Top 10 Places I Want to Travel to Before I Die

For some crazy reason I don’t have a vacation planned for this August. One day I looked at my calendar, and there was no room left to get away—when you combine my schedule, my husband’s schedule, and all the kids’ events, it makes it hard to take trips unless you plan way in advance. So other than a quick weekend trip to visit with my in-laws, we are staying home.

But I can dream! And dream I shall. I am going to share my list of the top 10 places I want to go to before I die (in no particular order, although I hope dying comes last):

1. Australia—The problem with seeing Australia is that it’s so freaking big, so I want to go for a long time. Once I’m over there I will also want to see New Zealand, and perhaps Tasmania. But I definitely want to climb Ayers Rock (I had an Australian Shepherd named Yulara once!), and also shop my way through Sydney.

2. Jerusalem—Hopefully, I will go during peaceful times (ha!). But it’s hard not to want to see what all the fuss is about, and experience so many important religious and historical sites firsthand. I will have to go to Bethlehem, since that is where I live in Pennsylvania. And Emmaus, too. And I think it would be fun to swim in the Red Sea.

3. Southern India—I just watched an episode from The Story of India, and it showed an amazing market filled with glorious silks, gold jewelry, and spices. It really made me want to go. Plus, Southern Indian food is so yummy!

4. Salzburg (and Prague
)—What can I say, I want to take the Sound of Music tour of Austria, and go to the Czech Republic and see where the Moravians got their start.

5. Vienna—I want to waltz to a live orchestra playing Strauss—preferably wearing some sort of gown—with my husband, who hopefully will remember how to waltz. (Deep down we are all Cinderella!)

6. Mongolia—There is a great movie called Mongolia Ping Pong, which is hilarious and beautiful. It made me truly want to go to Mongolia and ride horses into the wide open steppes, and stay in a yurt and let my face get ruddy and bathe in a river. And maybe I can even see a crane.

7. Amsterdam—It just seems like everyone should go there once and do whatever he or she wants. Shop. Smoke. Observe. Eat. And whatever else comes naturally, or slightly unnaturally.

8. The Sahara—I want to ride a camel into the desert, see Tuareg blue up close. Feel the heat. Absorb the space. Maybe plant a few trees. Camp out in a tent, and sit on rugs and pillows while eating dates.

9. The Greek Islands—I love Greek food. I love blue water. I want to get on a sailboat and stay on it for weeks while we go around and see the unfolding of our history and the times when the Goddess ruled and lost her power, all the while eating olives and feta and fresh-grilled fish and fruit.

10. Morocco—When all the kids are grown and I am old, and no one cares if I ever come back, I want to go to Morocco and sink into the mystery—study Sufism, drink mint tea, visit Petra, maybe get a crush on a sheik and write songs of love, and fall back into a bed filled with pillows and maybe never get up. That’s a happy ending.

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17 Responses to Top 10 Places I Want to Travel to Before I Die

  1. MR DAVID ANDREW MDOUGAL July 27, 2009 at 12:04 pm #


  2. TB July 27, 2009 at 12:11 pm #

    Petra is in Jordan… have to add another place to your list 🙂

  3. G.C. July 27, 2009 at 1:43 pm #

    Yes, the Red Sea has wonderful snorkeling… but don’t you mean the Dead Sea? It’s much nearer to Jerusalem.

  4. maria July 27, 2009 at 4:50 pm #

    Gee I’m going to have to look at maps more. I want to go to both the dead sea and the red sea, Petra in Jordan and Morocco. Maybe I’ll even ride a camel from Morocco to Petra….or maybe not.

  5. Joe July 27, 2009 at 6:12 pm #

    Salzburg is my favorite city. There are so many things to do and see. Don’t just take the Sound of Music Tour. Savor the city. Walk the streets and see the city up close and on your time, not the tour guides time. Take a trip outside the city center and find an excellent restaurant (they are hard to miss). Stroll along the river, eat the German hotdogs, bread and mustard for lunch. One of my favorites is to just watch the people—from virtually everywhere visiting beautiful Salzburg.

  6. Kattya July 27, 2009 at 10:53 pm #

    Knowing what I know now about my food, I would very much like to go back to my country (Mexico) and visit the small farms and “ranchos”. Eat fresh cut grilled pad cactus with fresh mushroom quesadillas.

  7. Chona July 28, 2009 at 12:23 am #

    Your bucket list got me to make my own list. Traveling to beautiful spots in the world is also my dream but it could get pretty expensive, something that discourages me. However, It will remain a dream if I don’t do anything to lead me one step closer to it. So, thank you for igniting that fire again. If you plan to go to the fareast, schedule a trip to Amanpulo or El Nido in Palawan Island of the Philippines. Aside from the pristine beauty of the place, you’ll get to experience the great food and the best tourist come-on : Filipino Hospitality.

  8. Alan July 28, 2009 at 12:25 pm #

    I and my wife have wanted to take a Canadian Rockies train tour, go to Alaska, not on a ship but to the wilderness by train or whatever means and a resort where we would be pampered and waited on hand and foot – just once, just to know what it would be like.

  9. maria July 28, 2009 at 4:29 pm #

    I love trains! When I was little my mother was afraid to fly so we took all our vacations by trains…so divine! Fingerbowls!

  10. Steph July 28, 2009 at 6:12 pm #

    “Get a crush on a sheik and write songs of love …” That’s awesome 🙂

  11. Shirley July 28, 2009 at 11:15 pm #

    Turkey is incredible. And Istanbul is very exotic.

  12. Blaze August 2, 2009 at 2:08 pm #

    Have you been everywhere that you want to go in the good ole U S A? If you haven’t been here, New Orleans , I pity the fool.

  13. Debra August 2, 2009 at 2:09 pm #

    I’m with David, Scotland it is!!! Been to Prague, Greece, and Amsterdam……….the HIghlands still top my list!!!!!!!!!!

  14. Harold Jones August 3, 2009 at 8:46 pm #

    I went to China last year ane the Great Wall is amazing, it just stretches on and on TH E fORIDDEN cITY IN peking was also fascinating.

  15. Harold Jones August 3, 2009 at 8:46 pm #

    sorry about he typing, recovering from A STROKE!

  16. Carole Rothery August 5, 2009 at 2:46 am #

    I am already saving to go to Israel a lifelong dream

  17. DONNA FROM DELAWARE August 18, 2009 at 10:26 am #

    Maria, I’ve been to just about every place you have mentioned except Australia, New Zealand and Tasmania. Been to Greece. Went for 28hrs and loved it. Coming into Athens and seeing the ruins on Mt. Olympus was breathtaking just across from the Hilton Hotel where we stayed. Jerusalem is a must for anybody of any religion and persuasion. Petra, in Jordon, was also breathtaking. It is unbelievable how this city was carved out of the mountains and the color of the sandstone is just gorgeous at sunset. Be aware that you are in the desert and need a coat and head covering. It can be very windy and very cold at night. I was not fascinated with India. Love the food though and shopping for silk was a bargain hunters dream. Not interested in gold jewelry there because it is not good quality gold. More 10kt than anything else or silver dipped in gold. Find a quality jewelry shop. Salzburg is to die for. Such history and culture. Food, music, architecture. You name it, Salzburg has it! Don’t forget to eat Sacher Torte in the Sacher Cafe just up from the Continental Hotel in Vienna. Do not leave without visiting at least one coffee house and find out what it was like when the artitstic intelligentsia gathered there and smoked and talked about literature, music, government, etc. Prague is an amazing place also.The Czechs are so cultured and the food is delish! The original pilsner from Plsen (and that is not misspelled) is wonderful ,if not too cold. They have got the best tasting goose in Europe, perhaps the world, and the bread dumplings with that cream sauce that blankets the meat is heavenly. Amsterdam. Loved it. Free spirited, wonderfully exciting, overcrowded. Take a boat ride down the canal and look at the wonderful architecture. Eat, drink and carouse in a good way. Visit museums and shop, shop, shop! Pick up the language. If you know German, you’ll grasp Dutch easily. Savor each city and back country of every country that you visit. Do your homework before you go. Check with the State Department on what places to avoid visiting, and check with the CDC if going to places such as India and Morocco to see what innoculations you may need. Was in China last year. Did Shanghai, Beijing, a Yangtze River Cruise, Hunan, etc. Saw everything that could be seen. Fascinating! Be careful of the food. They use too much oil in food preparation. Just got back from Scotland and Ireland. The Highlands have to be my favorite place there. I cannot begin to describe the rugged beauty.I am in love with Scotland. Went to the Military Tattoo in Edinburgh. Loved it. The moaning of the bagpipes, all played together was so beautiful. The Irish people are beautiful. So helpfuland thoughtful. Needless to say the pubs were full every day. The food was very good, as in Scotland. I can’t say enough about it. I could go on and on. Just be careful where you go and try not to go any place in the evening alone if you plan to stay out into the wee hours, no matter where in the world you go. Make sure your cell phone is loaded and with you at all times. You never know where you’ll get stranded and Maria, swim in the Dead Sea or should I say, float before it is all dried up! Terrible! Study your world map carefully before you end up somewhere you didn’t intend to go!

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