Peregrine’s Ultimate Travel Bucket List

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11/09/2015 / By / , , , , , , / Post a Comment

One world. One million different ways to explore it. See it, taste it, walk it, climb it, be humbled by it, marvel at it or simply sit back and contemplate your place in it. We’ve brought together (in no particular order) 100 of our favourite travel experiences, all of which you can do on a Peregrine trip. Take a look and reminisce over the things you’ve done, and perhaps add a few items to your own bucket list while you’re at it:

See penguins in Antarctica

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Image c/o Antarctic Bound, Flickr

Adelie, chinstrap, emperor, gentoo, king, macaroni, rockhopper…no matter which species of penguin you’re lucky enough to see on an Antarctic trip (and maybe you’ve seen them all!) these little creatures are not quickly forgotten. Take the trip.

Spot a polar bear in the Arctic

Maybe were the first to see it, after scanning the flat white landscape ahead. Perhaps your leader pointed one out, using their expert knowledge to pinpoint tits exact location. Or was it someone in your group, excitedly rushing back with news of a spotting from the upper deck of your ship? Take the trip.

Northern Lights

This incredible phenomenon should be on everyone’s bucketlist. If you’ve already seen the lights in action, then perhaps see how they look from a different spot on the map? Some of the best places to see the world’s greatest light show include Svalbard, Iceland, Finland, Northern Canada, Scotland and Russia. Take the trip.

Battlefields of Gallipoli, Turkey

A special place in the heart of many Australians, visiting the Battlefields of Gallipoli is a sobering experience; but one that is remembered fondly by many of our travellers. Lest we forget. Take the trip.

Ephesus, Turkey

The excavated remains of this ancient city tell the story of many generations, from classical Greece to the Roman Empire to the spread of Christianity. Take the trip.

Blue Mosque (Hagia Sophia), Turkey

Did you know that the ceiling of the mosque is lined with 20,000 blue tiles? Step inside and see for yourself. Also known as the Sultanahmet Mosque, this is one of Istanbul’s most stunning landmarks.Take the trip.

Mostar Bridge, Bosnia & Hercegovina

Spanning the River Neretva, Stari Most is a reconstruction of the original 16th century Ottoman bridge that formerly occupied the site. After standing for 429 years, the bridge was destroyed in 1993 during the Croat-Bosniak war. Take the trip.

Walk the medieval City Walls, Dubrovnik

Not a bad way to get your morning exercise. There’s around 2000 metres of uninterrupted walls circling the city and it should take you about 2 hours to walk the entire length, not including the many places to stop and admire the views of Dubrovnik’s Old Town and the Adriatic Sea. Take the trip.

Charles Bridge, Prague

For 460 years, the Charles Bridge was the only way of crossing the River Vltava (without swimming). Made up of 16 low arches, it managed to survive the Second World War relatively unscathed and remains one of the Czech Republic’s most famous landmarks. Take the trip.

Lake Ohrid, Macedonia

Some lakes are rather plain, simply plonked on the earth with no real charm or beauty. Lake Ohrid is not one of those lakes. Four million years in the making, it sprawls across an area of 358 square kilometres and is surrounded on all sides by mountains with peaks soaring up to 2,000 metres high.Take the trip.

Cinque Terre, Italy Positano, Italy

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Image c/o Lassi Kurkijarvi, Flickr

Five beautiful fishing villages are connected by a series of walkways overlooking some of the world’s most incredible coastal scenery. What’s not to love? Stop off and try famous seafood and local specialties (pesto, anyone?) in each town along the way. Take the trip.

Acropolis, Athens

Originally intended as a fortress to protect Athens from attacks, the Acropolis of Athens later became a symbol for Athens itself. It is believed that the buildings were constructed between the years 460 – 429 BC, including the Propylaia, the Parthenon, and the Athena Nike. Take the trip.

Sail the Greek islands

With the wind in your hair and the Mediterranean stretched out before you, it’s clear that the Greek Islands are best discovered by boat. You’ll get a front row seat to stunning sunsets and daily life unfolding on the water’s edge. Skip between islands famous for a mix of buzzing nightlife, incredible food and fascinating history. Take the trip.

Dordogne, France

There’s no better way to taste the heart and soul of France than by visiting the Dordogne region, located in the southwest of the country. Foie gras, duck, truffle, cheese, mushrooms, strawberries, and asparagus will all feature heavily on any local table. Did we mention the 13 varieties of wine produced here? Take the trip.

Visit a French Chateau, France

France is home to thousands of chateaux, ranging from crumbling ruins to breathtaking estates. The most famous are found in the Dordogne and the Loire Valley, and each has its own fascinating story. Some of our favourites include the Chateau de Versailles, the Chateau de Chambord (with 440 rooms) and the fairytale-like Chateau de Pierrefonds. Take the trip.

Ponte Vecchio Bridge, Florence

This medieval bridge spanning the River Arno has always played host to shops and lively shopkeepers. In fact, it has been said that the concept of bankruptcy originated here. So don’t go spending too much (if you can help it!). Take the trip.

Flamenco show, Andalucia

The fiery dance was first recorded here in the 18th century, and there’s no finer place in the world to see a traditional flamenco show. You can see it performed in one of many tablaos, but for an authentic experience we suggest finding a hidden penãs flamencas and mingling with the locals. Take the trip.

Alhambra Palace in Granada, Spain

After being built in the 9th century and acting as a residence for kings from the 13th century onwards, this beautiful fortress fell into a state of neglect. It wasn’t until around 1870 that restorations began, and by 1984 it had become a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Take the trip.

Walk the Camino de Santiago

You might know it as the Way of St. James, St. James’s Way, St. James’s Path, St. James’s Trail, Route of Santiago de Compostela or the Road to Santiago. Phew! Whatever you choose to call it, this epic 790-kilometre pilgrimage route through Spain is bound to challenge and inspire you. Take the trip.

Mont Blanc, Swiss Alps

The height of Mont Blanc differs depending on how much snow is on the summit, but it’s estimated to be around 4,180 metres high. That makes it the tallest mountain in Europe. Over 20,000 people reach the summit every year. Are you going to be one of them? Take the trip.

See an active geyser, Iceland

A geyser is basically a big vent in the Earth’s surface that periodically bubbles up and erupts in a spray of hot water and steam. The name comes from The Great Geysir of Iceland, which first erupted in the 14th century. Iceland is also home to Strokkur, a geyser that erupts around every 8 minutes or so. Stand back and watch her blow! Take the trip.

Camel ride in the Moroccan desert

When riding a camel, there are a few simple rules to make the journey more enjoyable. Firstly, always walk alongside your camel and never in front – they are known to spit! Secondly, lean back in your saddle when the camel begins to stand up, as it rises from its back legs first. Finally, put one hand on the handle at the front of your saddle, and the other on the handle behind you. Glide with the motion of the camel and enjoy the view over the golden desert sands. Take the trip.

Djemaa el fna, Marrakech

In the swirling square of the Djemaa el Fna you’ll see cobra charmers, sword swallowers, tooth pullers, and child boxers perform to enthralled crowds. Grab a freshly squeezed orange juice from the nearest vendor and watch the magic unfold.  Take the trip.

Saint Basil’s Cathedral, Moscow

Few countries do grand on the scale of Russia. None more so than Saint Basil’s Cathedral, the crazy and colourful icon commissioned by Ivan the Terrible in 1555. Located in Moscow’s Red Square, it is shaped like flames from a bonfire rising to the sky, and there’s nothing else quite like it in Russia… or the rest of the world for that matter. Take the trip.

Cruise down the Nile

Watch life unfold on the banks of this great river, as you cruise past on either a traditional felucca or sleek and stylish boat. Desert hills form a backdrop to lush riverbanks, as fishermen cast their nets and farmers work their land. Take the trip. 

Pyramids of Giza, Cairo, Egypt

Giza is home to perhaps the greatest iconic structure ever created by man – the pyramids. Instantly familiar yet retaining an undeniable mystique and power, getting up close to these incredible pharaonic tombs is captivating.  Take the trip.

Abu Simbel, Egypt

It took 20 years to carve this monumental temple complex into the cliffs of southern Egypt. There are actually two temples, one is dedicated to King Ramses II and the second is dedicated to his beloved first wife, Queen Nefertari. Take the trip. 

Float in the Dead Sea, Jordan

At 423 metres below sea level, the Dead Sea boasts Earth’s lowest elevation on land. Its saline levels are roughly 34%, which makes it almost nine times saltier than the ocean. Herod the Great used to vacation here, and you can follow in his footsteps. Take the trip. 

Wadi Rum, Jordan

Jordan’s desert valley is beautiful to visit, but not the sort of place one could imagine living; unless you are one of the several thousand Bedouin nomads and villagers who have traversed the land for thousands of years. Travellers can explore the 720-square-kilometres of dramatic desert wilderness in the south of Jordan by camel, Jeep or on a hiking tour. At night, you even have the chance to fall asleep under the stars in a traditional Bedouin camp.  Take the trip.   

The Treasury, Petra, Jordan

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Image c/o Marko Forsten, Flickr

No matter how high your expectations, Al Khazneh (The Treasury) in Petra will exceed them. One of the essential parts of the experience is the walk in. Stretching for a couple of kilometres, you will follow a natural pathway with irrigation channels on either side, past tombs and rock formations before the pathway opens up and you get your first, unforgettable glimpse of The Treasury. Take the trip. 

Western Wall, Jerusalem

Before it was destroyed by the Romans in the year 70 CE, the Temple Mount was the centre of the spiritual world. The Western Wall is one of the last surviving remnants of the Temple Mount, and is considered to be the wall situated closest to the former Temple, making it the single most sacred site recognised by Judaism (besides the Temple Mount itself). Take the trip.

Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque, Muscat

Got any rugs at home? Big rugs? Well let me ask you this…would a 70mx60m hand-loomed carpet fit in your living area? That’s the size of the Persian carpet inside the Grand Mosque, which took 600 women a total of four years to weave.  This should give you an idea of the opulence waiting to greet you inside, where there’s also room for 20,000 worshippers. Take the trip.

Ruins of Persepolis, Iran

Lying at the foot of Kuh-i-Rahmat (Mountain of Mercy) are the ruins of Persepolis, the capital of the Achaemenid Empire. When thebGreeks of Alexander the Great burnt the city down in 330, they stole countless treasures. But what they left behind is something truly priceless. Take the trip.

Imam Square, Isfahan, Iran

The second largest square in the world (behind China’s Tiananmen Square) is also known as Naghsh-e Jahan Square, meaning “design of the world”. To the south you’ll find the breathtaking Imam Mosque. Look to the west and you’ll see Ali Qapu Palace. Turn towards the east and there’s Sheikh Lotf Allah Mosque. Walk north and you’ll find yourself in the heart of the Isfahan Grand Bazaar. Take the trip.   

Star Wars’ famous Tataouine, Tunisia

Luke Skywalker has long since left home, but you can still see where the young boy grew up. When it came to creating the world of Star Wars, George Lucas was inspired by not only the landscape of Tataouine, but also the traditional style of dress (as seen on Jedi Knights). Take the trip.

Mountain gorillas, Rwanda/Uganda

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Image c/o Andries3, Flickr

From one of our travellers: “Squatting down I could feel something moving to my left. Before I knew it, an adult female was slowly loping towards me. I lowered my head and waited. Then, in an unforgettable moment, she brushed past me. I had goose bumps as her fur touched my bare arms. I looked up and the whole group was staring back at me in amazement. I was gobsmacked.” Intrigued yet? Take the trip.

Ngorongoro Crater, Tanzania

Here’s a few numbers relating to the largest intact caldera in the world: It is 259 square kilometres in area, with walls up to 600 metres high. There are about 40,000 birds and animals living here and you could be one of 450,000 people who visit each year. Take the trip.

Stone town, Zanzibar, Tanzania

The Moorish, Arab, Persian, Indian and European cultures have all made their mark on the look, feel and (most importantly for some) taste of Stone Town. Head town to the Forodhani Gardens on the waterfront for the nightly food market, where you can get your fill of freshly caught seafood, Zanzibari pizza, refreshing sugarcane juice, warm chapati or a bowl of piping hot urojo. Take the trip.

Summit Mount Kilimanjaro, Tanzania

Here’s some handy hints if you’re planning to trek 5895 metres to the summit of Africa’s highest peak, Mt Kilimanjaro: start off small and build up to longer walks, aiming for at least one six-hour trek before you leave; pack only the essentials (you have to carry it all with you!) but don’t forget decent shoes, raingear, a weather-appropriate sleeping bag, blister patches and thin but warm layers of clothing. Take the trip.

Masai Mara National Reserve, Kenya

This game reserve is named for the Masai people, the first inhabitants of the area. This is where you can see huge numbers of Masai lions, African leopards and Tanzanian cheetahs. If you can, try and visit during the Great Migration to and from the Serengeti (July to October). Take the trip.

Cape Town, South Africa

From gourmet cuisine to picture-perfect scenery, Cape Town is one of the world’s most sought-after  travel destinations. Just think about it – you’ve got Table Mountain, the Winelands, Robben Island and beyond. Plus all that rich history and Nelson Mandela’s legacy. What more could you want from a place? Take the trip.

Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe/Zambia

“No one can imagine the beauty of the view… It had never been seen before by European eyes, but scenes so lovely must have been gazed upon by angels in their flight”. Words written by explorer David Livingstone after witnessing ‘the smoke that thunders’ in 1855. Take the trip.

Cruise Okavango Delta by mokoro

Nothing quite compares to the feeling of being propelled through the waterways of the Okavango Delta in a traditional canoe, with your expert poler navigating the crisscrossing inlets as the sounds of birds fill the air. Take the trip.

Sand dunes of Sossusvlei, Namibia

Even the most amateur photographer will come home with images worthy of framing. It’s impossible to take a bad shot of the soaring sand dunes that surround Sossusvlei, Namibia’s enormous salt and clay pan. At almost 400 metres high, these dunes are among the highest in the world. Take the trip.

Vodoo trail, West Africa

You can follow the voodoo trail from energetic Ouagadougou to coastal Accra. Learn all about the voodoo religion in Benin, walk up to the voodoo shrines on Dassa Hill, visit the Betamaribe people in Natitingou and stroll through the fantastic fetish markets of Lome.  Take the trip.

Churches of Lalibela, Ethiopia

Lalibela is home to 11 extraordinary churches. You see, each one has been carved entirely out of a single block of granite, with its roof sitting at ground level. Were it not for this sacred site, you might pass right by this tiny town. Take the trip. 

Spot lemurs in Madagascar

They like to move it, move it. Madagascar’s isolated location has made it the perfect home for these unique and interesting critters. Whether they’re singing like a whale (the indri) or dancing across the sand like ballerinas (the sifaka) you can bet the lemurs will put on a show. Take the trip.

Gobustan mud volcanoes, Azerbaijan

Mud volcanoes. They’re like regular volcanoes, but instead of shooting out hot lava they ooze thick, gooey, cold mud. Intriguing, right? Apparently almost half of the world’s mud volcanoes are located here in Gobustan, southwest of Baku, Azerbaijan. Take the trip.

Geghard Monastery, Armenia

Partially cut into the surrounding cliffs, this unique monastery dates back to the 13th century. The word Geghard means, “spear” in Armenian, and comes from the spear that was said to have been brought back here by Apostle Jude – the same spear that allegedly pierced the side of Christ at Calvary. Take the trip.

See Orangutans in Borneo

As the third largest island in the world, Borneo plays host to some 222 species of mammals, 420 resident birds, 100 amphibians, 394 fish and 15,000 plants. But we all know the one you really want to see is the orangutan. The name is derived from the Malay and Indonesian phrase orang hutan, meaning  ‘man of the forest’. Take the trip.

Tiger’s Nest Monastery Bhutan

The hike to this incredible monastery perched on the edge of a cliff goes something like this: Walk through forests, stop for tea at a “cafe” in the mountains; continue the steep climb, passing shrines along the way; stop for photos overlooking the monastery; climb 850 steps to the entrance; cross a small bridge; continue up some more steps and finally…arrive at your destination. You will be left breathless in more ways than one. Take the trip.

Bagan, Myanmar

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Image c/o Christopher Michel, Flickr

This ancient city was once home to 10,000 Buddhist temples, pagodas and monasteries scattered across its plains. Now, more than 2200 still stand and we think one of the best ways to see them is on a hot air balloon ride at sunrise. Take the trip.

Ancient city of Angkor, Cambodia

With over 1000 temples scattered across the holy city of Angkor, it’s impossible to see them all. But some of our favourites include the Temple of Angkor Wat (the world’s largest single religious monument), Angkor Thom and the many faces of Bayon Temple. Take the trip.

Silver Pagoda, Phnom Penh, Cambodia

Upon entering the Silver Pagoda, the first thing you should do is look down, because the floor is covered with around five tonnes of silver. Then look up to see the Emerald Buddha, weighing in at a whopping 90 kilograms and wearing 2086 diamonds. Take the trip.

The Grand Palace, Bangkok

You can’t leave Bangkok without seeing the Grand Palace. In fact, it’s pretty much impossible to miss! Built in 1782, it was the residence of the Thai King for 150 years. The enormous complex also housed the Royal court, the administrative seat of government, the Thai war ministry, state departments and even the mint. Take the trip.

Tiger Leaping Gorge, China

Tiger Leaping Gorge is one of the world’s deepest river canyons and one of Asia’s most dramatic and photogenic hiking trails. About 15 kilometres in length, the gorge is named after a legendary tiger that leapt across the gorge to escape the clutches of a hunter. No mean feat considering the canyon’s narrowest point is still a staggering 25 metres wide!  Take the trip.

Great Wall of China

Spanning an incredible 8,851.8 kilometres in total, the Great Wall of China is one of the most impressive manmade structures to date. The wondrous wall is best explored on foot, and crossing some of the lesser-trodden parts of the wall allows you to grasp a sense of its sheer scale and enormity. Take the trip.

Gori, Georgia

It is impossible to escape the name Stalin here. From the main street, Stalinis gamziri (Stalin Avenue) to the Stalin Museum to the main square, named Stalinis moedini. The man was born and went to school here in Gori, located west of Tbilisi. Take the trip.

Taj Mahal, India

Peregrine Senior Copywriter, Kellie Bright, had this to say after seeing the Taj Mahal for the first time: “At the end of the day, even your best words will never do it justice. You’ve seen the postcards, bought the t-shirt and cried over the Princess Di pics. But nothing can prepare you for the sheer, breathtaking majesty of this enormous marble monument”. Go. Now. Take the trip.

Boat ride on the Ganges, India

See pilgrims bathing and performing rituals and ceremonies unchanged for hundreds of years; temples full of bell chimes and the smell of incense; the dhobi wallahs and the burning ghats. Take the trip.

Cruise Kerala’s backwaters

Legend says that this land was a gift offered by the God of the sea, Varuna, to one of the 10 incarnations of the Lord Vishnu, named Parasurama. In order to atone for the sins, the sage gave the land to the Brahmins he brought from the northern part of India. To ensure their physical wellbeing in Kerala, Parasurama imparted the wisdom of Ayurveda to eight chosen families. It is one of the best places in the world to receive Ayurvedic treatments. Take the trip.

Amber Fort, Jaipur

The stunning medieval Amber Fort was built in 1592 by Maharaja Man Singh, and remains a superb example of Rajput architecture. Take the trip.

Fjords of Norway

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Image c/o Mike Green, Flickr

The Norwegian fjords were carved by a huge sheet of ice up (up to three kilometres thick in some places) that covered Northern Europe for a period of ice ages. If you want to get technical, a fjord is a long and narrow inlet surrounded by steep cliffs. But to us, they are simply some of the most beautiful natural wonders you can hope to see.  Take the trip.

Enjoy fresh sushi in Japan

Contrary to popular belief, the word ‘sushi’ does not mean ‘raw fish’. It actually refers to rice that has been seasoned with vinegar, sugar and salt. No matter what you call it, once you’ve tasted fresh sushi in Japan you’ll never get it confused again! Take the trip.

Temples in Kyoto, Japan

The old capital maintains its long famed charm and beauty, even today. Wander through the incredible temples and on your way around you might even catch a glimpse of a geisha in Gion, standing tall and looking so very elegant in her colourful kimono. Take the trip.

Issyk-Kul Lake, Kyrgystan

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Image c/o mzximvs-Vdb, Flickr

The name Issyk-Kul means “hot lake” in Kyrgyz, because it never freezes. This is one of the largest alpine lakes in the world, surrounded by mountains that provide shelter for some very rare animal species, including the snow leopard. Take the trip.

Monks of Luang Prabang

Travellers to this part of the world can take part in the giving of alms to the monks each morning as they leave the monasteries. The types of alms you might place in their bowls include food, flowers or incense sticks. Take the trip.

Sleep in a ger, Mongolia

This traditional, round dwelling is supported by two central columns, and no matter how many people are inside you should never lean against either of these support columns. It is considered poor manners. Take the trip.

Shwedagon Pagoda, Myanmar

If you’ve ever wondered why this is referred to as “the crown of Burma” then get a load of this: The main gold-plated dome of the Shwedagon Pagoda is topped by a stupa made up of more than over 7,000 diamonds, rubies, topaz and sapphires. At the top sits a massive emerald positioned to reflect the last rays of the setting sun. Take the trip.

Mt Everest Base Camp, Nepal

We can take you on the iconic Himalayan trek to the world’s most famous campsite. The route runs from Lukla along the Dudh Kosi Valley to the busy little bustle of Namche Bazaar, then up the Khumbu Valley to Base Camp. That bare description does little to convey the majesty of your surroundings, where every brings extraordinary panoramas, not least the close-up of Everest from the summit of Kala Patar. Take the trip.

Chitwan National Park, Nepal

The subtropical climate of Chitwan Park is host to a multitude of wildlife, including several IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature) Red Listed Species, such as the great Indian rhinoceros, the clouded leopard, and the Indian python. Take the trip.

Sit lakeside in Pokhara, Nepal

Inevitably, every visitor to Pokhara winds up drifting down to the dreamy shores of Phewa Lake. Keep your fingers crossed for a breeze-free day – the mirror reflection of the Himalayan peaks is really quite something, and the lake is at its serene best when the wind dies down. Take a boat out, row a little and laze a lot – when the weather’s good there are few more peaceful places to be. Take the trip.

Kokoda Track, Papua New Guinea

A basic knowledge of the outnumbered Australian soldiers’ resistance to the advancing Japanese forces along the trail in 1942 is a must when trekking Kokoda. We suggest reading Peter FitzSimons’ gripping book, Kokoda, before you arrive. It provides fascinating insights into some of the personalities who fought along the trail and the horrific battles that took place in villages like Isurava and Brigade Hill. Take the trip.

Drink Tea Nuwara Eliya, Sri Lanka

“… the tea fields of Ceylon are as true a monument to courage as is the lion at Waterloo” said Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. According to the World Tea Council, Sri Lanka exported 340 million kilograms of tea in 2012, the third highest by volume behind Kenya and China. Take the trip.

Sigiriya, Sri Lanka

Widely considered as the eighth wonder of the world, any visit to Sri Lanka’s Sigiriya is sure to be a special one. Home to an ancient castle from the 5th century AD, the Sky Palace situated on top of the rock, the Lion Gate, the Mirror Wall and the famed Sigiriya Frescoes – the site gifts visitors an insight into an ancient world. Take the trip.

Eat Kimchi in Seoul, South Korea

Never heard of kimchi? Spend some time in South Korea and you will. You see, it’s so popular here that people say “kimchi” instead of “cheese” when posing for a photograph! It’s a pickled mix of cabbage, ginger, garlic, and red peppers, fermented together for many months. Take the trip.

Pamir Highway, Tajikistan

The Pamir Highway runs from Dushanbe, Tajikistan’s capital, to Khorog on the Afghan Border then up and over the High Pamir to remote Murghab on the Chinese border, before finishing at Osh in Kyrgyzstan. Roughly 1,000 kilometres of road wends through some of the most mind-blowing mountain scenery in the world, though at the times the ‘highway’ is little more than a crumbling track. Take the trip.

Lhasa’s Potala Palace, Tibet

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Image c/o Boqiang Liao, Flickr

In Lhasa there’s no mistaking the greatest monument in all of Tibet, the iconic Potala Palace. The original home of the Dalai Lama and past seat of Tibetan religious and political power is an incredible architectural feat and a real highlight for any traveller. Take the trip.

Door to Hell, Turkmenistan

Darvaza, (aka the Door to Hell) is a fire-filled crater 70 metres wide, located in the heart of the Karakum Desert (three to four hours from Ashgabat). Geologists created it by accidentally tapping into a cavern filled with natural gas and then decided to burn off the gas; and the flames within have been burning ever since. It’s particularly beautiful in the blue light of dusk. Take the trip.

Samarkand, Uzbekistan

Samarkand, one of the great ancient cities of Uzbekistan, has been described as an inland Atlantis. It must have been a sight for sore eyes among caravan travellers crossing some of the most inhospitable climes anywhere, whether in the depths of snowy winter or the shadeless zenith of summer – food, water and company, as well as some of the most amazing architecture you’ll see anywhere, present in this city of diverse ethnicities. Take the trip. 

Old quarter of Hanoi, Vietnam

When we think Hanoi, we think food. Hanoi’s cuisine is a subtle treat, and few places are as fun to eat in as the country’s capital. Follow your nose to the Old Quarter and find a plastic seat at one of the countless kerb-side one-dish eateries, or join a queue at a soup stand then dive in. Take the trip. 

Cruise Halong Bay, Vietnam

The story behind Halong Bay is a real beauty. Legend has it that when invaders came to Vietnam, the gods sent fierce dragons to protect the Vietnamese people. These brave dragon warriors spat thousands of jade jewels into the water to form a great wall against the invaders. These jewels became the limestone islands and islets that still dot the bay today. Take the trip. 

Royal Tombs, Hue, Vietnam

There are seven known Royal Tombs of the Nguyen Dynasty located in the ancient imperial capital of Hue. There are six located to the southeast of the Citadel along the edge of the Perfume River, and a single tomb on the same side. The most popular are the tombs of Minh Mang, Tu Duc and Khai Dinh, due to their excellent condition. Take the trip. 

Machu Picchu, Peru

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Image c/o Geraint Rowland, Flickr

Machu Picchu needs little introduction. Built by the Incans in the 15th century, this spiritual, ancient site on the eastern slope of the Andes has become an iconic destination for travellers across the world. Thought to have been built as a royal estate for emperor Pachacuti Inca Yupanqui in the 1400s, the site would have been inhabited by the emperor, his family and a small group of groundskeepers. It’s one of the most immaculately preserved Incan sites ever found. Take the trip. 

Lake Titicaca, Peru

Located on the border of Peru and Bolivia, Lake Titicaca is one of South America’s largest lakes and the world’s highest navigable body of water. Here, you can visit with members of the Uros Tribe, who are said to pre-date the Inca Empire.  They consider themselves to be the owners of the lake they’ve made their home, and they earn their living by weaving, fishing, and welcoming curious travellers to their shores. Take the trip.

Amazon Jungle, South America

The Amazon is something that you shouldn’t leave behind if you go to South America because some of the trekking is fantastic. Going out at night in the dugout canoe, and the silence of being in the jungle is pretty special… especially with a gin and tonic in hand! Take the trip. 

Christ the Redeemer, Rio, Brazil

Here’s a few facts about Christ the Redeemer: It’s the largest art deco statue in the world at 98-feet (not including the 26-foot pedestal). The arms of the statue stretch 92-feet wide and the whole thing weighs around 635 tonnes. Located in the Tijuca National Forest, it’s worth the trek. Take the trip. 

Iguazu Falls, Brazil/Argentina Argentina

About twice the size of Niagara Falls, Iguazu Falls consists of 275 different falls and forms part of the border between Argentina and Brazil. It is also considered one of the most extraordinary natural wonders in the world. At 82 metres high, Devil’s Throat is easily the most impressive of the falls. See it from as many different viewpoints as possible – you can walk to the very edge (take a poncho!), cruise by boat, take a helicopter and even swim right in it. Take the trip. 

Tango in Buenos Aires, Argentina

For a truly memorable tango experience in Argentina’s capital, you should head to a milonga. This is where the locals go to watch the dance, listen to music and drink incredible wine. There are many tango shows in Buenos Aires and you can usually expect to see a dinner show with a variety of dancers and musicians performing over a period of around two hours. Take the trip. 

Wine region, Mendoza

With more than 1,500 wineries spread out through Mendoza’s three main wine regions (Lujan de Cuyo, Valle de Uco and Maipu) you can expect nothing but the best. The wineries range from small, cosy, family owned places to modern architectural masterpieces. Take the trip. 

Torres Del Pain, Chile

A source of national pride, tell a Chilean you’ve trekked the Torres del Paine and watch them bubble over with enthusiasm. Their pride is not misplaced; standout moments like the towers themselves, those vast fingers of granite pointing skywards, or Grey Glacier calving icebergs into frozen waters, are inspirational sights, and the very reason people brave many a blister on their feet. Take the trip. 

Cerro San Cristobal, Chile

Also known as Parque Metropolitano, the peaks of this 722-hectare park offer some of the best views in all of Santiago. Climb the trail or take the funicular train up to the 14-metre high statue of the Virgen de la Inmaculada Concepción at the Bellavista end of the park. Take the trip. 

Easter Island, Chile

Easter Island’s most famous attraction is the moai statues, enormous head-and-torso blocks carved from the stone of the Rano Raraku volcano. At least 288 moai once stood on massive stone platforms around the perimeter of the island. Another 600 are still scattered across the island. At four metres high and weighing more than 80 tons, it’s estimated that 50- 150 people were needed to drag them across the countryside. Take the trip. 

Uyuni salt plains, Bolivia

You’ve probably seen those photos where someone in the foreground looks like they’re balancing a tiny person on their hand? Chances are, those photos were taken here, at the Salar de Uyuni salt flat in Bolivia. The world’s largest salt flat spans 10,582 square kilometres and it’s one of the most fun places in the world to take photos. Take the trip. 

Galapagos Islands, Ecuador

The star of this archipelago is undoubtedly its wildlife. The beautifully varied and dramatic landscapes of the Galapagos provide habitat for some of the world’s most diverse animal species. On some islands there’s the Galapagos fur seal and green sea turtle, eastern red bat and lava lizard, red-billed tropicbird and Nazca booby. On others you can find Darwin’s finches and the scalloped hammerhead shark, marine iguana and great blue heron, white-tipped reef shark and American flamingo. Take the trip. 

Mayan ruins at Tulum, Mexico

Perched on the edge of the Caribbean ocean on the astounding Maya Riviera, the ruins at Tulum are a true Mexican highlight. Though perhaps not as spectacular as other ruins in the area, the setting of this Post-Classic (1200-1500 AD) site makes for an unforgettable glimpse into a forgotten world. Take the trip.

Nip of rum in Havana, Cuba

The feel of Havana lives up to the myth, with its old cars, colonial architecture and local couples promenading along the Malecon sea wall. It has a special atmosphere that, along with the music, lulls you into a relaxed and happy frame of mind. Even with two left feet and only a single sip of rum under your belt, you’ll soon be up and dancing. Although, sitting back and watching the expert Cubans dance salsa and rumba is absolutely captivating as well. Take the trip. 

Arenal Volcano, Costa Rica

One of Costa Rica’s biggest attractions is this 1657-metre high conical andesitic stratovolcano. It is one of Central America’s most active volcano, with a massive eruption in 1968 that saw firebombs launched up to five kilometres from the site. Take the trip. 

See a sloth in Costa Rica

The old saying about being as lazy as a sloth isn’t just a load of rubbish. They really are slow! Sloths usually only leave their tree to go to the toilet once a week. Once they are on the ground, they move at a pace of around two metres per minute. PER MINUTE! Blink and you won’t miss them! Take the trip. 

Panama Canal, Panama

Between 13,000 and 14,000 ships use the Panama Canal every year. Opened in 1914, the American-built waterway connects the Atlantic and Pacific oceans and is around 77 kilometres wide. Take the trip. 

How well travelled are you? Take the Peregrine Ultimate Bucket List and find out. 

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