The Bucket List: 50 Things to Do Before You Die

Because life is for living.

EXPERIENCES

1. Tour the Colosseum in Rome, Italy

Colosseum in Rome, Italy

A site of fascinating events since 80 A.D., the Roman Colosseum is one of the world's most recognisable monuments. This historical Roman amphitheatre is always packed with tourists, but the experience of walking through 2,000 years of history at this iconic site is a memorable one for any bucket list.


2. Winter Solstice at Stonehenge

Stonehenge-UK

Mingle with the Druids at Stonehenge for one of the monument's most bewitching events. The shortest day of the year brings visitors from all over the world looking to experience the ancient site of Stonehenge on this hallowed astronomical occasion. Watch the sunrise over the prehistoric ring of stones and cross it off your list in a very special way.


3. Celebrate St. Patrick's Day in Dublin

St. Patrick's Day in Dublin

Pour yourself a pint of Guinness, wear your best green duds, and celebrate Saint Patrick in Dublin's biggest party of the year. Stand along the parade route before hitting the traditional Irish pubs - St. Patrick's Day in Dublin is one of the best celebrations on earth.


4. Hit the Casino in Monte Carlo

Casino in Monte Carlo

If you fancy rubbing shoulders with the world's rich and famous, Monaco's Monte Carlo Casino guarantees a fabulous experience. Try your luck at the tables, or simply take in the incredible people watching opportunities, all amidst one of the most beautiful cities in Europe.


5. Gaze at the Sistine Chapel in Vatican City

Sistine Chapel in Vatican City

Gazing up at Michelangelo's most famous work is a humbling experience to say the least. Head to Vatican City and explore the immense art collection inside the Papal residence, an experience heightened if you catch a glimpse of the man himself.


6. Take a Gondola in Venice

Gondola in Venice

Lay back and enjoy the Venetian canals as you are serenaded by your very own enthusiastic gondolier. One of the most iconic cities in the world, there is no better way to explore Venice's 177 breathtaking canals than by its most famous mode of transportation.


7. Throw Tomatoes at the Tomatina Festival in Buñol, Spain

La Tomatina Festival

Join the world's biggest food fight at the Tomatina Festival in Spain, an epic event where participants cover each other head to toe in squashed tomatoes. This experience is a must for any fun-loving traveller ready to get messy and let loose!

8. Stand in Red Square, Moscow

Red Square, Moscow

Immerse yourself in Russian history standing in Moscow's iconic Red Square. Visit Lenin's mausoleum or explore St. Basil's Cathedral before watching the day turn to night as the square illuminates in spectacular colour.


9. Take a Walk Through the Ancient City of Petra

Petra- Jordan

An ancient city unknown to the modern world until 1812, Petra has fascinated visitors with its rock-cut architecture and history ever since. Walk along the Jordanian basin and discover this fascinating UNESCO World Heritage Site for yourself.


10. Ride an Elevator to the Top of Dubai's Burj Khalifa

Burj Khalifa, UAE

Burj Khalifa, the world's tallest building, towers over Dubai - providing visitors to the top with indescribable views of the city and surrounding landscape below. Hurry and cross this off your bucket list, before someone else takes their ideas to new heights and the Burj Khalifa becomes just another skyscraper.


11. Bargain in the Souks of Marrakech

Bazaar Marrakech

Explore the maze of intertwining alleyways in Morocco's largest traditional Berber marketplace. The souks of Marrakech are synonymous with the city, and reward visitors with bargains galore, cultural immersion, and mouth-watering street food.


12. Float in the Dead Sea

Float in Dead Sea

The world's largest saline lake is the perfect place to lay back and relax. The Dead Sea has more than just buoyant waters to entertain, for travellers seeking sun and spa time - the region has an endless array of experiences.


13. Visit the Pyramids at Giza

Pyramids- Egypt

The Pyramids of Giza are the oldest of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World, and the only one that is still intact. Explore these Egyptian marvels that have inspired and mystified the world for the last 12,000 years.


14. See the Christ the Redeemer Statue in Rio de Janeiro

Christ the Redeemer Statue

Keeping a watchful eye over the people of Rio De Janeiro, the Christ the Redeemer statue is an art-deco masterpiece that stands on the peak of Corcovado mountain. The statue is not only an icon of Brazil, it also provides extraordinary views of Rio you won't find anywhere else.


15. Play with Penguins on the Falkland Islands

Penguins on the Falkland Islands

Although they have long been a subject of controversy, the Falkland Islands are still relatively unknown to tourists. Due to their remote location in the South Atlantic Ocean, the wildlife and landscape have remained relatively untouched - giving adventurous travellers the rare opportunity to get up close with some of the world's most fascinating animals.


16. Go Wine Tasting in California's Napa Valley

Napa Valley

The rolling hills of California's Napa Valley are the perfect backdrop for tasting the region's locally produced wines. Whether you opt for an organised tasting tour or take a wine themed road trip (Take a designated driver!) Napa Valley will exceed your expectations in both taste and beauty.


17. Pay Homage to the Dead at the Dia de Los Muertos Festival in Mexico City

Day of the Dead

The Dia de Los Muertos Festival may be a celebration in honour of the dead, but the party is for the living. Head to Mexico City to experience this unique festival for yourself, and learn a thing or two about life in the process.


18. Drink Mojitos in Havana, Cuba

Havana, Cuba

Going halfway across the world for a drink may seem extravagant, but the experience of drinking a mojito in its birthplace is well worth the trip. They say visiting Havana is like travelling back in time, but times are a changing, so book fast before this bucket list item loses that special touch.


19. Take a Helicopter Ride Over the Grand Canyon

The Grand Canyon

One of the world's most majestic landscapes, the Grand Canyon is one place on earth that always exceeds expectations. Climb aboard a helicopter for a bird's eye view of this magnificent wonder, and return home humbled by the sheer magnitude of this American landmark.


20. See the Taj Mahal in Agra, India

Taj Mahal

Commissioned in 1632 by the Mughal emperor Shah Jahan for his wife, this world wonder is one magnificent ode to love. The gleaming white marble makes a fantastic backdrop for exotic selfies, but you may be surprised by the sheer size and fascinating history of this bucket list must.


21. Climb the Great Wall of China

Great Wall of China

While you can't actually see the Great Wall of China from space, tall tales of this engineering phenomenon have been spun for centuries and for good reason. Stretching over 5,500 miles across the Chinese landscape, climbing to the top is a life achievement you will never forget.


22. Take a Photo of Mt. Fuji, the Most Photographed Mountain in the World

Mt. Fuji

Mt.Fuji is often said to be the most photographed mountain in the world. Its spectacularly symmetric shape against the surrounding cherry blossoms in Spring are truly a sight to behold. For the adventurous, it is also possible to trek to Fuji's peak.


23. Get Colourful at the Holi Festival in India

holi Festival

A festival of love and laughter, don't expect to leave this colourful festival the same way you arrived. India erupts on Holi with huge crowds, plentiful supplies of coloured powder, and a festival spirit that you won't find anywhere else on Earth.


24. Explore the Forbidden City in Beijing, China

Forbidden City

An imperial palace that was home to the Chinese emperors and their families for over 500 years, this remarkable complex still looks very much as it did in the 13th century. Peruse the museums, get lost in the gardens, and let your imagination run wild as you picture what life must have been like in this secret city for those who once called it home.


25. Go Snorkelling at Australia's Great Barrier Reef

Great Barrier Reef

The world's largest coral reef system is not just another day at the beach. This world heritage site is one of the most fascinating ecosystems on the planet - with over 1,500 species of fish, 134 species of sharks and rays and 30 marine animals (just to name a few) making the reef their home.


ADVENTURES

26. Search for Nessie at Loch Ness in Scotland

Loch Ness Monster

Ever since the first major sighting in 1933, the creature that supposedly lurks beneath the waters of Loch Ness has captured the world's imagination. Whether or not you catch a glimpse of Nessie, a trip to the stunning Highlands region of Scotland is worth a place on your bucket list just for the views.


27. Watch the Sunrise at Machu Picchu

Machu Picchu

High in the Andes Mountains of Peru sits the once great city of the Incan empire. Although it was built around 1450, it wasn't known to the outside world until 1911 - adding to the UNESCO World Heritage Site's mysterious past.


28. Drive Iceland's Ring Road

Ring Road

For a road trip to remember, head to Iceland. Drive along this famous road and revel in the glaciers, waterfalls, and sleepy fishing villages you pass. The Ring Road will take you all the way around Iceland, but don't be surprised if you are ready for round two as soon as you cross the finish line.


29. Take the Bergenline Train from Oslo-Bergen, Norway (The Most Beautiful Train Ride in the World)

Flan Train

Taking passengers from the capital city of Oslo to the scenic city of Bergen, the Bergenline train is eight hours of pure rail magic. Gaze out your window as you pass through breathtaking fjords and snow covered mountain towns, this bucket list item will be over way too soon.


30. Go Island Hopping in Greece

Greek Islands

There may be nothing more cliche than island hopping in Greece, but this popular sun worshipper pastime is more than beach parties with a booze cruise. Dive into local cuisine and explore some of Greece's less inhabited islands for an adventure as perfect as a postcard.


31. Look Down From the World's Tallest Waterfall- Angel Falls, Venezuela

Angel Falls

Forget your fear of heights and look down from the world's tallest waterfall, located deep in the Canaima National Park of Venezuela. This UNESCO World Heritage Site isn't Niagara Falls, you can enjoy this spectacular natural wonder without the crowds and tour buses blocking your view. If you enjoyed the film "Up", you are probably already convinced.


32. Chill out with the Moai on Easter Island

Moai on Easter Island

Probably the most famous heads on the planet, the mysterious Moai statues on Easter Island are truly a sight to behold. Thought to be carved between 1250 and 1500 BC, scholars still can't determine how exactly the Rapa Nui people transported such heavy stones across the island. One thing is for certain, making your own theory in their shadows is a great way to spend the day.


33. Observe Polar Bears in the Wild in Churchill, Manitoba

Polar Bear Family

Located on the shores of Hudson Bay in Northern Manitoba, Churchill is seemingly just a tiny town miles from anywhere. (The train journey from 'nearby' Winnipeg takes 40 hours.) Each year, however, the native polar bear population passes through to settle near the shore - putting this Canadian town on the map. If you want an all but guaranteed sighting of a polar bear in its natural habitat, a trip to the "Polar Bear Capital of the World" is an unforgettable treat.


34. Dive with Great White Sharks in South Africa

Great White Sharks

Definitely not a bucket list item for everyone, but there is something to be said about getting face to face with one of the world's most simultaneously terrifying and beautiful creatures. Put on your wetsuit, climb into the cage if you dare, and prepare to meet the Great White.


35. Get Face to Face with Gorillas in Rwanda

Rwanda gorillas

Trekking through Rwanda's Volcanoes National Park on a quest to see gorillas in their natural habitat is not just another day tour. Hiking through the mountain terrain can be arduous, but the chance to see a mountain gorilla group in the wild is a bucket list triumph.


36. Cycle Through the Rice Fields of Vietnam

Vietnam Rice Fields

The rice fields of Vietnam astound visitors with their geometric perfection, blanketed in a sheet of green. Cycling through the region isn't about a love of fitness (or rice), it allows visitors to delve into local culture, see typical people in their everyday lives, and escape the tourist trail for a refreshingly authentic adventure.


37. Sleep in a Mongolian Yurt

Yurt in Mongolia

Sleeping in a yurt on the remote grasslands of Mongolia is an adventure of a lifetime. Half of Mongolians are still nomadic people, and a Mongolian yurt experience gives you a window into the lifestyle and traditions of this fascinating culture. While glamping is an option, the best way to check this off your bucket list is by joining a local herder family and experiencing the real Mongolian life.


38. Chat with Monks at the Potala Palace in Lhasa, Tibet

Potala Palace

Located in the autonomous region of Tibet, Potala Palace was once the chief residence of the Dalai Lama before he was exiled to India in 1959. Today the palace stands over Lhasa and is open to the public. Explore the chapels and museums, immerse yourself in Buddhist culture, and chat with a monk or two on the 'rooftop of the world'.


39. Go Bungee Jumping in Queenstown, New Zealand

Queenstown Bungee

Bungee as we know it started in 1979 at the Clifton Suspension Bridge in Bristol. But it was a New Zealander ten years later that turned this adventure sport into an activity that could be enjoyed by all. Today, thrill seekers around the world flock to Queenstown, known both as the "Home of Bungee Jumping" as well as the "Adventure Capital of the World". A jump from the historic Kawarau Bridge will propel this bucket list adventure to new heights.


40. Hit the Australian Outback

Australia outback

Vast. Wild. Unexpectedly breathtaking. The Australian Outback is much more than tumbleweeds and kangaroos. This remote region covers most of Australia, a fact in itself that is hard to wrap your head around. From the world heritage site of Uluru Kata to the landscapes rich with indigenous spirituality, you won't return home the same person.


JOURNEYS

41. Take a Voyage into the Unknown: Antarctica

Antarctica

Antarctica is at the top of many adventurer's bucket list. A remote landscape, largely untouched and unexplored by man. Home to an incredible array of wildlife, with mind-blowing scenery that many well-travelled souls have called the most beautiful place on Earth. You'll need to ditch the comfort zone, grab a parka, and get ready to be amazed by Antarctica.


42. Retrace the Footsteps of Marco Polo on the Silk Road: Venice to China

Silk Road

Marco Polo's adventures on the Silk Road have captured imaginations for centuries. For a journey that will change your life, follow in the footsteps of the man himself. Do note, this will not be an easy task but one that will challenge you with 4,000 miles of dramatic landscapes, wonderful people, and unforgettable memories.


43. Attend the Biggest Show on Earth: The Great Migration

The Great Migration

The largest migration of animals on Earth takes place in Kenya and Tanzania every year. You can't imagine what millions of zebra and wildebeest look like, until you see it for yourself. The Great Migration easily tops any run of the mill safari experience, and you'll never look at the circle of life quite the same way again.


44. Cross the Sahara Desert (Camel Optional)

Sahara Desert

The Sahara Desert is vast, remote, and dangerous. Yet within its 3.6 million square miles expanse is a world begging to be explored. Hire your camel, take the year off work, and discover why the Sahara is a journey that trumps all journeys.


45. Climb Mount Kilimanjaro: The Tallest Mountain in Africa

Kiliminjaro

Probably the most accessible journey on our list, though no less life-affirming, is climbing Tanzania's Mount Kilimanjaro. The highest peak in Africa and the highest free-standing mountain in the world, a typical journey to the top can take anywhere from five to ten days. While 40,000 people tick this off their bucket list each year, standing on the roof of Africa is still a bragging right worth pursuing.


46. Trek the Jagged Coast of Chilean Patagonia

Patagonia

Patagonia is home to one of the most dramatic landscapes on Earth, yet it still isn't on the radar of most travellers. From pristine glaciers to iceberg laden lakes, the jagged coast offers surprise after surprise for those who undertake the journey.


47. Watch Wildlife in the Remote Galapagos Islands

Galapagos Islands

Charles Darwin made the Galapagos his laboratory, forever changing the way we viewed human history. Due to the remote location and isolation from humans over time, the islands are very much as they were in the prehistoric era. Get back to nature at its purest, spot indigenous wildlife, and go on a journey back in time.


48. Explore the Amazon by River

Amazon River

The world's largest tropical rainforest is home to a wealth of biodiversity, some 30% of the world's species live here. Hop on-board a vessel for a journey that will take you along the Amazon River - a chance to see vast amounts of wildlife, indigenous villages, and perhaps even an anaconda or two. Are you ready?


49. Hike the Appalachian Trail

Appalachian Trail

Any serious hiker dreams of hiking the entire Appalachian Trail, but it was only recently after the release of "Wild" that it became something ordinary people around the world wanted to take on as well. The trail goes through 14 American states, a length of an astounding 2,168 miles. You can expect to spend at least 6 months start to finish, a feat only 1 out of 4 hikers who take on the trail achieve.


50. Master the Himalayan Trail to Everest Base Camp

Everest base Camp

The ultimate bucket list icon - Mount Everest. Climbing the highest mountain in the world isn't accessible or affordable to most of us, but you can defeat the Himalayan Trail and reach the famous Everest Base Camp instead. This journey typically lasts 15-20 days depending on how slowly you want to acclimatise to the dizzying heights, but the personal achievement of reaching Base Camp is something you will have forever.



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Written by Jessica Zijlstra, editor of the Holiday Extras Blog and author of the travel blog The Fly Away American. Catch up with her on Twitter.

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