Dream Vacation Destinations: 8 Magical Places to Visit
Your piggy bank is full, and you’ve scheduled off work. Now what? It’s time to plan a trip you won’t soon forget. Whether you’re traveling solo or with the whole family, try one of the eight dream vacation destinations below.
Iceland has recently become a vacation hotspot, drawing in tourists from around the world. If you’re lucky — and visit between September and March — you may get to see the Northern Lights. However, there’s plenty more to do in this Nordic country. Do you want to take a dip with the locals? Then head to the fishing town of Hauganes, where outdoor Viking-ship hot tubs line the cove. Plus, don’t miss the opportunity to see the Diamond Circle. This wasteland feels like a dystopian universe, complete with boiling mud pots, steaming fumaroles, and clouds of sulfuric gas.
You’re planning a vacation to Hawaii, but which destination do you choose? Kauai is the oldest of the islands geologically and was the first to be inhabited. It’s also a Hollywood favorite, used as a set for movies like Jurassic Park and Raiders of the Lost Ark. If you want to visit the site of an active volcano, plan to spend time on The Big Island. Kilauea made headlines here for its aggressive eruption in 2018. While visiting, don’t forget to check out the Halema’uma’u crater, steam vents, and Sulphur Banks trails.
Take a boat tour across the Tadami River and visit a village that people abandoned in 1964 after a landslide. If you’d rather stay away from the evacuation zone, consider a trip to one of Japan’s iconic cities, such as Tokyo or Kyoto. If you plan your trip accordingly — preferably late spring — you can take part in the famous Cherry Blossom Festival.
India is a vast country, and it’s impossible to see all the sights in one trip. If you’re a history buff, take in ancient structures like the Qutub Minar, Amer Fort, Mahabalipuram and Khajuraho Temples. Plus, don’t forget to stop at the famous Taj Mahal. Tired of looking at old buildings? Work on your suntan at one of India’s stunning beaches. In the west, you’ll find Goa, a tiny state that stretches along the Arabian Sea. After swimming, visit the 17th-century Basilica of Bom Jesus or Se Cathedral, the largest Roman Catholic church in Asia.
If you’re ready for some fun in the sun, head south to Florida, one of the most populated states in the country. Once you arrive, take your pick from nearly 1,200 miles of gorgeous coastline, including the paradise-like islands known as the Keys. Don’t feel like getting wet? Head to the mainland to hit up one of the state’s famous theme parks, including Walt Disney World, Universal Studios, and Legoland. You can also visit one of many historic sites, such as The Kampong botanical garden, the Kingsley Plantation, and The Barnacle Historic State Park.
When you think of South Africa, the first destination that comes to mind is Cape Town. This spot is known for its natural scenery and well-marked trails. Walk to the summit of Table Mountain, where you can catch sight of wildlife like birds, lizards, and guinea-pig-like mammals. Your next stop? Just a 30-minute ferry ride from Table Bay is Cape Town’s version of Alcatraz, Robben Island. Nelson Mandela was imprisoned here for 17 years under apartheid. This island is also home to a lighthouse, village, and African penguin colony.
If you want to spend time in the rainforest, you can’t go wrong with a trip to Peru. This country is known for its epic UNESCO World Heritage site, Machu Picchu. After you climb to the top, take in the mysterious Inca citadel, intricate stone structures, and astounding hilltop views. This destination is open year-round, but you may want to avoid October through April, as it’s the rainy season. If you don’t feel up for a hike, you can also reach Machu Picchu via a train, taxi or minivan from Cusco.
Are you an adrenaline junkie? If so, schedule your next flight to Alaska. This state is home to 17 of the 20 highest peaks in America, including Denali. This mountain, known as “The Great One,” tops out at 20,320 feet. The Last Frontier also has around 100,000 glaciers, many of which you can climb on and explore. Malaspina, for example, is the largest in the state, stretching a massive 850 square miles. If you’re flying into Anchorage, plan a trip to the Knik, Portage, or Spencer glaciers.
When planning your next vacation, don’t stick to tired cliches like Niagara Falls or Times Square. Instead, choose one of these dream vacation destinations where you can find adventure. From the beaches of Florida to the glaciers of Alaska, you’ll have the time of your life.
Kacey Bradley is the blogger behind The Drifter Collective, an eclectic lifestyle blog that expresses various forms of style through the influence of culture and the world around us. Along with writing for her blog, she has written for sites like U.S. News, Hotel Online, SevenRooms, Point 2 Home and more!