My dream trips – what are yours?

To date, I’ve travelled to more than 30 countries around the world. I count myself extremely lucky since I have been able to do all of this before I hit 30 (and no, I’m still not 30). Every place I’ve been to has opened my heart, mind and soul up a little bit, and helped shape who I am today. There were so many great memories in each and every place that if someone were to ask me to name my favorites, I would have a hard time choosing.

That being said, the opposite isn’t true. When people ask me, where else would you like to go? or what would be your dream trip? There are a few places that immediately jump to mind

Ethiopia – specifically Lalibela

250px-Bete_Giyorgis_Lalibela_Ethiopia(Source: Wikipedia. Sunken churches!)

I saw a picture of the sunken churches of Lalibela a long time ago. I can’t remember if it was when people were voting for the new seven wonders of the world, or if it was in a best of Lonely Planet book somewhere. But ever since then I’ve been quite intrigued by this place. There are 13 churches here, carved deep into the ground. You don’t see much from above, perhaps a cross etched into the land. But underneath is a church that is interconnected. I met a man from Ethiopia recently and told him about my fascination with the sunken churches. He in turn told me that the priests are priests for life, and that their scepter or cross is one that has been passed down from generation to generation, and therefore may be as old as the 12th or 13th century. He also mentioned that everyone who heads by gets to kiss it. That didn’t seem especially sanitary to me.

Greece – specifically Athens/ Santorini/ Mykonos

270px-Ia_Santorini-2009-1(Source: Wikipedia)

I have watched ‘My life in ruins’ one too many times, not to mention ‘My big fat Greek wedding’ (same actress) and The sisterhood of the travelling pants. Something about the sun kissed island, the image of blue and white buildings, donkeys, olives, turquoise sea, not to mention historical Athens appeals to me. I loved travelling through Egypt and learning its history, to be in the land where they worshipped Athena? I might just cry

Turkey – specifically Istanbul, Cappadocia, Pamukkale

Pamukkale_002(Source: Wikipedia)

Apart from seeing the famous Hagia Sofia, I am looking forward to visiting Cappadocia. It has been described as having little chimney houses, where people live in the rocks/ hills/ mountains (notice a trend in my fascination with people living in rocks?) Floating on a hot air balloon and guessing which spires people are living in would be fun, and when I am done with the red brown dust of Cappadocia, Pamukalle with its layers of turquoise pools and overhanging cliffs would be a nice change.

Mongolia – outer Mongolia

220px-Three_Naadam_riders(Source: Wikipedia. Imagine galloping through this scene)

I once read that Mongolia had a population concentration of one person for every kilometer. This was fascinating. Imagine having one kilometer of land for yourself! ‘Oh that mountain? yeah, that’s my backyard. That river? yeah my horses use it to drink’. Outer Mongolia symbolizes liberty and freedom to me. I have images of myself galloping crazily on a horse, an eagle on my arm, racing in a valley, the mountain on my back. I am also somehow swathed in animal skin… Ok, maybe I should have stopped at the mountain description.

Africa – Tanzania, Botswana, Kenya, South Africa

800px-NgoroNgoro_Crater,_Tanzania,_Africa(Source: Wikipedia. I can’t wait!)

I promised myself, Africa will be the one place I will hold off until I get married. My dream honeymoon destination. I have heard so many magical stories about this continent that I want to share it with my someone special. In a lifetime of so many first instances, my one wish is that this first instance, this first recognition be shared with the man I love. As such, you probably won’t see a lot of travel posts on this continent. I can’t wait for this one day!

So, where are your dream trips? Drop a note in the comments below