My (Sort Of) Travel Bucket List

Reader Nancy asked in the comments the other day where I had published my travel bucket list because she couldn’t find it, and I answered that I had never actually published one in the blog. Why? Because it’s always changing! There are a few places and trips that have remained constant, but places that I was eager to see two or three years ago have been bumped by other spots, or just don’t seem quite as interesting any more as other places.

But, Nancy’s comment has inspired me to try and come up with a list. I ended up dividing it into three sections: Dream Trips, Places I Very Much Want To See, and Places I’d Like To Visit But Won’t Feel Badly If I Don’t Get To. I guess I could also add a section on places I don’t want to go, but if it’s not on any of the other lists you can pretty much figure it’s not someplace I’m as eager to visit (but of course would go if I won a free trip or something).

Japan, of course, is in a category all its own and doesn’t need to be on any list.

So here goes:

#1 – Dream Trips:

  • India
  • Botswana (one of the national parks)
  • The Western U.S. National Park Loop

    The Blue City of Chefchaouen, Morocco.

#2 – Places I Very Much Want To Visit:

  • Lisbon, Portugal
  • Florence, Sienna, the Amalfi Coast and the Cinque Terre, Italy
  • Amsterdam, the Netherlands
  • Paris and Normandy, France
  • Toledo and Barcelona, Spain
  • Athens, Greece
  • Switzerland (pretty much all of it)
  • Vienna and Salzburg, Austria
  • Prague, The Czech Republic
  • Scandanavia (pretty much all of it)
  • England (pretty much all of it)
  • Edinburgh and the Highlands, Scotland
  • Ireland (all of it)
  • Marrakesh and Chefchaouen (the blue city), Morocco
  • Bangkok, Thailand
  • New Zealand
  • Sydney, Australia
  • Buenos Aires, Argentina
  • Mexico City and San Miguel de Allende, Mexico
  • Alaska, up to Anchorage by ferry via the Inland Passage

#3 –  Places I’d Like To Visit But Won’t Feel Badly If I Don’t:

  • Germany
  • Iceland (I’m probably the only person in the world who isn’t itching to go here)
  • Rome and Venice, Italy
  • Croatia
  • Vietnam

As you can see, the middle list is pretty long – there’s lots I want to see! There’s nothing really out of the way or exotic about any of these places on my lists, but I love visiting cities and museums and such so that’s what fills the lists. Some places, like Hong Kong or Beijing, are not on the list because we’ve been before, and some places Brett isn’t very much interested in (although he has his own list) but we pretty much agree on most places we’d like to visit some day. And, I’m sure there are some places I’ve just forgotten to put on the list.

I’m fairly sure there’s no way we’re going to get to see all of these places, but once we get our last little bird launched out of the nest Brett and I are going to try and see as much as we can for as long as we can, as well as trying to get over to Japan every year for a few months to spend time with our grandchildren.

And yes, our BIG Mystery Adventure™ can be found tucked in among all these places!

17 thoughts on “My (Sort Of) Travel Bucket List

  1. Journeys of The Zoo says:

    I’ve done a fair amount of travelling in my life and Mexico City is my favourite place and not just because I got engaged there on New Years Eve 2004. There is something to see in every single square inch of that city and the Mexican culture is in my blood (we spend 4 months a year living in Mexico, not the city).

    Question, why do you want to go to San Miguel?

    Culture is what I seek and living in San Cristobal de las Casas provides that (it’s high in the mountains so the weather there is also temperate). I’d like to visit Puebla, Oaxaca, Merida (minus the heat) and Guadalajara.

    I hope that you make it to all your destinations and take us along with you.

    Besos Sarah
    Journeys of The Zoo

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    • Laura says:

      I’ve been to Mexico, but a few friends who have recently traveled there have all especially enjoyed their time in San Miguel, to the point where I now want to go visit too. They have all visited other cities and towns, but all keep talking about going back to San Miguel. It’s not all that far from Mexico City either, so I feel I could do both. I have been to other cities in Mexico, along the west coast (including Guaymas and Mazatlan), and would like to go back. Oaxaca also calls to me.

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  2. Lori says:

    Hmm… Todd and I are guessing your mystery destination is Buenos Aires, Argentina! Also, we have some news to share. A couple years ago for Todd’s 50th birthday I surprised him with a 2 week trip to Alaska which has been on his bucket list for decades. We hiked miles, went rafting, Halibut fishing, Sockeye Salmon fishing on the Kenai river, wildlife viewing (bears, moose, puffins, sea lions, orca pods, eagles and many others.) We never tired of the awe inspiring scenery and endless opportunities to connect with nature. We loved it so much we went again last year and added a few days in Denali National Park where we were treated to a breathtaking view of Mt. Denali (formerly McKinley.) Now for the BIG news! We have bought a small home on the Kenai Peninsula. It is very much a fixer upper but we are beyond excited to spend our summers there once Todd retires in 2019. The Arizona heat is a bit much in July, August, September with temperatures reaching 110-115 degrees. Once we get the house in shape we would love to host you whenever you make it to Alaska. Can’t wait for your big mystery trip reveal!

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    • Laura says:

      We absolutely LOVED seeing your Alaska pictures last year when we saw you and Todd in Phoenix – we’re still talking about them, and how beautiful it is up there. Congrats on your home purchase! We may actually take you up on your offer of a visit one of these days. Have you ever thought of doing the ferry trip? It’s very low key, very affordable, but the scenery up the Inland Passage is supposed to be incredible, and you get closer than you would on a regular cruise. I don’t know if it’s still possible, but people used to sleep on the upper deck of the ferry in their sleeping bags – maybe now everyone has to book a cabin.

      The big reveal will happen once we know where and when YaYu is going to college – we can’t make any firm plans until then.

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    • Laura says:

      Thank you for reading!

      Well, our trip might be to Edinburgh, and it might not. That’s all I can say for now. Believe me, I am as eager to spill on the destination as anyone, but we first have to get a few more things lined up, and have to know where and when YaYu is going to college next year.

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  3. Vicky says:

    Fabulous list. I’ve been lucky and probably been able to spend time at most of the places on your list. Re Iceland, I felt the same as you, but it was big for my husband so we went last November. It was truly fabulous and worth the time and money. Also Germany is probably my favorite country in the world so shows how different we all are. Interesting that India is at the top of your list as we went for wedding in 2015 which in itself was interesting but both came home so ill I doubt we will ever return, though that was probably my 4th trip there.

    I’m wondering if the mystery trip is Big Sur as would that tie in with the Western NP loop?

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    • Laura says:

      India has fascinated me for years. I’ve known people who have traveled all over, and say that India scared them to death, and others have loved visiting. At this stage of my life it’s someplace I would most likely go with a tour, which is the reason it’s listed under “dream trips” because it would be super expensive. But, I really, really, really want to see it. Brett would probably love Iceland, and I’m sure if I went I’d love it too, but right now I’m just not fostering as much enthusiasm for Iceland as I am other places.

      Have you seen the photos of the recent slide over the highway in Big Sur? Hwy 1 is going to be closed for a l-o-n-g time (like maybe a year). I feel very fortunate that I’ve visited Big Sur – I grew up in So. California and made that drive a few times on the way north and back.

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  4. Jenny says:

    Well, if you get to Alaska, add on a few days and rive the Kenai Oeninsula to beautiful Homer, where I live. The drive is stunning, it’s an arty town on the water with a Kauai vibe, and you already know someone here! 😀

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  5. Libby says:

    Great list! I loved Morocco – my favorite place was the Roman ruins outside of Meknes. Entire mosaics preserved in the open in their original locations. Ouarrazate was also cool. I liked the Berbers more than the people on the western side of the Atlas mountains.

    Hmmm…..large suitcase implies different weather zones….I’m guessing a grand tour of Europe! I’m also guessing that you are studying Dutch or German 🙂

    Next year I want to go to Iceland in February to see the Northern Lights and a week in AZ to see the Grand Canyon. Just applied for a new credit card to get the bonus points to cover travel expenses 🙂

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    • Laura says:

      We had such a great trip to the Grand Canyon last year – it’s a place every American should experience, IMHO. You’ll be glad you went.

      I’ve read about Ouarrazate – it’s supposedly an easy trip from either Marrakech or Casablanca. Would love to see more of Africa, both north and south. I had many students from all over the continent – so many fascinating countries and cultures. Brett visited Kenya when he was in the navy, and really enjoyed his time there.

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      • Libby from New England says:

        Actually your trip last year inspired me about Arizona!

        We rented a car and drove from Marrakesh to Ouarrazate. Up into the Atlas Mountains where we stopped at some of the dirt kasbahs and also purchased geodes and a huge nautilus fossil. In Ouarrazate I found a man weaving small camels out of date palm fronds. They are some of my favorite Xmas tree ornaments.

        Would love to explore more of Africa……so many places and so little time/money!!!

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      • Laura says:

        Agree so much about the cost of visiting Africa – a trip to Botswana would probably end up costing us $20K before it was over.

        Do you plan to stay in the park at the GC? The El Tovar was spendy, but worth every penny.

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