I have to admit, I often think about my own mortality. Mostly, in the sense that your life can be taken so quickly and I would like to enjoy my life to the fullest while I’m living and able-bodied. I have been fortunate to have travelled all over the world but there are still so many countries I want to visit. This is a list of destinations that are top on my list (right now…it can always change!).

Sweden:
I have dreamed of visiting Sweden since I was 15. I excluded the country from my two backpacking trips through Europe because of its high cost of living. I have had a long fascination with the country; I even tried learning Swedish when I was a teenager. (I wasn’t very successful.) I love Ingmar Bergman films, Scandinavian furniture, Swedish indie pop, admire their social democratic system and colourful architecture. When I go, I’d like to see Stockholm, visit the north and stay in a cabin.

Denmark:
Copenhagen seems like one of the the coolest cities on earth. My desire to go here may be related to my fascination with Sweden. Bonus points for being the home of Lego.

Greece:
My friend Alex describes Greece as one of the most beautiful and romantic places on earth. The photos of Santorini I have seen are breathtaking. The newest instalment in my favourite romantic movie series, Before Midnight, is set in Greece giving me another reason to visit.

Madagascar:
I would like to see a Baobab tree in person. They look so magnificent and odd. I also have an affinity for Baobab trees because I first learned about them in my favourite book, The Little Prince.

La Reunion:
A small island in the Indian Ocean, 670 km east of Madagascar, I have had a desire to visit this country since seeing jaw-dropping photos of its volcanic landscape. Plus it would give me an opportunity to practice my French again, which is always an embarrassing challenge.

Mongolia:
I watched the Ewan McGregor documentary, Long Way Round, and I was impressed by the backdrop of the country and the nomadic lifestyle which seems so foreign to me. I tried to go to Mongolia when I did my Asia trip in 2008, but it was really expensive to fly there and I was worried about getting another re-entry visa to China.

France:
I have been lucky to visit Paris, my favourite city, and the southern part. However, I have a dream of cycling through the countryside of Paris, village to village, with wine and cheese in tow. I imagine the bucolic hills of Jean de Florette, a movie I remember watching in Grade 7 French class.

Tahiti:
The huts on the water look beautiful and romantic but I feel like I need lots of money to go there.

Northern Brazil:
I’ve only heard great things about the Northern part of Brazil and it’d be interesting to see where the roots of Tropicalia, the great music movement, was formed.

Patagonia:
The landscape of Patagonia is beautiful. I want to hike the glaciers and land and finish it off by relaxing in a hot tub by the edge of a mountain.

Salar de Uyuni, Bolivia:
The landscape is surreal and jaw-dropping.

Monterrey, California:
I absolutely adore sea otters and I’ve heard this is the place to go to see them. They have an aquarium but there are also areas where you can kayak and possibly spot them.

Tuscany, Italy:
When I think of Tuscany, I think about drinking Chianti while I wait for an Italian grandmother to cook me my meal.

Guatemala:
My friends, Sarah and Walter, plan to open up a surf camp in Guatemala and I will be the first one there when it happens. I’d also like the visit the great Mayan ruin, Tikal.

I guess this list could go on forever; I can think of many countries that I omitted (Philippines, Scotland, Iceland, Fairyale Germany, East Coast Canada, Portugal…). My list seems pretty Euro-centric, which is funny, since for awhile I thought I wouldn’t go back until I was much older.

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