Have you got a travel bucket list?
As wonderful as it would be to see all of everything, even the most intrepid traveller must admit that it’s important to prioritise. When it comes to viable possibilities, all you need to do is flip through a travel magazine or search #traveldestinations on Instagram to feel overwhelmed with choices. The number of beautiful destinations around the world clamouring for your attention can make it difficult to decide where to head next.
Let our ultimate travel bucket list help you narrow down your options so you can get that list going!
Jump To a Section Below
- How Do You Make A Travel Bucket List?
- What Is The Number 1 Place In The World To Visit?
How Do You Make A Travel Bucket List?
Making a travel bucket list can be a great deal of fun. However, we should warn you that you might be tempted to start packing a suitcase as soon as you’re done writing…
We suggest that, instead of scribbling your list on a scrap of paper, you purchase a good quality travel journal. Not only is it a fitting place for your list of must-visit destinations, it can also be the perfect place in which to plan your trips. If you take it with you, you can make notes about your travels.
The first thing you should do is to list all the places you have already visited. Unless you’re absolutely determined to re-visit somewhere you’ve already been, your bucket list for travel should only include places that are new to you.
Next, write down all the places you’ve wanted to visit as well as all the travel experiences you’ve wanted to have. When you cannot think of anything more, prioritise your list. Start by identifying the three destinations or life experiences that are absolute musts.
Next, identify three more destinations or experiences that you could visit in the coming years.
When you’ve done that, choose a few more places to round off your list. If possible, make a timeline for your ultimate travel bucket list. If you’re feeling motivated, you can then start planning your first trip.
What Is The Number 1 Place In The World To Visit?
According to the US News & World Report, the number one place in the world to visit is Paris. Known as the city of lights and the city of love, millions of people see the French capital as the epitome of elegance, luxury, refinement and romance.
If you have never been to Paris, consider adding it to your bucket list for travel. That said, if the thought of the city leaves you cold, there would be no point in visiting it. Remember, they’re your bucket list ideas, and every destination on it should be meaningful to you.
Below are the destinations that we think would be a meaningful addition to any list (and yes, Paris is first!).
People have lived in the Paris area since 300 BC. What began as a small settlement all those centuries ago has become one of the great centres of art, fashion, literature, and science. Thanks to landmarks such as the Notre Dame Cathedral, Eiffel Tower, Louvre Museum, and the Moulin Rouge, the city is an iconic destination.
Imagine sipping champagne while enjoying a view of the Eiffel Tower, shopping for the latest fashions on the Champs-Élysées, or enjoying the peace of the Sacré-Cœur Basilica on Montmartre. The city of love deserves a spot on the ultimate travel bucket list.
The Pyramids of Giza, Egypt
There are plenty of bucket-list-worthy experiences to enjoy in Egypt, such as cruising down the Nile, strolling along the Avenue of Sphinxes at Karnak temple and exploring the Valley of the Kings. However, if we have to highlight only one experience that is not to be missed, it would be a visit to the pyramids of Giza. The enormous scale of those ancient monuments to long-dead pharaohs must be seen to be believed.
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Crowded, cacophonous Rio de Janeiro is a city of extremes. Brazil’s second-largest city probably comes as a culture shock to many visitors, but the highlights of a visit make every moment worth it.
The city is where you can find the famous Sugarloaf Mountain, the gigantic art deco statue of Christ the Redeemer on Corcovado Mountain, and the beaches of Copacabana and Ipanema. There’s no way we could leave a visit to Rio off our ultimate travel bucket list.
For a truly memorable experience, try to travel to the city for the pre-Lent carnival, which consists of five days of music, dancing, parades, feasting, and drinking.
Ha Long Bay, Vietnam
Friendly locals, a vibrant culture, and amazing food make Vietnam a fantastic bucket list travel destination. For a truly unforgettable visit, include a cruise on Ha Long Bay as part of your itinerary. The bay’s crystal-clear waters undoubtedly will delight you, but even more enchanting are the huge pillars of rock that rise out of the bay. Topped by lush vegetation, they create a truly ethereal scene that you’ll still be talking about over sundowners at a trendy beach bar that evening.
Machu Picchu, Peru
Built on top of a flat-topped mountain ridge 600 years ago, Machu Picchu is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of the New Seven Wonders of the World. Originally an Inca stronghold, the site was abandoned during the Spanish conquest of Peru.
The citadel is a marvel of engineering as many of the stones are so well dressed and fit so closely together that you cannot slip a piece of paper between them. Add the site to your bucket list for travel if you have a reasonable level of physical fitness, as you will need to hike the Inca trail to reach it!
Angkor Wat, Cambodia
Constructed during the 1100s, Angkor Wat is the largest religious monument in the world. It was originally built as a Hindu temple and then was converted into a Buddhist place of worship.
One of the first European visitors to the site, a Portuguese friar named Antonio da Madalena who explored it in 1586, said that no other building could compare to it. He added that it was impossible to describe its grandeur in words. Centuries later, visitors still echo his sentiments. Make memories that will last a lifetime by visiting this bucket list travel destination.
Cape Town, South Africa
If you are looking for bucket list places to visit in the world that offer something for just about everyone, Cape Town, South Africa, is one of them. Although the Cape of Good Hope was first rounded by Portuguese navigators in the 1500s, it wasn’t until almost a century later that the Dutch East India Company sent a small group of people to settle there. Their task was to build a fort and a vegetable garden so that ships on the maritime spice route could stop to replenish their supplies.
Now, Cape Town is a colourful, cosmopolitan cultural melting pot and a top-pick for any traveller’s summer bucket list. Dominated by Table Mountain, it offers beautiful beaches, world-class entertainment, delectable food and wine, and much more.
The Grand Canyon, Arizona, USA
Arizona’s Grand Canyon demands a place on the ultimate travel bucket list. Carved into the earth by the Colorado River over millennia, the canyon’s vast size, impressive rock formations and ever-changing colours are mind-boggling.
There are several different ways in which you can experience the magic of the Grand Canyon. One of them is to participate in a hike that takes you into the canyon. Another way, far more comfortable than walking, is to enjoy a helicopter ride over it.
Salar de Uyuni, Bolivia
One of the strangest bucket list places to visit in the world is Bolivia’s Salar de Uyuni. Covering more than 10,000 square kilometres, it is the world’s largest salt flat. More than that, after it rains, the thin layer of water that covers the snow-white salt transforms it into the world’s largest mirror. Being in that amazing place at that time is like being in a surrealist painting. You won’t know which photos to post on Instagram first.
Located on Honshu Island, Kyoto is regarded as Japan’s cultural capital. The ancient city is famous for its numerous temples, gardens, palaces, and shrines, many of which are UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
Although the city is a wonderful place to visit at any time of the year, it is at its most beautiful in March and April when the cherry trees bloom. Another Kyoto vacation bucket list idea is to time your visit to coincide with one of the major festivals celebrated there. Among them are Aoi Matsuri in May, Gion Matsuri in July, and the Bon Festival in August.
The Great Wall, China
Built primarily to defend China from invaders, the Great Wall also helped regulated the movement of people, and it played a role in early import/export controls on the Silk Road. The walls built during the Ming dynasty measure almost 9,000km in length. This is just one of the reasons the Great Wall of China is one of the most awe-inspiring architectural feats of the ancient world. Walking on its battlements would be an incredible experience to add to your ultimate travel bucket list.
The Great Barrier Reef, Australia
The Great Barrier Reef off the coast of Queensland, Australia, is the largest coral reef system in the world. Made by living organisms, the reef is more than 2,300km long and it covers an area of more than 344,400 square kilometres.
There is more to the reef than coral, it’s a haven for a multitude of sea life, from tiny, colourful fish, to massive giant clams. You can explore this bucket list travel destination from the comfort of a glass-bottomed boat, or you can dive or snorkel in its warm, clear waters. An alternative is to get a bird’s eye view by enjoying a helicopter ride over a section of it.
These 12 destinations are only a few vacation bucket list ideas. Whether you visit one or more of them, you are sure to make memories that will last a lifetime.