Photo courtesy of wanderlasss on Flickr.
When fellow hiker Michael from easy hiker kindly asked me to share my bucket list, I was stumped. I didn’t have a bucket list – or so I thought. Once I started, I couldn’t stop. It turns out I pretty much want to go everywhere and experience almost every adventure this planet has to offer. I’ll spare you the details and just share the top 5 on my bucket list.
1) Diving the Sardine Run in S. Africa – The sardine run is the largest migration on earth. You can see it from Space. Sharks, whales, dolphins and countless other fish show up for the ever moving buffet. -I want to see it up close, but I’ll find my dinner somewhere else – I know better than to compete for my dinner with a hungry shark. Unfortunately the sardines don’t take appointments and you have to book the excursion months in advance as it sells out quickly – with no guarantee that the dates you booked will correspond with the sardine’s calendar that year.
Photo courtesy of dullhunk on Flickr.
2) Volunteering with Chimpanzees – This likely doesn’t come as a huge shock, I am a woman who after all has “monkey” in her travel blog name and holds a Bachelor of Science in Primatology (the study of primates). For as long as I can remember I’ve longed to be around chimps. I find them utterly fascinating! If I had to name my hero it would be Jane Goodall, the primatologist who has extensively studied chimps in the wild. It has been a dream of mine for as long as I can remember and one that will be coming true in a couple of weeks! I will be spending four days volunteering at a chimp sanctuary with retired ex-lab chimps in Spain. I’m beyond thrilled. Safe to say there will be a post (or two) about what I am anticipating to be an amazing experience – once I can prove that I’m Tuberculosis free. For the record chimps are wild animals and do not belong in New York apartments, nor are chimps monkeys, they’re apes!
3) Hiking to Everest Base Camp in Nepal – I don’t have any ambitions to climb Everest. I’m not fond of avalanches nor freezing temperatures and frankly I’m not nearly dedicated enough for that level of training. But Everest Base Camp seems like an achievable goal with the added benefit of meeting people that actually are brave enough to attempt to climb Everest, while I’ll stick to my really high views from apartments in New York.
4) Biking Along the Rhine River in the Netherlands, Germany and Switzerland- I’m a big believer that you don’t always have to go far from home for adventure. While there are cruises down the Rhine River, I think that’s way too easy. I always enjoy scenery more when I have to work for it, hence why I would like to bike along one of Europe’s longest and most important rivers. The 1233km trail is mostly flat but obviously long for a novice like me. But somehow I think the oodles of castles and wineries along the way would distract me from sore and aching muscles. One 85km stretch of the route has 18 castles alone! Somehow I think that’s way too many castles for my husband. Any takers?
5) Climbing Mt. Temple in Banff National Park, Canada – This mountain is one of the most challenging mountains in the Canadian Rockies that scramblers can do without ropes. I’m SOOOO up to the challenge, yet it keeps alluding me. I’ve had plans to do it on numerous occasions, but due to bad weather, snow that refuses to leave making it unsafe, fellow hikers canceling at the last moment, and a knee injury that took 2 years to heal, it continues to allude me. Whenever I meet another avid hiker they’ll ask me if you’ve done Temple. Every time, I hang my head and shame and reply “not yet,” as I mumble my excuses. Yet, I know in their books, they don’t consider me a “real” hiker. Fortunately, living in Germany no one has heard of Temple, so my “real” hiker status remains unjeopardized on the European continent.
I would love to hear @hikebiketravel, @ItalianNotes and @xiaozhuli ‘s bucket lists, which I expect will all be quite different. What’s on your bucket list?