Just a month ago I returned home from a volunteer trip to Roatan, Honduras. Now I am about to embark on my first trip to the United Kingdom. This is the last big trip I currently have planned. When I start to run out of planned trips in my countdown app, I always start to daydream about where I might go next.

The following places are always the first ones I think of. These are my big five. My bucket list is a million miles long, but these destinations alway top it.

African Safari & Gorilla Trek

This has been number one on my bucket list for as long as I can remember. I work with wildlife, so I know several people who have done this type of trip. I can’t even imagine how it will feel to finally see wild elephants, zebras, hippos, rhinos, lions, and more in their natural habitat. I literally have dreams about this. And don’t even get me started on the gorilla trek. This is an expensive adventure, but seeing as Africa could be a once in a lifetime trip, I am not going to go until I can save enough to do it right and see those gorillas.

Galapagos

Again, being an animal person and someone who works with wildlife, the Galapagos have been on my bucket list for quite some time. Ever since I learned about Darwin and read On The Origin of Species in high school biology. There are small cruises you can take to experience the Galapagos. And by small I mean less than thirty people on the boat.

Amazon River Cruise

Imagine taking a boat down one of the longest rivers in the world in one of the most biodiverse rainforests in the world. It’s awe inspiring. That’s why this one’s near the top of my list. There are millions of species of plants, animals, and insects living here that you won’t find anywhere else in the world.

Australia & New Zealand

This is a different one. I actually have been to Australia. I was thirteen and it was part of a student ambassador program. That trip sparked my wanderlust. I had so much fun. The problem is, at thirteen, I did not have a digital camera, and I may not have been old enough to truly appreciate what I was experiencing. I have virtually no photographic memories of the trip. I would love to go back as an adult now that I can appreciate it more. And while I’m over there on the other side of the world, I’d love to visit New Zealand as well! Both countries have such a wonderful culture, rich history, and beautiful natural areas.

Japan

My husband just got back from Tokyo a few days ago. His work sent him there for a conference. Needless to say, I was super jealous. I want to experience everything about Japan. The food, the culture, the history. Everything. Everyone I know that has been to Japan has raved about it and some have made return trips.

Antarctica

This one feels like it’s a little out of reach, but visiting Antarctica would be such an incredible journey to take. Antarctica is nearly uninhabited other than researchers from various countries and penguins. It is not easy to get to Antarctica, and the most common way for tourists to visit is by ship. I would love to see penguins in the wild.

I think it goes without saying that this is not a complete bucket list, only my top five. Have you been to any of the places on my list? What’s at the top of your bucket list? Comment to let me know!