Pantone’s 2023 Color of the Year Is an Unsuspecting Traveler’s Dream — Here's Where You Can See It Around the World

Viva Magenta is Pantone's 2023 Color of the Year, and you can see it in real life, from the Netherlands to Vietnam.

Pantone is just like us, in the sense that they, too, are setting their intentions for the year — one filled with strength and energy. The Color of the Year for 2023 is Viva Magenta, which the company describes as powerful and empowering. “Viva Magenta is brave and fearless, and a pulsating color whose exuberance promotes a joyous and optimistic celebration... [It] revels in pure joy, encouraging experimentation and self-expression without restraint.” A year surrounded by joy and self-expression sounds like a year well spent to us.

From left: Bougainvillea flower in Oia, Santorini, Greece; Vive Magenta Pantone swatch; Pink dyed incense sticks in Hanoi, Vietnam

From left: nantonov/Getty Images, Courtesy of Pantone; Background: Manan Vatsyayana/Getty Images

Luckily, you can spot this shade throughout your travels, too. From opulent hotels in Dubai to salt pans off the coast of Portugal, here’s where you can find the 2023 Pantone Color of the Year around the world.

Netherlands

Rows of colorful tulips at Park with multi-colored tulips. Location is the Keukenhof garden, Netherlands

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Some of the most beautiful and famous flowers can be found at Keukenhof, also known as the Garden of Europe. Keukenhof is one of the largest flower gardens in the world, home to more than seven million blooms. It's located in Lisse, covering 32 hectares, and can be reached in about 30 minutes from The Hague, Haarlem, Leiden, and Amsterdam. Travel to the Netherlands in mid-April to see the tulips at their best. Tulip season runs from the end of March until mid-May, but the flowers are usually at their peak halfway through April. The pink tulip is a symbol for caring and good wishes, perfect for leading us into the new year. 

Santorini, Greece

Traditional White Houses Covered with Bougainvillea Flower in Santorini, Greece

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The flight from Amsterdam to Santorini is less than four hours, meaning you can go from walking the rows of multicolored tulips to seeing blooming bougainvillea climbing the traditional white and blue houses around the Greek island in no time. Bougainvillea is one of Greece's most beloved flowers, and they bloom between early spring and late autumn. And nothing makes a magenta flower pop like having the Aegean Sea as your backdrop.

Hanoi, Vietnam

A worker collecting dried incense sticks in Quang Phu Cau village ahead of Lunar New Year, Hanoi, Vietnam

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Quang Phu Cau, on the outskirts of Hanoi, is known as one of the “incense villages.” Ahead of the Lunar New Year celebrations — called Tet in Vietnam — you'll find hundreds of bright-pink incense sticks fanned out like bouquets along the streets and courtyards. The holiday's full name is Tet Nguyen Dan, which means “feast of the first morning.” At midnight on Jan. 31, or the last day of the old year (giao thua), families burn the pink-colored incense to invite deities and ancestors to gather. When the incense burning ends, everyone comes together to eat and wish each other a happy new year. The best time to visit and experience this cultural event is January, right before the Lunar New Year on Feb. 1. 

Iceland 

Aurora Borealis or Northern Lights, Iceland

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Some of the best places to see the northern lights include the Nordic countries of Iceland, Norway, Sweden, and Finland, all of which lie within or near the Arctic Circle. Iceland tends to be the least frigid of the bunch, making it slightly easier to stand the cold temperatures and experience the light show in the skies. September through March is the peak season for northern lights viewing, due to the longer nights, and pink auroras are far rarer than green ones. Just make sure to stock up on coffee and be on the lookout as they can appear any time between dusk and dawn. 

Cape Town, South Africa

Brightly coloured houses in the Bo-Kaap district of Cape Town, South Africa

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The brightly colored neighborhood of Bo-Kaap, which translates to “above the Cape,” is located at the foot of Signal Hill in Cape Town. Today, the area — formerly known as the Malay Quarter — is the city's oldest surviving residential neighborhood, as well as a historical hub of Cape Malay culture. It's filled with houses and mosques dating back to the 1700s, including the Auwal Mosque, which was built in 1794. Bo-Kaap is also home to the largest grouping of pre-1850 architecture in South Africa. Originally, the houses in this neighborhood were leased to the southeast Asian slaves. While on lease, they were required to be painted white. When this rule was lifted and homes were able to be purchased, they were all painted in vibrant colors as a symbol for joy and freedom.

Mysore, India 

Colorful pyramids of spices in market, Mysore, Karnataka, India

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There may be no better place to experience a diverse array of vivid colors than an Indian spice market. Namely, the famous Devaraja Market in Mysore, India, sells everything from bright flowers to fresh fruits to cones of colorful kumkum powder. Kumkum powder is used for religious and social markings in India, as well as thrown in the air during Holi. The colorful powder can be created with a number of local ingredients for a variety of shades, but the natural kumkum is made with turmeric treated with slaked lime to create the classic deep red color. 

Cusco, Peru

Rainbow Mountain in Cuzco, Peru

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Rainbow Mountain, originally known as Vinicunca, can be found in the Andes mountains of Peru. Although an attraction like this feels like it should have always been a part of history, it wasn't until 2015, when the snow covering melted away, revealing the naturally colored mountain underneath. The rainbow-like appearance was formed by mineral sediments from the area, creating the layered hues of gold, lavender, red, and turquoise. Rainbow Mountain falls around 62 miles from Cusco’s city center, and given that it stands more than 16,000 feet above sea level, it’s recommended you spend a few days in the region getting acclimatizing to the high altitude before attempting a hike. The best weather for a memorable trek comes between March and November, with the bluest skies from June to August.

Ria Formosa Natural Park, Portugal 

Flamingos flying over the colorful salt fields and mineral lakes found around the Algarve coast in Southern Portugal

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A few times a year, what seems like magically, the salt pans in Portugal’s Ria Formosa Natural Park turn from their standard ocean blue-green color to a pink hue befitting Pantone's 2023 Color of the Year without any human interference. This natural phenomenon is actually created by an algae that exists in salt lakes. It’s the substances made from this specific algae, paired with the high salt content found in these pans, that yields this unique shade. Even better, flamingos love the algae found here and can often be spotted in and around the salty waters from November to March. 

Burj Al Arab Jumeirah, Dubai

The King Bedroom inside the Royal Suites at Burj Al Arab Jumeirah in Dubai

Courtesy of Burj Al Arab Jumeirah

While we love being surrounded by Pantone's 2023 Color of the Year in nature, we also love experiencing the shade in the lap of luxury. Built on a human-made island in Dubai’s Arabian Gulf, Burj Al Arab Jumeirah fits every definition of the word luxury — and the opulent, 8,396-square-foot Royal Suite on the 25th floor takes the cake. The two-floor suite features a marble staircase and elevator, as well as a sitting room, banquet hall, dining room, study, and primary bedroom where everything from the sheets on the rotating canopy bed to the floor-to-ceiling walls are covered in the jewel tone. While the bathroom isn’t painted in Viva Magenta, the stand-alone marble tub still gets an honorable mention in our book.

Cranberry Highway, Wisconsin

A Wisconsin cranberry marsh in the fall during harvest showing cranberries in flooded bog

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Wisconsin may be known for its cheese, but it's also home to miles of cranberry marshes. In fact, the state produces about 60 percent of the country’s cranberries and more than 50 percent of the world’s share. Visitors here will find the Cranberry Highway, which stretches for 50 miles along century-old marshes. The cranberry harvest season happens in fall, specifically from late September to late October, meaning it's the perfect time to admire the cranberry-magenta hues, as well as partake in vine pickings, tastings and samplings, tours, and museum visits. In some places like Wetherby Cranberry Co. in the town of Warrens, you can even don your own pair of waders and get right in.

Havana, Cuba

American red, pink and purple convertible vintage car parked in the historical center from Havana City, Cuba

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Havana can easily be identified as one of the most colorful cities in the world. Varying shades of blue, purple, red, and pink line the streets, from vintage cars to old architecture, making this city a prime spot for seeing the Color of the Year. That said, getting to Cuba requires some planning — you need a tourist card (or visa), travel insurance, and a self-certification under one of 12 travel categories of authorized travel to Cuba.

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