London life is hard work. I work long hours, put up with the inhumanity of daily tube travel and endure spending a small fortune just to get a Starbucks Coffee. My way of getting through is ensuring I always have a holiday booked to look forward to. As soon as I return from one trip I make sure there is at least one more in the pipeline.
I am currently lucky enough to be single and childless which means I can take advantage of traveling whenever I can get the time of unencumbered by school holidays. If I get my way I always like to travel in February, June and October which, as long as you avoid half terms, avoids most of the peak seasons of the year and you can get further for less.
Over the last few years I have been lucky enough to go to New York, Los Angeles, Vancouver, Orlando, Colorado and The Isle of Man but that still leaves a lot of places unexplored. Thankfully a British Airways credit card means I am always earning Air Miles and spending 8 months basically living in a Holiday Inn for work means I have a pretty high number of IHG points so my choices are pretty open.
So, where is next on my list….
The Travel Bucket List
10. The Scottish Highlands
My knowledge of Scotland extends to a couple of very quick visits to Edinburgh for the Fringe and a University open day. Every time I see the Highlands on TV they look absolutely spectacular. I reckon this could be a quick weekend away and probably more in the summer than the winter, hear it can be a little snowy!
I have friends who live in Ireland. Ryanair offer flights for less than my train ticket to work. And yet, I have never been. This is another one where the countryside looks amazing and I know that the people are lovely. A trip to Dublin, a drive to Cork to see some friends and some time in the countryside would be perfect.
Definitely another summer trip but since I was a kid and I have seen the Kremlin and Red Square on TV I have always thought it looks like an incredibly interesting place. It is clearly a vast country and only a small part is a tourist attraction. To be honest my knowledge of things to do is pretty limited and I would welcome advice of where to go (Can one do Moscow and St Petersburg in one trip?!). This is definitely on the list but more research required.
7. South Africa
I have always wanted to go on Safari. My father spent quite a bit of time when I was a child working on the African continent (Central rather than Southern) and came back with incredible stories and amazing photographs. Safari is obviously the main draw but the history of this country is incredible and interesting, being able to follow the Mandela story and visit Robben Island is definitely also on the list.
6. An Alaskan Cruise
Alaska is one of the last frontiers in the world. It is absolutely possible to visit overland and tour the country that way but it is difficult and expensive. I am still a Geography student at heart and being able to see real Glaciers up close would be a dream come true. A chance to see the Northern Lights would also be something I could not possibly turn down. I’ve also never done a cruise so this would be kind of a two for one deal.
5. San Francisco
I have been lucky enough to visit California but never San Francisco (technically a lie, I once connected flights in the airport). As someone who works in Tech San Fran and Silicon Valley are somewhat of a pilgrimage. I mean I’d love to live here one day if someone wants to offer me a job?! The city by the bay is also supposed to have incredible food and culture (as well as being the hipster capital of the world).
4. Hong Kong
As a kid I remember watching Britain give up Hong Kong and seeing the incredible bright lights and hearing all about this financial centre of the world. I think my inner Geographer likes this one too, the story of a city entirely constrained growing upwards is amazing and creates stunning visuals. I have travelled very little in the far east and I think this would be a great first trip.
When I was a small child my Grandmother did a tour of China (Waayyyy before most people were travelling out there) and came back with fantastic stories and photos that looked out of this world. Since then Shanghai has become a mega-city and is rapidly westernising – I think I would like to visit while there is still some of the old Shanghai left and to see the mix of East meets West that now prevails. Given the length of this travel this would almost certainly become a cross-China trip.
2. New Zealand
I have two friends who currently live in New Zealand and went to school with a Kiwi. The famous adage is there are more Sheep than people but the landscape is breathtaking. I love a good outdoor activity and they have them in abundance. Getting to visit the Hobbiton wouldn’t be terrible either!
I could 100% live in Australia. It has a lovely climate, a relaxed lifestyle, a nice cost of living and the people are among the nicest in the world. Given I am not moving there any time soon a holiday will have to do. There are a whole host of cities and towns that I could visit, I am not super keen on the backpacker thing so it would be nice hotels along the way. Perhaps I will take a sabbatical for a few months at some point and do it properly, not sure I could do it justice in a couple of weeks.
What’s on your Travel Bucket List? Do you make sure you always have a trip to look forward to? Let me know in the comments below