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Travel Bucket List

jessica490jessica490
1000 Comments 250 Love Its Third Anniversary Name Dropper
member
edited June 2014 in Travel

Hi! H and I are going to start working on a bucket list for the US/Caribbean. Can you please post some of your spots that are your favorite or are a must-see

Edit: We have no kids or plans to have them in case that makes a difference

 

TIA!

Re: Travel Bucket List

  • We scored the Southwest companion pass last month which is good through 2015 - SO excited!! With this we're booking Boston, Napa/San Fran, Seattle, Charleston, Vegas and Chicago.  I honestly wasn't that impressed with either LA or NYC, but I think everyone has to gone once.  And we love Florida, Tampa/St. Pete/Clearwater and St. Augustine are a few of our faves.  We haven't ever had any interest in the Caribbean, so no help there.  Good luck!!
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  • In the Caribbean, I loved San Juan, Puerto Rico.  It had the tropical vibe with the big city history and activities, and was extremely affordable.  My favorite in the Caribbean is Bonaire, but I'm not sure it has much to offer non-divers.  Of course my main suggestion would be to get certified and dive there, but if you like a quiet, friendly island with a beautiful desert landscape it's still a great place to go.  If you can't tell I'm a big nature buff, but I also loved the Everglades.  Miami was a blast too, but extremely expensive.  I think one night there is all I can afford!

    Still on my US bucket list are Olympia National Park in Washington, Yellowstone, and New Orleans.
  • We honeymooned at Bluefields Bay Villas in Jamaica. If you want a relaxing, private, completely catered for vacation, that is the place.

    http://bluefieldsvillas.com/
  • Mom987Mom987
    100 Comments 25 Love Its First Anniversary Name Dropper
    member
    Loooved the Dominican Republic.
  • I have no interest in the Caribbean either, but here is most of my US bucket list:

    DC...from that area and LOVE going back and being a tourist
    Savannah
    Charleston
    Philly...been a few times, love it!
    Salem...I want to go in the Fall and do all the Ghosty-Witchy stuff
    Boston
    NYC
    Niagra Falls...it's a tourist trap, but gorgeous!
    Seattle
    San Francisco
    Atlanta...I've been but hated it, would definitely not go back voluntarily, though the suburbs of the city are awesome
    Houston
    Dallas
    Grand Canyon
    New Orleans
    Louisville...I loved going to Churchill Downs and hope to go back for a Derby someday
    Nashville
    Cleveland...only because I want to see the house from A Christmas Story
    Pittsburgh...lots of cool stuff there, but I'm only an hour away, don't think I would pay to stay there overnight
    Key West
    Hawaii


    #GetItTogether2013
  • hoffsehoffse
    Sixth Anniversary 2500 Comments 500 Love Its Name Dropper
    member
    US:
    1) New Orleans is my favorite US city.  The food is ridiculous.  So I'm always up to go back.
    2) Nashville is my favorite city to live in.  Fantastic vibe and would love to move back there someday.
    3) Napa/Sonoma - haven't been but tentatively planning on it for our 5-year anniversary
    4) San Fran - we have lots of family there, but would love to visit as a tourist.  I'd also love to go back to San Diego - FABULOUS zoo if you like that kind of thing (we do)
    5) Alaska - haven't been
    6) Hawaii - haven't been

    I also LOVE Washington DC because I'm a museum nut and the Smithsonian is like cultural overload.  I love Boston too.  Savannah/Charleston are amazing as a combined trip, and I love Chicago in the summer.  And actually, St. Louis and Madison WI are surprisingly nice cities.

    Not really a fan of NYC though - sorry.  It was exactly what I expected it to be, so I guess it didn't "wow" me.  And I have a love/hate relationship with Atlanta.  I grew up near there so I know it quite well... but the traffic is godawful and everything is at least 45 minutes away from everything else.  Plus I and at least 3 other people I know have been robbed there in the "safe" parts in the city.  So yeah.  I can't recommend it to tourists.  I would always recommend Savannah, New Orleans, or Nashville over Atlanta.

    Caribbean:
    -St. Lucia
    -PR because I want to see the old town

    I'll be honest, though, the Caribbean thing doesn't always do it for me.  In some respects it's amazing.  In others it's kind of terrible - you know...  American and British companies semi-colonizing what is effectively a third-world country with resorts and then using up its natural resources in a wasteful way (ahem).  I mean, we went to Jamaica for our honeymoon and bummed around on the beach and drank fruity drinks and loved every second of it.  But I honestly kind of felt guilty when we left the resort and saw how people lived there.  And then posters on tripadvisor had the gall to say things like, "the poverty I saw on my way to the resort ruined my vacation."  Seriously.  We might go back, we might not.  

    In August we're heading to the UK for a week.  For 2015 we're probably going to Peru to see Machu Picchu and the Sacred Valley.  Then 2016 is tentatively slated for Istanbul if the political situation is stable over there.  

    Wedding Countdown Ticker
  • US Places I have been:

    Yellowstone twice, want to go back
    Grand Tetons, want to go back
    Pike's Peak twice, want to go back
    Canyon lands: Bryce, Grand, and Zion
    Olympics in Washington State, awesome scenery
    Sequoia, Kings and Yosemite National Parks
    Mt Saint Helen
    St. Louis
    Dodge City
    Wichita Mountain Wildlife Refuge
    Nashville
    Seattle
    Madison Wi.
    Blue Mounds in Wisconsin is awesome, need to take my son there soon.
    Put In Bay, Ohio
    Niagra Falls
    Most of the North Central parts of PA
    Columbus Ohio for an Ohio State football game (this is awesome especially if you are a buckeye fan).
    Upstate New York, Ballston Spa and Saratoga Springs area

    Overseas:
    Germany is a very nice place to visit.  If you love wine, go the the Moselle and Rhine river area there is a small village near Koblenz that has a great wine festival in May or June.
    Zurich is very expensive but another great city to visit.

    If you don't have children you can skip Orlando, Florida

    These are just a few of the places that I have visited or lived and I would recommend all of them.
  • vlagrl29vlagrl29
    2500 Comments Sixth Anniversary 500 Love Its Name Dropper
    member
    edited June 2014
    We went to hawaii for our honeymoon.  You must go to Kaua'i.  It just so happens that we are going to St. Lucia next April for a wedding DH will be shooting.  I honestly can't believe he got that gig.  We will make a vacation of it.
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  • ta78ta78
    Fourth Anniversary 100 Comments Name Dropper 5 Love Its
    member
    I went to most of the US places on my bucket list in my early 20's and these are my top choices.

    Seattle/Olympic Peninsula WA - Ok.. so I am biased because I live here, but definitely not many places in the US like the Puget Sound. Go in July-Sept.

    San Francisco/Napa Valley - We go once a year and there is always more to see and do.

    Key West - One of my all time favorite vacation spots

    New Orleans, Nashville, DC, New York, San Diego or anywhere in So Cal is a must see at least once.

    I haven't been to Hawaii or Alaska, but that would be on my list also.
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  • hoffse said:

    US:

    1) New Orleans is my favorite US city.  The food is ridiculous.  So I'm always up to go back.
    2) Nashville is my favorite city to live in.  Fantastic vibe and would love to move back there someday.
    3) Napa/Sonoma - haven't been but tentatively planning on it for our 5-year anniversary
    4) San Fran - we have lots of family there, but would love to visit as a tourist.  I'd also love to go back to San Diego - FABULOUS zoo if you like that kind of thing (we do)
    5) Alaska - haven't been
    6) Hawaii - haven't been

    I also LOVE Washington DC because I'm a museum nut and the Smithsonian is like cultural overload.  I love Boston too.  Savannah/Charleston are amazing as a combined trip, and I love Chicago in the summer.  And actually, St. Louis and Madison WI are surprisingly nice cities.

    Not really a fan of NYC though - sorry.  It was exactly what I expected it to be, so I guess it didn't "wow" me.  And I have a love/hate relationship with Atlanta.  I grew up near there so I know it quite well... but the traffic is godawful and everything is at least 45 minutes away from everything else.  Plus I and at least 3 other people I know have been robbed there in the "safe" parts in the city.  So yeah.  I can't recommend it to tourists.  I would always recommend Savannah, New Orleans, or Nashville over Atlanta.

    Caribbean:
    -St. Lucia
    -PR because I want to see the old town

    I'll be honest, though, the Caribbean thing doesn't always do it for me.  In some respects it's amazing.  In others it's kind of terrible - you know...  American and British companies semi-colonizing what is effectively a third-world country with resorts and then using up its natural resources in a wasteful way (ahem).  I mean, we went to Jamaica for our honeymoon and bummed around on the beach and drank fruity drinks and loved every second of it.  But I honestly kind of felt guilty when we left the resort and saw how people lived there.  And then posters on tripadvisor had the gall to say things like, "the poverty I saw on my way to the resort ruined my vacation."  Seriously.  We might go back, we might not.  

    In August we're heading to the UK for a week.  For 2015 we're probably going to Peru to see Machu Picchu and the Sacred Valley.  Then 2016 is tentatively slated for Istanbul if the political situation is stable over there.  

    One of the reasons I loved Puerto Rico and Bonaire was that they were less closed off/less of an artificial-feeling tourist zone than the other Carribbean places I've been. In San Juan we did see some poverty, but it really just felt like a cool city that happened to be on a tropical island. The hotels weren't walled off in a different area like the DR, and we met lots of friendly locals to chat with when we were out. Bonaire was the same-hotels were interspersed with local areas and we shopped at the same grocery stores as the locals. We'll probably go back to Bonaire for our next Carribbean trip, but long-term I'm interested in finding other islands that feel more "real" like these two. I'm intrigued by Dominica, though I need to do more research.
  • Thanks for the ideas! We've been to some of these places and love them as well!
  • DH and I say that if we could continue to go to just one resort for the rest of our lives, it would be Couples Swept Away in Negril, Jamaica. 

    Simply paradise.  Can't wait to go back.
    Married 5.7.11 | Me: 31 | DH: 32
    TTC Countdown to 8/2015

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  • hoffse said:
    US:
    1) New Orleans is my favorite US city.  The food is ridiculous.  So I'm always up to go back.
    2) Nashville is my favorite city to live in.  Fantastic vibe and would love to move back there someday.
    3) Napa/Sonoma - haven't been but tentatively planning on it for our 5-year anniversary
    4) San Fran - we have lots of family there, but would love to visit as a tourist.  I'd also love to go back to San Diego - FABULOUS zoo if you like that kind of thing (we do)
    5) Alaska - haven't been
    6) Hawaii - haven't been

    I also LOVE Washington DC because I'm a museum nut and the Smithsonian is like cultural overload.  I love Boston too.  Savannah/Charleston are amazing as a combined trip, and I love Chicago in the summer.  And actually, St. Louis and Madison WI are surprisingly nice cities.

    Not really a fan of NYC though - sorry.  It was exactly what I expected it to be, so I guess it didn't "wow" me.  And I have a love/hate relationship with Atlanta.  I grew up near there so I know it quite well... but the traffic is godawful and everything is at least 45 minutes away from everything else.  Plus I and at least 3 other people I know have been robbed there in the "safe" parts in the city.  So yeah.  I can't recommend it to tourists.  I would always recommend Savannah, New Orleans, or Nashville over Atlanta.

    Caribbean:
    -St. Lucia
    -PR because I want to see the old town

    I'll be honest, though, the Caribbean thing doesn't always do it for me.  In some respects it's amazing.  In others it's kind of terrible - you know...  American and British companies semi-colonizing what is effectively a third-world country with resorts and then using up its natural resources in a wasteful way (ahem).  I mean, we went to Jamaica for our honeymoon and bummed around on the beach and drank fruity drinks and loved every second of it.  But I honestly kind of felt guilty when we left the resort and saw how people lived there.  And then posters on tripadvisor had the gall to say things like, "the poverty I saw on my way to the resort ruined my vacation."  Seriously.  We might go back, we might not.  

    In August we're heading to the UK for a week.  For 2015 we're probably going to Peru to see Machu Picchu and the Sacred Valley.  Then 2016 is tentatively slated for Istanbul if the political situation is stable over there.  

    @hoffse - We just went to Peru last month.  Amazing trip!   

    OP - What kinds of things do you like to do?  Do you prefer beachy/relaxing vacations or on-the-go cities?

    As PP mentioned, Bonaire is amazing if you dive.  We also really liked Curacao.  I also love Bermuda.

    Domestically, we really enjoyed our California trip to Napa and San Fran.  I also loved the Grand Canyon, and all of the big National Parks are on my bucket list.
  • JoanE2012 said:
    hoffse said:
    US:
    1) New Orleans is my favorite US city.  The food is ridiculous.  So I'm always up to go back.
    2) Nashville is my favorite city to live in.  Fantastic vibe and would love to move back there someday.
    3) Napa/Sonoma - haven't been but tentatively planning on it for our 5-year anniversary
    4) San Fran - we have lots of family there, but would love to visit as a tourist.  I'd also love to go back to San Diego - FABULOUS zoo if you like that kind of thing (we do)
    5) Alaska - haven't been
    6) Hawaii - haven't been

    I also LOVE Washington DC because I'm a museum nut and the Smithsonian is like cultural overload.  I love Boston too.  Savannah/Charleston are amazing as a combined trip, and I love Chicago in the summer.  And actually, St. Louis and Madison WI are surprisingly nice cities.

    Not really a fan of NYC though - sorry.  It was exactly what I expected it to be, so I guess it didn't "wow" me.  And I have a love/hate relationship with Atlanta.  I grew up near there so I know it quite well... but the traffic is godawful and everything is at least 45 minutes away from everything else.  Plus I and at least 3 other people I know have been robbed there in the "safe" parts in the city.  So yeah.  I can't recommend it to tourists.  I would always recommend Savannah, New Orleans, or Nashville over Atlanta.

    Caribbean:
    -St. Lucia
    -PR because I want to see the old town

    I'll be honest, though, the Caribbean thing doesn't always do it for me.  In some respects it's amazing.  In others it's kind of terrible - you know...  American and British companies semi-colonizing what is effectively a third-world country with resorts and then using up its natural resources in a wasteful way (ahem).  I mean, we went to Jamaica for our honeymoon and bummed around on the beach and drank fruity drinks and loved every second of it.  But I honestly kind of felt guilty when we left the resort and saw how people lived there.  And then posters on tripadvisor had the gall to say things like, "the poverty I saw on my way to the resort ruined my vacation."  Seriously.  We might go back, we might not.  

    In August we're heading to the UK for a week.  For 2015 we're probably going to Peru to see Machu Picchu and the Sacred Valley.  Then 2016 is tentatively slated for Istanbul if the political situation is stable over there.  

    @hoffse - We just went to Peru last month.  Amazing trip!   

    OP - What kinds of things do you like to do?  Do you prefer beachy/relaxing vacations or on-the-go cities?

    As PP mentioned, Bonaire is amazing if you dive.  We also really liked Curacao.  I also love Bermuda.

    Domestically, we really enjoyed our California trip to Napa and San Fran.  I also loved the Grand Canyon, and all of the big National Parks are on my bucket list.

    We like everything pretty much
  • H and I just got back from Jamaica (literally got back 14 hours ago!), and it was wonderful!

    We did all inclusive at Sandals Grand Riviera in Ocho Rios...wonderful. Our favorite thing was Dunn's River Falls, it's beautiful, and only a 20 minute boat ride from the resort. 

    We love touring New England, there's fantastic hiking in VT and NH...I love Mount Mansfield in Stowe and the Lincoln-Lafyette loop outside of North Conway.

    DC is always fun...and most activities are free or cheap

    I visited Jekyll Island In GA in my youth and it was fun (we did Savannah in the same trip)

     
    Me: 28 H: 30
    Married 07/14/2012
    TTC #1 January 2015
    BFP! 3/27/15 Baby Girl!! EDD:12/7/2015
    jessica490
  • Whaaat?! No one wants to come and visit Detroit?! 

    But seriously, I've been to every city in the states I've wanted to see except San Francisco and Napa. Excited to plan this trip for October 2014!

    My Favs are NYC, Minneapolis, DC, and New Orleans.

    hoffse
  • Hi!!! 

    Im from PR and its really pretty island, affordable and it has many things to do. I recommend you to go to the bioluminescent bay (there are two in the island). Also there are two small islands called Culebra and Vieques, they are a must, they are on the best beaches of the Caribbean. Its a really beautiful island, you and your hubby will love it. :) -Nery
    • Disneyworld - yes, even with no kids
    • Boston
    • Alaska
    • Colorado Springs
    • Cape Cod
    • Mount Rushmore & Mount Crazy Horse
    • Las Vegas
    • Washington DC
    • Baltimore
    • Niagara Falls (I prefer Canadian side, more to do)
    • Milwaukee
    • Chicago
  • emily1004 said:
    Whaaat?! No one wants to come and visit Detroit?! 

    But seriously, I've been to every city in the states I've wanted to see except San Francisco and Napa. Excited to plan this trip for October 2014!

    My Favs are NYC, Minneapolis, DC, and New Orleans.
    @emily1004, what would you suggest to do in Detroit? My husband wants to visit. 
  • emily1004emily1004
    Eighth Anniversary 500 Comments 100 Love Its Name Dropper
    member
    edited July 2014

    AprilH81 said:
    emily1004 said:
    Whaaat?! No one wants to come and visit Detroit?! 

    But seriously, I've been to every city in the states I've wanted to see except San Francisco and Napa. Excited to plan this trip for October 2014!

    My Favs are NYC, Minneapolis, DC, and New Orleans.
    @emily1004, what would you suggest to do in Detroit? My husband wants to visit. 
    I'm not Emily, but I will say the Henry Ford Museum is fantastic.  I hosted a work event there last year and it was really neat the stuff the variety of stuff they have there.  It isn't just a car museum...

    They have the chair that Lincoln was shot in from Ford's Theatre, the bus where Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat, several old Presidential Limos, including the one where Kennedy was shot...  Lots of neat stuff.
    Oh my goodness, where do I start!?

    Yes, to the Henry Ford and Greenfield Village are a must-see, but they are not technically in Detroit. They are in Dearborn. Dearborn is home to the largest population of Arabs outside the Middle East. Every part of Metro Detroit has it's own charm. It's VERY diverse here. 

    We all say we're from Detroit because some of us live in "Metro Detroit."  This includes Oakland, Wayne, Macomb and parts of Washtenaw Counties. Detroit is in Wayne County. Ann Arbor is in Washtenaw. GO BLUE! ;) Even if you're not a Michigan fan, going to the Big House on game day is worth seeing. If you're an MSU fan, hit up East Lansing on Game Day. GO GREEN GO WHITE! ROSE BOWL CHAMPIONS! 

    My first piece of advice is rent at car and get a GPS. This is the Motor City after all! The Mile roads start at Campus Martius Park and go North. (8 Mile, 9 Mile etc) The reason the city doesn't have a lot of public transportation is because it's such a sprawling city. They are trying with the new M1 Light Rail project, but I don't think it's going to work here, which is good and bad for the city.
     
    IMHO, the best thing about coming to Detroit is the FOOD!

    If you are in Detroit, I recommend staying at the Westin Book Cadillac (it's been remodeled but there is so much history there) Go to happy hour at Roast in the hotel. I also recommend the DIA and catching a Detroit Tigers Game at Comerica Park. Best Shawarma in the city is at Bucharest Grill and Park Bar. It's right down the street from the ball park. But get there early! It fills up fast, if there's a home game.  If you come to the D, you must try a Coney. It's a hot dog with bean-less chili, mustard and onions. (Don't put ketchup on it!) Lafayette and American are right around the corner from the hotel. Greektown is great for dinner too, Pegasus or Pizza Papalis. 

    There are three casinos in Detroit. They are nothing like the casinos in Vegas, so I don't go unless there is something going on. But if you do like to gamble, go to the MGM. The MGM and MotorCity have good spas. There is always a show going on at either the Fox, The Fisher, the Fillmore, The Detroit Opera House and the casino theaters. Not to mention some of the other smaller theaters. The architecture is so stunning in the city. It's a shame they let so much of the city become dilapidated. They are trying to fix it up, but I think it will take another 20+ for the city to make a come back. I just hope to be here to see it!

    There are really too many wonderful restaurants in and outside the city to continue to list, but I can recommend anything you're craving, (mexican, greek, sushi, etc) A lot of non-chains. 

    Outside the city, Must-sees
    The Detroit Zoo-Royal Oak, MI
    Royal Oak and Ferndale have hipster downtown areas to walk around, shop and eat.
    Valentine Vodka Distillery and Tasting room is in downtown Ferndale. 
    Birmingham (My home!) & Plymouth have beautiful downtown areas to walk around, shop and eat.
    It's a little pricey, but the Townsend Hotel in B'ham is a great place to stay. (Tell them you want a newly remodeled room.)
    Parking is very cheap in these areas, compared to other cities. But in no way are these towns concrete jungles. They are quaint, but Plymouth and B'ham can get a little pricey. 
    Great malls, Somerset Collection in Troy, and Twelve oaks in Novi.
    Great outlet Mall in Auburn Hills-Great Lakes Crossing.
    6% sales tax throughout the whole state.
    About a million golf courses. 
    If you like lakes, there are bodies of water every where for boating and beaches. 
    People are relatively friendly and will always suggest things to see and do when your hear. 

    I do have to give a shout-out to Northern Michigan The beaches are better up north. It's another fabulous place to visit. I grew up going to Traverse City several times a year. If you're more the outdoorsy type, go up north. Mackinac, Boyne, Traverse just to name a few.  Boating, golfing, sand dunes, hiking, biking, camping, wine tasting, etc everything.

    I'm sure I could type forever but this is just off the top of my head! (I hate it when my posts get this long!)


  • I have had a travel bucket list since I was 18 to see all 50 states!  I have 9 left.  We will be going to 7 of them in the late spring or early summer:  Maine, Rhode Island, Connecticut, Delaware, Vermont, Massachusetts and New Jersey. 

    I loved visiting Washington DC, I have been there twice and enjoyed the experience both times.

    One of my favorite places is Niagara Falls, it is absolutely breathtaking!

  • In the US, must see (although all 50 states someday would be fun):

    San Fran (although I'd love to see a lot of CA)
    The Grand Canyon
    Seattle
    Portland OR
    Alaska
    Hawaii - thinking about planning that for our 10 year anniversary, we hope to have no kids either.
    New Orleans
    NC, preferably the Outerbanks
    I could drive to Delaware if I had a full week to go. I hear the beaches there are beautiful.

    My dad's been taking a lot of business trips to Colorado lately and he highly recommends it. Says there's a lot of great places to see. I've done the DC thing a few times, it's good if you like History, a lot of free stuff to do and see. I live in NE so I've traveled here, but I would say there's a lot to do out here too and the states are so close you could see a lot in one trip.

    We went to Nassau for our honeymoon that was perfect. Not too humid, no rain, nice people. Eventually I'd love to hit the Virgin Islands and Bermuda. I'll probably go to the DR, but that's more because it's cheap(er).

    DH and I are going to Disney at the end of the month. Neither of us have been so we want to see what it's all about. Everyone says go without kids even if you want them someday, you can do a lot more and have time to relax sans kids.

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