We have selected five top locations for your bucket list along with some tips to help with your planning such travel insurance.
Plan Your Next Adventure – 5 Bucket List Destinations for 2016
There’s nothing quite like travel to give you a fresh perspective and awesome new stories for your repertoire. Be it an adventure holiday or a trip to a paradise Island, we all have that one dream destination. And there’s no time like the present to put a plan in place to get you there.
Kick back and start compiling your travel plans now, as we count down our top Bucket List Destinations for 2016 to get your inspiration flowing. Just make sure to check your travel insurance is up to date before you head off, to avoid any annoying mishaps ruining your trip.
Top 5 Countries for your Bucket List
If paradise is what you’re after, Bora Bora has you covered. Part of French Polynesia and situated bang in the middle of Australia and South America, this is about as far from Ireland as it gets. With crystal clear lagoons and lush vegetation, the tiny gem has been attracting honeymooners and jetsetters for generations.
From the scores of iconic beach huts to the majestic palm trees, everything here looks like it’s been taken straight from a postcard. Relaxation is the main objective. Feel free to spend your time underwater exploring colourful aquatic life. When you finally decide to come up for air, it’s worth taking a trip inland to marvel at the dormant volcanos that birthed this piece of paradise. You’ll never want to leave.
Patagonia is a landscape full of contradictions. It’s a place where moving glaciers nudge up to crystal clear waters, rainforests house unique wildlife and authentic cowboys tame wild horses.
Spanning 400,000 square miles and located at the Southern end of South America, this vast but sparsely populated landscape is shared by Chile and Argentina. If the daily grind has drained you of your creative spark then this place might just be your perfect trip. It’s long been a source of enlightenment for artists, authors and scientists - and once you visit you’ll see why.
Be sure to pack those binoculars. With over 100 species of birds, this is a birdwatcher’s paradise. Deer, puma and guanaco roam the expansive landscape so if you’ve always fancied yourself as a bit of a David Attenborough pack a good camera to document your trip. Just check your travel insurance is up to date before you head off to protect your expensive equipment.
Machu Picchu - Peru
Standing proudly at 2,430m above sea level and nestled between the misty mountain forests of Peru, the ancient city of Machu Picchu is one of the great architectural and artistic achievements of the world. Built in the fifteenth century by the Incas, these intriguing ruins lay relatively unknown up until 1911 when the American archaeologist Hiram Bingham stumbled upon them while out trekking. The exact former function of Machu Picchu is still a mystery, and history buffs will enjoy trying to piece together clues on its former use. Whatever your interests, the breath-taking views of the Andes and ancient stones give the site a mystical feeling that will surely stir your soul.
Top Tip: Plan your trip time wisely, Irish rain is nothing compared to the rainy season here. Check out the dates of the rainy season ahead of your trip, to make sure you leave rainy days behind you.
It’s the land of the rising sun, home to skyscrapers and world class design. Tokyo, Japan’s densely populated capital will sweep you off your feet. And luckily, immaculate public transportation makes exploring Tokyo’s eclectic districts a breeze.
If you’re after an authentic experience, then venture to the bustling Tsukiji fish market. Stay afterwards to indulge in some of the freshest sushi in all of Japan. Delicious! If shopping is more your thing, then Japan will not disappoint. Walk across the famous junction at Shibuya Station to join the hordes of trendy teens as they hit the nearby shopping malls. Or for a unique night out, the neon filled district of the Golden Gai with its miniscule bars, is the perfect place for a late night sake.
When the bright lights of the capital become too much, take a train to Kyoto to soak up some traditional culture. Marvel at the grace of a real life Geisha or take a quiet moment of reflection in one of the perfectly balanced Zen rock gardens and temples. A trip to the Great Buddah in the Kotoku-in Temple is also a must.
With a striking natural landscape and friendly locals, the land of fire and ice is the perfect location for an adventure of a lifetime. Situated in the Arctic region of Northern Europe, Iceland is one of the most geologically diverse regions on earth full of volcanos, lava fields, geothermal water and hot springs. This sparsely populated island offers plenty of activities to keep outdoorsy types occupied as well, from rafting and climbing to skiing and surfing.
It’s also a foodie heaven and Icelanders enjoy one of the world’s healthiest diets. This industrious nation are not afraid to tap into the natural energy that surrounds them either. There’s even a geothermal bakery where loaves of rye bread are cooked in the hot ground.
After you’ve sampled the local delicacies, a dip in a geothermal lagoon is the perfect ending to a day spent adventuring. Here, high levels of minerals and silicates restore the skin and relax the mind. If you’re lucky, nature might even grace you with its most spectacular natural phenomenon, the Aurora Borealis or Northern lights.
The practical necessities are not the most exciting part of a trip but it pays to have everything in order before you go. When traveling to any exotic destination, make sure you are up to speed with any travel injections necessary and check your travel insurance is up to date. AIB have a fantastic range of travel insurance and multitrip travel insurance types available at exceptionally low prices so you can relax and focus on the most important task at hand – enjoying yourself.
Some of the links above bring you to external websites. Your use of an external website is subject to the terms of that site. Allied Irish Banks, p.l.c. is an agent of AIB Insurance Services Limited in relation to provision of general insurance products. AIB Travel Insurance is exclusively underwritten by ACE European Group Limited. AIB Insurance Services Limited is regulated by the Central Bank of Ireland.