We all know what a bucket list is, or at least where the term came from. It’s a list of things to you want to do before you kick the bucket (die). Seems a little grim, doesn’t it? I like to think of a bucket list as more of a list of things you should do to make you feel more alive.

Bucket lists aren’t just about ticking things off a list. Coming up with great bucket list ideas brings out the creative side of you. Putting them into action pushes you out of your comfort zone and often brings out the daredevil in you. And ticking something off your list which you weren’t sure you could do gives you a sense of accomplishment.

Travel Bucket List

I’ve put together a list of 50 incredible bucket list ideas to help you get started in creating your epic travel bucket list. If you want to delve deeper into creating your ultimate dream bucket list, sign up below to receive your free bucket list guide!

Table of Contents

1. See the penguins in Antarctica

Antarctica is one of those places we all dream of seeing, but few ever make it. It’s an expensive dream, admittedly, and takes time to get there. But what an adventure it would be, witnessing the ‘penguin highway’.

2. Climb Mount Kilimanjaro

Mount Kilimanjaro

The highest peak in Africa, Mount Kilimanjaro stands at 5,895 metres (19,341 feet). Now, I know what you’re thinking, I’m not a trained climber! This is the beauty of Mount Kilimanjaro – practically anybody can climb it. In fact, it’s more of a hike than a climb and you just need to be in somewhat of a good physical shape to reach the summit.

3. Drive the Wild Atlantic Way, Ireland

The Wild Atlantic Way stretches the entire coastline of the west of Ireland from Co. Cork to Co. Donegal. This scenic driving route offers breathtaking scenery around each bend (of which there are a lot on Irish roads!). You’ll have to stop along the way to soak in the Irish culture by way of ancient castles (see some of Ireland’s best castles here), beaches and small villages.

4. See a show in the West End, London

London’s West End is home to some of the best musical theatre shows and plays you will ever see. The feeling of excitement as you take your seat in the theatre and listen to the orchestra warming up, the only feeling as exciting is if you’re behind the curtains waiting to go on stage!

5. Skydive over the Palm Jumeirah in Dubai

Skydiving in Dubai over Palm Jumeirah

One of the most scenic skydiving spots in the world, Dubai offers a jump directly over the manmade island of The Palm Jumeirah, with panoramic views of the Dubai skyline. See more about skydiving in Dubai here.

6. Try solo travel

Something everyone should try at least once in their life is solo travel. It’s exhilarating, empowering and allows you to discover more about yourself. You get to pick and choose everything you want to do, and you can even change up your itinerary at the last minute if you choose. Check out the benefits of travelling alone here.

7. See the Big 5 on safari in Africa

Get up close and personal with these incredible wild animals in their natural habitat. An African safari is an adventure of a lifetime, whether you’re just chilling at the lodge watching the animals around the watering hole, or heading out in search of the lions.

Be sure not to visit any country that has legalised hunting. An example of this is Botswana who have just recently legalised the hunting of elephants.

8. See the Northern Lights

As far as bucket list ideas go, this is one of the ultimate ones to add to a travel bucket list. The Northern Lights, or Aurora Borealis, is an exquisite lightshow which occurs when the Earth’s magnetic field interacts with the sun’s charged particles. It is mostly seen in the northernmost countries during winter months. Check out my quest for the Northern Lights in Finland here.

9. Float in the Dead Sea, Jordan

Floating in Dead Sea

The Dead Sea is a salt lake which borders Israel and Jordan. There is so much salt in the lake that it is next to impossible not to float in it. Before testing this out, it is customary to cover yourself in the Dead Sea mud, let it dry, and then wash it off with the salt water. I guarantee you will come out with baby soft skin after doing this! Be sure to cover up any cuts you might have – salt on a wound = ouch!

10. Experience the thrill of dune bashing in the Arabian desert

If you visit Dubai or Abu Dhabi, dune bashing in the desert is a must do for any thrill seekers and adventure lovers. You will ride in 4x4s, which are fully padded inside, and speed up and over huge sand dunes. The drivers are incredibly experienced and manoeuvrer the cars in such a way that you don’t slide back down the dunes. Arriving at the top of a dune, the driver is likely to hit the brakes, leaving you with an almost horizontal view of the bottom of the dune, before swerving around and heading back down. No video can really express the thrill you get out of dune bashing (other than hearing people screeching in the background).

11. Walk the Camino in Spain

The Camino de Santiago is a 500 mile pilgrimage through four of Spain’s regions to the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela in Galicia, Spain. The full walk takes, on average, four to six weeks, however many opt to just walk a portion of the Camino, starting at various points and ending at the Cathedral of Santiago.

12. Take a road trip on Route 66 in the US

Known as the ‘Main Street of America’ Route 66 is a historical route running from Chicago to Los Angeles. Americans and those from abroad drive Route 66 to experience almost 4,000 kilometres of contemporary America.

13. Swing off Victoria Falls

Victoria Falls

Victoria Falls is the largest waterfall in the world, a majestic waterfall on the Zambizi River which borders Zambia and Zimbabwe. It is said that the waterfall is drying up due to global warming so best to put this towards the top of your travel bucket list.

14. Sleep in a treehouse in Thailand

One for nature lovers, spend the days visiting national parks and spotting wildlife, and the nights high above the jungles of Thailand in a treehouse resort.

15. See Rainbow Mountain in Peru

Rainbow Mountain

Rainbow Mountain, or Vinicunca, was only discovered in 2015 after the snow covering the mountain melted and revealed a marble effect of turquoise, red, gold and purple.

16. Relax on the white sandy beaches of the Philippines

The Philippines is a country in Southeast Asia which comprises of over 7,000 islands. It has some of the most pristine and crystal clear beaches in the world.

17. Hike the Araroa Trail in New Zealand

New Zealand’s longest hiking trail, the Araroa Trail runs 3000km between both of the islands. This is one for avid hikers to add to their travel bucket list.

18. Ring in the new year at Sydney Harbour Bridge

Sydney has one of the most spectacular New Years Eve pyrotechnic shows in the world. Once way to ensure a perfect view of Sydney Harbour Bridge is to book a harbour cruise for the night.

19. Walk underwater off the coast of Hoi An, Vietnam

Underwater Walking with SeaTrek Vietnam

Walk along the sea bed off the coast of Hoi An in Vietnam and feed the fish as you go along. Read about my underwater walking adventure here.

20. Step onto the Giant’s Causway in Northern Ireland

Stemming from the legend of Irish giant, Fionn mac Cumhaill and Scottish giant, Benandonner, it is said that Benandonner challenged Fionn to a duel, so Fionn built the Giant’s Causeway for the two giants to meet. The scientific explanation is that the Giant’s Causeway was formed as a result of an ancient volcanic fissure eruption.

21. Visit Gardens by the Bay in Singapore

Located beside the iconic Marina Bay Sands Hotel, Gardens by the Bay is a 110 hectare urban park in Singapore loved by horticulturists and nature enthusiasts.

22. Cave dive in Angelita Cenote, Mexico

For experienced divers only, be amazed by the underwater river flowing through the Angelita Cenote.

23. Hike Maccu Picchu

Maccu Picchu

Located high in the Andes, Machu Picchu is a 15th century stone city which sees hundreds of thousands of visitors each year to hike the Inca Trail. Witness incredible views of the surrounding valleys and meet Machu Picchu’s oldest residents, the Alpacas who maintain the lawn!

24. Cruise through Alaska

Alaska is home to over 100,000 glaciers, most of them inaccessible. With the progression of global warming, cruising through the Alaskan glaciers is fast becoming a once in a lifetime experience. 

25. Witness a hot air balloon sunrise in Cappadicoa, Turkey

Cappadocia is famous for its hot air balloons, but is less famous for the unique rock formations and landscape. Stay overnight at a cave house while in Cappedocia.

26. Stay in an ice hotel in Sweden

The Ice Hotel in northern Sweden is the first and largest hotel to be made out of snow and ice. Each spring, the snow and ice melt and the hotel is reincarnated every year. 

27. Stay in a water villa in the Maldives

Maldives water villa

Pristine water that you can just jump into right out of bed, a water villa in the Maldives is on everyone’s travel bucket list. If you’re lucky, you’ll get one of the villas that has a slide into the water!

28. Have breakfast with the giraffes at Giraffe Manor

This once in a lifetime experience does not come cheap. At $900 per person sharing, per night, there’s a reason it’s once in a lifetime. However, if you stay at Giraffe manor, you will get up close and personal with the giraffe residents, share breakfast with them and watch them in their natural habitat.

29. Walk the edge of the CN Tower in Toronto

The CN tower is a 556 meter tower in downtown Toronto. Adrenaline junkies flock to The Edge at the top of the tower, where you can walk, hands free, around the outside on a ledge. After your walk, you have the chance to lay back out over the edge, held with a harness. 

30. Swim in Bimmah Sinkhole in Oman

Oman Sinkhole

Bimmah Sinkhole in Oman is known as Hawiyat Najm in Arabic, which means ‘the deep well of the star’. It was originally believed that the sinkhole was formed by a meteorite but was later found to have been the due to the collapse of the limestone.

31. Snorkel in the Great Barrier Reef

The Great Barrier reef is the world’s largest coral reef system with 900 islands and over 2000 reefs. Snorkeling is a fantastic way to explore the reef and the incredible marine life. 

32. Walk the cobble-stoned streets of Paris

The romantic city of Paris has always been in my heart and I have visited many times. One of my favourite things to do is walk the cobble-stoned streets around Montmartre, sitting outside a Parisian cafe and watch people and the world go by.

33. See the Pink Dolphins off the coast of Hong Kong

pink dolphin

Scientists have been investigating as to why the dolphins off the coast of Hong Kong are pink in colour but are still none the wiser. Take a cruise out of Hong Kong and witness these incredible creatures dancing through the water.

34. Gamble in Las Vegas

Almost a right of passage when visiting Vegas! I don’t suggest you gamble away your life savings, however risking a couple of dollars on the slot machines is definitely one for the bucket list (and winning money is an even better one!).

35. Take a cruise on HaLong Bay

One of Vietnam’s many UNESCO World Heritage Sites, HaLong Bay is famous for it’s towering rainforest islands and stunning emerald waters. Kayaking around the bay at sunset should be on your travel bucket list.

36. Island hopping in Thailand

Island hopping in Thailand

Thailand has almost 1,500 islands to choose from when planning your Thailand island hopping itinerary. 

37. Discover Angkor Wat, Cambodia

Angkor Wat is the largest religious monument in the world, and one of the world’s most popular tourist spots. Because of this, the best time of day to visit Angkor Wat is just after sunrise. 

38. Capture the Taj Mahal at sunset

Taj Mahal India

Made completely out of marble, the Taj Mahal is India’s most iconic structure.  The Mughal emperor Shah Jahan built the mausoleum in loving memory of his wife, who died during childbirth, 

39. Walk the Great Wall of China

This magnificent ancient structure is one of the 12 wonders of the ancient world. At just below 30,000 kilometres, its unlikely you will walk the entire length of the wall (correct me if I’m wrong!) but there are different sections of the wall you can choose to walk. 

40. Eat all the gelato and pasta in Italy

Of course, there are many beautiful and interesting sights in Italy, but for me Italy is about the food.

41. Visit St. Basils Cathedral in Moscow

St Basil’s Cathedral is a colourful magnificent building on the Red Square in Moscow. While the view of the Cathedral is stunning from the outside, it’s well a worth a look inside also.  

42. Ride the Kandy to Ella train in Sri Lanka

This train journey is said to be one of the most scenic train journeys, not just in Sri Lanka, but in the world. With stunning views on each side of the train, you will wind through mountains and tea plantations and over bridges with huge drops below. 

43. Ski in Georgia

What used to be a well kept secret, Georgia, which borders Europe and Asia, has seen increases in visitors coming to ski in the past few years. 

44. Explore Fingal’s Cave in Scotland

Fingal’s Cave is one of the most popular sea caves, located on the island of Staffa in Scotland. You can visit the cave and the uninhabited island, capturing breathtaking coastal and mountain views on the journey to the cave. 

45. Camp overnight in Wadi Rum, Jordan

Wadi Rum Desert

Wadi Rum is a protect UNESCO World Heritage Site desert in south Jordan. Often called the ‘Valley of the Moon’, Wadi Rum has been used in many movies which are set on the moon. Camp out overnight under the stars and travel through the desert in open top 4x4s. 

46. Go on a yoga retreat in Bali

Whether you’re a seasoned yogi or just enjoy from time to time, experiencing yoga with mother nature in a Balinese jungle under the sunshine is one for the travel bucket list. Connect with nature and disconnect from everything else in your life. 

47. Visit Japan during Cherry Blossom season

Japan’s cherry blossom season runs from March to April. During cherry blossom season parties, festivals and celebrations are held through Japan, welcoming the Spring. 

48. See the giant tortoises on the Galapogas Islands

The giant tortoises on the Galapagos Islands are the largest and oldest tortoises in the world.  The tortoises spend their day grazing grass, napping and basking in the sun (sounds like me on the weekends!). 

49, Wonder at the pyramids of Giza, Egypt

Giza Pyramid

As one of the original seven wonders of the world, the Giza pyramids are the best preserved pyramids in Egypt. They are so big in stature that they can be seen from space. 

50. Discover the Amazon Rainforest

The Amazon rainforest, the largest in the world, takes up almost 40% of South America. Another one for you nature lovers, the Amazon rainforest is home to 40,000 species of plant, thousands of species of birds, four hundred different types of mammals and a whopping 2.5 million different insects!

Have you spotted any bucket list ideas you want to add to your travel bucket list? Have you already done any of these? Let me know in the comments below!

Ellie-M

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34 Comments

  1. These are awesome ideas, and I love how everything is all in one place. I will be definitely referencing this as a start to build out more of my bucket list.

    1. Thanks Fransic! The Dead Sea was definitely something different! I thought the stories about how much salt was in there were just exaggerated but it was literally impossible to sink in there!

  2. Love this list. I’ve done a few, but so many on the list I still need to mark off. Sky diving anywhere is the top. But that one in Dubai looks awesome.

  3. What a fantastic list! I’ve been lucky enough to experience several on your list and I definitely see a few more that I’d like to add to my list! Thanks for sharing.

  4. Hy, Ellie! I just discovered the meaning of “bucket list” in this post. I agree with you, I would prefer a makemefeelalive list! 😀😀 I’ve accomplished only 2 of yours (Camino de Santiago & italian pizza and gelatto), but heading for other ones I share with u: northern lights, Ireland and Macchu Picchu. I change my goals usually, so I’m afraid I can’t have a 50 to dos, I need between 1 to 5 to feel focused. But your list is amazing, I probably add some of them in a while. 🤩🤩

    1. That’s a great idea to just have a few if you feel a long list overwhelms you! I never thought of that! I haven’t done the Camino myself and am hoping to do it with my mum. I hope you get to do Ireland, Machu Picchu and see the Northern Lights 🙂

  5. I love this bucket list! I’ve been meaning to update my travel bucket list just to inspire and motivate me to continue striving til the world is safer again for travel.

  6. I can definitely tick of the eat all the pasta and gelato in Italy! I’ve visited Italy almost ten times in the past 6 years it’s my favourite place to go! Thanks for sharing x

    1. Haha great minds think alike!! That’s amazing you’ve already done 5 of these, only 45 more to do! I’m definitely bucket list obsessed haha. Going to check out your site now!

  7. This list is absolutely full of great places Ellie! I found plenty of them that were already on my list and then added some more! I have been dreaming of seeing the northern lights and visit Peru for a while, hopefully, we will get back to travel safely soon x Thank you for sharing 🙂

    1. Thanks Cristina! I’m so glad you got some inspiration from my list. I hope you get to see the Northern Lights – I didn’t catch them on my trip to Finland so I’ll just have to in search of them again!

    1. Thanks Louise, I’m sure you can get to do more than one in your life! I find when I have a physical list, it helps me to do more and plan more 🙂

  8. That is some list 👌 could you imagine the penguins in Antarctica thats a great 1. Love the Jordan 🇯🇴 one to. We live in Ireland now so hope to do the wild Atlantic way soon.
    Thanks for the great post

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