Friday, 6 November 2015

Wanderlust

There aren't many things in life that I'm sure of, and when I think I am, something always comes up to change that.

Travelling and wanting to see the world, so far, hasn't.

I have a lot of friends and a lot of family members that have been absolutely everywhere and that has always left a ping of jealousy in me. Having grown up with my grandparents and being a part of a lower class community I haven't been so fortunate.

I know what you're thinking - excuses. Well yes. I agree with you. But other expenses always come up. There are always more important things.

Over the years I've compiled a list of the places I want to visit and why. Today I decided to share this list.

ps: although not mentioned (yet), London is number one on my bucket list.

/// Morocco.

It's an exotic city with its own personality and an unique culture. What more can you ask for? It's a city waiting to be explored, and that will enrich your soul once you do.

From everything I've researched throughout the years there's a lot I want to see. It's a spellbinding exotic and beautiful destination.

Here are a couple of things I want to do once I set my foot in Marrakech soil: the souks and markets, the heart of the city, also known as Djemma el Fna - during the day a shopping heaven, and at night, known for its entertainment. I will also definitely visit the Museum de Marrakech, the building alone worth a visit. The Hamman, a significant part of the peoples lives and beliefs. The Saadian tombs, surrounded by magnificent arched ceilings, marble and mosaics carvings. And, among other things, Medina: the historic centre of the city and a UNESCO World Heritage Site for Outstanding Universal Value.

Last but not least, Moroccan foods. Damn, does that couscous look delicious.

 

/// Italy.

I've done a lot of history studying: it's not a secret that I'm an architecture, arts, museums, history kind of girl. It's just my thing. So, it's only common sense to have one of the oldest cities in Europe on my list. I'd be nuts not to.

It's the perfect city to wander around, without any aim, and I know I'll end up finding something that'll leave me in awe. Let's start with its history spanning over 2500 years: considered the birthplace of western civilisation and its historic centre is a UNESCO World Heritage site. There's history in every corner. It doesn't get better than that for me. Then there's the architecture: everywhere you look there's something - the Pantheon, the Colosseum, the Vatican, the fountains such as the Trevi Fountain or La Fontana Delle Tartarughe, the neighbourhood of Trastevere, considered by many the Real Rome, The Temple or Hercules Victor, among others.

They also have the perfect trap to make me never want to leave: the food. The gelato, or the pizza, or the pasta, or their markets full of fresh fruit. Even the coffee and the wine.

I know I could stay there for months on end and still not see half of what there is to see. I could also write a novel on the reasons why I want to visit Rome, but I won't. I'll keep it to myself.

/// Italy.

I know what you're thinking: Venice, one of the best places to go for a romantic vacation. Well, I'm single, and I've been single for a while so that isn't the case. I'll do the romantic trip by myself. Its greatness is still well documented to this day.

Venice's architectural, cultural and artistic heritage is simply mind blowing. But Venice is mostly well known for four things: the wine, being one of Italy's most important wine growing areas, its canals, the Film Festival and the Architecture Biennale.

I mean, to listen to Vivaldi at La Fenice Theatre, to go to the Gallery dell'Accademia, to visit the city of Palaces, to take a tour on a Gondola or to visit the Acqua Alta Bookshop and the Coffee Museum. What more can you ask for when you're travelling? Consider me sold.

Again, like Rome, we could spend hours aimlessly walking, and we'd never run out of things to see.

Should I mention the food, or is it not necessary anymore?

/// France.

France is one of the most beautiful countries in Europe. It's hard to find an area in France that's anything but outstandingly beautiful and interesting.

Provence has so much to offer: from its scenery (from the mountains to the panoramas to some of the most beautiful hilltop villages in the whole world), to the cuisine (shocker?), the cultural and, again, architectural heritage, the museums and exhibitions, the shopping, among many other things.

I also happen to be a sports girl, and I like adventure, and I've always been interested in kayaking in the river canyons, walking in the beautiful hills, cycle along the tracks and swim in the Riviera.

Let's not forget that it's also known for two other things: custom made perfume and vintage wines, such as Rhone Valley, legendary for the Chateauneuf-du-Pape reds and whites. Who doesn't like wine, or to create their own perfume?

I truly believe that Provence is much more than just a beautiful place to travel to. I feel like, anywhere I go to, there is plenty of good for the soul in the peace and tranquillity of this region.

Also, from what I've read and heard, everyday is a market day somewhere in Provence.

/// France.

Paris is the cosmopolitan city of France. It's widely known for art, culture, fashion, gastronomy, history and architecture. It's not a surprise that this is, even in this economy, one of the most visited cities in the world. It is known by many as the City of Light, City of Love and the Capital of Fashion.

I could compile a list what I want to do while there, but I'd probably never run of things to write, so I'll just give you a few pointers: the world's most visited museum, the Louvre, (Who doesn't want to see Mona Lisa live at least at a point in their lives?), the Pompidou Centre and the Orsay Museum or even the Cite de la Musique.

Let's not forget the Arc de Triomphe, the Champs-Elysees avenue, Notre Dame, Chateau de Versailles (UNESCO world heritage), Eiffel Tower, the Sacre Coeur Basilica, La Conciergerie,but these are only historic landmarks. Like in Portugal and Italy and many other European countries, in every corner there is something to see, something to explore, so again, my list could be endless.

It wouldn't be me if I didn't mention the food: cheese, bread, croissants, the patisseries, the wines, etcetera, etcetera.

It's an energetic city you can't run away from: there will always be something to do here. And I think you'll leave feeling immensely in love with the country, and immensely creative.

I mean, it's Paris.

/// China.

From all the photos I've seen, it just doesn't look real to me. I mean, how in the world? So I've made it my mission to one day, just go see it with my very own two eyes.

It's no wonder why it's a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a United Nations Geological Park.

It would just be widely satisfying to take a cable car to the top and simply be, simply look at the view.

I don't know, I can't really put into words why I want to visit, but I know that I'll regret it if I get to 90 and not do so. I feel like the picture is self explanatory.

/// Netherlands.

It's a city I'd like to go to in the winter. Ever had that feeling where you know it's going to be cold as heck, but a place just looks warm to you nevertheless? That's Amsterdam to me.

I've always been curious to know what it's like to hop on a bike and wander the canals, and admire the beautiful views.

It's a place I'd like to escape to one day. Learn the language. Explore Begijnhof, go to the markets, wander in the neighbourhood that is Jordaan or De Negen Straatje. I'd also be a liar if I didn't mention the Anne Frank House or the Van Gogh Museum or the Hermitage Museum or the Foam Gallery or the Pianola Museum (I heard somewhere that you can attend concerts here, and that you basically listen to a playerless piano)- I mean, who could escape that??

Someone please take me there, I feel like I could lose myself - or better yet, find myself amidst losing myself in this city.

/// Meteora, Greece.

What an epic visit this would be, right? There's much more to Greece than the beautiful beaches and clear crystal waters. I mean, I wouldn't complain at all if I took a few weeks off and a beach somewhere in Greece was my destination. This is a whole landscape itself though.

But I still fee like there is more. Perhaps it's the thought of observing the landscape of Pindos and Antihasia from the mountains, that would probably make me feel like I haven't seen or experienced anything at all in the world. Or visiting all the 6 monasteries, still active, at the top of those mountains. Or visit the Church of Transfiguration,

Still, waking up in a place like this, with a view like this, must be an experience out of this world.

Would there be a better place to parachute at? Or mountain bike, or raft, or horseback, or ski at? I truly believe that if I have to do one of these things for the first time in my life, and I do, this is the place.

It also has the whole, warm, cheap, delicious food, incredible and friendly people vibe to it. there isn't much more you could ask for.

I also think it's pretty incredible that Eyrie of the Vale from GOT (Game of Thrones) is based on Meteora.

It's on my bucket list.

/// Peru. 

This is by many, known as the lost city of Incas. These beautiful mountain-top ruins were unknown to anyone living outside of the Urubamba Valley and nearby Cusco until 1911. This pretty much means the Incan architecture is still preserved to this day.

This is by many considered the trip of a lifetime and I want to find out why. This has so many natural and cultural treasure that still mange to fascinate everyone who visit, that there has to be a reason why, right?

I'm sure that, like many other countries, even those not mentioned above, it has an incredible history, available to find out through Museums, the towns and village, the ruins or even just by wandering around. I mean, the Inca Ruins are considered to be some of the most beautiful in the world.

I just know I want to do a guided tour around the ruins. I also know that Peru is absolutely beautiful, and it'd be silly of me not to have this on my list.

______________________

These are honestly only a couple of the places I want to visit. There are so much more. So many things I want to do in life, so many places I'd like to go to. There are what, 193 / 194 countries in the world?

I'm a lover of many things and although I haven't travelled much, I know travelling is a passion of mine. It's something I'll want to do until I can't anymore. And even then someone will have to tie me up on a chair somewhere.

Perhaps I'll give you more of the ones on my list some other day. Who knows?

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