12 Travel Bucket List Ideas - Rest Less (2023)

If you love traveling to new places, you probably already know how difficult it can be to narrow down your travel wish list. The world is full of wonderful and impressive places, some on the other side of the world and some closer to home.

However, the places you most want to visit will probably depend on the type of trip you want to take. It could be an adventure holiday, a wildlife themed trip, a city break or a holiday where you can admire the beauty of nature.

So if you're thinking of your ultimate travel bucket list, we're here to (hopefully) inspire you.

Here are 12 of the coolest travel bucket list ideas from around the world.

1. Visit the Grand Canyon

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As one of the natural wonders of the world, it will come as no surprise to see a visit to the Grand Canyon on this list.

Arizona's most famous attraction attracts five million visitors each year, and the sheer size and sheer beauty of this vast canyon can literally leave you speechless.

The spectacular beauty of the Grand Canyon is impossible to convey through photos or videos, which is why it is such a wonderful place to visit in person.

Standing on the edge of the sandstone canyon as the shadowy abyss fades beneath you is magical and mysterious, and spending the day here, watching the colors change as the sun moves across the sky, is truly unforgettable.

With an estimated age of two billion years, about half the age of Planet Earth itself! – a visit to the Grand Canyon will not only fascinate history and geology buffs, but is also ideal for adventure seekers. In addition to hiking the many trails that criss-cross the canyon, you can raft along the Colorado River or even take a helicopter ride over the overhanging ocher peaks.

2. See the Big Five in Kenya

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Kenya is one of those countries that is unusually suggestive...

The name itself conjures up images of vast savannahs dotted with herds of animals, majestic snow-capped mountains and palm-fringed beaches stretching into the Indian Ocean, not to mention the seemingly endless Great Rift Valley, which once almost tore the continent apart. This is truly one of the last great deserts in Africa.

But for many people, the first thing that comes to mind is the wildlife of Kenya and it is one of the best places in the world to go on safari and see the Big Five.

Seeing lions, leopards, rhinos, elephants and buffaloes in their natural habitat is an experience to suit you, but you also have a good chance of spotting giraffes, hippos, cheetahs and all kinds of monkeys and exotic birds.

Kenya is also home to some of the most fascinating cultures and people in the world. You can learn the stories of the Maasai, Samburu, Turkana, Swahili and Kikuyu peoples and their struggles to survive in an increasingly modernized world.

And if you want to relax, you can head to the coast, where the white sand beaches, swaying palm trees and sparkling waters look like they belong in the Caribbean.

3. Go back in time to Havana, Cuba

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If you're looking for a Caribbean vacation with a difference, going to Cuba should definitely be on your list.

This is a strange, heady, wonderful country with a serious retro feel. In the capital Havana, vintage Cadillacs, colonial architecture with stopped clocks, Art-Deco streets and salsa music played in cabaret clubs will make you feel like you've stepped back in time.

Havana is one of the most exciting and fascinating cities you can imagine. Raw, tropical, vibrant and energetic, it vibrates with an energy and spirit that permeates all Cuban culture. It's a city of juxtapositions, where grand colonial plazas sit alongside dilapidated buildings, classic cars blast the latest reggaeton beats, and the smiles of friendly locals belie the country's austere reputation.

Exploring the rest of Cuba is also unforgettable...

Outside of Havana, there are many white beaches with crystal clear waters. In the country's colorful cities, there are signature bars where you can sip delicious mojitos with cigar-smoking locals, and further off the beaten path, you can hike through jungles and flamingo-filled lagoons.

Many amenities in Cuba are basic, but this is a rustic Caribbean getaway like no other.

Experience the unique energy of Cuba

4. See elephants in Chiang Mai, Thailand

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Thailand is one of those countries that has something for everyone. It has beautiful beaches, exciting cities, friendly people, glorious weather, fascinating history and delicious food.

However, it is also a country that is impossible to summarize in a few paragraphs because it is so diverse, from the north of the country to the south and of course the many islands.

One of the most magical places to visit is the mountainous north, where you can see and meet Thai elephants. Whether you choose to visit a sanctuary or try to see these huge animals in their natural habitat is up to you, but it will certainly be an unforgettable experience.

The countryside around the city of Chiang Mai is the best place to see elephants, and luckily for foodies, it's a culinary paradise.

There are countless food markets, cafes and restaurants where you can enjoy the best Thai food in the country. And if you want to be able to recreate these dishes at home, Chiang Mai is also home to many excellent cooking schools where you can hone your skills.

This friendly city is also full of culture and history, and whether you want to visit temples or museums, you'll be spoiled for choice.

Enjoy a Thai adventure

5. Marvel at the Northern Lights

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It's no surprise that seeing the Northern Lights is a popular bucket list idea. This display of natural light is not only mesmerizing, it is also both elusive and mysterious, which only adds to its allure.

There can never be a guarantee that you will witness the Northern Lights, but if you do, seeing those emerald green lights dance and twinkle across the sky is something you will cherish for a lifetime.

The best place to see these magical lights is Norway, followed by Iceland, although you can also see them in Sweden, Finland, Alaska and northern Canada. October to March is usually the best time to see the lights, but since there's no guarantee you'll see them, you should make sure to visit the arctic country that fascinates you the most.

If you're more into wildlife and adventure, you might want to head to Iceland, where you can see arctic foxes, mink, rabbits, reindeer and occasionally even polar bears, while visiting ice-capped volcanoes and geysers.

Or, if you want to see the lights but also want to hike through valleys and mountains and sail through dazzling fjords, then Norway is a great choice.

Witness the magic of the Northern Lights

6. See the pyramids of Egypt

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Few ancient relics are as magical and mysterious as the Egyptian pyramids, and there's something about this country that brings out the curious child in all of us.

From Luxor's Valley of the Kings, where Tutankhamun's tomb was found, to the sand-eroded pyramids and tombs of pharaohs buried for millennia, Egypt is truly special.

Traveling along the Nile, the longest river in the world, is one of the best ways to explore this fascinating country, and at 4,160 miles long, it will take you close to Egypt's most exciting sights. You can explore seaside temples like Dendera or Edfu, cross Lake Nasser to admire the monument of Ramesses II at Abu Simbel, or walk through the desert to see Roman ruins.

For lovers of history and archaeology, Egypt is one of the most fascinating countries in the world. Apart from the impressive yet thrilling experience of navigating the maze-like pyramids, it is filled with minarets and mosques, as well as churches and monasteries that are unprecedented in the world hidden in the desert.

And if you need a break from the heat, the Red Sea beaches are just around the corner.

Explore the history of Egypt

7. Go on an expedition to Antarctica

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If you're drawn to true isolation and untouched nature, places that feel so different from anywhere else that they seem truly otherworldly, then you may already be dreaming of a trip to Antarctica.

One of the world's last authentic frontiers, this is a land of vast ice shelves, pristine mountains and glistening icebergs. It is made only of snow, ice, water and rock.

But of course getting to such a remote place is not easy and most visitors end up traveling to Antarctica. This means that in addition to the ethereal sights on your trip, you'll also have plenty of time to learn about the Antarctic landscape and wildlife from your experienced team and understand how and why this land has escaped humanity . human influence.

Once you get to Antarctica, there is a lot to do. You can kayak or paddle the icy waters, climb steep mountains, and even camp on the ice meadows.

Then there's the wildlife, which is just as magical. You can see huge whales, seals and emperor penguins and see albatrosses and terns circling the waters.

Magnificent, inspiring and incredibly beautiful, this is a place like no other.

8. Drive California's Pacific Coast Highway

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For many people, a road trip is at the top of their travel wish list and there are a number of destinations around the world that are perfect for a driving holiday. But one of the most popular, most beautiful, and most diverse is California's iconic Pacific Coast Highway (PCH).

If you've always wanted to explore California and see the best of the Golden State, this is the best way to do it!

Stretching for more than 600 miles, this spectacular scenic highway takes you along California's rugged coastline, from San Francisco in the north to San Diego in the south.

You'll pass major cities like Los Angeles, laid-back surf resorts, luxury cities, endless golden beaches and some of the best golf courses in the world. You can even enjoy watching whales on the shore while driving!

While driving the PCH takes 10 hours if you don't stop, the goal of this trip is to take your time and see the most beautiful places in California.

In addition to enjoying the glitz and glamor of Hollywood, you can detour to Yosemite National Park to admire the giant sequoias and towering cliffs, or drive to Napa Valley, where you can go wine tasting and enjoy the view of the idyllic vineyards.

9. Dive the Great Barrier Reef

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Australia is known for many things: Uluru, kangaroos, beautiful beaches, laid back locals and surfing to name just five!

However, one of the things it is most famous for is being home to the Great Barrier Reef, which is located on the north-east coast of Queensland. As the largest structure ever built by living creatures, it is so large that it can even be seen from space. However, the most impressive view of this reef is much closer.

The Great Barrier Reef is one of the best places in the world to dive because this 344,000 square kilometer underwater kingdom is full of life and color. The reef includes over 2,900 individual reefs and 900 islands, so if you dream of combining diving with island hopping, this is the place to go.

Even if you don't like diving, visiting this special part of Australia will never disappoint...

You can visit Fraser Island, with its sugary white sand beaches and towering sand dunes, take whale and dolphin watching cruises in the deep blue waters and snorkel the many beaches of Great Keppel Island. You can also relax and simply enjoy the sun, sea and sand that this country is famous for.

10. Walk along the Calzada coast

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You don't have to go to the other side of the Earth to tick some amazing places off your bucket list.

Northern Ireland is home to the beautiful Causeway Coast, which is a long stretch of beaches, cliffs and dunes on the north coast of County Antrim.

If you enjoy history, myths and legends, as well as great natural beauty and wildlife, this may be the place for you.

Walkers will be in their element here as these coastal paths pass many of Northern Ireland's most spectacular sights. Walk the windswept cliffs and secluded beaches, take time to stop at historic ruins such as the 13th century Dunluce Castle. Or work up the nerve to climb the famous Carrick-a-Rede suspension bridge.

This part of Northern Ireland is home to the stunning Giant's Causeway, a jagged headland of 40,000 basalt columns leading out to sea. Legend has it that giants once used the path to walk across Scotland, and it still holds a unique sense of mystery about it today.

And of course, if you love whiskey, the Causeway Coast is home to some of the best distilleries in the world.

11. Visit Angkor Wat and the Mekong Delta

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The magic and beauty of the ancient Angkor temples in Cambodia are legendary.

While the Angkor Archaeological Park is home to 72 impressive temples, the most iconic is Angkor Wat, which is the largest religious monument in the world. Decorated with elaborate sculptures and towers, it is also one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World.

Visiting this amazing part of Cambodia will not only allow you to witness a once-in-a-lifetime sight - the sun rising over the looming temples - but will also allow you to see many other mystical ruins. Explore Ta Prohm with its jungle canopy, the elaborate sculptures of Banteay Srei and the peaceful atmosphere of Ta Nei while learning about Khmer life and history.

But that's not all you can do on this type of trip...

The vast Mekong River flows through Cambodia, Vietnam, Thailand, Laos and China, and after the hustle and bustle of Angkor, you can enjoy the sense of serenity you will find on this sparkling river.

Here, in this unique part of the world, you can admire emerald rice paddies, floating houses, farmers with conical hats and floating markets.

Visit Cambodia and the Mekong Delta

12. See Everest and the Himalayas

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If you're an adventurer drawn to mystical mountains, chances are you've always dreamed of visiting Nepal and seeing Mount Everest up close.

As the world's tallest mountain, Everest's power and beauty are iconic, and seeing the jagged, looming peak in real life will take your breath away. Although the reality is that most of us aren't able to climb Everest because not only does it cost between £24,000 and £120,000, it's also extremely dangerous.

That said, the good news is that this part of Nepal is the heart of the Himalayas, so there are many other safer but spectacular treks you can do along the peaks and valleys, many of which offer spectacular views of the of Everest.

There is also much more to Nepal than the Himalayas. This part of the world is also a wildlife lover's dream, home to fascinating wildlife such as rhinos, crocodiles and rare birds. Moreover, the traditional villages dotting the foothills of Annapurna are equally fascinating for culture lovers.

While there are many adventures to be found here, you will also find a unique sense of spirituality.

Final thoughts…

Whether you've always dreamed of experiencing the desolate and remote beauty of Antarctica, seeing animals like lions and elephants in Kenya, or driving a classic California highway, the opportunities for adventure and exploration in our wonderful world are endless.

The beauty of travel is that it is very personal and the trips on your list can be tailored to your own interests and personality.

Explore ancient temples in Cambodia, relax on pristine Caribbean beaches, admire Mount Everest or try Thai restaurants.

While we may not be able to book our dream trips right now, it never hurts to dream or plan.For more ideas and inspiration, you might want to visittravel departmentfrom our website.

Have you checked any of these experiences off your travel bucket list? Or do you have your own ideas for your dream trips or the perfect vacation? We'd love to hear about your experiences and travel plans! Join the conversation at Rest LessCommunity forum, or leave a comment below.

Selene Nelson

Selene Nelson is an author, freelance journalist and lifestyle writer for Rest Less. After graduating from the University of Sussex with a BA in English Literature, Selene began contributing to many major newspapers and websites and has written for the BBC, The Sunday Times, The Independent, Town & Country and HuffPost. Her specialist subjects include food, travel and health, although she enjoys writing about a wide range of subjects (for example, her two books are about veganism and psychopathy, respectively!). She enjoys cooking (especially pasta and Asian noodle soups), reading, traveling, hiking, trying to stay in shape, and watching animal videos on YouTube.

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