Monday Loves – What is currently on my Bucket List

After writing about what places are worth your dollars and time, it’s time to move onto the places that I still want to visit. The list is long. I love traveling and seeing new places on Instagram does not quell that dream. But I do have some top locations that I have been wanting to visit for many years. Let’s take a look!

Israel

This March I was planning on going to Israel with my parents and church family, but had to decline last year because of financial reasons. Basically I need to save for the new condo and couldn’t really afford to go. It makes me sad that I would have checked off the #1 place on my bucket list in a couple of months, but that’s how life works. The reason I want to go to Israel is religious. Traveling to the Middle East is a sensitive topic as I have learned through my mother’s planning of the trip. With the on going religious conflicts there, it is hard to remember that believers of the three major monotheistic faiths (Judaism, Christianity, and Islam) believe this land is sacred. I believe that and when I go I hope to be in awe of Jerusalem, the Sea of Galilee and to be baptized in the Jordan River.

A Bazaar in Old Jerusalem (photo from Fodor’s Travel)

Japan

Japan has been a recent addition to my bucket list. (Recent for me means in the past five years) The reason it has now been moved up to my top 5 is the food and Instagram. When Kyoto blew up on Instagram a few years ago, it really did seem this untouched and authentic place. I hope it is still true, but I assume it has become a little more tourist recently. Most of my travels have been in Europe, so I have always wanted to make sure that I include other places where I might not be as comfortable. Push out of my comfort zone. On the subject of food, I was (and some people still think am) a picky eater. When I was in high school the only Japanese food I liked was teriyaki chicken. Teriyaki chicken was rumored to have started by Japanese immigrants to Hawaii. So it’s not even real Japanese food. Once I got out of college, I loved sushi. I also have grown to like ramen, udon, and other Japanese noodle dishes. If I went to Japan in high school, I probably wouldn’t have had the appreciation that I would now. It’s a good thing I waited.

Mt Fuji (photo from CNN Travel Guide)

Sicily

Right after I say I want to go to places other than Europe, I put a European destination on the list. Ha! Things happen. I did my study abroad during college in Florence, Italy. I love Italy and I want to keep exploring other parts of Italy that are not the big three as I call them (Rome, Florence, Venice). Sicily is #1 on Italian places I want to see. I had the opportunity to visit Sicily when I was studying in Italy, but my parents were coming into town, so went to Rome instead. Sicily is Italian, Greek, Arab, and a host of other cultures rolled into one identity. With amazing people, food, architecture, and history, Sicily is a destination worth going to on its own.

Market in Palermo (photo from sicily.co.uk)

Uruguay

I have no recollection of when Uruguay got on my bucket list, but it has been for about a decade. One of the reasons why I think I’m drawn to it is because seemingly it has left it’s authoritarian past behind and have moved forward into a charming, under-the-radar, and progressive county. The capital on Montevideo, picturesque beach towns, and the ranching interior gives Uruguay a place for everyone.

Independence Plaza, Montevideo Uruguay (photo: https://www.britannica.com/place/Montevideo)

MLB Stadiums

I am a big baseball fan and especially the Los Angeles Dodgers. We have always been a baseball family, even half joking telling my 2 year old nephew he needs to learn to bat left handed. With that I have a goal to visit all 30 MLB stadiums. With most sports arenas, some come and go, so there’s always some team I will need to see more than once. My mom bought me a map for Christmas, so I can track them as I visit. Seeing these stadiums is also a great way for me to see other cities in the US. For instance, my family did a road trip for Los Angeles to Providence, RI and then Boston (dropping my brother and I off at college in the process). We ended up seeing baseball games in Kansas City, MO and Cleveland, OH. I had never been to these cities before or had a reason to visit them. We specifically picked them because of scheduling and because of the fact we had never been before! I suggest you have this as a bucket list item if you are a fan of any sports, doesn’t have to be baseball.

My MLB Stadium map! (photo: me!)

Where are you going next? Have you been to any of the places I mentioned? Leave a comment below!

With Love, Allison

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