Travel Destinations to Put on Your 2020 Bucket List
One of the universal themes in the human experience is the desire to travel, see new things and experience different cultures. If you don’t believe it, just ask someone about their bucket. You’re sure to hear all about the destinations they want to visit around the world and the adventure they want to have there.
If you haven’t started your own bucket list yet, now is the time! A lot of great destinations deserve a spot on your 2020 bucket list. Take a look!
If you don't have Antarctica on your bucket list, nobody can blame you. It’s not exactly the most accessible travel destination in the world, and even if it was, you would probably wonder what you could possibly see or do on the frozen continent. Frankly, you might be surprised, but more importantly, how many people do you know who can say they've been to Antarctica?
If you don't already know about it, Seychelles is an archipelago of islands off the Eastern coast of Africa in the Indian Ocean. The islands are known for pristine nature reserves, dive-worthy coral reefs and world-class beaches. The short version is you have to put Seychelles on your travel bucket list.
Greenland is a massive, remote island nation that is home to some of the most undisturbed natural habitat remaining in the world. Natural Habitat Adventures' East Greenland Arctic Safari aims to give visitors — maybe including you! — a first-hand glimpse into Greenland's pristine natural habitats.
If you're into wine country and all that goes with it — getting nice and toasty in a temperate, sunny environment, for one — then you may as well shoot for the stars. Napa Valley and Martha’s Vineyard are nice, but when you're talking about taking the trip of a lifetime and wine in the same breath, you can't beat Tuscany.
This Jordanian adventure is likely to appeal specifically to serious cyclists. In fact, for those with a serious cycling itch, it may appeal in a major way. Even less serious bikers might be able to keep up on this eight-day trip through the historic nation in the Middle East.
The Galapagos Islands are an archipelago province that belongs to Ecuador and are situated in the Pacific Ocean, and they are beyond beautiful. The islands are known especially for their abundance of diverse, colorful and tourist-friendly wildlife, and you will get to see many different types if you book a spot on G Adventures' Galapagos Multisport excursion.
Hokkaido is Japan's second-largest island and the northernmost of the main Japanese islands. Known for natural hot springs, skiing and scenic volcanoes, Hokkaido is best visited in the winter. In fact, you can't go wrong with Oku Japan's Hokkaido Winter Tour.
Be honest — unless you're among the more experienced travelers in the world, you probably don't have any nation with the suffix -stan on your bucket list. If that is the case, you're overlooking one nation that is rich in culture and natural beauty: Kazakhstan.
Bhutan is a Buddhist kingdom (yes, kingdom) located in the Himalayan mountain range in Southern Asia. As the home of fortresses and monasteries, it is one of the most stunning places you will ever visit. The general atmosphere of the country makes you feel like you traveled backward in time.
North Americans have such a vast array of geographical options on their continent that it can be easy to forget just how convenient some bucket list-level destinations are. Canada's portion of the Rocky Mountains are a playground for adventurists, and REI Adventures' rendition of tackling the Canadian Rockies is called Canadian Rockies Hiking Plus — and it leaves a lasting impression.
Egypt remains a land of mystery, as it is home to ancient structures that seem to defy the possibilities of human ingenuity of the time — hence, all those alien conspiracy theories. You can get the full Egyptian experience with Intrepid Travel's Egypt Adventure, which takes you through the storied desert nation via train, boat and bus.
The word is out on Croatia, and it is no longer the needle in a haystack that only the most shrewd travelers recognized as a scenic paradise. Ever since the Croatian city of Dubrovnik became the real-life filming location for King's Landing in Game of Thrones, Croatia has become more of a recognized travel destination.
If you’re wondering what’s so special about the state of Georgia, this trip isn’t about that Georgia. Wild Frontiers Adventure Travel's Walking in the Svaneti Mountains trip is in the country of Georgia on the other side of the world, strategically located at the intersection between Europe and Asia.
You already know that if an excursion has a name like National Geographic attached to it, then the adventure is going to be legit. The New Zealand South Island Adventure proves this rule, as it is a 12-day, hiking-intensive trip that aims to maximize the immense natural beauty that made the nation the filming location for The Lord of the Rings films.
Cuba is a beautiful island nation, but you can easily do the whole Cuba experience wrong if you go with the wrong guide or no guide at all. The Backroads' Cuba Multi-Adventure Tour is designed to ensure that you see the best that Cuba has to offer.
Alaska is the uncharted land where fugitives run to when they’re fleeing the law — just kidding! But it is a rough and rugged land that you absolutely need on your bucket list. If you want to enjoy the best Alaska experience without compromising your safety, OARS' Alaska Rafting Tour is one option.
Ireland is a land with no shortage of history. It has been home to literary giants and enough fascinating history to keep you exploring and learning for months. Ireland is also home to some of the most stunning scenery in the world, and the Connemara district in western Ireland is a particularly scenic part of the island.
Rwanda still has something of a stigma attached to its name from its days of civil war, but the country is as safe now as it has ever been, and you can embark on a once-in-a-lifetime trip while the crowds are still thin. The Rwanda Primate Adventure, brought to you by Mountain Travel Sobek, is one of the options you should consider as soon as you decide to visit Rwanda.
Slovenia is a Central European nation that remains something of a well-kept secret among those who are not hardcore travelers. Exodus Travels' Epic Outdoor Adventures in Slovenia tour will hit you with a fix of adrenaline if you're into that sort of thing.
Chile and Argentina
Whenever you can pack two different destinations into the same trip, you get to double-team your bucket list, knocking out two birds with one single trip, in a manner of speaking. That's the case with Boundless Journeys' Solar Eclipse Adventure, which takes you through the South American nations of Chile and Argentina.
Much of the outside world assumes that Africa is simply too dangerous to visit. If malaria doesn't get you, the lions will, or at least that’s what some travelers tend to assume. The problem with that incorrect thinking is that it prevents you from seeing some of the most stunning scenery the world has to offer, and that scenery is abundant in Ethiopia.
Austria is in the midst of something of a makeover, hoping to shed the long-held perception that the nation was full of beautiful buildings and countryside but somewhat limited when it came to culture. Austria still has the eye-pleasing architecture and countryside where the hours just melt away as you take it all in, but now it is augmenting its cultural offerings.
It's no wonder that a widespread desire to live a slow and easy lifestyle was largely to blame for sinking the Greek economy. If you lived in Greece, you would be sorely tempted to spend all your time soaking up the sun-drenched lifestyle too!
Headlines warning outsiders (and insiders) of political turmoil, rampant crime and other hazards could scare the novice traveler into crossing Brazil off their bucket list, but that would be a massive mistake. The South American nation has long been known as a nation where the beauty of the scenery is rivaled only by the beauty of the people.
The Dominican Republic is like many of the Caribbean island destinations. It’s naturally beautiful, and you can have a good time on the cheap, but you have to know where to go and where not to go when you visit.
If you’re looking to take a trip to Asia, Malaysia is worth considering as a stop. The country's Desaru Coast borders the South China Sea and is noted by travelers as one of the must-see regions.
Saint Barthélemy, known commonly as St. Bart's, is a French-speaking island in the Caribbean that isn’t difficult for Westerners to get to, and it’s completely worth the trip. Yacht-filled harbors, high-end restaurants and that indefinable blend of French and Caribbean culture leaves a lasting impression that will have you yearning to return soon.
For most westerners, France is one of the first items on their bucket list. Considering the relative convenience of traveling to Western Europe from the States — as far as bucket-list destinations go — France may be one of the easiest items to knock off your list. So, if you haven't already done the French experience, what are you waiting for?
United Arab Emirates
The idea of traveling to the Middle East is a scary thought for some people. Cultural attitudes that forbid alcohol, the sheer heat of the region and recent conflict may lead some to consider Middle Eastern travel a non-starter, but this would cause you to miss out on some great experiences.
India is a nation with a massive economy, and while you might not want to visit every nook and cranny of India, there are some spots that you can’t go your entire life without seeing. Jaisalmer, known as India's Golden City, is one of those destinations. It is a one-of-a-kind architectural phenomenon on the outskirts of the Thar Desert.