Travelling round the world is an experience most of us can only dream of. But isn’t it a terribly limiting misconception that travelling round the world has to be done all in one? I personally would rather feed my wanderlust by piecemeal, spelling out each tantalising travel destination on its own numbered line on my bucket list. Here are some of those breathtaking places that I have both scratched off my bucket list and those that I am still waiting to savour the taste of in my dreams.
1. Istanbul, Turkey
Described by some as the place where East meets West, here is a place where breathtaking history and culture has begun to incorporate a new modern flavour to its narrative. From labyrinths of bazars, breathtaking mosques and trendy cafes and bars sprouting in up and coming neighbourhoods like Kadıköy-Moda, there is something in this travel destination for absolutely everyone.
2. Cinque Terre, Italy
With astounding views, incredible seafood, hiking trails and brightly coloured buildings, this picturesque dream world is an incredibly romantic travel destination for your bucket list. The five villages on the Western coast, Monterosso, Vernazza, Corniglia, Manarola and Riomaggiore are all linked by a coastal train system which cuts the travelling down to a matter of minutes. However, for those more outdoorsy folk who’re willing to hike in the heat for some of the more breathtaking views, hiking between villages takes a couple of hours and is definitely a must.
3. Chefchaouen, Morocco.
This hidden gem, tucked away and hidden in the Rif mountains of Northwest Morocco, is renowned to those who know it for its unusual sky blue appearance. Every shopfront, hostel and house match in the same particularly stunning shade, confusing many as to where the sky and buildings meet. There are many myths as to why this small town is painted this way but none can quite agree, adding to its overall mystery.
4. Tosh, The Parvati Valley, India
With only a smattering of villages across its vast and lush expanse, the Parvati Valley may be unparalleled in beauty. I would recommend snaking along the endless dirt road to Tosh, its furthest village, by motorbike, just to fully absorb its astounding beauty. Tosh is one of the few places in India where you may experience quiet, making it truly unique. Due to its remote location Tosh only attracts a handful of travellers at a time, so if you’re one for exploring the world’s untouched treasures this is the perfect travel destination for your bucket list. If you’re lucky, you may even catch wind of one of their impromptu psychedelic festivals.
5. The Red Sea, Egypt
As we all are only too aware of these days, our coral reefs are suffering greatly to the hand of climate change. Whilst there are many beautiful wonders of the world that are disappearing to the hands of global warming, war and other kinds of change, Egypt’s Red Sea coral reefs are still thriving and tantalisingly stunning. But for how long? I recommend this as remedy to a stressed and tired souls who prefer having their breath taken away in other ways, literally .
6. Petra, Jordan
Petra attracts hundreds of thousands of tourists every year, but don’t let this deter you from visiting. Have you breath taken away by the sheer size of Al-Khazneh (pictured below) and let the history of the countless other ancient monasteries and ruins inspire you. Locals are warm, friendly and you can always find a good bargain down in the markets.
7. Meteora, Greece
Meteora needs to go on your bucket list right now. And I mean now. It’s got it all. Dramatic views, ancient history and of course, mystery. Famous for its monasteries nestled precariously on towering pinnacles, Meteora is the perfect travel destination for those with a keen sense of adventure who also don’t mind impromptu leg workouts. If the six monasteries aren’t enough to satisfy your traveller’s appetite, the surrounding area has recently opened new outdoor exploration activities including caves that have unearthed artefacts that date back to Neolithic and Palaeolithic times.
8. Bagan, Myanmar
Back in its prime this devout Buddhist Kingdom had built temples numbering in the tens of thousands. Although four fifths of these were destroyed by a Mongol invasion in the 13th Century, there are still enough left to leave you in awe of both the beauty and the powerful inkling of what this place once was. Whether it be the golden Shwezigon Temple, Htilomino Temple or a climb up Temple Shwesandaw to watch the sun set and turn the surrounding temples a shade of rusty orange you’ll never forget, Bagan is an unmissable addition to your bucket list.