Category Archives: General

Travel Bucket List

This post will be constantly updated as I get further inspired, and as I get to cross items off. I’m also going to include things I have already seen or done, so I can start the list with a few crosses.

Worldwide

Oceans: 4/5
Seas: 10/141
Continents: 3/7
Countries: 18/198

Trans-Siberian Railway (Russia)

Seven Wonders of the…

Ancient World:
(Obviously most of these have been destroyed, so with the exception of the Pyramids, I’m talking visiting the site, or surviving artifacts. Also, since we’re not sure the Hanging Gardens ever existed, I’m going to replace them with the Ishtar Gate, which appeared on pre-Colossus lists)

Great Pyramid of Giza (Giza, Egypt)
Temple of Artemis at Ephesus (Izmir Province, Turkey, also plundered artifacts at British Museum)
Statue of Zeus at Olympia (Olympia, Greece)
Mausoleum at Halicarnassus (Bodrum, Turkey, also plundered artifacts at British Museum)
Colossus of Rhodes (Rhodes, Greece)
Lighthouse of Alexandria (Alexandria, Egypt)
Ishtar Gate (Originally Babylon, Reconstructed in Berlin, Germany, and parts on display at other museums, including the British Museum)

Natural World:
Grand Canyon (Arizona, USA)
Great Barrier Reef (Queensland, Australia)
Harbor of Rio de Janeiro (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil)
Mount Everest (Kathmandu, Nepal)
Aurora Australis and Borealis (Extreme Northern and Southern Hemispheres)
Paricutin Volcano (Uruapan Municipality, Mexico)
Victoria Falls (Border Zimbabwe and Zambia)

Modern World:
Channel Tunnel (Strait of Dover, English Channel)
CN Tower (Toronto, Canada)
Empire State Building (New York City, USA)
Golden Gate Bridge (San Francisco Bay, USA)
Itaipu Dam (Border Brazil and Paraguay)
The Netherlands (The Netherlands, Europe)
Panama Canal (Panama)

Other:

(This list is for everything between the Ancient Greeks’ list and the Modern list.)

Colosseum (Rome, Italy)
Taj Mahal (Agra, India)
Great Wall of China (China)
Machu Pichu (Cusco Region, Peru)
Angkor Wat (Siem Reap, Cambodia)
Petra (Ma’an, Jordan)
Christ The Redeemer (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil)

Africa:

Countries Stood On: 0/55

Fez Medina (Fez, Morocco)
Serengeti National Park (Tanzania)
Masai Mara National Reserve (Kenya)
The Valley of Kings (Luxor, Eqypt)
Kruger National Park (South Africa)
Egyptian Museum (Cairo, Egypt)
Karnak (Karnak, Egypt)
Carthage (Tunis, Tunisia)
Luxor Temple (Luxor, Egypt)
Grande Mosquee (Djenne, Mali)
Timbuktu (Mali)
Lower Zambezi National Park (Zambia)
Central Kalahari Game Reserve (Botswana)
Matmata (Tunisia)
Roman Amphitheatre (El-Jem, Tunisia)

Asia:

Countries Stood On: 1/49

Lake Baikal (Siberia, Russia)
Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park (Hiroshima, Japan)
Halong Bay (Halong City, Vietnam)
Forbidden City (Beijing, China)
Terracotta Warriors (Shaanxi, China)
Tbilisi Old Town (Tbilisi, Georgia)
Korean DMZ (Border North Korea and South Korea)
Summer Palace (Beijing, China)
Burj Khalifa (Dubai, UAE)
Cu Chi Tunnels (Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam)
Persepolis (Iran)
Mt Fuji (Japan)

Europe:

Countries Stood On: 15/51

Aya Sofya (Istanbul, Turkey)
British Museum (London, UK)
Greek Island-Hopping (Aegean Sea, Greece)
Old City Walls (Dubrovnik, Croatia)
Gondola Ride (Venice, Italy)
Acropolis (Athens, Greece)
Charles Bridge (Prague, Czech Republic)
Chateau de Versailles (Versailles, France)
Louvre (Paris, France)
Eiffel Tower (Paris, France)
Pompeii (Naples, Italy)
Old Town Square (Prague, Czech Republic)
Notre-Dame (Paris, France)
Anne Frank House (Amsterdam, The Netherlands)
Stonehenge (Salisbury Plain, UK)
Berlin Wall (Berlin, Germany)
St Peter’s Basilica (Vatican City)
Red Square (Moscow, Russia)
Giant’s Causeway (Northern Ireland, UK)
Auschwitz-Birkenau (Oswiecim, Poland)
Vatican Museums (Vatican City)

Prinsengracht Canal (Amsterdam, The Netherlands)
Blue Mosque (Istanbul, Turkey)
Chernobyl/Pripyat (Ukraine)
Schloss Neuschwanstein (Bavaria, Germany)
Van Gogh Museum (Amsterdam, The Netherlands)
Mont St-Michel (Normandy, France)
Reichstag (Berlin, Germany)
Natural History Museum (London, England)
Cinque Terre (Italy)
Duomo (Milan, Italy)

Gallipoli (Turkey)
Lake Geneva (Geneva, Switzerland)
Casino de Monte Carlo (Monaco)
Normandy Beaches (Normandy, France)
Sedlec Ossuary (Kutna Hora, Czech Republic)
Catherine’s Palace (Tsarskoe Selo, Russia)
Hadrian’s Wall (UK)
Jungfraujoch (Alps, Switzerland)
Brandenburg Gate (Berlin, Germany)
Black Forest (Germany)
Trinity College (Dublin, Ireland)
Flanders Fields (Belgium/France)
Leaning Tower of Pisa (Pisa, Italy)

North America:

Countries Stood On: 2/23

Yosemite National Park (California, USA)
Old Havana (Havana, Cuba)
Yellowstone National Park (Wyoming, USA)
Chichen Itza (Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico)
The Met (New York City, USA)
Niagara Falls (Border Canada and USA)
Statue of Liberty/Ellis Island (New York City, USA)
Disneyland (Anaheim, USA)
Walt Disney World (Orlando, USA)
National Mall (Washington DC, USA)
Underwater Statue Park (Moliniere Bay, Grenada)
Art Institute of Chicago (Chicago, USA)
Burgess Shale (British Columbia, Canada)
Blue Hole (Belize)
Griffith Observatory (Los Angeles, USA)

Oceania:

Countries Stood On 1/14
Australian States/Territories: 7/8

Great Ocean Road/Twelve Apostles (Victoria, Australia)
Uluru (Northern Territory, Australia)
Kakadu (Northern Territory, Australia)
Sydney Opera House/Harbour Bridge (Sydney, Australia)
Anakena Beach (Rapa Nui, Chile)
Bay of Islands (New Zealand)
Port Arthur (Tasmania, Australia)

South America:

Countries Stood On: 0/12

Iguazu Falls (Border Brazil and Argentina)
Tikal (Flores, Guatemala)
Galapagos Islands (Ecuador)
Angel Falls (Venezuela)
Encontro das Aguas (Manaus, Brazil)
Nazca Lines (Peru)

Five Reasons I’m Worried About Traveling

Everyone is always quick to tell you the reasonsĀ  you should travel, and trust me, I’ll get to that. But right now I’m in the pre-planning stages of my “big trip”, and I’ve got a lot of doubts, and I know a lot of you do too. So I’m going to list the five biggest things I’m worried about, and then tell you why it’s not that big a deal.

Swanston Street
Should I just stick to Melbourne?
1. Missing Out

My best friend is married, my old housemates are engaged and I’ve got a lot of family members who are turning into grown-ups. And I plan to leave it all behind. The people who are most important to me are finding who they are and getting their lives on track. I’m not going to be with my friends when they have kids, or when my brother starts his career. I’m not even going to be in the same hemisphere.

But, fact is, either way, I’m going to be missing out on something. Thanks to the wonders of technology, you’re never too far away from your loved ones. Facebook, Skype and Instagram keep you together, even when you can’t really be there. Not to mention, they’re finding themselves, and I’ll be doing the same.

2. Failing

So I figure out two weeks into Europe that I can’t hack it. I miss home. I can’t speak the language. I get lost all the time. My money dries up before I find work. Whatever the reason, I just want to give up. And so I fly home, and I have to face everything I left behind. I’m stuck back in the rut that I was escaping in the first place.

So what? Nothing ventured, nothing gained. Even a short trip will recharge my batteries, and give me a new viewpoint on life. Either way, I’ll discover something new about myself, and I’ll know I’ve tried.

3. Something Awful Happening

I get robbed. I get lost. I get injured. And all of this happening a world away from my support network. It would be bad enough at home, but in a country where I don’t speak the language? Where I can’t crash at dad’s house while I recover, where I can’t borrow some cash from my brother until the bank sorts out my cards? That would be a disaster.

There's a whole lot of ocean between home and the rest of the world.
There’s a whole lot of ocean between home and the rest of the world.

It’s only slightly more likely for these things to happen abroad than it is for them to happen at home. Decent travel insurance includes hospital cover and covers lost and stolen items and money. Being well prepared minimizes the problems caused when bad things happen.

4. Is It Worth It?

I get to the Eiffel Tower and yawn. I see the Northern Lights and shrug. The Mediterranean? We have beaches at home. What happens if I spend thousands of dollars and fly to the other side of the world, only to be completely underwhelmed by it all? What if I built it all up in my head and it can’t match?

We build these things up for a reason. France is the most popular tourist destination in the world because it really is special (politics aside). London is one of the world’s great cities. Photos and descriptions never do justice to the real thing in my experience.

5. What Next?

Ok, the plan goes off without a hitch. I get to Europe, I love it, nothing bad happens, I find work, and can stay for the extent of my visa. Or this travel blog takes off and between this and my savings, I can sustain myself. Either way, eventually my visa will run out, and I’ll be faced with a decision: go home, or go somewhere new? You hear the stories about people who come home, and all they want to do is go on the next trip. Their lives consist of saving up and disappearing for months at a time. All they can talk about is their trip. On the other hand, to start over again means I get to face these doubts again. I have to find time to plan, save money and organize all I need to take on a new journey.

It isn’t as easy a decision as it sounds. I go home, I miss out on the rest of the world. But I don’t have to worry about visas or work permits, I’m lucky enough to live in Australia, so I’m covered by unemployment benefits and we have nationalised healthcare, while I look for work. I find a job, get my money together, buy a house, save for retirement. It’s safe. Not to mention it’s one of the most beautiful countries in the world, I can still travel and keep blogging here.

There is still plenty to see at home.
There is still plenty to see at home.

On the other hand, I keep traveling until it isn’t viable anymore. Until I run out of money, or until my body breaks down from old age. Then, not only do I get to deal with all the problems I’ve already mentioned about traveling, I still have to go home anyway. The difference is, depending on how long I’m on the road, I’ll have lost valuable years that I would otherwise have spent earning money and saving for retirement. I could come home in ten years, and be in my mid-thirties, with a Bachelor of Arts and having next to no useful job skills. Or by some miracle I sustain it for twenty years or more, and it won’t matter what qualifications I have, I’ll be over forty, and unable to get a decent job because nobody wants to hire a middle-aged person when they can have someone in their twenties.

Is seeing the whole world worth that?

I certainly hope so.