Stuck for ideas on where you should go and not quite prepared to just throw a dart at the map and let fate decide? Here are Click Frenzy’s top 5 Destinations to add to your Travel Bucket List immediately!
Monterey Bay, California – USA
Monterey Bay, home to California’s first Theatre, built in 1844 (still operating today), is located on the coast of California between LA and San Francisco and is well worth the stop over on your next coastal drive. Take a walk through this peaceful coastal town, stroll along the beach and soak up the relaxed atmosphere. Monterey Bay is a place where you can forget time and really live in the moment. I would recommend that you try the Jambalaya at Louie Linguini’s restaurant, they have a Balcony overlooking the beach and sitting there, enjoying your meal with your travel companions, is not to be missed.
The Monterey Bay Aquarium, a non-profit public aquarium and one of the largest in the world, is a huge tourist attraction for this town. The Outer Bay Wing has a million gallon tank that depicts the open ocean, although having the chance to witness a Sea Otter, simply lazing about in the ocean outside the Aquarium, is also a clear travel highlight.
Siem Reap – Cambodia
Siem Reap, a popular resort town and gateway to the Angkor Temples, is fast becoming a popular destination with Travellers worldwide and for good reason. Siem Reap is the closest port to Angkor Wat, made a Unesco World Heritage site in 1992. Aptly name the City of Temples, the word Angkor is derived from the Sanskrit nagara, meaning “City” and Wat deriving from the Sanskrit vattaram meaning “Temple”. You’ll want to make sure you’re there to catch the Sunrise over the back of this historic Landmark, I am not a morning person AT ALL, but trust me, it will be worth the early wake up call.
Asides from all the cultural experiences to keep you occupied, this city also has the added bonus of having an incredible exchange rate, meaning you can find yourself a $2 frozen cocktail after a long day of temple hopping. Cambodia uses $ USD as well as the local currency the Cambodian Riel, which makes haggling for a bargain at the Siem Reap Moonlight Market SO much easier. So long as you’re not too squeamish, you should also try a Fish Spa Treatment (fish pedicure) while you’re at the Markets. It’s the oddest sensation, somewhere between a tickle and a nibble.
Finally, if you do find yourself in Siem Reap and you’re looking for a good meal, book yourself a table at the Butterflies Garden Restaurant. Opened in 2006, the Butterflies Garden Restaurant is committed to building a promising future for the Youth in Cambodia. The Amok Curry is delicious, however, the main attraction for this restaurant is their Social Mission providing income-generating opportunities for disadvantaged communities. This restaurant offers advanced restaurant training to disadvantaged youth and they also purchase the Butterflies from children of the local area, who catch the butterflies to bring back to the restaurant ,adding to an incredibly unique dinning experience.
Mont Saint Michel – France
This Benedictine Abbey located in the Normandy region, off the northwest coast of France, situated on an Island 600 meters from land. Dating back as far as 8th century AD and only accessible at low tide, this is one of France’s most recognizable landmarks. There are day trips available departing Paris that will take you by coach out to the Island and return you to Paris the same day, however, it is well worth your time to spend the night. Not only will you get the Island practically to yourself after all the coaches leave for the day, by making your own way here from Paris, you will save time in transit and also get the opportunity to feel like a local while travelling through the spectacular Medieval town of Rennes.
You simply take a high speed TGV train from the heart of Paris to Rennes and then from Rennes hop on a coach, which will deliver you to the foot of Mont Saint Michel. This whole journey will take you approximately 3 hours, much shorter than the Day Trip return bus tours on offer.
Mont Saint Michel is also famous for their delicious biscuits, La Mère Poulard, (Warning: they’re super addictive) and if you’re a Disney fanatic like myself, you may recognise this structure from the 2010 animated film Tangled. A fairytale Island town, isolated from land by the ebbs and flows of the ocean topped with a Romanesque Style Castle. If it’s not already, you should be adding Mont Saint Michel to your Travel Bucket List.
Oaxaca – Mexico
Described by Lonely Planet as a burgeoning cultural and culinary capital with a beautiful colonial core of lovely, tree-shaded streets, this captivating city has a lot to offer. I’m placing it into this list for one main reason… HALLOWEEN!!! The true Halloween, that stemming from All Hallows Eve, Oaxaca becomes a visual display of ornately rich celebrations honouring our deceased loved ones. Dia de los Muertos is one of the biggest celebrations of the Mexican calendar year and is a highly recommended cultural immersion experience. The whole celebration is taken to another level, not only are the costumes are incredibly elaborate and intricate with many locals spending all year working on them, but you will be swept up into the moment and find yourself on a moonlit vigil graveside with a family praying for the safe return of a loved one.
You’ll definitely want to make sure and try the local Moles, from the Nahuati word molli meaning sauce, while you’re in Town. Fun fact? Guacamole literally means ‘Avocado Sauce’. Oaxaca has the greatest variety of Moles on offer, we suggest trying the local Chocolate Mole with a cup of Oaxacan-style hot chocolate, served in a traditional clay mug. Chocolate holds a special importance in Mexico and has over the years been used as medicine and even currency. Chocolate money? My kind of finances!!!
Chefchaouen – Morocco
Rounding out this list is the Blue-Washed mountain village of Chefchaouen is one of the most visually striking towns in Morocco. With beautiful natural landscapes and stunning architecture, this town has a lot to offer. There are Hiking opportunities in the surrounding Rif Mountains offering spectacular and breathtaking panoramic views from lookout points above the village, just remember to pack your water bottles and a bite to eat if you’re planning a longer trek through the mountains.
The aromas circulating from the Medina will draw you back to town soon enough. After an intense day of sightseeing, hiking and wandering through the narrow passage ways of the Medina, make your way to the Main Square to enjoy a meal and watch the world go by before you. The traditional Moroccan Tagine, a special clay cooking pot, containing meat marinated in local spices stews slowly over a low charcoal fire, simmering away for hours in homes all over town, is a culinary delicacy to not miss out on!!
Be sure and add these 5 destinations to your Travel Bucket List!
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