Travel Channel Editors Share What's on Their Bucket Lists

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Our Travel Channel digital team editors are constantly researching, producing and programming travel-related content, which means our travel bucket lists are constantly growing. Our editors have traveled to varying degrees. Some are just getting started crossing off destinations from their travel bucket lists and some have traveled to almost all seven continents. One editor has even been known to hop on a plane to Tokyo just for a weekend. Check out what destinations we have at the top of our bucket lists.

 Argentina

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Insights

“For the past four years, I’ve said that I’ll visit South America, but I always end up traveling to Europe, Asia, Africa and Oceania instead. This year (cue the broken record) I’ll visit South America to camp and explore Patagonia and sip wine in Argentina. Since it’s in the southern hemisphere with opposite seasons, visiting during winter will mean going during their summer.” – Arthur Hsu, Producer

 Ireland

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Andreas Prott

How to Tackle Your Bucket List

Take Advantage of Credit Card Sign-Up Bonuses and Points

Take Advantage of Credit Card Sign-Up Bonuses and Points

"There is no doubt that rewards credit cards and their 50,000 to 100,000 point sign-up bonuses are the fastest and cheapest ways to get almost free flights and hotel stays," says Summer Hull of Mommy Points. "For example, the Chase Sapphire Reserve gets you 100,000 points worth $1,500 in travel with $4,000 in purchases. Of course many of those cards do have annual fees and you won't come out on top in the long run if you don't pay off the balances each month to avoid interest," she says. Experts across the board recommend Chase Sapphire Preferred as one of the best cards for accruing points. Editor-in-Chief of The Points Guy Zach Honig says, “Not only does this card offer 50,000 points after you spend $4,000 in the first three months, those points are much more flexible than the points and miles you’ll earn directly with a hotel or airline, since you can transfer them to a partner when you’re ready to book an award, or redeem them for paid flights, hotel stays and some other travel expenses directly through Chase.” Other recommendations for racking up points include Chase Ultimate Rewards, American Express Membership Rewards, Citi Thank You Points and the Starwood Preferred Guest Program. 960 1280

bernie_photo  

Accumulate Points and Miles at Participating Vendors

Accumulate Points and Miles at Participating Vendors

Shopping portals are another way to earn points and miles. Visit aggregator sites such as Evreward or Cashback Monitor, which list how many points or miles you’ll earn from shopping at your favorite stores via major airline and hotel portals. The Points Guy, The Travel Sisters and Million Mile Secrets are among the many travel sites that provide extensive tips on how to maximize this strategy.

Don't overlook eating out as a way to acheive your dream trip. For example, the Rewards Network consists of more than 11,000 participating dining establishments, and it’s free to join. Just link a credit card and search whether you want to earn points with airlines or hotels.

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Nikada  

Join Hotel and Airline Loyalty Programs

Join Hotel and Airline Loyalty Programs

"It may sound simplistic, but the loyalty programs that save you the most money are the ones you’re actually able to use. It doesn’t make sense to earn Hyatt points if you don’t ever plan to stay at a Hyatt hotel, though the same doesn’t necessarily apply to airlines," says Honig from The Points Guy. "The major U.S. carriers all allow you to redeem miles with partners, too — in some cases 30 or more international-based airlines — giving you a ton of options when it comes time to book free flights. My favorite U.S. airline program is United MileagePlus, since I find that it offers the best award availability, especially on partners like Lufthansa and Thai," he says.

For those who aren’t brand loyal, particularly with hotels, Brent and Jackie Blum of Out of Office suggest Hotels.com for its reward program. "It cuts across major and boutique hotels and lets you accrue rewards points across all of them (letting your points rack up faster)." This means a free night’s stay after spending 10 nights at any of the 275,000 eligible hotels. The Blums add that Hotels.com also price matches popular sites like Booking.com, Priceline and Hotel Tonight. The site also offers secret prices only available to reward members. Plus, it’s free to join.

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ShutterWorx  

Manage Miles and Points

Manage Miles and Points

Keeping track of various miles and points can become time-consuming and overwhelming. Instead, use sites like AwardWallet, a free service that tracks all of your reward programs in one easy-to-use place. It alerts you to any points that are about to expire. (Unfortunately, some reward points expire in as little as a year if there’s no activity.) TripIt is a handy service that organizes your entire trip itinerary; all you have to do is forward email confirmations for hotels, flights and restaurants. Even better, upgrade for a small annual fee to TripIt Pro, and it will also automatically update your points and miles. Points.com is another worthwhile service; besides doing the dirty work of tracking, it also allows you to transfer your points and miles between loyalty programs. 960 1280

svetikd  

Volunteer to be Bumped From a Flight

Volunteer to be Bumped From a Flight

You’ve probably experienced hearing a gate agent ask for volunteers to be bumped from a full flight. Arthur Hsu, a digital producer at TravelChannel.com, not only received a $1,000 credit from Delta by going this route, but he says he even got home three hours sooner. Since agents don’t always ask for volunteers, Hsu advises letting them know you're willing to be bumped, just in case. 960 1280

Anna Bryukhanova  

Be Flexible

Be Flexible

This includes your flexibility to be bumped, travel dates and which airports you’re willing and able to fly to and from. Sam Huang, the founder of TopMiles.com, notes that flexibility comes in handy during the holidays, when award seats are often blacked out on international flights, but sometimes open up. If you're not redeeming points, Huang recommends using the Google power matrix tool for finding the lowest fares with flexible dates and airports. 960 1280

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Make Use of Stopover Programs

Make Use of Stopover Programs

Though not always widely advertised, quite a number of airlines offer the opportunity to spend a few days in a hub city before continuing on to your destination — without paying extra airfare. Icelandair is one of the best-known stopover programs; not only does it allow you to stay a full week in Reykjavik, but last year it also added a free buddy service, which paired travelers with Icelandair hosts upon request. This year it’s offering a twist by offering stopover buddies to help plan celebrations. Other airlines offering stopovers include Emirates (Dubai), Air France (Paris) and Turkish Airlines (Istanbul). 960 1280

powerofforever  

Monitor Deals

Monitor Deals

The Flight Deal, Booking.com and Travelzoo are among the many sites to find discounts on everything from flights and hotels to travel packages. Since it’s not realistic to spend every free moment searching for deals, Matilda Geroulis of The Travel Sisters advises, "Sign up for email alerts from websites such as AirfareWatchdog, and they will email you when there is a low fare on your chosen route." It doesn’t hurt to continue monitoring a fare after you’ve booked, since some airlines will honor a lower price. Sign up for newsletters to stay informed of daily and weekly deal roundups. You can also find amazing deals on auction sites such as Priceline and Sky Auction. If you’re worried about the unknown factor of what you’re bidding on with the former, check The Bidding Traveler first, which reveals recent winning bids, along with the actual hotel names.
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mammuth  

Use Apps

Use Apps

If you can wait until the last minute to book a hotel, the Hotel Tonight app offers deep discounts on (literally) last-minute deals at both basic and high-end hotels around the world. Skyscanner factors in both major and budget airlines, and often finds cheaper fares than other major sites. Hopper is useful for monitoring the cheapest months to fly and suggesting the best time to buy. Yapta not only tracks fares and alerts you to price drops, but it also continues tracking the fare until you leave, helping you reap a potential refund. 960 1280

anyaberkut  

Grab Mistake Fares

Grab Mistake Fares

Mistake fares are simply too-good-to-be-true fares that an airline or hotel posts in error, and which they usually catch and correct pretty quickly. However, if you diligently monitor certain sites that announce these, scoring one isn’t impossible. "Twitter accounts that tweet fare sales and mistake fares include @theflightdeal, @airfarewatchdog and @secretflying," says Geroulis of The Travel Sisters.

Just be sure to wait for a confirmation from the airline or hotel before booking the rest of your trip, since there’s no guarantee that a mistake fare will be honored.

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adamkaz  

Tanzania

Tanzania

If exploring the wilds of Africa is on your bucket list, then consider a trek to Tanzania. Located in eastern Africa on the Indian Ocean, Tanzania is home to the continent’s largest freshwater lake — Lake Victoria — and its highest mountain — Mount Kilimanjaro — plus the amazing ruins of Kilwa Kisiwani and Songo Mnara and Serengeti National Park. The Serengeti region — which encompasses the Serengeti National Park, the Ngorongoro Conservation Area and other controlled areas and reserves — is most famous for its yearly migration. Over a million wildebeest and about 200,000 zebras move south for the short rainy season in October and November and then back west and north in April, May and June. Take a safari through this region for the ride of your life. 960 1280

raisbeckfoto  

Iceland

Iceland

In Iceland, you can see the stunning northern lights, which are most visible from October to March, when summer’s midnight sun gives way to fully dark nights again. But Iceland’s marvels aren’t limited to its colorful night sky. A slew of natural wonders awaits the traveler year-round, from lava fields and black sandy beaches to lagoons, three spectacular national parks, geysers and glaciers. These wonders include the Blue Lagoon, a geothermal pool that is used for spa and therapeutic treatments. Intrepid souls can even find adventure on their dinner plates. Try Hákarl, if you dare. Iceland’s traditional fermented shark dish is prepared by pressing and drying the Greenland shark, which when unprepared is toxic to humans. 960 1280

pidjoe  

China

China

Continual construction from the 3rd century B.C. to the 17th century A.D. created the more than 20,000 kilometers that make up the Great Wall of China. Built for China’s military defense along its border, travelers from all over the world journey to hike along the top of the Great Wall. Back in Beijing, the history of China’s capital stretches three millennia. Get your fill of the culture at Tiananmen Square pedestrian plaza or the National Museum of China. China also offers a variety of historical sites, including palaces and tombs of the Ming and Qing Dynasties. 960 1280

Jeff_Hu  

France

France

France’s Eiffel Tower, the Louvre and Notre Dame Cathedral are traditional bucket list hotspots, but don’t forget to venture outside of Paris’ arrondissements. The Palace and Park of Versailles and the Decorated Cave of Pont d’Arc, which has the oldest known and best preserved figurative drawings in the world, should make the list too. Then head to the lavender fields of Provence, which bloom from June to August. From the Luberon region, follow the lavender up around Mont-Ventoux and into the areas of Sault and Valréas. While in Provence, tour Notre-Dame de Sénanque Abbey, a community of Cistercian Monks, where in the summer the lavender fields stretch up to the door. 960 1280

Michal Krakowiak  

Australia

Australia

Opt for the Oceania region to experience famous natural wonders, like The Great Barrier Reef, and extreme adventures. A journey Down Under also offers breathtaking scenery, unusual wildlife and surfing. Charming seaside towns can be visited along the Great Ocean Road. Tasmania’s Bay of Fires conservation area also offers beautiful scenery with over 50 kilometers of white sandy beaches and incredibly clear water from Binalong Bay in the South to Eddystone Point in the North. 960 1280

Rafael Ben-Ari/Chameleons Eye  

New Zealand

New Zealand

If bungee jumping is on your to-do list, then take the plunge to New Zealand, the home of the original bungee jump off Kawarau Bridge near Queenstown in the southwestern part of the country’s South Island. While on the South Island, take a hike on the 71-kilometer Queen Charlotte Track along the northern coast or explore scenery in the Southern Alps that is straight out of the “Lord of the Rings” films. Head to the North Island to check out the colorful and bubbling Champagne Pool geothermal spring, rafting and even more “Lord of the Rings” locations. 960 1280

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Spain

Spain

The famous running of the bulls has drawn spectators and thrill-seekers to Spain for years. If witnessing the centuries-old tradition is on your list, head to Pamplona in early July. While you’re in the area, be sure to see the beautiful Gothic architecture at Burgos Cathedral in the city of Burgos, or journey to the Roman Walls of Lugo, the finest example of late Roman fortifications in western Europe. 960 1280

Photographer: Laura Garca  

Jordan and Israel

Jordan and Israel

Partially built and partially carved into the rock, the ancient city of Petra in Jordan is one of the world's most famous archaeological sites. Blending ancient Eastern traditions and Hellenistic architecture, Petra is a must-see. From Petra, head north to the Dead Sea. With banks that sit more than 400 meters below sea level, the Dead Sea is famously salty, making floating easy. The water and mud are considered therapeutic, and the mud is often used for treatments at area resorts. West of the Dead Sea, cross into Israel and discover the ancient and holy city of Jerusalem, home of the Temple Mount, a sacred site for Christianity, Judaism and Islam. 960 1280

Roman Slavik  

Peru

Peru

Surrounded by diverse plants and animals, the Historic Sanctuary of Machu Picchu high in the mountains of Peru is an archaeological treasure and a testament to the achievements of the Inca civilization. Situated between the Amazon Basin and the Peruvian Andes, the Incas’ 600-year-old city of Machu Picchu is carved into the mountainside and includes more than 200 structures. Next, come down out of the mountains for a glimpse of the geoglyphs of Nasca and the pampas of Jumana. Found within a 450-square-kilometer area, these enigmatic carvings in the ground are thought to be as much as 2,500 years old and may have been used in astronomy and other rituals. 960 1280

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Utah

Utah

Visiting all of the national parks in the United States is quite a feat, but in Utah, you can easily hit five in one trip: Arches, Canyonlands, Capitol Reef, Bryce Canyon and Zion. Then travel to the southeastern corner of the state for the opportunity to stand at Four Corners, where Utah meets with Colorado, Arizona and New Mexico. Combine that with all of the opportunities to ski, and you’ll find Utah is chock full of adventure. Additional reporting by Shannon Adams. 960 1280

LordRunar  

Quebec City Instead of Paris


Quebec City Instead of Paris


The exchange rate is currently in favor of Canada, and you won’t encounter the same crowds in Quebec City as in Paris. What you will find, especially if you stay in the UNESCO-designated Old City, are cobblestone streets worthy of a French village and plenty of chances to practice your French. Even better, you won’t have to sacrifice amazing food, since Quebec City does justice to both French and French Canadian dining. Standouts include the award-winning Panache, which feels like the country French farmhouse of your dreams. Le Grafitti attracts more locals than tourists, and offers an updated approach to French (and Italian) dishes. Don't miss queuing up for crepes at Casse-Crêpe Breton and gorging on poutine at Le Chic Shack and Chez Ashton. Visit the recently opened Pierre Lassonde Pavilion at the Musée National des Beaux-Arts du Québec. The collections include more than 2,600 pieces of Inuit art and some of the finest paintings by regional artists. For shopping, Old City offers a plethora of one-of-a-kind boutiques. Pop into Charlevoix Pure Laine on the iconic Petit Champlain for hats, scarves and mittens made from the wool of Charlevoix sheep. Venture past Old City to explore the trendy Saint-Roch district and poke along Rue St. Jean. When it’s time to crash, spend a night at the historic Château Frontenac. At the very least, grab drinks at its 1608 Wine & Cheese Bar, named for the year and spot the city was founded. Or batten down at Auberge Saint-Antoine, (which also houses Panache) a converted 19th-century warehouse that exudes French rustic charm. You’ll forget you're not in Paris. 960 1280

iStockphoto: HonestTraveller/gregobagel  

The Northern Lights in Reykjavik, Iceland Instead of Scandinavia

The Northern Lights in Reykjavik, Iceland Instead of Scandinavia

Norway, Sweden and Finland are often associated with the spectacular northern lights phenomena (aka the aurora borealis), but the airfare and long drives from the nearest airport make Northern Europe viewing more expensive and less accessible. Enter Reykjavik, just a six-hour flight from New York City, plus low fares on WOW Air and Norwegian Air make it more affordable than ever. The fact that Reykjavik is the northernmost capital in the world means you can even base yourself in the city to catch one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World. While it’s never guaranteed you’ll see the light show, your chances increase between late September through early April. Grotta Lighthouse, about an hour walk, or 10-minute drive, from downtown, is one of your best bets for viewing the lights in Reykjavik proper. The Pearl is another option, home to a revolving restaurant and observation deck. Alternatively, numerous Northern Lights tours leave from the city: Elding offers a two-hour excursion, which includes a 20-minute boat ride to Videy Island. In the event you don't see any lights, the company will provide a free tour ticket good for two years. 960 1280

  

The Biltmore Estate Instead of a European Castle

The Biltmore Estate Instead of a European Castle

If a European trip isn’t in the budget, the U.S. boasts castles to rival Europe’s grand dames. The Biltmore Estate in Asheville, North Carolina, was modeled after the French chateaus of the Loire Valley and is considered the largest privately owned manse in the country. Architect Richard Morris Hunt, whose other projects included The Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Statue of Liberty, designed this National Historic Landmark. This epitome of Gilded Age homes contains 250 rooms, 34 bedrooms, 43 bathrooms and three kitchens, filled with centuries-old tapestries and Renoir paintings throughout. Since owner George Washington Vanderbilt III outfitted it with the era’s latest and greatest, it’s also one of the few 19th-century homes with central heating and plumbing, electricity, fire alarms, elevators and an early refrigeration system. The grandeur doesn’t stop inside; Fredrick Law Olmsted, who designed Central Park, brainstormed Biltmore’s grounds, from formal gardens to a 250-acre park. Explore the house at a leisurely pace on a self-guided tour, which provides access to three floors and the basement. Or take the guided Premium Biltmore House Tour, a private two-hour viewing that includes rooftop access. Unfortunately visitors can’t stay at Biltmore itself, but there are three hotels on the property as part of Biltmore Village. 960 1280

Getty Images: Walter Bibikow/wjarek  

The Egyptian Wing at the Metropolitan Museum of Art Instead of the Egyptian Pyramids

The Egyptian Wing at the Metropolitan Museum of Art Instead of the Egyptian Pyramids

By all means the Pyramids at Giza, one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World, should remain a bucket list item. However, you’ll only be visiting a shell; the treasures within have long been looted or removed to world-class museums. Fortunately one of the world’s best collections can be found among 39 rooms at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, thanks in part to a 35-year archeological excavation. Highlights include mummies, jewelry and wooden tomb models.

But the main event is the Temple of Dendur, housed in a soaring, partially glass-enclosed wing. Roman emperor Caesar Augustus constructed the Temple around 15 B.C for the goddess Isis, a major deity in ancient Egypt. Part of a UNESCO campaign in the ‘60s to save it from floodwaters, the Egyptian government dismantled and shipped the Temple to the U.S. for preservation. President Lyndon B. Johnson later gifted it to the museum. Besides admiring the carved reliefs, keep an eye out for 19th-century graffiti that’s been left intact.
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Brooks Walker/domin_domin  

Overwater Bungalows in Jamaica Instead of the Maldives

Overwater Bungalows in Jamaica Instead of the Maldives

French Polynesia and the Maldives possess the lion’s share of overwater bungalows, but the time and expense of getting to those islands is a deal-breaker for many. Don’t despair: they’re not the only places in the world to get the full overwater experience. Enter the brand-new bungalows at the five-star, all-inclusive Sandals Royal Caribbean Resort, one of the only real-deal overwater bungalows on this side of the world. This new addition to the Montego Bay resort includes 12 truly luxurious villas modeled after their Tahitian counterparts, with glass floors, giant soaking tubs and infinity pools to boot. While the spacious bungalows are removed from the rest of the resort, a private butler, 24-hour room service and dedicated water taxi ensure that you won’t feel like you’re stranded on a remote (if posh) retreat. Starting at $1,435 a night, it’s not cheap, but still a lot closer than the Maldives. 960 1280

Sandals Resort/AleksandarNakic  

California Wine Country Instead of Italy's Wine Country

California Wine Country Instead of Italy's Wine Country

You could easily spend weeks exploring Italy’s many famed wine regions — Tuscany, Piedmont, Veneto — but if that’s not in the budget, head to the best wine region in the U.S. California Wine Country, just north of San Francisco, consists of Napa and Sonoma Valleys, and offers a whopping 800-plus wineries between the two. Take note that many of the smaller wineries are reservation only, even in the slower seasons, and the larger ones may also require advance bookings for tours and special tastings. Many first-timers start in Napa, whose 12 wine regions produce many award-winning wines, from Cabernet Sauvignon to Chardonnay. Deciding where to start can be overwhelming, but you can’t go wrong by exploring the dozens of wineries along the quieter Silverado Trail, such as Clos Du Val, William Hill Estate Winery or Hagafen Cellars. Elsewhere in Napa, Robert Mondavi Winery, Castello di Amorosa and Grgich Hills Estate attract larger crowds, but the grounds and wines of all three are worth it. Sonoma tends to be less crowded and more laid back than Napa, and its 17 appellations produce everything from Merlot to Pinot Noir. Base yourself in charming Healdsburg. From there, head straight to Westside Road, a curving, bucolic stretch with one winery after another. Leave time for Gary Farrell Winery and Porter Creek Vineyards at the very least. Elsewhere in Sonoma, budget time to visit Francis Ford Coppola Winery, Jordan Vineyard & Winery and Scribe Winery to get a comprehensive taste of the best Sonoma has to offer. 960 1280

iStockphoto.com: johnrandallalves/Scacciamosche  

A Wildlife Safari in Yellowstone National Park Instead of an African Safari

A Wildlife Safari in Yellowstone National Park Instead of an African Safari

It’s not uncommon for an all-inclusive, higher-end African safari to run upwards of $1,000 a night (or more). True, there are more affordable options, but then you have to factor in the cost of flights, the hassle of vaccinations and visas, not to mention the time needed. If you’re not ready just yet for this major undertaking, consider going on what amounts to an American safari. Wildlife Expeditions, operated by non-profit Teton Science Schools, runs half, full and multiday trips to Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks. Instead of lions, zebras and elephants, expert guides will track wolves, bears, elk, moose, bison and more. The weeklong Winter Wolves of Yellowstone is a sought-after option to spot retiring gray wolves in their native habitat. Along the way you might also see bighorn sheep, pronghorn antelope and golden eagles while traveling via safari-like vehicles. Expect to pay $3,300 a person for the week, but this includes comfortable lodging, meals and snacks. 960 1280

iStockphoto.com: JudiLen/skynesher  

The El Yunque Rainforest in Puerto Rico Instead of the Amazon Rainforest

The El Yunque Rainforest in Puerto Rico Instead of the Amazon Rainforest

As the world’s largest tropical rainforest, the Amazon’s merits don’t need to be touted. It’s home to about 10 percent of the world’s animal species, such as black spider monkeys, macaws and jaguars. But the time, cost and logistics of getting to the Amazon are not insignificant. Enter the El Yunque National Forest in Rio Grande, Puerto Rico, less than an hour’s drive east from San Juan. Believe it or not, it’s not only a U.S. national forest, but it’s also the only tropical rainforest in America’s forest system. At 28,000 acres it can’t compare size-wise to the Amazon, but it contains plant life and animal species you won’t find anywhere else in the world. The flora includes 240 types of trees and 150 fern species, while its biodiversity encompasses the endangered Puerto Rican parrot, 11 bat species, and most notably, the indigenous coquí tree frog, Puerto Rico’s national symbol. One of the best ways to experience El Yunque is by hiking one or more of its 18 trails. However, leave the popular La Mina Waterfalls Trail to the tourist hordes, and opt instead for the challenging El Yunque Trail to the 3,496-foot peak. Don’t forget your camera or phone to capture miles of rolling green hills and the sparkling blue water just beyond. 960 1280

iStockphoto.com: OGphoto/apomares  

Bungee Jumping From the Navajo Bridge in Marble Canyon, Arizona Instead of in New Zealand

Bungee Jumping From the Navajo Bridge in Marble Canyon, Arizona Instead of in New Zealand

Bungee jumping tourism started in New Zealand almost 30 years ago; since then, it’s remained a destination goal for adrenaline enthusiasts. Hope isn’t lost if your budget doesn’t cover a plane ticket to New Zealand this year, as the U.S. has worthwhile alternatives. The Navajo Bridge in Marble Canyon, Arizona, near the Grand Canyon’s North Rim, regularly makes it onto lists for top bungee jumping sites. At 467 feet it’s not the tallest in the U.S., but it is among the handful that allow organized jumps. It also offers peerless views of the Colorado River and Marble Canyon, and is the closest you can get to pretending that you’re swan diving into the Grand Canyon. Bungee Expeditions organizes jumps from the Navajo Bridge for $250 a person. 960 1280

iStockphoto.com: pick-uppath/4FR  

Scuba Diving in Marathon Key, Florida Instead of the Great Barrier Reef

Scuba Diving in Marathon Key, Florida Instead of the Great Barrier Reef

As a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Great Barrier Reef is not only the largest coral reef system in the world, but also the largest living organism; so great, in fact, that it can be viewed from space. Alas, time and money make this bucket list fave a once-in-a-lifetime trip for many scuba divers. If this is not the year, then consider the coral reef along the Florida Keys. It’s the only tropical reef system in the U.S. Atlantic, and the third largest reef in the world. Luckily, the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary protects more than 6,000 types of marine critters, plants and objects. Divers in the know favor Sombrero Reef, off of Marathon in the Middle Keys, for its array of coral, tropical fish, barracuda, stingrays and sea turtles. Another area highlight is Thunderbolt, an intentionally sunken ship from the WWII era. Three decades of corals and sponges cover its surface, attracting angelfish, amberjack, goliath grouper and more. 960 1280

Getty Images: Dickson Images/vyenel  

“I’ve always wanted to visit Ireland. I just have a thing for all things Irish — bright green landscapes, four-leaf clovers, foggy mornings, string instruments, whiskey. Part of that comes from my ancestry, which has deep Irish roots, and also from the connection to my home in the southern Appalachians, a local culture permeated with Irish influence. I don’t have plans on the books right now but I know I’ll get there soon.” – Kelly Smith Trimble, Executive Editor

 Lyon, France

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Gary Yeowell

“Lyon, France, has been on my travel bucket list for a few years now. Not only is the city an affordable alternative to Paris, Lyon boasts historic architecture and fine dining options that rival the capital city. A perfect day for me would include biking along the Rhone river, sampling wine from the nearby Beaujolais region and dining at Paul Bocuse’s famous restaurant.” – Ryan Reed, Editor

 Japan and Greece

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Laurie Noble

“My travel bucket list is extensive. I’ll admit, I’m a little greedy. My whole family is obsessed with Japanese food, film and culture in general so at the top of my list is a trip to Japan, hopefully before my son graduates from high school.

But I will check a major destination off of my long bucket list when I return to Athens, Greece this spring. In high school, I lived in Athens for almost three years when my father was an Army officer working with the Greek military. I can’t imagine a better life experience, especially for a teenager; attending the American Community School with kids from around the world, school field trips to Crete, and traveling with my debate team to a conference in Thessaloniki. In March I’m taking my travel-obsessed teenage son, who is about the same age I was when I traveled to Greece for the first time. I hope he loves it as much as I did.” – Felicia Feaster, Managing Editor

 Alaska and Washington

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Andreas Gebhard

“I really, really want to go see the Northern Lights. I don’t care where (I’ve been told Alaska and Iceland are both good places), but I want to really do it up, and stay in a big cabin or one of those crazy ice yurts.

This year I’m actually completing a bucket list item: I’m going to Seattle! I haven’t been back to Seattle since I moved to the South when I was 13. I’m going to a concert and the Skagit Valley Tulip Festival.” – Jessica Yonker, Online Editor

 Scotland

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Kenneth Cox

"Scotland is high on my travel bucket list because my ancestors on my mother’s side are from Scotland, so I’d love to trace where our clan lived and bring back something in our tartan pattern as a souvenir. I also want to hike in the gorgeous landscape of the Highlands, visit the many majestic castles and explore the charming streets of Edinburgh." – Laura James, Assistant Editor

 Easter Island

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Patricia Hamilton (Larigan)

"Easter Island is on my bucket list because those statues – like 900 of them – have got to be the coolest thing ever. Plus, the beaches look really nice." – Jackie McGilvray, Editor

See More of Our Editors' Bucket List Spots

Editors' Picks: Travel Bucket Lists

Working on the Travel Channel digital team is a sure way to constantly have the next dream destination in mind. Here are the places our editors have at the top of their bucket lists.
Cinque Terre, Italy

Cinque Terre, Italy

"Cinque Terre is on my bucket list, and I’m so excited I get to go this September. I love hiking, so I can’t wait to hike the several trails I’ve been reading about with the colorful, picturesque villages in the background.“ – Farima Alavi, Assistant Editor 960 1280

AGF  

New Zealand

New Zealand

"New Zealand is at the top of my travel bucket list, because I’m a big nerd and want to see where “The Lord of the Rings” movies were filmed. My must-see places would include the Hobbiton movie set in Matamata, and Mount Sunday, the breathtaking setting for the city of Edoras." – Shannon Petrie, Managing Editor 960 1280

Alex Livesey - FIFA  

Half Dome in Yosemite National Park

Half Dome in Yosemite National Park

“I’m determined to get to the top of Half Dome in Yosemite via the cable route. I just haven’t managed to win the permits necessary to get there! When I first laid eyes on Half Dome, I knew I wanted to see the world from its peak. There’s something so majestic about the way it looms over Yosemite Valley. If I lose the permit lottery again this year, my husband and I may hop over to Iceland to see what the fuss is all about!” – Beth Rucker, Managing Editor 960 1280

Mark Boster  

Cambodia

Cambodia

“Southeast Asia, especially Cambodia, is on my bucket list this year. I’ve been dreaming of touring the temples at Angkor Wat in Siem Reap for a long time. This is the year I make it happen.” – Deanne Revel, Contributing Writer 960 1280

SeM  

Lyon, France

Lyon, France

“Lyon, France, has been on my travel bucket list for a few years now. Not only is the city an affordable alternative to Paris, Lyon boasts historic architecture and fine dining options that rival the capital city. A perfect day for me would include biking along the Rhône river, sampling wine from the nearby Beaujolais region and dining at Paul Bocuse’s famous restaurant.” – Ryan Reed, Editor 960 1280

Gary Yeowell  

Turkey

Turkey

“There are a ton of places on my bucket list, but Turkey is definitely at the top. Throughout history, the country has been a connection between the East and West, and so it’s been the setting for many major geopolitical events: the rise of the Byzantine Empire, the fall of the Ottoman Empire. The country is also home to some of the most incredible architecture in the world, like the Hagia Sophia. I can’t wait to see it for myself someday!” – Katie Friedman, Industry Outreach Coordinator 960 1280

Anadolu Images  

Scotland

Scotland

"Scotland is high on my travel bucket list because my ancestors on my mother’s side are from Scotland, so I’d love to trace where our clan lived and bring back something in our tartan pattern as a souvenir. I also want to hike in the gorgeous landscape of the Highlands, visit the many majestic castles and explore the charming streets of Edinburgh." – Laura James, Assistant Editor 960 1280

Kenneth Cox  

Alaska

Alaska

“I really, really want to go see the Northern Lights. I don’t care where (I’ve been told Alaska and Iceland are both good places), but I want to really do it up, and stay in a big cabin or one of those crazy ice yurts." – Jessica Yonker, Online Editor 960 1280

Andreas Gebhard  

Washington

Washington

"This year I’m actually completing a bucket list item: I’m going to Seattle! I haven’t been back to Seattle since I moved to the South when I was 13. I’m going to a concert and the Skagit Valley Tulip Festival.” – Jessica Yonker, Online Editor 960 1280

Edmund Lowe  

China

China

“Asia has been on my list for as long as I can remember, and I’m finally going to make that dream a reality this March! I’ll be traveling to China and cannot wait to experience the culture, find out what Chinese food really is, and of course, see the incredible sights. I’ll start the trip by checking out the Great Wall in Beijing and finish up by visiting the Terracotta Army in Xi’an. I can’t wait!” – Keri Sanders, Assistant Editor 960 1280

inigoarza  

Argentina

Argentina

“For the past four years, I’ve said that I’ll visit South America, but I always end up traveling to Europe, Asia, Africa and Oceania instead. This year (cue the broken record) I’ll visit South America to camp and explore Patagonia and sip wine in Argentina. Since it’s in the southern hemisphere with opposite seasons visiting in December will be during the summer.” – Arthur Hsu, Producer 960 1280

Insights  

Ireland

Ireland

“I’ve always wanted to visit Ireland. I just have a thing for all things Irish — bright green landscapes, four-leaf clovers, foggy mornings, string instruments, whiskey. Part of that comes from my ancestry, which has deep Irish roots, and also from the connection to my home in the southern Appalachians, a local culture permeated with Irish influence. I don’t have plans on the books right now but I know I’ll get there soon.”– Kelly Smith Trimble, Editorial Director 960 1280

Andreas Prott  

Ireland and London

Ireland and London

“Ireland has been on my bucket list since I was little. My mom’s side of the family has strong roots there, so I’ve always wanted to “go back to the Motherland,” as they say. I’m also fascinated by the culture, in love with the green, rolling hills and rocky cliffs, and dying to chat with locals in a cozy pub. This year, I’m finally going! My husband and I are planning to visit in October. We’re also staying in London for a few nights, too, because we’ve never been there either, and why not?“ – Molly Miller, Apple News Editor 960 1280

Nicolò Campo  

Japan

Japan

“My travel bucket list is extensive. I’ll admit, I’m a little greedy. My whole family is obsessed with Japanese food, film and culture in general so at the top of my list is a trip to Japan, hopefully before my son graduates from high school." – Felicia Feaster, Managing Editor 960 1280

Laurie Noble  

Athens, Greece

Athens, Greece

But I will check a major destination off of my long bucket list when I return to Athens, Greece this spring. In high school, I lived in Athens for almost three years when my father was an Army officer working with the Greek military. I can’t imagine a better life experience, especially for a teenager; attending the American Community School with kids from around the world, hopping on a bus and shopping and hanging out in cafes in Athens, school field trips to Crete, and traveling with my debate team to a conference in Thessaloniki. My best friend Debbie remembers we called it Thess, “to be cool.” In March I’m taking my travel-obsessed teenage son, who is about the same age I was when I traveled to Greece for the first time. I hope he loves it as much as I did.” – Felicia Feaster, Managing Editor 960 1280

Alexander Hafemann  

Easter Island

Easter Island

"Easter Island is on my bucket list because those statues – like 900 of them – have got to the coolest thing ever. Plus, the beaches look really nice." – Jackie McGilvray, Editor 960 1280

Patricia Hamilton (Larigan)  

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