I have frequently discussed dreams and goals on the blog recently, mostly related to moving to Oregon. I am incredibly grateful to see that dream becoming a reality. As much as I am enjoying the process, even the packing part (I have gotten rid of so much stuff!), it has come at the temporary expense of another important part of my life – travel. And that is okay. Sometimes one area of your life takes precedence over another. That does not mean I have not been thinking about travel, however. If I cannot actually go somewhere, the next best thing is planning to go somewhere. So, today I am thinking, and thus writing, about the top places “on my list.” In no particular order, they are:
1. Peru: If you have been reading my blog at all, you know this is one of the next big trips I would love to experience. In fact, I have a tentative date set for the fall of 2015. Of course, that will partly depend on finances and available time off, both of which I will have a better sense of once I begin my new job (in Oregon!!). Because this will likely be my first solo trip outside of the US, I plan to join a small group tour such as those offered by G Adventures and Wilderness Travel. I am so excited to see how this particular trip comes together over the next few months.
2. France: And by France, I mostly mean Paris, although I would also love to spend some time in Provence. This may seem like an odd choice as a place to travel alone. Paris is, after all, the city of love. However, I cannot help but get excited about perusing the Louvre and the Musée d’Orsay at my leisure, which is inevitably longer than anyone else I would travel with could possibly enjoy. I think about having a quiet picnic next to the Seine or in one of Paris’s many parks. I dream about strolling the streets of Paris or sitting in a cafe alternately reading a book and people watching. All of that sounds pretty amazing to me with no travel partner needed.
3. Caribbean Cruise: This dream gets at my current desire to have a low stress, beachy vacation. Cruising is great when you do not feel like doing much planning and between a trip to Peru and a trip to France, I might be a bit tired of planning (if that’s even possible). Considering that this could be another solo trip, I will probably look at cruises with Norwegian or Royal Caribbean, both of whom offer cabins for singles on certain ships. Norwegian even has a lounge solely for people booked in single cabins. I have cruised in Alaska and the Mediterranean, but not the Caribbean, so this sounds like the perfect balance of relaxation, fun, and something new.
4. China: Sometimes travel is about taking advantage of opportunities. In this case, two of my best friends are currently living in China. It only makes sense for me to make a trip there sometime in the near future. Although I will hopefully get to see some of the iconic sites of China, like the Great Wall and the Forbidden City, I will also have the less typical experience of seeing firsthand what it’s like to live in China as I spend time with my friends. It is also the perfect opportunity to make not-funny-at-the-time memories. Given my propensity for getting lost, China seems like quite a likely place for that to happen. I promise to share the details.
5. Arkansas: Obviously, Arkansas is “home,” so there is nothing particularly new or adventurous about going there. But that’s where my family is and with the move to Oregon, I am sure that many future trips will be to this place. And I am more than okay with that. A chance to see the people I love and the beauty of “The Natural State” is a hard to beat combination.
These are just a few of the travel goals I have floating around in my head at the moment, although I feel like this list is always changing. Who knows when each of these trips will actually happen, but it never hurts to consider the possibilities! What about you – any particular travel plans or dreams?