Although the COVID-19 pandemic has barred us from international travel, lately all I can think about is where I want to go when travel is allowed again. I have found myself captivated by places I have read about or watched YouTube videos about. I feel inspired to go everywhere from ancient ruins, to bustling cities, and remote mountainous areas. Now more than ever I feel like I have caught what people call the “travel bug.” Although I can’t cure it by traveling right now, I’d like to share where my wanderlust has been taking me in my imagination. Here are the top 8 places I would travel to if COVID-19 didn’t exist (and I had an unlimited supply of money).
Greece has been at the top of my travel bucket list for the longest time. One of my travel dreams is to go island hopping there, taking in the breathtaking views, and indulging in the flavorful Mediterranean cuisine. Many people know about the popular, touristy islands of Santorini and Mykonos, but there are plenty of other lesser-known islands like Paros, Antiparos, and Tinos, just to name a few. Greek cuisine is also one of my favorites. From savory gyros and feta cheese to sweet baklava, I want to savor it all.
Morocco is another place that has been on my travel bucket list for the longest time. I first learned about the country in high school French class a couple of years ago, and soon after, a Moroccan restaurant opened close to my house in upstate NY that really opened my eyes to the different flavors of North Africa. I would love to travel to the city of Marrakesh with its colorful, bustling marketplaces, and its unique, picturesque architecture that has been influenced by many different cultures throughout history. Of course, I also need to taste authentic Moroccan cuisines like their tagines and couscous.
Whenever I think about traveling to Asia, Japan is the first country that comes to mind. I find this country and its culture to be so unique and fascinating. Since Tokyo is the capital of the country, it is generally thought of as Japan’s cultural center and many want to visit it. But I would also love to travel to the city of Kyoto. Kyoto is known for its beautiful fall foliage, its Buddhist temples and Shinto Shrines, and its authentic Japanese cooking. Japan is seemingly so different from the United States, and I think it would be really eye-opening to experience a culture that is so different from my own.
Although Australian culture is somewhat similar to that of the United States (we both speak English, and are heavily influenced by western civilization), it is a travel destination that not many Americans ever visit because of how far away it is. Although the journey there would be very time consuming, I would love to travel to Australia and experience the world-class beaches, the contemporary cities, and the breathtaking natural scenery.
I recently read a book that was set in Capri, an island on the Italian coast, and the book definitely inspired me to add Italy to my travel bucket list. The Italian culture seems so fascinating and charming, and of course, the food seems mouth-watering. I dream of licking a cone of gelato on a hot summer day on the Amalfi Coast or savoring a bowl of pasta by the canals in Venice.
Very few people have South American destinations on their travel bucket lists, and I think it’s primarily because many people living in the United States simply don’t know very much about our neighboring continent. There are so many beautiful and culture-filled places to travel to in South America, but I think that Chile seems so cool. One of the country’s main attractions is its portion of the Patagonia mountain range. As someone who loves hiking and the outdoors, the idea of traveling there sounds like an incredible experience.
Everyone knows and loves Paris (for good reason), but I would love to go to the South of France on the coast of the Mediterranean Sea. Cities like Nice, Cannes, Marseilles, and St. Tropez seem like they could be scenes out of a classic French film. The Mediterranean Sea offers many opportunities to enjoy the natural beauty of the world by swimming or boating. French cuisine is one of my favorites as well, and it is so interesting how some things differ from region to region. But wherever you go you are sure to find an authentic French bakery serving fresh pastries.
I come from upstate NY, so I have traveled to Canada quite a bit, but it is a massive country with so many different places to explore. I think Vancouver seems like such a cool, modern city to travel to. It has ever-evolving art and foodie scenes. As a bonus, Canada has lots of great parks and natural scenery.