Camping on the rim of a volcano? An alternative travel bucket list

2018-11-07 14:00 - Ethan Van Diemen
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real igloo on the snow

(Photo: iStock)

Your bucket list sucks and we don't care that you want to hike up to Machu Picchu and take a selfie in front of the Eiffel Tower. Those Instagram pictures of you leading an anonymous hand on the beach in Thailand make me literally want to crawl over broken glass to escape the uninspired conceptualisation of 'wanderlust' you have.

Nobody cares my dude.

I'm kidding though, all of those things sound awesome and you should totally do that.

So, you've got your bucket list full of regular travel ideas, that's good and all but perhaps there are some travel-related things you want to do that may surprise everyone. 

Maybe they're a bit out there for most, but you want to do it with all your might. This is a list of precisely that - alternative travel bucket list ideas to get you thinking about how to enjoy some of the more unusual, unique and less common things people do and see on this blue planet.

Here are some of the top things to put on your alternative bucket list:      

Travel back in time

Let's start off with a bang, shall we? No, you don't need to research Einstein's theories of special and general relativity or be a widower astronaut farmer travelling through a wormhole.

Yes, you can technically travel back in time if you take the right flights at the right time. Try flying from Brisbane in Australia to Honolulu, Hawaii. With a 20-hour time difference, why not celebrate your time-travelling success and the tick on your bucket list with some island chill.

People standing in front of colorful Firework

Have two New Year's Eve countdowns on the same day

Now that you have mastered time travel, it is time to use your newfound ability for the purposes of celebration.

Count down to midnight - in Brisbane and Honolulu. Pop champagne - twice. Kiss that guy or gal - twice. Brag about this memory - forever.


    Get a free seat upgrade

    Boarding your tubular bus with wings can make some people feel incredibly plebeian as they walk by all the empty or suit-filled seats in business class to their dusty, crying-baby filled area in economy.

    It's completely normal to feel a desire to be in the First or Business classes and get a feel for what the good life feels like thousands of feet in the air. An alternative bucket list goal would thus definitely be being bumped up into the high life for free.

    SEE: How to get bumped up to Business Class when travelling

    Confidently speak (badly) to a local in a foreign language

    It's not okay that people who speak English as a first language make fun of the French when they attempt to speak English - especially when these same people don't make an attempt to do the same while in a French-speaking country.

    Well, on your alternative bucket list should be the goal to muster up the courage to speak to a local in their language even if you fail miserably. It's the thought that counts - mostly.

    Throw a party in a hotel room

    Now, this is by no means encouragement to do something illegal, unethical, risky or just plain stupid but there are plenty of things hotels offer that travellers often neglect to make use of.

    So go wild, use all the towels, empty out the minibar and jump around on the bed and then organise yourself a wake-up call because you're wild, but you're also responsible.

    SEE: R90 for a packet of crisps?! The real reason hotel mini bars are so expensive

    Wine tour in China 

    If a wine tour is on your bucket list, you've probably envisioned France or Italy or maybe even Chile, but never China. Admit it, this is the first time you've ever thought of China as a wine-touring destination. Well, they are and for good reason.

    The world's largest wine producing area is in Spain (no surprises right?) but the world's second largest land area under vine is in China. So if you're keen for an unique oriental experience lubricated by fermented grape juice - why not head east to China?

    Dive in and discover an underwater wine cellar in Croatia

    Divers in the bay of Mali Ston are looking for a special treasure at the bottom of the Adriatic Sea - Navis Mysterium Wine, aged underwater by Croatia’s Edivo Winery.

    Customers who are feeling especially adventurous can dive down to retrieve their very own bottle – provided that they have a diving license.

    WATCH: Dive down to this underwater wine cellar in Croatia

    Dive in the Silfra Rift in Iceland

    Silfra is a fissure between the North American and Eurasian tectonic plates in Thingvellir National Park.

    Think of how cool it would be to say that you have dived between where two continents physically meet. Silfra is said to have the clearest water in the world so feel free to have a sip of this pristine water at any point during your dive or snorkel.

    Colour outside the lines at the Vinicunca Rainbow Mountain in Peru

    Your preschool teacher told you to colour between the lines but what does she know? You're busy being awesome, travelling the world, reading this article, considering doing some unusual things that not many other human beings do and she's busy collecting crayons and stacking colourful chairs.

    Stick it to Mrs Erasmus by heading to Vinicunca Rainbow Mountain (Montaña de Siete Colores) in Peru and get a snap of yourself colouring, and living, outside of the lines.

    Quick Guide to Peru: Visa-free travel for South Africans

    Make an expedition over to and across Antarctica

    The continent that you forget is a continent should definitely be on your alternative bucket list. There is probably a whole bunch of fun and beauty to be had and seen but you wouldn't know because you've never even considered this to be in the realm of possibility.

    Well, it is, almost anything is possible with a little gusto and being born into the 1%. One of the best ways to check out the frozen continent is to hop on board one of the vessels that depart from the southernmost city in the world - Ushuaia in Argentina. Dress warmly.


    WATCH: 10 Things You Didn't Know About Antarctica

    Camp overnight on the rim of an active volcano - in North Korea

    Foreign tourists looking to go off the beaten path in North Korea can now camp out on the country's biggest volcano. Foreign tourists are now allowed to trek off-road and camp out under the stars on Mount Paektu, a huge volcano that straddles the border that separates China and North Korea.

    Make sure you have done all your research before you head off though, it is North Korea after all.


    PICS: Would you go camping at this sacred volcano in North Korea?

    Trek barefoot across New Zealand like a hobbit

    Kick off your shoes and start walking as they do in that great New Zealand hiking documentary directed by Peter Jackson called 'Lord of the Rings'.

    Sure, Hobbiton and The Shire are cool places to check out in their own right but if you really want to get a feel (literally) of the country (Middle Earth), lose what separates your sole and the ground and get walking. 

    Have a safe, psychedelic experience in a South American jungle 

    Be safe, be smart and don't do this if you aren't completely mentally prepared and okay with going through this unique experience. If you are, imagine sitting on a mattress strewn across the floor with white sheets while a traditional healer starts to chant in an indigenous language.

    Take a sip of ayahuasca, a hallucinogenic elixir made of native plants that is thought to heal some mental illnesses and get ready to have some crazy stories. 

    PICS: Tourists advised to take caution as 'psychedelic tourism' thrives in Peru

    Overnight in an igloo in Finland, Canada, Alaska or somewhere equally snowy

    It's warm, but you're in a hut made of snow and ice? What?

    Well, believe it, igloos are great. Much colder and much warmer than you think. Sleeping in a plenty-warm igloo bed is not only welcoming, but it's also plenty comfortable - especially after a long, cold day outside. Make sure you prepare appropriately. 

    Check out voodoo markets in Haiti or Togo

    Is ritualistic voodoo still practised in modern-day Haiti and Togo? And is it really as bloody, as macabre and as terrifying as it is generally portrayed?

    In short, yes.

    But don't let that dissuade you from enjoying all this wonderful cultural experience may have to offer you. Just don't upset anyone on the trip or they may steal some hair from you in the middle of the night for purposes unknown *wink wink*.

    SEE: History, Hollywood and voodoo all in a New Orleans cemetery

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