We’ve all got them hiding as the proverbial skeleton in our collective closets. Albums we should have listened to, books we should have read, movies we should have watched. They hang over us like ghosts, haunting reminders that in spite of being extremely cultured and worldly, there are some seriously fatal flaws in our ability to hold polite dinner conversation. We shrink and retreat into a cowardly ball at even the slightest mention of such humongously detrimental knowledge chasms, while nervously fiddling with the wrapper of a post desert mint.
As travelers, the same can be said of certain locations dotted around the globe you’ve not managed to visit yet. Even though you’ve danced naked with the Cacataibo tribe while high on ayahuasca in Peru. We ourselves have been to a fair few places in our time, and we’ve compiled a list of locations you really should have visited by now – but probably haven’t. The little clue for you, even though we’ve been traveling since 2011, we’ve not been to all of them either!
Star of a gazillion Hollywood movies and more than enough GoPro footage of hiking, biking, rafting, and climbing, the Grand Canyon has been carved over centuries by the Colorado River in Arizona. It’s taken over 2 billion years to make it what it is today, so don’t worry if you’ve not seen it yet – you’ve got some time.
When you do, you’ll join over 5 million people who visit every year, making it one of the world’s premier tourist attractions. It’s little wonder too, as it’s arguably the most jaw-dropping sight you’re ever likely to experience.
This might only apply to people who specifically live in and around Europe (and particularly if you’re from the UK) but a visit to Amsterdam when you were a teenager was a rite of passage. This is largely due to how relaxed this beautiful city is, allowing you to get up to all sorts of unadulterated mischief with your gang of mates without your parents being any the wiser.
If you’re visiting Amsterdam for a short stay, check out Amsterdam in 24 Hours guide with a list of the best things to do and see in the city of canals.
It’s one of the most liberal cities in the world, and also one of the greenest. Literally and figuratively speaking.
The general favourite of the non-traveller, the fabulous remains of the Inca city in Peru will always inspire heartfelt cries of “I really wanna go there! Sooooo bad! I need to sell a kidney!” It’s one of the world’s most popular tourist destinations and for good reason – it is even more spectacular than it looks in the photographs and trekking the jungle Inca trail is almost as memorable as seeing the site itself for the first time. Get your skates on to see it, because new measures are being implemented to curb the huge crowds. It’s too much of a cash-cow to close though.
Thailand’s capital has been raking in the tourists since the 1960’s when it became a major transport hub for Southeast Asia. Since Thai infrastructure has come on leaps and bounds, millions of people flock here every year to enjoy quite possibly the best all-round holiday experience on the planet.
It’s more than a jumping off point for beautiful beaches and islands though, and there’s enough to keep you entertained for days, months and even years. But you knew that already didn’t you – because you’ve already been?
It’s a toss-up between London or Paris for the most visited city on the face of the earth, but we’re sure London has won it this year due to the unmissable Royal Wedding. (Unmissable as in it was impossible to miss.) But London is a global city steeped in history and entwined in the ancestry of so many, having been one of the original strongholds of the old world. Thus, it attracts record numbers of visitors each year, keen to see the likes of Big Ben, the changing of the guard and Benedict Cumberbatch.
OK, so it’s technically not a place, but you should really have seen this northern hemisphere phenomenon by now. Best viewed from Scandinavia, Iceland and parts of Scotland, we’re pretty sure you could also get a good look at the Aurora Borealis if you went to the North Pole – although that’s considerably further down the pecking order when it comes to places you should already have been.
Across the pond, Alaska, Canada, and Greenland offer good views too, but it kinda sucks if you’re south of the equator. You’ll just have to make do with the southern version.
Ahhhh the Big Apple. Times Square, The Empire State, Broadway, Central Park, The Statue of Liberty and Friends. If you’ve never been to the city that never sleeps, it might certainly feel like you have. Star of hundreds of films and TV series, walking these streets will feel so instantly familiar – you almost don’t need to bother going. New York is a love-it-or-hate-it kind of place. If you love big, bustling, rowdy, crowdy, take-no-prisoner cities – you’re in for a treat. If you don’t, maybe it’s best to book a holiday in Mongolia.
Slap bang in the center of the Mediterranean Sea you’ll find the distinctive boot of Italy, so teeming with sights, cities, and attractions it’s remarkable there are people left who have still to visit the place. Venice alone draws in more tourists than you’re ever likely to see in your life, so much so they’ve needed to put gates up to limit numbers.
Go and see it before it’s reclaimed by the sea, or totally ruined by the amount of foot traffic. And if you’ve never been to Rome you should be ashamed of yourselves.
Of course, such a list is subject to personal circumstances, and we’ve opted for those big tourist pulls that generally most travellers should already have under their belts by now. That being said, it’s not always easy to go gallivanting over the other side of the world, and visiting the Great Wall of China might be more difficult for someone living in Swansea than say for someone…actually living in China. Still, you could visit China without visa for 144 hours, so it’s over to you now – you can’t hide under the tablecloth any longer!
It’s time to confess – where have you not visited that you really should have by now – and why?! Let us know!