Why do we travel?
There are many answers to that question, each as different as the person answering. I love to travel for both adventure and relaxation. The world is such an interesting place. Being in a new city or country can heighten your awareness of life: both the differences and the similarities to your own part of the world. Travelling gives you an opportunity to reflect and it adds richness to your inner world, as it’s an invaluable part of personal education, no matter your age.
I could keep going, but I’m sure you feel it, too. Not to mention, sometimes it’s just plain fun!
My family travelled often when I was a teenager, but, sadly, I haven’t travelled nearly as much with my own kids. It’s now been over a year since the world shut down due to the COVID pandemic, and while it’s made me immensely grateful for what I have, it has also heightened my desire to shove my passport in my backpack and get moving.
Do you travel for adventure or relaxation? This question has occupied an unnecessary portion of my thoughts over the last year because I really want both. It’s been a mentally stressful year, but it’s also been a boring year and I want to do something interesting. So, let’s head out on an adventure, but schedule a few days of R and R, while we’re there!
Three Places I Want to Visit
The best thing about travel dreaming is never having to look at prices. It’s also never having to shorten your travel bucket list. I want to take my kids to Paris and on safari in Africa. I’ve never seen the Amazon or the Outback. Wouldn’t it be amazing to sail the Atlantic on the Queen Mary 2 or take a Disney cruise through the Panama Canal? The top three places I want to visit when COVID is over may be completely arbitrary, but when you’re daydreaming, who can choose?!
Filled with glaciers and volcanoes, geysers and hot springs, it’s obvious why Iceland is called the Land of Fire and Ice. Iceland is located between two tectonic plates, the North American Plate and the Eurasian Plate, making it geologically fascinating, as the two plates move and shift, causing earthquakes and volcanic activity. With a rich culture and stunning landscape, it seems like the perfect spot for my first adventure. Hiking to a dormant volcano one day and relaxing in a geothermal pool the next day brings the best of both worlds. My interest was piqued again by Iceland when Mount Fagradalsfjall erupted in March 2021.
I have to be honest, though. I first became fascinated by Iceland after reading Journey to the Center of the Earth by Jules Verne. I still find the tale of subterranean escapades that began in Iceland captivating, but I’m willing to settle for less outlandish adventures, as I hear Iceland is awe-inspiring and fascinating even in non-fiction. But I would certainly still visit Snæfellsjökull National Park, where Jules Verne’s three explorers descended into the earth, and maybe I’ll even learn how to pronounce it.
Egypt is another exotic travel destination to me . . . and another flight of fancy. Like many children, I was fascinated by stories of pharaohs and pyramids. Then I began reading authors like Elizabeth Peters and Agatha Christie, with their mysteries set in an age of travel gilded with images of luxurious liners and the dusty discoveries of early 20th century Egyptology.
As I can’t go back in time and book a Thomas Cook tour to Egypt in 1905, I’m hoping for a trip to the Egypt of the 21st century. I’ll be sure to make a stop at the brand-new Grand Egyptian Museum, with over 5000 artifacts from the royal tomb of King Tutankhamun, many never seen in public before. I want to visit pyramids, temples, and the Valley of Kings. After experiencing the modern commotion of the ancient city of Cairo, I’d like to cruise down the Nile and visit one of the relaxing resort towns on the Red Sea.
I’m sure the reality will be even better than my favourite stories.
I’ve mostly heard of Costa Rica in reference to eco-tourism and amazing adventures, and it’s known for its national parks, forests, and tropical beaches. Do you love adventure, animals, nature, or relaxing on the beach? Yes to all, and take me to Costa Rica!
Costa Rica may be tiny compared to Canada, but it boasts 27 National Parks and 5% of the world’s biodiversity, including rainforests, dry forests, swamps, and coral reefs. You could see volcanoes and hot springs, discover fascinating creatures, or visit beaches on over 1200 km of shoreline. I want to zipline through the treetops, hike to a volcano, go river rafting, and learn how to surf before I spend a few days relaxing on the beach.
And apparently, Costa Rica is known for its coffee, as it’s a mainstay of the economy. But I didn’t even need another reason to go!
I don’t know when we’ll be travelling again or how far I’ll be able to go when I do travel. But dream-travelling gives me the opportunity to “see” the world: who cares about logistics like budgets and time off work?
Until then, I’ll just have to hit the road in my own province.