Ticking Off Your Bucket List

Ticking Off Your Bucket List

We all have a bucket list of sorts. It may not be in the traditional sense of an actual list pinned to the fridge waiting to be ticked off, it may just lie in your dreams, your conversations with friends or those quiet moments where you’ve sat imagining being somewhere else.

We’ve all said it - “I’d love to go there/do that/see that/eat that…” You’re making a bucket list, even if you don’t want to admit to the cliché.

Hilton Hotels & Resorts conducted a survey to find out what are...

The top 10 most sought after bucket list items and they discovered the below:

1.            Stay on a tropical island
2.            See the Northern Lights
3.            Try new local food / drink
4.            Skydive
5.            Go on safari
6.            Swim with dolphins
7.            Drive Route 66
8.            Bungee jump
9.            Go to a casino in Las Vegas
10.          Climb a volcano

The list includes both big adventures (seeing the Northern Lights), adrenaline pumping activities (skydiving and bungee jumping) and easy to tick off items (trying a new local food / drink). It’s good to have varying levels of your travel dreams, it’s easier to keep them alive that way as you can tick off the smaller ones while you’re waiting on the bigger ones.

You can try out new food and drinks at any time, you don’t necessarily need to be in a new country to try a new cuisine. Get a taste for Indonesian food at the Indonesian restaurant in your city, try a few Belgium beers at the pub or order a new French wine over your next dinner out. It’s easy to keep your travel desires alive while you’re saving up or planning your next big adventure.

You also need to make sure that your bigger bucket list items, like seeing the Northern Lights, become more than just a faraway dream. They should be your ‘one day’ for only so long, before they become your ‘today’. Time can go past so quickly, you need to take your opportunities for adventure when they come around.

For the longest time I dreamed of going on safari in Botswana, exploring the Okavango Delta and really getting into the African bush. It wasn’t really high up on my travel plans though – it was more of a ‘one day’ trip, so not something I was actively pursuing. That ‘one day’ however, happened much sooner than I thought when a friend started working in Botswana, and said that he could help organise a trip through the Okavango Delta. My travel instinct kicked in, and I knew I had to take up the opportunity while it was still there. Those last minute plans turned out to be the most amazing experience, a once in a lifetime trip that will stick with me forever.

Another amazing bucket list experience was when I went swimming with dolphins. I was at a trance festival in Mozambique, expecting a weekend of non-stop partying. Turned out though that the lodge where the festival was held also offered sea safaris that included swimming with dolphins. I thought it sounded pretty cool, so the one morning while everyone was lounging around hung-over I joined the morning sea safari and got to swim, up close and personal with dolphins. It was the highlight of my weekend – and again, probably an experience that I’ll remember forever.


Sometimes the most amazing travel experiences can spring up on you, and if you don’t grab the opportunity you might just regret it.

The way I see it, the world is one big bucket list. I want to see it all, experience it all and fall in love with new places over and over again. There’s just so much out there, that I can spend all of my time just dreaming of new places to visit. And they can so easily become just that, dreams. You need to hone in on what it is that you want to do, and pick which adventure you want to tick off first. Truth is, we can’t go everywhere at the same time.


A great way to do this is to pick your next adventure, and start a vision board. Hilton Hotels & Resorts have started a campaign, Our Stage. Your Story, where travel dreamers can start putting together their own digital vision boards.  The site offers a selection of templates and dream-worthy destination images to start building your dream travel experience, as well as finding inspiration and tips from other travellers. You can put your vision board together to share on your social media or download it to put on the fridge. Putting it out there makes it all the more real. 

My next travel goal is to tackle India, and I’m having such fun researching and learning more about the country. There is so much inspiration available online, that I can get lost for hours just finding amazing pictures, experiences and places to stay. I’ve found it really useful to put together a vision board, to pull together all of the great ideas that I find online.

The planning and visualising part of travel is just as exciting, so have fun with it. Let your imagination run wild, there is no limit to dreaming. But as they say, ‘if you can dream it, you can do it’ – so DO it. Stop making excuses, and start booking your next trip.

So, where are you off to next?


Travel tip shared by Bridget Williamson for TravelDudes