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If you’re searching for trip inspiration, we created a list of 9 destinations you should visit at some point during your life. The list is in no particular order. And these are great trips whether you’re traveling solo or with others!
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1. Iguazu Falls, Argentina and Brazil
Upon laying eyes on the Iguazu Falls, Eleanor Roosevelt allegedly said, “Iguazu Falls makes Niagara Falls look like a leaky faucet.”
Iguazu Falls is considered one of the Seven Wonders of Nature. It makes up the largest waterfall system in the world and borders the Argentina province of Misiones and the Brazilian state of Parana. In total, there are 275 waterfalls.
As a comparison, Iguazu Falls is nearly twice as tall as Niagara Falls. And nearly 3 times as wide.
When visiting, you might consider staying at the Melia Iguazu hotel, which overlooks the falls. There are ample dining options and hotels for every type of traveler and most accommodations are only an easy taxi ride to the falls.
2. New York City
New York City is a melting pot of diversity, history, food and architecture. The city offers something for every type of traveler.
New York City is home to iconic sites, including the Empire State Building, Broadway theaters, Times Square, World Trade Center, Central Park, and MUCH more!
Throughout the city, you can find incredible art galleries and museums, stunning architecture, some of the world’s best restaurants and bars, swanky hotels, and plenty of shopping!
3. Florence, Italy
Arguably Italy’s most vibrant city, Florence is home to spectacular museums, rich history, delicious restaurants, and timeless beauty.
Florence is considered the birthplace of the Renaissance and was once called “the Kingdom of Italy.” The city is home to the sculpture of David, the Uffizi Gallery, and the beautiful Florence Cathedral.
Fun fact: Florence is said to be the birthplace of gelato. There are world famous ice cream shops sprinkled throughout the city.
One of the best ways to experience Florence is on bike. The city is full of bike paths that wind through scenic neighborhoods while giving you a chance to stop at cafes and restaurants along the way.
4. Chefchaouen, Morocco
The city of Chefchaouen (also known as Chaouen) in Morocco is known as “The Blue Pearl.” It’s located in the Rif mountains.
Chefchaouen is a magical, artsy paradise known for its striking, blue-washed buildings that fill the town and create a dramatic landscape.
The city has narrow, cobblestone streets, passageways with steep stairs, and beautiful architecture. There are many different colors and shade of blue to be found around the city from periwinkle to cobalt to indigo. The hues change colors as the sun moves across the sky, so you can be sure see every shade imaginable during your visit.
There are plenty of hotels and accommodations in the city. And of course, amazing food. Be sure to try the oranges!
It’s a bit hard to travel to Chefchaouen. So you will need to rent a car to go to this little paradise. But it’s a nice change of pace to a journey to a hectic city.
5. Jiuzhaigou, Sichuan, China
Jiuzhaigou is a nature reserve and national park in southwestern China. It’s located at the end of the Min Mountains. Some folks argue it’s one of the most beautiful places on earth.
The Jiuzhaigou Valley spans 180,000 acres and is famous for its multi-level waterfalls, snow-capped peaks, and colorful lakes. Until 1975 the valley was inaccessible, so it’s still quite new to visitors.
To get to this extravagant natural wonder, you must fly from Beijing, Xi’an, or Shanghai. Or you can travel by bus.
Outside the park, you’ll find a range of accommodations from 3 to 5-star hotels, as well as hostels.
6. Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona
There is nothing on Earth more GRAND than the Grand Canyon itself. Located in northwestern Arizona, the Grand Canyon is often considered one of the great Natural Wonders of the World.
Grand Canyon National Park covers more than 1.2 million acres of land. When President Theodore Roosevelt visited the site, he said, “The Grand Canyon fills me with awe. It’s beyond comparison — beyond description; absolutely unparalleled throughout the wild world…” and he could not be more accurate.
Annually, the park receives more than 6 million visitors. Inside the park, you can finding hiking, rafting, and backpacking. Or just walk along the rim to take in the beauty.
A visit to the Grand Canyon is a must. As spectacular as it is in photos, it’s even more breathtaking in person.
7. Great Barrier Reef, Australia
The Great Barrier Reef is world’s largest coral system. Here you’ll find a wide array of beautiful colors, fish, plant and animal life, and, of course, breathtaking white sand beaches.
The incredibly vibrant colors of the reef underwater make it one of the most amazing sites on Earth.
The coral system is made up of 900 islands and 2,900 individual reefs that span over 1,400 miles. The incredible amount of life and biodiversity that live among the Great Barrier Reef make for great scuba diving, snorkeling, swimming, and sailing.
According to recent discoveries, the Great Barrier Reef has been showing significant signs of recovery from the mass bleaching the reef experienced in the past. Because these corals are making a comeback, there is no time like the present to go check out this thriving ecosystem.
To get the best up close and personal experience at the Great Barrier Reef, find a sailboat operator around Whitsunday Island. I recommend Sailing Whitsundays. They will take you on a luxurious overnight sailboat tour that will highlight the most gorgeous beaches and coral reefs. You can swim and snorkel through the reefs. And there is a good chance you will bump into a dolphin or 2 during your dunk.
8. Blue Lagoon, Turkey
The Blue Lagoon, or as Turks call it “Ölüdeniz,” literally means “Dead Sea” because of its calm waters and gorgeous weather, even during storms. It’s a small village and beach resort located on the Turquoise Coast of Turkey. This area is famous for its incredible shades of aquamarine and turquoise.
If you want to try something new, you might consider paragliding in Ölüdeniz. The weather is so calm in and around the Blue Lagoon, it makes for very easy, comfortable and gorgeous flying. Scuba diving is another popular activity in these crystal clear, turquoise waters.
The weather along the Turquoise Coast in Turkey is usually pleasant. So you can consider visiting any time of year.
9. Vancouver Island, Canada
Vancouver Island is located just off Canada’s Pacific Coast. It’s the largest island on the West Coast of North America.
The pristine island is sparsely populated and much of it is protected. On the island, there are rain forests, beaches, mountains, lakes, and rivers, which are all accessible via car.
On Vancouver Island, you’ll find Pacific Rim National Park, which is known for its long sandy beaches. The island is also home to Port Hardy, which is a town surrounded by an ancient, temperate rain forest full of beautiful trees and wildlife. The mountains provide a stunning backdrop and it’s a must-visit for lovers of outdoors, natural beauty and wildlife.
There’s plenty to do on Vancouver Island. You can hike, camp, golf, sea kayak, fish, bike, and whale watch. Plus, there’s fine dining, great shopping, and trendy bars. There are also countless lodging options, including fancy hotels or cabins in the woods with no electricity.
How many of the destinations on the list have you visited?