Now that the kids are grown and gone, I’ve been giving a lot of thought to creating a list of the ten places I have to see before I die, since traveling in or out of the country can be pretty expensive for a large family of eight such as we were, budget travel is a must. There are so many beautiful places to see in the world, and I haven’t had the opportunity to see many of the scenic places even within the U.S., except for a visit to San Francisco and a beautiful drive along the California Coastline two years ago. I love being near large bodies of water, and if I could choose the best place to retire and grow old, it would most definitely be a place near an ocean.
My husband and I also love the mountains, and if we could find a beautiful location to retire that had both mountains and a large body of water nearby, I’d be able to die happy and content when the time comes. My husband loves large trees, and would love to own several acres of ranch land to build a house for us to grow old in, but before that time comes we plan to visit as many beautiful places in the world as possible so we don’t look back on our lives with a lot of regrets.
Great Barrier Reef- Australia’s own Great Barrier Reef is one place I must see; said to be the world’s biggest single structure made by living organisms and visible from outer space. How cool is that? Seeing pictures and video of the barrier reef on television makes the reef a must-see on my “before I die” list of places to see. The Great Barrier Reef covers 135,000 square miles (350,000 square kilometers), an expanse greater than Poland. Simply amazing.
The Grand Canyon- My husband has been to the Grand Canyon but I haven’t seen it yet. From what he and others have said, it an awe-inspiring place to take in its beauty, and where you may be brought to tears from a spiritual awakening. I’m not someone who is easily brought to tears, even from the sappiest of movies, but if that is the experience some have had when visiting the Grand Canyon then so be it.
The Iguazu Waterfalls- The Brazilian waterfalls consist of 275 falls, measuring between 210 and 269 feet in height, with an amazing U-shaped cliff called “Devil’s Throat” marking the border between Argentina and Brazil. Having seen Niagara Falls as a little girl and feeling overwhelmed by it’s size, it’s incredible that the Iguazu Waterfalls are said to be “vastly larger” than Niagara Falls, and it brings back the memories of how nervous and scared I was when the family visited Niagara Falls so many years ago.
The Tasmania Island- Here we go again with yet another beautiful place in Australia I have to see. It seems to me that I should just plan a lengthy trip to Australia and take in all the sights, and perhaps even drop in on a few fellow Aussie bloggers while there. I wonder if people in Australia have the tendency to take for granted the beauty surrounding them like people here in the U.S. do? I suppose it happens to most anyone living near such beautiful places to become so accustomed to their surroundings that it’s easy to forget just how much beauty surrounds us and really enjoy every moment of it.
Victoria Waterfalls- Located in Zimbabwe, the Victoria Waterfalls are said to be the largest waterfall in the world, based on its width of one mile and height of 360 feet. One thing that I’m anxious to see with the falls is how the whole thing can be seen face-on, as opposed to other waterfalls that are viewed in separate sections. I’m not real anxious to see any of Africa’s wildlife up close and personal, but I suppose I put my fears to rest since the Victoria Waterfalls is one of Africa’s major tourist attractions, and I’m married to big strong man to protect me from the pesky critters.
Niagara Falls- Even though I’ve been to Niagara Falls once in my life, I was so young at the time that my only clear memory of having been there is that of fear. The noise made from the falls is so loud that I physically shook with fear, while my brothers pointed and laughed at me. So I must see Niagara Falls at least one more time in my life to put away those fears and just take in the beauty of it all. I’ll be sure to leave my nasty, mean brothers at home this time.
Bora-Bora- This Polynesian island is largely dependent on tourism, with an array of bungalows and resorts for tourists, as well as being a hot spot for snorkeling and scuba diving in and around its lagoon. I’m not the least bit interested in participating in the well-known manta ray dives and shark-feeding dives, because as luck would have it, I’d most likely be on the menu for the day. Um, no thanks! I just have to go and see this beautiful island, enjoy the various touristy hot spots, and make a safe exit back home.
Barcelona Spain- I have a brother that lives in Barcelona, and the pictures he sends me are breath-taking to say the least. He has invited my husband and I to visit there numerous times over the years he’s lived there, and we’re definitely going to take him up on his offer as soon as possible. Barcelona contains 68 municipal parks, divided into 12 historic parks, 5 thematic (botanical) parks, 45 urban parks and 6 forest parks that will surely keep me entertained, along with seven beautiful beaches to develop a nice tan.
Jiuzhaigou River- Jiuzhaigou Valley is a nature reserve in a northern province of China, known for their colorful lakes and multi-level waterfalls. During our China Travel, we’ll have to be sure to go during the fall season since Jiuzhaigou’s forests take on attractive yellow, orange and red hues in the autumn, and a number of plant species that will surely be of interest to the gardener side of my husband. I’m primarily interested in seeing Jiuzhaigou’s blue, green and turquoise-colored lakes, as these lakes are amongst its best-known features.
The Neuschwanstein Castle- Since my heritage is mostly German, I think it’s only fitting that I should see as much of Germany as possible, especially the Neuschwanstein Castle. Pictures I’ve seen of the castle take my breath away, and I can only imagine my reaction when I see it in person. I didn’t know until recently that the castle has appeared in several movies, and was the inspiration for the Sleeping Beauty Castle in Disneyland. Darn, I haven’t been to Disneyland or Disney World either.
Are you planning a cheap vacation anytime soon? Have you made your own list of places you have to see before you die? What places did you list?