Can you believe the year of 2015 has ended?
I’m sure you have seen many posts already, and hopefully, you are not sick of them, but I too have a 2016 travel list. I am bad about making a list and usually just wing it, which has worked for me in the past. However, I have learned that it’s more of a probability of things happening if you write it and speak it into existence.
So...here goes! My Top five Countries for 2016, in no order:
Updated in 2017 to link the posts to the countries visited.
Brazil: I’ve put it on my bucket list ever since I saw Gabby Douglas be amazing during the 2012 Olympics, to attend the 2016 Olympics in Rio De Janeiro. The idea to attend the Olympics started before then. You see, before I was this globe-trotting lady behind the computer, I had some powerful legs as a child. My swim instructor believed me to be in the 2012 Olympics if I kept at it. I had similar compliments as the lead track star in middle school. And well, we see where that lead. But nonetheless, attending the events would be exciting. If I can squeeze in a visit to Bahia, that would be cool too.
South Africa (Lesotho, Swaziland): I have an amazing history with Operation Crossroads Africa. I first volunteered with them for a summer in Ghana 2011. Ever since my trip, I have been actively involved with them locally by keeping the legacy alive. That’s how I found my husband in a way, through Operation Crossroads Africa, because I left at the same time at the Gambia volunteers summer 2014, and it is a mutual friend we have, who I met through Operation Crossroads Africa. The organization travel to various parts of Africa. Even though this year, the country the closest to South Africa that they will be traveling to is Zimbabwe, the final deadline for applying and for me to determine isn’t until February. That’s enough time to get a feel for if I will be able to spend at least a couple of weeks of my summer in Africa. But if not with Crossroads, I have seen some favorite shows and events expanding to South Africa: Diner En Blanc, Black Girls Rock!, and Essence Music Festival. Ever since I have joined a travel community, I have learned that even though South Africa is quite big and you almost need to take a plane to get from one side to the other, I still would like to visit Lesotho and Swaziland since they are both technically within South Africa.
Cuba: Ever since Cuba has reopened its “arms” to the U.S., I have seen blogger friends take advantage of that opportunity by visiting. Cuba has a long, amazing history. As a photographer, it would be a perfect opportunity to do what I have always done: teach the youth and photograph the country. Even though we are limited to the type of tourism we want to do to in order to visit, I have no problem with that because out of the 12 options, my intentions cover at least two of them.
Caribbean: Earlier this year I won a free cruise. Although I no longer believe that it is true, haha, it was a friendly reminder that I still have yet to visit the rest of the Caribbean, especially islands of the Virgin Islands, where my maternal grandfather is from. I have already visited Jamaica and Puerto Rico, but I am ready to see more of the West Indies.
United Arab Emirates: My husband was able to go to the amazing Dubai airport before me as he flew home to me in the USA, haha, but God willing with or without him, I will be able to see Abu Dhabi and Dubai. It’s amazingly affordable to get there, despite its portrayed luxury that is displaced in the Instagram photos of celebrities and recent action movies. For example, there has been a Groupon floating around for an 8-day stay....
Canada: I have toured almost all of the East coast, and have yet to visit Canada, not even as close as the Niagara Falls. Despite Toronto becoming more popular thanks to Drake, I am a big fan of diversity. Another thing that has been on my bucket list is attending the NBA All-Star Game. I am a huge basketball fan (Go Miami Heat!) so naturally, I would like to check that off my list one year. This year in February, they will be in Toronto. I know this makes the 6th country...technically..but I just thought I’d throw that out there...hint...hint….
Europe: Yes, yes, I know Europe is a continent. But while the euro is still in its good currency value, I would like to go to the European countries that are the most talked about that I have not seen (the U.K., France, and Italy) yet, such as Germany and Switzerland. I thought I would have my honeymoon in Venice, Italy, haha, but either way, it has not been checked off nor removed off of my bucket list. Will it happen this year? We will see.
So that summarizes my travel list for 2016. Anything can happen if you just believe.
What are your travel goals? It doesn’t have to be international. It can even be discovering the town next door!
Just as an added bonus, here are some In-country states that I would like to visit:
California is full of events, history, and landmarks that I would like to see before it completely floats or burns away.
West Virginia is the ONLY state on the East Coast that I have not been to, excluding the New England Area, so, of course, I would like to visit there. With me being both a city and country girl, there are lots of winding roads and pretty green trees as well as small town hospitality!
P.S. Happy New Year! :)