So, if you’re like me, you’re the type of person who dreams of where they are headed to next while they are still either on vacation or returning from vacation. Part of it is because of never ending wanderlust as your travel bucketlist is longer than possible to actually visit even if you lived and traveled until you reach 100 years of age. The other part of it is everything you learn from the other wonderful wanderlusters who you’re surrounded by while on vacation. For example, earlier this month we were in Bali, Indonesia, and met a group of friends who were all headed to Japan. While Japan was somewhere on my list of places to go, it quickly inched up a few spots once I learned about some of the cool activities they had planned – yes Mario Kart in Tokyo, I’m looking at you. So we will be traveling to Japan with a few friends next summer and yes that idea was framed while we were drinking in Gili Trawangan. Just another plug to always talk to people when you’re traveling as they usually give awesome tips of places to go, and things to do, that you may not have heard about back home. Anyhoo – some of ya’ll have asked me where I’m dying to go next so here’s a quick list of 5 spots that I NEED to see in the next 4-5 years. And I’m sorry, but I don’t have pictures because I haven’t gone to these locations, and I only post pictures on my site that were taken by me or my husband (best travel partner ever!)
- South Africa and Kenya/Nairobi/Tanzania – This is certainly number one on my list of destinations, and I will be going 2020 (barring any crazy setbacks). I’m not sure I need to (or can articulately) explain why but I’ll try… first off, the culture and history of South Africa is amazing, and when I say amazing, I don’t necessarily mean awesome, but rather intense and full of history. I am one of those folks that need to know the history of a place, and it’s people before I can take part in other activities. Thus, I’m looking forward to seeing sites like where the Zulus held their forces, and where Nelson Mandela was imprisoned, among other cultural spots. I’m also excited to check out the sharks near Cape Town, Cape of Good Hope, and enjoy the amazing culinary delights the city has to offer. Then, comes the safari – this is why I have listed 3 countries (though there are a couple of of more in the mix as well). Depending on the migration season (which has fluctuated greatly the last couple of decades due to climate change), we may choose any of the countries listed above to see wild elephants, lions, gazelles, and rhinos. Overall, the trip would be no less than 14 days long, and I want to choose a wildlife tour operator that assists in the preservation of animal habitat, even if that means paying a few more dollars for the reservation – hence why this is designed for 2020, I need to save up a bit 😉
- Brazil – I keep hearing that Brazil is THE place to be for New Year’s and of course, Carnival. I’m not sure I’m quite ready for Carnival yet – I think I may check out Trinidad first just to get my feet wet, but in the interim, I do want to see what Brazil is all about. I have heard tons about the Afro-Portugese culture, so I definitely want to learn more the people, who they are, what they eat, and what type of music they like. Then of course, I need to see Christ the Reedemer, check out the Bairro of Copacabana (supposedly this is the spot to be on New Year’s – especially the hotels that overlook the beach which apparently go all out for the festivities without getting all sandy), Ipanema, Iguazu Falls (border w/ Argentina), and take a tour of the Amazon where I stay on a river boat for a couple of days. Granted, I’m petrified about that last part, especially because it feels like every action movie from the ‘90s set in the jungle was centered around anacondas or piranhas, but, what can I say? I’m a risk-taker… Again, I’ll probably carve out about 2 weeks to accomplish this, especially as it appears to be a bit of hike to Iguazu Falls.
- Easter Island – Random right? You were probably expecting me to say the Galapagos, which are on my list, but not extremely high for some reason. Anyways, I digress. Easter Island is on my list because I’m fascinated by the mysticism of the statutes (moai). To date, no one can sort out how the moais that line the island were placed there (or why), given the lack of machinery available at the time. I’m the kind of person that neeeeeeds to see this (History + Myth = Paradise). I also want to see Anakena Beach, Kakenga Cave, and see the Milky Way from a location that doesn’t have much competing light. I’d say this trip will warrant about a week – as I have to fly into Chile (and fly into Easter Island from Santiago).
- Prague – I’ve seen a few countries in Europe, and so far my faves are the ones that I expected the least (Luxembourg and Spain). I say this because I thought Italy would be my fave given my affinity for Italian food, and though quite lovely, the charm of Barcelona and Luxembourg are something I can’t over-emphasize! Ok, I’m focused again…I have Prague on my list as I keep hearing how charming and historical it is, without being overly commercialized. I think the addition of the castles that I read about simply make it a country out of a storybook. I’m pretty sure I’ll visit this spot in conjunction with others (ie: Hungary, Northern Germany, Austria, etc.), and opt for Nov/Dec so we can check out the Christmas markets which look to be out of this world. We were in Germany in October and they were already preparing for Christmas – can you imagine the festivities in late November or December? Cold…yes, but magical? Also Yes!!
- Seychelles – because, well, why not? Literally just type this country into Google Images and you will see that it looks magnificent. From secret waterfalls to gorgeous vistas and snorkeling, this place reminds me of what I enjoyed about Bora Bora. I’m not sure if I’m right, so I guess I need to go see so I can check it out. Apply the same logic for the Maldives, and press repeat. I’ll prob spend about a week in either country, and a week in the countries that lead to these islands (ie: African countries for Seychelles, India for the Maldives).