For Lunar New Year 2020, the world welcomes the Year of the Rat. In the Chinese zodiac, the rat has strong connections to nature, fertility, and the midnight hours. Using these qualities as our inspiration, let us tell you where in the world it’s best to travel during the Year of the Rat.

Earthly Signs

Travelers influenced by the Year of the Rat should seek out places where the earth and nature take center stage. In these destinations you’ll find fun with the ground beneath your feet and the natural wonders of the world on full display.


The earth is alive with fascinating geothermal activity in Iceland. Explore the gurgling geysers, craters, lava pools, and caves that are part of this ancient wonderland. If you’re really feeling the zodiac connection, satisfy the rat’s penchant for nighttime activity and stay up late to see the Northern Lights dance in the wee hours. Our Iceland Adventure suggested itinerary is a great place to start.

Iceland Adventure Trip - Year of the Rat - Customized Travel in 2020 with Ker & Downey

Costa Rica & Nicaragua

Our Venture to the Volcanoes suggested itinerary hits several of Central America’s earthly wonders, from sand between your toes on Nicaragua’s Emerald Coast, to the rich volcanic landscapes of the Arenal and Cerro Negro volcanoes. Hot springs soaks and volcanic mud painting will give you a new appreciation for the earth in its rawest forms.

Arenal Volcano - Customized Travel in 2020 with Ker & Downey

Midnight Magic

If you’re influenced by the Year of the Rat, then the nighttime hours are significantly auspicious. You thrive after the sun sets, and the later it gets, the better you feel. Embrace the darkness and stay up past your bedtime in another part of the world.


When the sun goes down in vibrant Marrakesh, the Jemaa El Fna square becomes a night owl’s dream. Food stalls emit puffs of steam and tantalizing aromas, performers stun with acrobatics and music, and a kaleidoscope of vendors sell their wares. Glide through the chaos with your private guide and plant yourself on a terrace above the spectacle of the market for a more leisurely view. Our Journey Back In Time suggested itinerary splits your time between Marrakesh’s busy streets and quiet stargazing in the Sahara.

Jemaa el Fna in Marrakesh - Ker & Downey

South Africa

Speaking of stargazing, staying up late on safari lets you experience the night sky as you never have before. Without interference from light pollution, the stars shine bright all night. In South Africa, you can spot constellations, planets, and galaxies from the state-of-the-art observatory at Leobo Lodge. Elsewhere in South Africa, the sleep out decks at Tswalu Kalahari and treehouses at Lion Sands offer an amazing overnight experience.

Add some other stargazing spots to your travel bucket list >>

Leobo Lodge - Customized Travel in 2020 with Ker & Downey

All In The Family

Rats are prolific procreators, and in Chinese culture they were celebrated as good luck charms for couples trying to conceive. Travel in the Year of the Rat and bring your whole brood on these journeys designed for families. Or, if starting a family is on your radar in 2020, these romantic trips might help set the mood >>


Ker & Downey’s Kenya Family Safari is an all-ages adventure with room enough for everyone. Private, fully catered safari accommodations are enhanced by the flexibility of personalized schedules. On this trip, every member of the family can engage with the wild at their own pace. Game drives, bush walks, and behind-the-scenes conservation activities are all on the menu throughout Laikipia and the Masai Mara and Samburu reserves.

Check out more family safari options with Ker & Downey >>

Kenya Family Safari - Year of the Rat - Customized Travel in 2020 with Ker & Downey

United Kingdom

Journey throughout England and Wales on an exciting UK Family Holiday. Find something for everyone on this trip. See big-city sights in London, ancient wonder at Stonehenge, and adventure in the Welsh countryside. Tap into the untamed nature of the British Isles and head into the woods of the Forest of Dean and Wye Valley.

Wye Valley, England - Customized Travel in 2020 with Ker & Downey

Make 2020 your year to travel; check out our list of the places you must see this year. For more Chinese zodiac travel inspiration, consider our travel tips for the Year of the Pig and the Year of the Horse. Contact us to start planning your own customized trip.