Jamaica and never leave your resort, because they have some one the most award-winning, all inclusive resorts in the world. I love this island and you will too!


Minus the the airplane tickets, Thailand is by far the most affordable country on the list. Depending on the city, travelers can enjoy themselves for as little as US $20- $25 a day (seriously). You can go scuba diving in Koh Tao or dance your butt off at the full moon party in Koh Phangan. There is also a lot of cultural diversity in Thailand. You can visit Buddhist temples and architectural masterpieces that are full of the country’s history in Bangkok, Ayutthaya or Chiang Mai. Bangkok is the most visited city in the world. The people are amazing and the food is both delicious! Thailand is beautiful and is highly recommended!

So, y’all, which country would you visit first?

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