When people ask, “Where do you want to visit before you die?” you will get all kinds of answers from someone who wants to see the majestic seas of Hawaii or someone who wants to go on a backpacking tour through the Appalachian mountains. Others might want to go sightseeing throughout Europe or others might want to visit landmarks like the Great Wall of China, the Big Bend, the Statue of Liberty, or even the Eiffel Tower.
While those are all great places to go see in one’s lifetime, it’s an entirely different thing to go see sights and hear sounds often left unseen and unheard by so much of the world’s population. There is a myriad of places that few people consider going, yet really deserve more attention than they get. Some of the most notorious include the following:
Some of the most notorious include the following:
Angkor Wat, Krong Siem Reap, Cambodia:
Angkor Wat is one of the oldest known civilizations founded back in the 12th century where ancient Cambodians built a temple complex which has been a source of national pride ever since. There are estimated to be over 1,000 temples in the Greater Angkor area. Angkor was also the first home dedicated to Vishnu as Hindu temple. Later on, Angkor was named the center of the Theravada sect of Buddhism. If you love history all things historical, religious, or old then Angkor Wat is a location to put on your bucket list!
Easter Island, Rapa Nui National Park, Chili:
The Rapa Nui National Park is a national park located on Easter Island off of the coast of Chili. This has been a certified UNESCO World Heritage Site. The national park is home to more than 887 “moai” which are statues that were built by the natives of the island to honor their ancient ancestors. The tallest statue on the island named “Paro” stands a stunning 33 feet high and weighs 82 tons or 164,000 pounds. There are also great hiking and diving locations on Easter Island near the national park. It’s a must-see attraction for anyone into visiting national, historical sites.
The Galapagos Islands are a must-see for anyone who is a nature aficionado. Galapagos Island is home to everything from giant turtles to marine iguanas as well as massive collections of fauna and flora. Visitors can get up close and personal through guided sightseeing tours to the protected island which has also been declared a national park. Some expeditions include activities like scuba diving or hiking around the island to see the wildlife first hand.
Milford Sound, Southland, New Zealand:
Milford Sound is a beautiful remote area that was called “the eighth wonder of the world” by Rudyard Kipling. The beautiful views of the mountains and waterways will enchant any nature lover and sightseer. Guided tours are available to help show off the area as well. This makes a great, stunning destination at virtually any time of the year.
Kelimutu Volcano, Indonesia:
The Kelimutu Volcano is a beautiful sight to behold located in Indonesia. the volcano is surrounded by three rivers which change colors ranging from pink to blue and back again. Locals attribute the color changes of their rivers to their ancestors whose spirits are believed to rest here. You can enjoy guided hikes around the perimeter of the volcano and also around the lakes as well. This is a majestic sight that everyone should see at some point in their lives. It has even been named one of the most beautiful volcanoes on earth.
This is the ultimate meeting of man and nature as one. Meteora, Greece is home to ancient wonders of rock meeting landscape where ancient monks built their monasteries. What’s even more impressive is that stairs were never built here, so monks had to climb into their monasteries that were built on these magnificent rock formations. While only 6 of the original 24 structures are left standing, it’s definitely worth a visit at some point in your life. Even more impressive than the sites is the “entry” fee to the protected area where the remaining monasteries stand is only 3 Euros.
Volcano Park, Rwanda:
Volcano Park in Rwanda located on Lake Kivu and is a protected wildlife area where tourists can go on a one-hour trek and walk in certain parts of the area with gorillas. This is about close up and personal as you will get with a gorilla in your lifetime. You will experience the deepest depths of the rainforest where you can trek with the chimps and take in the natural beauty of rainforest while doing it. The lush greenery and the up close and personal experience with the gorillas are like none other. However, keep in mind that this park is very strict about preserving wildlife and protecting the gorillas living there. Only about 800 known gorillas are still living so you will have to respect a variety of rules to be allowed in. Following the rules, however, is definitely worth the once in a lifetime opportunity you will get in return!
Maasi Mara National Park, Kenya:
The Maasi Mara National Park is a safari-lovers dream. This national park is the prime example of an African wildlife reserve with an impressive display of wildlife contained within one protected area. These animals are in their natural habitats so you get to see how they experience everyday life including their behaviors, interactions, and eating habits. You get to see everything from zebras to giraffes to tigers and back again all on the same trip! It’s a must for any wildlife an animal enthusiast to see.
Hoi An, Vietnam:
For those who love local culture, Hoi An is a top-quality travel destination. The local sunny beaches are a great place to hang out and catch the surf or go for a swim. The warm water means that swimming and surfing are essentially possible year-around. Moreover, you can enjoy a kayak ride as you get paddled down the Thu Bon River by a local in one of their boats and enjoy the scenery passing by (be sure to leave a tip – it’s much appreciated). There are countless street-side shops to buy souvenirs at to support small, local businesses and in Western currency, the souvenirs are quite affordable as well. It’s a great place to visit and enjoy the local city life.
Stromboli is the site of a beautiful volcano that is continually spewing a light stream of volcanic ash and magma streaming from the top of it. You can enjoy this magnificent sight from the Stromboli area near Sicily in Italy. Beyond the volcanic magma shooting up into the sky, the glorious view of the local sunsets can be equally awe-inspiring. The scene of a small eruption will be something you won’t forget in this lifetime.
It’s not just the big landmarks that have a lot to offer visitors. Check out some of these destinations and others of your own to see plenty of places you would never see if you didn’t go searching for them! They will be some of the bets memories, vacations, and adventures of your life.