What’s on your travel bucket list? If you’re like most people, it has been growing in size throughout the pandemic. “A year of travel bans has only fueled our wanderlust: thoughts of Angkor Wat, Banff National Park and the Great Barrier Reef are more enticing than ever,” says Amelia Selby, a spokesperson for Unforgettable Travel, a U.K.-based luxury trip planning company. So with travel starting to open up again, the team at Unforgettable Travel analyzed global search data to come up with the world’s top 50 bucket list trips that people are wanting to experience the most.
The list includes some of the most beautiful places on earth—and some of the most dramatic ones, too. Coming in at the top of the list as the most searched for bucket list travel experience is the tallest building in the world: Dubai’s Burj Khalifa. “Being able to host up to 35,000 people at once, the world’s tallest freestanding structure is often referred to as a vertical city,” writes Unforgettable Travel. “And with 10,000 searches a month for ‘Burj Khalifa tickets,’ people are certainly keen to explore its 160 stories.”
The great outdoors also features heavily on the list. There are six epic hikes in the top 50, including Everest Base Camp, Machu Picchu, Mount Kilimanjaro, Arizona’s Havasu Falls, Trolltunga in Norway and South Africa’s Table Mountain. The list also includes more laidback—but equally thrilling—ways to experience nature’s grandeur, from cruising down the Nile to soaring over the Grand Canyon in a helicopter.
Road trips are also popular bucket list journeys and two of America best drives make the cut, including the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco and Route 66.
The country with the most bucket list travel experiences? Europe, which takes 38% of the spots on the list, with experiences ranging from art and history to adventure and even partying. North America is also a heavy hitter, with 24% of the experiences on the list. The top in the U.S. is also the second most popular bucket list travel experience in the world: Sailing New York’s Statue of Liberty.
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Read on for the full list of the top 50 bucket list experiences in the world. You can see more info about the list—including breakouts by region—and read about the methodology here.
The Top 50 Travel Bucket List Experiences
- Visit the tallest tower in the world, the Burj Khalifa, in Dubai.
- Sail around New York’s green lady, the Statue of Liberty.
- Trek to Mount Everest Base Camp in Nepal.
- Cruise down Egypt’s famous river, the Nile.
- Go to the top of the Eiffel Tower in Paris.
- Experience the madness of the Las Vegas Strip.
- Cross the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco.
- Enjoy beautiful views of New York from the top of the Empire State Building.
- Admire art at the Louvre Museum in Paris.
- Experience the wonder of Rome’s Colosseum.
- Witness America’s monumental crater, the Grand Canyon, from a helicopter.
- Take an American road trip down the famous Route 66.
- Enjoy the electric atmosphere at Glastonbury Festival.
- Experience California’s famous music festival Coachella.
- Live it up in the famous clubbing hotspot of Ibiza.
- Ride the famous Orient Express.
- Appreciate the gothic architecture of Barcelona’s Sagrada Familia.
- Marvel at the beauty of the Taj Mahal in India.
- Hike to the top of Machu Picchu in Peru.
- Explore the world’s largest coral reef system, the Great Barrier Reef.
- Visit untouched Antarctica.
- Enjoy the beautiful cherry blossoms in Japan.
- See unique, biodiverse wildlife in the Galapagos islands.
- Visit the Queen’s residence, Buckingham Palace in London.
- Cruise through the breathtaking Norwegian fjords.
- Climb to the top of Mount Kilimanjaro in South Africa.
- Experience the spectacle of the famous Niagara Falls.
- Visit China’s 600-year-old palace complex, the Forbidden City.
- Experience the incredible biodiversity of Costa Rica.
- Camp in the breathtaking Banff National Park in Canada.
- Watch a show at Sydney Opera House in Australia.
- Run through the streets in the London Marathon.
- Go diving in the Raja Ampat Islands in Indonesia.
- Learn about the history of Pompeii in Italy.
- Ride the train to the top of glacier-capped Jungfraujoch in Switzerland.
- Watch the sunrise at Angkor Wat in Cambodia.
- Visit the romantic Neuschwanstein Castle in Germany.
- Marvel at the massive sculptures at Mount Rushmore.
- Witness the breathtaking Northern Lights in Iceland.
- Marvel at the beauty of the Sistine Chapel in Rome.
- Hike to the top of Havasu Falls in Arizona and enjoy the blue-green water.
- Float in the Dead Sea in Jordan.
- Hike up and stand on Norway’s awe-inspiring cliff, Trolltunga.
- Marvel at the prehistoric monument of Stonehenge in the U.K.
- Go to the top of Kuala Lumpur’s twin skyscrapers, Petronas Towers.
- Hike to the top of Table Mountain in South Africa and take in the views.
- Explore Venice’s famous canals on a gondola.
- Learn about the Mayan people on a tour of Chichen Itza in Mexico.
- Visit the lush rolling hills of The Shire at Hobbiton in New Zealand.
- Explore the UNESCO villages of Cinque Terre in Italy.