The world is full of stunning views, entrancing cultures, and invigorating experiences. With so many fantastic things to see and do in the world, it can be hard to decide exactly where to start. Creating a bucket list is a great way to organize all your travel dreams and make them a reality. As with any bucket list, the choice of where to go and what to do lies entirely with you. Filling up your bucket list will require a bit of introspection, research, and possibly even some help from friends. With the right mindset, however, you can quickly craft your list and begin your jet-setting journey. This guide for how to create a travel bucket list will help you accurately envision and achieve all your travel dreams.
Look to the past
It may seem a bit contradictory, but one of the best tips for how to create a travel bucket list is to look to your past and reminisce over previous trips you’ve taken. This can include trips you’ve taken with family, friends, and even solo trips. Start by creating a list of all the locations you’ve visited in the past five or ten years. Don’t worry if you forget a few locations—you can always visit them again as a happy accident. Use this list to reminisce on each specific trip. It may be beneficial to compile a second list of all your favorite elements, activities, and meals from these trips. In compiling these two lists, you will likely begin to see a trend of your travel preferences. Use these lists to choose future destinations that share some of the same elements as past travels. Whether you prefer high-action, tropical adventures or a more peaceful stroll around a quaint, coastal town, your past travels will provide you invaluable insight that will help you plan fantastic future vacations.
Gather ideas from friends
Everyone has different ideas regarding the ultimate travel destination. So why not gather your friends and see what locations have caught their eyes? Start by asking them about their travel bucket lists and their reasoning for choosing each location. You may uncover some hidden wonders that you never even knew existed. It can also be very beneficial to discuss some of their favorite past travels. Ask to see pictures and videos of their journeys, if possible. Speaking with your friends and seeing photos from their journeys will often give you a clearer, more realistic vision of a specific destination than searching an online travel site would. Such sites tend to fixate on only the positive aspects of a location and seek to display their cities in the best light possible. Your friend will likely be more upfront and willing to honestly explain the highs and lows of their vacation to a certain destination. You may even come out of this discussion with a new travel buddy who can help you cross off the items on your bucket list.
Follow your favorite films
Hollywood producers have an uncanny knack for discovering the most stunning locations on earth and filming them in brilliant color. It would seem, therefore, that you could learn a thing or two about travel from prominent media moguls. The best part of using this method for choosing travel locations is that you get to start by rewatching your favorite films. From there, it generally takes only a few internet searches to uncover the filming locations used in the movie. There are even some destinations that tout special tours around the exact filming locations of famous films. Perhaps you’d like to experience The Sound of Music for yourself and traipse through the mountains of Austria, or shrink to the size of a hobbit and explore the filming locations for The Lord of the Rings in New Zealand. No matter which films catch your fancy, this can be a great jumping-off point for developing a truly unique travel bucket list.
Prioritize your list
After a significant amount of time brainstorming different travel locations, you’ll likely have a rather unorganized collection of ideas and inspiration. Once you have a rough idea of some destinations you’d like to visit, it’s best to create a more structured list. Prioritize the different locations on your bucket list, with absolute must-see locations at the very top and destinations that aren’t as pressing a bit further down the list. When prioritizing your list, be sure to consider the people you’d like to travel with and the attractions you’d like to visit at each location. Some attractions may only be available during certain times of the year, and your travel partner may have future plans that could impede your travel dreams. Vacations that are a bit more time-sensitive should be slightly higher on your list as a result. With your prioritized list, you will be able to craft a more accurate budget and timeline for all destinations on your travel bucket list.
Keep a travel journal
Finally, be sure to keep a travel journal to document all the fantastic experiences you’ll have as you cross off locations on your bucket list. Document the landmarks you visit, the meals you eat, the events you attend, and everything in between. Include photographs, menus, and ticket stubs to further solidify your trip in your memory. Keeping a travel journal is a great way to look back on all your whirlwind travels and may even make it easier to plan future travels. Documenting the highs and lows of each trip will make it easier to plan similar journeys or even a return trip to a previous location. You could even use the memories from your travel journal to help someone else plan their very own travel bucket list. If writing in a journal every day of your journey isn’t quite your speed, consider creating a travel blog or keeping a photo journal of your trips instead.
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