Two weeks ago, we looked at Earle’s bucket list vacations. Here is a list of my top 7 dream trips. All involve a little adventure, beautiful scenery, and tons of fun! From shark diving to mountain climbing, the opportunities are endless. There is so much to discover…
1.Cage Diving with Great Whites Off the Coast of South Africa
Call me crazy, but I have always wanted to swim with sharks. Sharks fascinate me – when Shark Week is aired on the Discovery Channel in the summer, I am glued to the television. The thought of seeing great whites breach the surface to catch seals off Seal Island in South Africa…I can’t even talk about it. So cool. Who would’t be drawn to the dark, mysterious, ancient creatures of the deep? They look more like dinosaurs than sea creatures, which is partly why I am intrigued by them. When I was a little girl, I didn’t collect books about cute fluffy animals. I collected books on dinos. As much as I would love to swim in open water with sharks eventually, my first time needs to be in a cage, and South Africa has plenty of cage diving tours to chose from!
2. Travel Dr. Frankenstein’s Route From Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein
This is a tough one, as it involves multiple destinations. Mary Shelley was an author from the Romantic Era, and her writing focuses largely on the beauty and transcendental qualities of nature. I’ve been to Edinburgh, London, Paris and Naples, and this winter I plan on visiting Chamonix and Geneva – all places Victor Frankenstein traveled. Victor is born in Geneva, and hikes Chamonix to heal after the loss of his brother. This is where he meets his creation (also his brother’s killer) face-to-face. The monster’s story is told from the top of Montanvert, or present day Mer de Glace, Chamonix. How cool is that? I also have yet to see Frankenstein’s other “Pitt Stops” like Milan, Ingolstadt, the Orkney Islands in Scotland, or the Arctic. But there is still time…
3. See Mt. Everest in Person
I love hiking. However, as much as I am an adventure seeker, after I read John Krakauer’s “Into Thin Air” I am content to see Everest from base camp, or, from one of the other hike-able mountains in the Himalayas. More than 280 people have perished trying to reach its more than 29,000 foot summit. I would like to climb this incredible mountain, but have way too much traveling to accomplish before I risk my life summiting this “Goddess of the Sky” (Nepalese nickname). Who wouldn’t want to see the tallest mountain in the world?
4. Go on an African Safari and Stay in a Treehouse Canopy!
Why not? Hasn’t everyone dreamed of hopping in a Land Rover and trekking across the Serengeti to hang out with Simba and his friends at a watering hole? If I were to go on a safari, I’d totally buy muted-brown pants, jacket and hat while sporting the coolest set of binoculars. Gotta look the part, right?
5) Walk the Great Wall of China AND 6) Take a River Cruise in Guangxi, China to See the Karst Hills
China is one of those countries that is so vast, ancient, and diverse it is hard to pick only one place I would like to visit. So I picked two. First – the Great Wall of China. It is 5,500 miles long. Enough said. My second choice is a little more obscure. Guangxi is a region in China the borders Vietnam and boasts incredible, jagged mounds in the Li River that look like dragon’s teeth called karst peaks. The scenery is peculiar and distinctive, which is why I am so intrigued.
7) Go to the Swabian-Alemannic Fastnacht Karneval Parades in Southwestern Germany
Basically, Fastnacht is Germany’s version of Mardi Gras. It starts on the Thursday before Ash Wednesday and lasts approximately one week. In this “Karneval”, people dress up in really cool demon, witch, animal and jester-masked costumes and parade the streets of Bavaria, the Black Forest, and Germanic Switzerland. This is a one-of-a-kind celebration, full of culture, history, and fun.
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