Destinations To Put On Your Bucket List
There’s so much to see all over the world, use these destinations to narrow down your wanderlust wish list to the places that shouldn’t be missed.
Anchorage is the largest city in Alaska and is all about the natural beauty.
Driving into the city is a beautiful way to start your trip. Sights will include the snow-covered mountains, the deep dark waters of the Turnagain Arm and amazing views of the Pacific Ocean. What’s not to love about that?
Head to Kincaid Park and you’ll be met with green hills and tall trees which are perfect for outdoor activities like hiking and running, but also an ideal place for taking time out to relax. Keep moving through the park and explore the ups and downs of the sand dunes and take in beautiful views over the woods. If you fancy a game, there’s also an 18-hole golf course.
Fill up on all things Alaskan at Anchorage’s Saturday market. Expect the freshest of fish, including fried halibut, oysters and salmon. There are also stalls with world cuisine if you feel like trying something different. After you’ve eaten, take a look at the rest of the market and you’ll discover Alaskan-made souvenirs.
While you’re in Anchorage, if you can, you should fly out to Mendenhall Glacier. It’s just an hour and a half by plane and with ice up to 1800 feet deep, you’ll experience an unbelievable natural wonder.
Where to stay: The Lakefront Anchorage
A combination of old and new, Tokyo is full of modern wonders and ancient shrines.
The first stop? Shibuya. One of the busiest intersections in the world, Shibuya crossing is packed with people and an amazing photo opportunity. Take a seat upstairs in Starbucks and people watch, or cross the road yourself and walk to Harajuku for some shopping.
You can’t miss the arcades and pachinko machines in Tokyo. There’s nothing quite like trying to figure out the instructions of a game in a language you don’t understand. Don’t worry, the people who work at the arcade will be on hand to give you a few pointers as you press buttons and bang on toy drums.
Pachinko Parlor, Tokyo
Next up, Golden Gai. This is a tiny area in Shinjuku which has just six narrow alleys full of small but vibrant pre-war era bars. Bar hopping here means getting in first, as most bars only hold spots for a maximum of 12 people.
When you’re feeling hungry, find a Yakiniku and go DIY. You’ll be given a grill, some scissors and a pair of chopsticks to cook your choice of meat with. Hopefully you’re not a bad chef.
No trip to Tokyo is complete without strolling through a park full of soft pink flowers. It’s a tradition called hanami, which means gazing at the cherry blossoms. For peak cherry blossom viewing, plan your visit for the end of March and the beginning of April.
Where to stay: Millennium Mitsui Garden Hotel Tokyo
Phuket is known for its white sandy beaches and its crystal-clear waters, but it doesn’t end there. Here’s what else to look for in sunny Phuket.
The best thing about Phuket is that it’s so close to many other islands along the Andaman Sea. Head out for day trips to different islands and take in the beauty. A hot favorite, Maya Bay was made famous as it featured in the film The Beach but if you travel there early enough you can avoid the rush of tourists later on.
Maya Bay, Phuket
There are two temples you should include in your visit to Phuket. One is Wat Chalong and the other is Big Buddha. You can do both of these in one day if you choose to rent a car or experience a journey in a tuk tuk.
Try the real deal and enjoy Pad Thai from the country it actually comes from. Street vendors also offer other delicious treats like fresh fish and grilled chicken. The street food is very affordable and all the locals enjoy it, too.
Thailand’s national sport is Muay Thai. Its popularity has risen around the world but the “Art of Eight Limbs” is actually a 700-year-old practice. Not for the faint-hearted, Muay Thai is a full-contact martial art. Watch the pros show their skills as a spectator or try out a class for yourself…if you’re brave enough.
Where to stay: Millennium Resort Patong Phuket
Abu Dhabi, UAE
Abu Dhabi is full of grand traditions as well as modern thrill-seeking experiences. Have the time of your life in this must-see city.
Your first stop in Abu Dhabi should be the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque. The large mosque is a sea of shimmering white and gold domes and is also home to the world’s largest handmade carpet.
Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque
For a bustling outdoor shopping experience, seek out an Arabian souk like the Al Ain Souk. These colorful markets sell anything and everything Arabian, from traditional garments to tasty spices – just the place for practicing your bartering skills.
Have you ever wished you were brave enough to go skydiving? In Abu Dhabi you can give it a go without the extreme of having to jump out of a plane. You’ll be shot upwards in a flight chamber, hovering 16 feet in the air with no parachute. Exciting.
Want to keep the thrills going? Follow up skydiving with a gigantic waterslide, the Liwa Loop, at Yas Waterworld. It’s the first looping waterslide in the Middle East and the drop is higher than a double decker bus. If you’re not looking to experience the big drop, Yas Island has a total of 20 different slides and rides which are all categorized by thrill level. Plus, there’s a beach and a mall.
London is abundant with the classic British tourist spots and the more unusual adventures.
Wake yourself up with a rave, thanks to Morning Gloryville. Raves are held across London from 6.30 in the morning. What to expect at an early rave? Eco-glitter, free hugs, dancing, yoga, smoothie bars and vegan treats. Everything you need to start your day off with a bang.
The debate on how to pronounce ‘scone’ rages on, but that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy a bit of afternoon tea in London. A proper cuppa and some tiny sandwiches are a great way to spend an afternoon if the typical British weather turns.
Afternoon Tea at Millennium Hotel Mayfair
Afternoon Tea at Olives Restaurant, The Bailey’s Hotel London
Spend your Sunday at Columbia Road flower market. Fresh flowers and plotted plants line the street as the people selling them call out prices. The market itself is free, so if you don’t want to take home a bright bouquet you can simply wander through the foliage and take some pictures.
Where to stay: Copthorne Tara Hotel London Kensington, Millennium & Copthorne Hotels at Chelsea Football Club, Millennium Gloucester Hotel London Kensington, Millennium Hotel London Knightsbridge, Millennium Hotel London Mayfair, The Bailey’s Hotel London & The Chelsea Harbour Hotel