Top 10 Countries on the Bucket List*

Whenever I got into writing bucket lists, I always came to the realization that my bucket lists weren’t really things to do rather than places to go. I’m not the person you’ll find jumping off a bridge on a bungee cord or out of a plane with a parachute. No, I’ll be the one with a suitcase and passport, ready to see all these amazing places filled with culture, history, and a great view. There are so many places that I’d like to get to and really learn about, but here are some of the most interesting countries to me, in alphabetical order:

Australia

I mean, who doesn’t want to visit Australia? The first time I said, “I need to go there,” was when I was about seven, watching the Mary Kate and Ashley movie, Our Lips Are Sealed. (I was a big fan.) I’m not going to lie, (I mean, why now, after almost telling you that I still have every Mary Kate and Ashley movie on VHS?) the biggest part of the appeal for me is that it’s on the other side of the world, and literally every picture I see of that place just looks amazing. The accents aren’t that bad to listen to either, so that’s a plus. Between the beautiful beaches, the forests, the freaking architecture (The Sydney Opera House, anybody?), and the wide range of jacked up animals, this continent/country is basically a huge, magical vacation spot. It probably even has the power to give someone like me sun-kissed skin. Imagine that.

Austria

Okay, so Austria isn’t a country on everyone’s list of places they’d like to see, but it is on mine. The place is full of castles, which I would kill to tour. And growing up, I’ve watched The Sound of Music countless times with either my mom or Oma, and ever since I heard that there is an actual tour, I was immediately writing that down on my bucket list. I will go on that tour, and I will (horribly) sing I Have Confidence, Edelweiss, and Do Re Mi the whole damn time.

Hofburg Palace in Vienna, Austria

England

I personally think taking a trip to England would be one of the coolest things. There’s so much to see and do in cities like London, and that’s the kind of atmosphere I’ve always found myself attracted to. England is tied to so much of our own history; I think it would be so cool to learn more of their information. I would love to see Big Ben in person, and maybe the London Eye, but best believe you will not find me on that thing. One specific place I’d definitely visit there is the Kensington Gardens, where the statue of one of my favorite Disney characters resides.

France

For the longest time, France—specifically Paris—has been at the top of my Bucket List. I learned French for six years just because of how badly I wanted to get to Paris. I feel like it’s widely known amongst the people that know me just how badly I want to get there. There are just so many monuments I want to see: the Eiffel Tower, Notre Dame, Sacré Coeur, Musée du Louvre, Sainte-Chappelle, Versailles, the Luxembourg Gardens, the Catacombs of Paris, Musée d’Orsay, l’Arc de Triomphe. I want to see and learn everything that I possibly can there. I guess you can say Paris holds the key to my heart.

Germany

Sixty-five years ago, my dad’s mom came over to America from Germany, and most of her family still lives in the Southwestern region. Much like Ireland, the main reasons I want to see Deutschland are to get in touch with my roots and the architecture. I’d actually like to meet that extended part of my family, someday, and see how similar our lives are. I want to get a feel for my heritage and the culture. Castles also just happen to be all over the place in Europe, and Germany has a good number of them. Like 20,000 of them. (I’m obsessed, okay?)

Neuschwanstein Castle, built by Ludwig II of Bavaria

Greece

Let me start off by saying I am a little obsessed with Greek mythology. I have been since I was a little kid (thanks, Disney), and it only got worse from there. I don’t really know if I actually believe in it, but the stories are just so fascinating. I would also love to explore around cities like Santorini and get a feel for the colorful towns built on slopes, because hey, let’s mention architecture again. I seriously can’t put my finger on exactly why I love it so much—I would probably be able to sit there and stare at the Parthenon for hours.

Iceland

This is an odd one to name, but my dream has been to see the Northern Lights for as long as I can remember, so I want the best view possible. That is literally the only thing that attracts me to Iceland, but hey, a dream’s a dream.

Ireland

Ireland is the home country of my maternal ancestors, so of course I’m interested in going there at some point. The landscape and open space always looked beautiful on its own, but getting that sense of family and history gives me some peace of mind. One of my dreams is to stand on the Cliffs of Moher; partially because it’s a famous landmark, but also because that view seems so serene. Plus, I’ve always wanted to check out some of the castles in Ireland. Which will be hard to choose from, since there are about 30,000 of them. Some of the oldest ones still stand there, and I believe that would be a breathtaking experience.

Cliffs of Moher, County Clare, Ireland

Italy

If you haven’t caught on yet, it’s all about the architecture for me. Despite the fact that a majority of the major cities, like Rome, have since updated to the modern look, they still have their most monumental buildings reserved for tourism and the sense of history. And I’m not going to lie; Italian food is my favorite kind of food, so I know I’ll enjoy myself in that retrospect. I think one problem I’m going to have is that the food there is different from what us Americans know as Italian food, so I worry an itsy bitsy bit for my taste buds. But if there’s bread, pasta, sauce, and cheese—I’m there.

Russia

Another place that first grabbed my attention because of a childhood favorite movie, Russia has always been a huge freaking mystery to me. As much as Disney influenced me as a person, Anastasia was (and still is) my number one favorite animated movie ever. When I first learned that the Romanovs were real people however many years ago, I basically ran to the computer to find out whatever else I could about them and the history. Ever since then, my interest kept growing. I’m also kind of obsessed with the works of Tchaikovsky, Pavlov, and the Chmerkovskiy brothers. And let’s not get into St. Basil’s Cathedral, am I right?

St. Basil’s Cathedral in Red Square, Moscow, Russia

*I guess I probably should have written a warning sign about how literally every place I want to go to is because of the architecture. My bad. But hey, if you’re not into it, that just means you have yet to see something that makes you think “How the hell did they do that?” or “OH MY GOD.” Because seriously, St. Basil’s Cathedral makes my jaw drop every time I see a picture of it. Every damn time.

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