In most cases you can continue the bench top surface up the wall as a splashback. This is not advised with laminates or solid surfaces (such as Corian etc) behind the cook top unless the bench top housing the cook top is made deeper.
There is no doubt that the most commonly used splashback are tiles as there are always plenty of choice in colour, shape & texture.
The material that is becoming extremely popular is glass. Glass offers a lovely seamless look and you can have any colour you like, you can even have a panorama if you dare.
Glass is easy to look after and is great in the modern kitchen.