12 Must Visit Travel Destinations
Spring has sprung, and the time is ripe to make some plans and go exploring. While there are plenty of incredible places to see stateside, the world is your oyster, and there are truly some bucket list-worthy destinations to see out there. Whether you’re planning for spring break, summer break, or just a trip on the fly, here’s our list of the top 15 travel destinations that should be on your travel bucket list.
Iceland is on the top of many bucket lists these days, and it's easy to see why. The land of fire and ice has it all: incredible waterfalls, volcanoes, hot springs, black sand beaches, and northern lights. With untouched, rugged nature and an offshore island falling square into the Arctic Circle, many bucket-list items can be checked off in this one destination.
2. Australia, The Great Barrier Reef
One of the seven natural wonders of the world, the reef is the largest on Earth, stretching just shy of 1,500 miles in length. What can you see beneath the water’s surface? A LOT. Researchers say the reef is home to more than 400 types of coral, 4,000 types of mollusks, 1,500 species of fish, as well as numerous whales, sharks, turtles, dolphins, and birds.
3. Santorini, Greece
Black sand beaches are offset by bleached white buildings with blue tops towering over the Aegean Sea. The contrast of colors and wide availability of world-renowned Greek food makes this island a top spot for many.
The great pyramids are more than 4,600 years young. To date, their construction remains a mystery. While we know they served as tombs for kings, little more is known about how these structures, located just outside of Cairo, came to be.
The last great frontier in the USA, Alaska is a land of grandeur. You’ll find lush mountains with waterfalls in the summer, and northern lights and snow-covered glaciers in the winter. Since most towns aren’t connected by road, plan on using regional flight planes to take in more than one town. It’s wild, rugged, and unlike anything you’ll see in the lower 48.
6. Rome, Italy
It wasn’t built in a day, and it takes a lot more than a day to see it all! From the Colosseum to the Vatican, this ancient city inspires and feeds the soul with a blend of ancient history and modern appeal. Be sure to have some gelato and pizza while you’re in town!
With so many castles along the roadside, you’ll find that locals have simply walked away from many, leaving them deserted on the hillside for your exploration. Ireland inspires imagery of royalty and awe. Get out of the city and take in the rolling hillside of the country and the “Ring of Kerry” for the best views. When you’ve explored all of the tiny island, head north into Scotland for a bonus look into Celtic life.
8. Petra, Jordan
The lost citadel in the sands of time - it’s fabled and awe-inspiring. The sandstone walls look like they’re carved out of the canyon walls. It's day-trip worthy from a home base of Amman, where you can also plan a trip to the lowest point on planet Earth: the Dead Sea.
9. Galapagos Islands
The place that inspired Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution remains a mainstay on any traveler’s bucket list. With more types of unique wildlife than anywhere on Earth, it’s a guarantee that you’ll experience things here that you won’t find anywhere else. The islands are located just off the coast of Ecuador.
10. Machu Picchu
Trek to Peru to take in the ruins of this ancient civilization. The ruins were widely unknown until the early 1900s, which means much of the Incan civilization remains intact. It’s typically available on coach vacations, but many think the best way to experience it is on a multi-day backpacking trip.
11. Tanzania Serengeti
The Serengeti is the world’s first UNESCO World Heritage protected site, designated as such in 1972. Expect to find the “big five” here (lion, elephant, rhino, leopard, and cape buffalo) as well as plenty of other, smaller animal life. If not Tanzania, make a safari trip to somewhere in Africa. Another worthy destination is Namibia, where you’ll find a quarter of the world’s population of cheetahs and the last free-ranging herd of black rhinos on Earth.
12. Swiss Alps
Some of Europe’s most dramatic views are here! Lush green hillsides dotted with vibrant wildflowers give way to snow-capped mountains that create a vivid backdrop in the spring and summer. In the winter, you’ll find some of the best skiing in the world.
13. Taj Mahal
Arguably the single most popular building in the world, this gem in India inspires the imagination and feeds the religious soul.
14. Visit Antarctica
Yes, it is possible to get here. It’s also extremely worthy of the effort. Arrive via ship (usually departing from South Africa) or by air. Just be sure to plan your trip November to March, as those are the only time the landmass is accessible. You won’t find towns, stores, or hotels, though - just the last place on Earth with no permanent residents.
15. Great Wall of China
Much fabled and photographed, this man-made wonder is something to experience first-hand. Running and bicycling tours along the wall exist for multi-day trips, while cable cars and toboggan rides make it accessible to families with small children.
Here at QALO, we love some outdoor adventures and we designed our rings to travel with you. QALO rings are the perfect accessory for your world travels. Pick your perfect ring by starting with our new arrivals for men and women. And, while you’re out there, be sure to share your adventure pictures with us on Instagram @QALO.
Photography By: Mike Sheffield & Jamie Kamiya