Five of the Best Bucket List Trips

From camping in Antarctica, to sleeping under the Northern Lights in Finland, these trips are bucket list worthy.

From camping in Antarctica, to sleeping under the Northern Lights in Finland, these trips are bucket list worthy.

Plus they are luxurious, and definitely memories to post on Instagram.  

1. Camp in Antarctica

The seventh, winter-wonderland content has been typically off-limits, a place where many don’t even think about setting foot on. But bucket-list trips are meant to be about once-in-a-lifetime opportunities.

Not many can say they’ve camped in Antarctica. Photo: Quark Expeditions

Consequently, camping in Antarctica has to be ultimate bucket-list trip. Think waking up to the sound of penguins, venturing across icebergs and sight-seeing humpback whales – a holiday that hardly anyone can say they’ve experienced.

Quark Expeditions is the leader in polar adventures and offers a number of different trips to Antarctica. Departing from Buenos Aires or Ushuaia in Argentina, these 14-day expeditions voyage by sea to the Antarctic Circle. On the way, expect to see colonies of penguins, humpback and minke whales, as well as leopard seals.

Hike over glaciers and snow-capped mountains. Photo: Quark expeditions

Set foot on the ice and hike snowy pathways to reach 360-degreee views of the icy-landscape, where the unpredictable environment of Antarctica can truly be felt – see the power of nature as ice glaciers crash into the Atlantic Ocean.

Additionally, most trips can also include camping on the ice, a truly memorable experience. Quark expeditions sets up all equipment, as well as offers guides and information to make the camp as easy as sleeping in a bed at home.

Other adventures include snow-showing, sea kayaking and stand-up paddle boarding.

Adventurers will feel tiny in comparison to nature’s wonders. Photo: Quark Expeditions

Prices start at $8,795 for a share room on board the vessel, and up to $26,991 for a balcony suite, with the option to add on a camping night in the Antarctic Circle.

And now is the perfect time to book, with new reports by the Global Travel Forecast suggesting that flight prices from Australia are set to soar to double the global average in 2020.

2. Dive in the Maldives

With only an estimated 30 years until the Maldives are predicted to be submerged due to climate change, diving in the Maldives is one of the best bucket list trips to take now.

Over 1200 islands are located in the Maldives, the crystal-clear blue waters offering an abundance of marine life that just has to been underwater. Dive amongst coral reefs and shipwrecks, swim past whale and reef sharks, and see manta rays and thousands of fish in their natural habitats.

Soneva Javi is the ultimate luxurious Maldives escape

Stay in a luxurious over-the-water bungalow, like the ones offered by Soneva Javi. The one bedroom water retreat with slide is a beautiful villa on the water that includes a private pool on the deck and a slide from the top of the two-storey bungalow, straight into the water.

A retractable roof in the master suite also allows for sleeping under the stars, while an open-air bathroom offers the epitome of luxury.

An open air bathroom with access to the ocean blends indoor-outdoor living together

For diving, there’s a private 23 metre yacht with qualified diving instructors that can go to almost any of the reefs and islands surrounding, in both day, night and overnight charters.

Luxury living awaits in the Maldives

The one-bedroom water retreat villa with slide starts at approx. $3,560 AUD per night, up to a 4-bedroom water reserve with slide that sleeps 10, starting at $22,000 AUD per night.

3. Visit the ‘tiny cities’ in Petra, Jordan

Take a step off the beaten path and head to Petra, Jordan, for an adventurous experience that exudes Indian Jones escapade vibes.

2,000 years ago, caves, temples and tombs were hand-carved from the pink sandstone in the Jordan desert, making up the now-lost civilisation of Petra.

The Petra Bubble Luoxtel, Jordan

Spanning more than four-times the size of Manhattan, Petra is a must see. A UNESCO world heritage site, opt for a luxury, private guided tour to learn about the site that continues to be discovered by archaeologists.

Carved into the rock is the tiny city that is Petra

For $4200 AUD per person, Luxury Escapes offers a small-group luxury eight day tour. Including accommodation at 5 star Kempinski and Mövenpick hotels as well as a luxury glamping experience in the Wadi Rum desert.

Unique experiences include a Petra by-candlelight tour, camel ride in the desert, dinner with locals and tours of Petra.

Petra by candlelight

4. Hike Machu Picchu in Luxury

South America is a must see, and one should take advantage of the fit-years before they fly by. Hiking the Inca trail to Machu Picchu is a once in a lifetime trip, the satisfaction of making it to the ancient wonder is worth putting in the effort.

But the four to five day trek doesn’t have to mean suffering or going without comfort.

An ancient wonder of the world needs to be discovered

Jacada Travel offers a luxurious private three night, four day trek on the Inca Trail, complete with luxury glamping and hotel accommodation, as well as other expeditions exploring the Amazon.

A personal guide will provide information about the archaeological sites being passed, before arriving at luxury camps already arranged each night, meaning one can immediately relax and rest the feet before another big day of hiking.

Food each night will be local cuisine, provided alongside hot showers and relaxing spa facilities, including a hot spring on the final day of hiking.

Here is Renae’s take on Machu Picchu, she stayed at Sanctuary Lodge (pictured below).

On this tour, stay in the Sanctuary Lodge, a 5-star hotel that is the only hotel located in Machu Pichu

With the full tour extending over 14 days, other sights to behold include Lima, the capital of Peru, two nights in the Southern Peruvian Amazon to truly experience the rainforest, the Sacred Valley and finally Cusco, where the tour ends.

Cusco has some spectacular accommodation including The Belmond Monasterio and The Belmond Palacio.

Renae loves South America, you can read why here.

Prices start at AUD $9,694 PP for the all-inclusive 14 day Inca Trail Amazon Adventure tour, including four days hiking the Inca trail.

5. Sleep under the Northern Lights in Finland

Seeing the green and blues of the illustrious Northern Lights is undoubtedly a trip one should take, but what about sleeping under the stars and seeing the view from the comfort of a luxury bed?

Stay in one of the glass igloos offered by Kakslauttanen Artic Resort in Lapland, Finland, 250 kilometres north of the Arctic Circle.

Kakslauttanen is a winter wonderland

Located in the wilderness, along the road to the Arctic Sea, Kakslauttanen in a winter wonderland – think snow covered pine trees, log cabins and reindeer farms.

Sleeping up two people per igloo, the glass ceiling allows for an unobstructed view of the stars, and if one is lucky, the Northern Lights. Each igloo features a toilet and the option for an additional small bed.  Watch from bed, or partake in one of the “Aurora Hunting” experiences, chasing the natural light show by riding a reindeer-drawn sleigh or via a snowmobile.

Each igloo features a toilet and the option for an additional small bed, and there are also larger four person igloos which include a shower.

A bucket list sleep in the Arctic Circle

Other features of the resort include two ala carte restaurants, serving traditional local Lappish cuisine. Ice swimming is also on offer, with a dip in the frozen ice-lake, finished by a session in one of the three smoke saunas, heated by a real log fire.

The igloos are available throughout the Northern Lights season, from around the 24th August until the end of April.

Prices start at $910 AUD for a double occupancy igloo.

After more bucket list trips? Click here for must-see bucket list beaches.

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