Music has the power to transport us to faraway places – which can be handy when you’re quarantined in your dining room.

A man listens to music while reading an ebook in an airport departure hall. His bag is next to him and fellow passengers are sitting around him.
Music can transport us to destinations around the world, even if we're stuck at home © wundervisuals / Getty Images

If you’re unable to hit the road, pop on one of these Lonely Planet Spotify playlists, close your eyes, and be immediately transported to one of these 10 cities from around the world. Each mix contains songs that evoke the sounds and rhythms of the destination, by bands and artists from – or strongly associated with – each place. It’s an audible adventure, if you will; all you have to do is pick where you want to go.

The bank district of central London with famous skyscrapers and other landmarks just before sunset
Hear a selection of tunes by artists form the Big Smoke © ZGPhotography / Shutterstock

1. London, England

The English capital is a global music melting pot that churns out hit after worldwide hit without breaking a sweat – here’s our ultimate London soundtrack, featuring artists like Sampha, The Kinks and Amy Winehouse.

A statue of George Washington at the Federal Hall in New York City
New York's musical pedigree is hard to beat © Kamira / Shutterstock

2. New York City, USA

The hometown of some of the planet’s biggest artists, New York is hard to beat in musical terms. Here’s NYC at its grunge, hip hop, genre-defining best, featuring artists like A Tribe Called Quest, Blondie and Talking Heads.

A group of people dancing in the street in Kingston, Jamaica, at night-time, next to a shuttered shop.
The sounds of Kingston will have anyone up on their feet © peeterv / Getty Images

3. Kingston, Jamaica

World famous for its reggae and dancehall output, Kingston is king of chilled vibes, infectious riddums and effortless cool – here are some of its best. Featured artists include Bob Marley, Sean Paul and Shabba Ranks.

'The Kiss' shows Soviet leader Leonid Brezhnev kissing East Germany President Erich Honecker on the Berlin Wall.
Turn your kitchen into a club from the cool German capital with our Berlin playlist © turtix / Shutterstock

4. Berlin, Germany

A city with a worldwide rep for cutting edge, experimental culture, Berlin’s music scene is every bit as quirky and boundary-pushing as you’d expect – strap in. Artists in this playlist include Rammstein, Markus Schulz and Alec Empire.

A classic American car is parked in a colorful street in Havana.
A classic car parked in the colourful streets of Havana © Atomazul / Shutterstock

5. Havana, Cuba

A collection of hip-swinging, sizzling beats from Havana, Cuba’s capital of cool. This playlist will have you reaching for your dancing shoes and Havana good time before you know it. Featured artists include Joe Cuba, Buena Vista Social Club and La Lupe.

The Eiffel Tower as viewed from across the Seine and framed neatly by two leafy trees in autumn colours
Put on our Paris playlist and start dreaming about the Eiffel © ESB Professional / Shutterstock

6. Paris, France

A heaving hub of musical innovation, Paris has a lot to offer a keen ear. From underground electro to folksy ditties, here’s how the Parisians get down. Artists featured in this playlist include Jain, Daft Punk and Edith Piaf.

Tourists sit in multicolor sun chairs in Federation Square. A modern architecture building is visible as well as a skyline of business towers. Melbourne, Australia.
Federation Square in the centre of Melbourne © Javen / Shutterstock

7. Melbourne, Australia

Edgy, alternative and effortlessly cool, Melbourne has a music scene to match. Here’s our pick of the best tunes the city has to offer, featuring artists such as The Avalanches, Sweet Jean and Kylie Minogue.

A three-piece band rock band play to a crowd at an intimate indoor concert. The band are in the spotlight while the crowd are in shadow.
Manchester is a powerhouse of the British music scene © Shirlaine Forrest / Getty Images

8. Manchester, England

Manchester is a real dynamo of British culture. Here are our top tunes that celebrate the UK’s original northern powerhouse, with songs by artists such as Joy Division, Oasis and Little Sparrow.

The National Cathedral in Mexico City with a large Mexican flag and a variety of people gathering in frong
Chill out with some Latin rhythms with our Mexico City playlist © Laura Bronner / Lonely Planet

9. Mexico City, Mexico

From the swing of conjunto to laidback Mexican ska, soulful ballads to experimental electro, here’s a selection of Latin rhythms from Mexico City, featuring artists such as Santana, Aida Cuevas and Christian Castro.

A couple of pedestrians cross a busy LA road at sunset
Our LA playlist will instantly teleport you to the sunny streets of La La Land © Simon Urwin / Lonely Planet

10. Los Angeles, USA

From downtown vibes to beachside beats, here’s the best tunes straight from LA, the heart of SoCal. This playlist features artists including Beck, Frank Ocean and HAIM.

A hammock strung between two palm trees next to a beach on Cadlao Island, Palawan, in the Philippines. Behind the hammock a strip of white sand is visible and beyond that a beautiful blue ocean.
Not sure where to go? Try our 'Lazing on a beach' playlist for general chilled travel vibes © Max Topchii / Shutterstock


Not sure where you want to go? We have a range of playlists that are non-destination specific, perfect if you want to pretend you’re lazing on a beach, deep in the jungle, sitting around a campfire or even spending a late night at the airport – it’s strange the things we miss...

Check out all of our 80 playlists on our Spotify channel.

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