Wednesday, 20 January 2016

My Travel Bucket List


I love travelling and the list of places I would like to visit keeps growing at an alarming rate! Every place has something to offer and every journey has something to teach. I broadly categorize any place into two kinds-
1. A place which needs to be soaked in, to grasp it's true essence.
For example beauty of Goa doesn't lie in a single fort or beach, but it's in the way you live there and the entire experience.

2. Visual treat.
Something which is so stunning that it takes your breath away in just one look like Taj Mahal.

Now, the list below is my version of  must-visit places under second category  -

1. Aurora, Arctic 

Named after the Roman goddess of dawn, Aurora is one the nature's most spectacular phenomenon. This brilliant display of vivid colors rippling through the night sky is caused by collision of electrically charged particles in polar regions. And even though I have extremely low tolerance to cold, a trip to arctic zone is worth it to watch these heavenly skies!

Photo: trond

2. Grand Canyon, Arizona , USA

Carved over thousands of years by the Colorado River, the Grand Canyon is famous for its visually overwhelming size and intricate colorful landscape. The massive rock walls span for over 200 miles. It would be pretty cool to sit on the edge of the cliff and watch sunset!

Photo: paul

3. Angkor Wat, Cambodia

Although I am not a very religious person, there is something alluring about a religious site. Spread over 500 acre site Angkor Wat is one of the largest religious monument in the world. Originally dedicated to Hindu god Vishnu by Khmer King Suryavarman II, it gradually transformed into a Buddhist temple over the course of time. I think what attracts me the most about the place is to visit the largest Hindu temple outside India. It's like meeting a long lost sibling who grew up to be different, yet shares a bond untouched by time..

Photo: christian junker

4. Great barrier Reef, Australia

My lack of swimming skills doesn't stop me from wanting to peek at the largest collection of coral reefs in the world. Spanning over 1,400 miles, it is the world's biggest single structure made by living organisms and can be even seen from outer space! So many colors and life forms nourished by magnanimous oceans..

Photo: richard

5. Pyramids of Giza, Egypt

Pyramids are one of the most enthralling and mysterious structures on the world. An ingenious masterpiece which blends architecture, astronomy and mathematics in a perfect balance. In fact, I was so captivated by it that after I left astronomy I wanted to pursue archaeology!


6. Madagascar, Africa

You cannot be a wildlife lover and not want to go an African safari! But the islands of Madagascar are a world apart, it's almost pre-historic. Madagascar’s isolation from the African continent 165 million years ago has resulted in the evolution of its animals and plants into what they are today. Some of these species are extinct from the world and can only be found in Madagascar. Going to Madagascar is like stepping into a time machine..

Photo: Frank

7. Kyoto, Japan

If I weren't born in India, then next on list would have been Japan. People who know me would know how obsessive I am with "Sakura" or cherry blossom. Unlike Tokyo, Kyoto is synonymous with ancient temples, tea ceremony masters, traditional ryokan inns and centuries-old craftsmanship. Maybe take the liberty to dress up as kimono-clad geisha and walk carelessly through the streets of Kyoto watching the beautiful sakura flowers dancing in the wind.

Photo: Annie

8. Door to Hell, Turkmenistan

It may not sound like a perfect travel destination, but this eternal fire is exactly what appeals to me! It has a very interesting story, in 1971 few engineers thought they found oil field site. After they started drilling they found it to be gas, and the ground beneath the drilling region collapsed into a wide crater. Expecting dangerous releases of poisonous gases from the cavern into nearby towns, the engineers thought it best to burn the gas off. But guess what, it happened to be one of the world's largest reserve of natural gas and hence is burning to this day! So now you got a crater of fire in the middle of desert burning day in and day out for more than four decades! It does seems to have a touch of devil if you ask me :D

Photo: stefan

9. Himalayas

No matter where I travel, at the end I shall come home to the abode of snow, mystical dwelling place of gods- to the eternal beauty Himalayas. It has stood testimony to time long before human race was born and it will remain so for another eternity. Visit Lhasa (Tibet). No one returns empty handed from Himalayas, you always come back with a part of you which was lost long back..


"We travel not to escape life, but for life not to escape us." 


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