The rationale: Well the first is pretty obvious since Brazil is hosting the World Cup. It's the centenary of polar explorer Ernest Shackleton's Antarctic expedition, while Scotland's nod is mainly due to it staging the Commonwealth Games in the summer and celebrating the Year of Homecoming for overseas Scottish. A great accent probably also helps.
Published this week, Lonely Planet's ninth annual roundup of best destinations around the world for the upcoming year was based on "scores for topicality, excitement and that special x-factor," as determined by their inhouse experts and outside writers.
And there are a few surprises. The quiet, peaceful, pretty and sometimes (unfairly) maligned Adelaide in South Australia made the top 10 cities for 2014 (possibly because of some of those adjectives). The ranking prompted this response from an Australian media outlet: Was Lonely Planet drunk when it rated Adelaide?
The travel guide went with Paris as the best city next year (it didn't make the top 10 last year), with Trinidad in second place (January marks the 500th anniversary of the foundation of Trinidad) and Cape Town coming in third.
In terms of regions as destinations, Sikkim in India was voted the best, for "showing the way for what could be the future of India's tourism industry."
Some more notable predictions included Hunan region as "the next big thing" in China and the Greek Islands as the best value destination due to recently lowered tourism prices and fewer tourist numbers.
From the 2014 guide:
Top 10 regions for 2014
1. Sikkim, India
4. Hokuriku, Japan
6. Victoria Falls
8. West Coast, New Zealand
9. Hunan, China
10. Ha'apai Tonga
Best value destinations for 2014
1. Greek Islands
2. Italy's Heel (Puglia)