The first category featured in the 2023 Travel Noire Awards is Favorite International Vacay for Black Travelers. If you enjoy traveling abroad and receiving stamps on your passport, then you’ll love reading about the cities in this category. Through the selection process, which included reviewing feedback from our Travel Noire audience, three cities were chosen as finalists.

Accra, Ghana

Accra is the capital and largest city in Ghana, located on the western coast of Africa. Travelers describe it as relatively safe and extremely hospitable. Bustling with rich culture, colorful textiles and a lively restaurant scene, Black Americans in particular have flocked to the city in recent years to get a much-needed taste of Africa. Dubbed “Africa’s Capital of Cool,” by the New York Times, it’s no wonder artists, influencers and fashionistas have paid tribute to Ghana through works of art.

Connecting to History

Aside from great food and entertainment, Black people visit Ghana to connect with their roots. Travelers have cited Cape Coast Castle and other slave castles on the coast as memorable, to pay homage to the Africans that were sold into bondage by Europeans and displaced across the Americas. Ghana gives Black people a sense of home and reconnection to the Motherland. 

Sandy Beaches

When you’re ready to play, Ghana’s spectacular coastline is spotted with sandy beaches, palm trees and waves ushered in by the Atlantic Ocean. It’s a great location for swimming, surfing and beach-side activities while on vacation.

Learn more about the history and what to do in Ghana in our travel guide.

Tulum, Mexico

Tulum’s diverse population and pristine bodies of water landed it in our top vacation spots for Black travelers. Located on the southeastern coast of Mexico in the Rivera Maya region, the city is about a 1.5 hours drive south of Cancun. The Ancient Mayan ruins draw over 1 million visitors each year for travelers interested in the preserved, pre-Columbian era of Mexico. Ethnicities in Tulum include Afro-Latino, Yucatan, Mayan and Spanish, adding to the appeal for travelers looking for diversity.

Authentic Vibes

Travelers say they go to Tulum in search of a beach vacation away from the hustle-and-bustle of Cancun, combined with cultural authenticity. Travelers noted Tulum’s cenotes, as one of the best things to do when visiting the city. Authentic Mexican foods, like ceviche, tacos al pastor, and Yucatecan Antojitos keep visitors coming back. 

It’s Affordable

Financially speaking, Tulum offers a cheaper vacation than one would typically find in the U.S. or Europe, so the affordability factor ranked high for Black travelers. Visit in the off-season for the best rates, or stay at an all-inclusive resort for a luxe, tropical vacation worth every penny. To learn more about what Tulum has to offer, read our travel guide.

Paris, France

Paris is one of the most visited places in the world and a classic European city that keeps travelers world-wide coming back. It’s a bucket list destination that every traveler should visit at least once. Paris is a hub for Black people around the world, connecting many diverse cultures from the African diaspora in one city, and that’s why it topped the list. Black-owned Paris is well-worth exploring to support shopkeepers, restaurant owners and black entrepreneurs throughout the city.

It’s Romantic 

Paris does not disappoint when it comes to love. It’s the perfect place for couples to experience their love together and singles in search of love. Visit Le Mur Des Je t’aime (The Wall of Love) or picnic at Luxembourg Palace and Gardens for a romantic afternoon. Then, head over to Pont des Arts, a renowned bridge where couples hang locks to signify their love.

It’s Timeless 

Travelers note that sightseeing, fashion and fine cuisine are among the top things to experience in Paris. The city has a plethora of well-known, historical sites to visit and many tucked-away finds that will keep you interested during your stay. Snap photos at timeless sites, like the Lourve and Arc de Triomphe, then venture out to “Little Africa” to soak in some more culture. Although Paris is considered a pricey travel destination, there are plenty of non-stop flights from cities, like New York, L.A. and Miami, to get you there in no time.

Read more about the Travel Noire Awards and Vote for the finalists!