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  • Ine Vandenwyngaert

20 travel bucket list ideas for 2021

Updated: May 24, 2022

Are you ready to scratch your travel itch in 2021? So are we! And that’s why we have compiled 20 travel bucket list ideas for the new year. We’ve finally put 2020 behind us, which was a challenging year to say the least. But with the anticipation of getting vaccinated and lifting travel restrictions, we’re hopeful for travel in 2021. This article highlights 20 incredible places and attractions that can be enjoyed while staying socially distanced. Besides, these countries are currently open or are expected to open their borders in the near future. Happy travels and we hope that all your travel dreams come true this year!

Travel bucket list ideas for 2021: albania!
The Albanian Alps

If you're looking for more destinations and travel inspiration for 2021, download our FREE 100 bucket list destinations and check off the destinations as you go!

Go island-hopping in Greece

Santorini should be on everyone's travel bucket list
The beautiful island Santorini

With about 6,000 islands and islets scattered around the Aegean and Ionian Seas, Greece is the perfect place to go island-hopping! From the gorgeous Cyclades, including Mykonos and Santorini, to the Ionian islands near the mainland, including the deep-blue Zakynthos and Corfu. You can explore the dark-colored volcanic beaches and swim in the sheltered bays and coves. Each island has its own unique history, local traditions, and topography, as well as a wide diversity of attractions. But while they are unique, all have this in common: the islands are affordable, beautiful, and delicious. Just hop on the ferry and explore!

Road trip through the Western US

Arches National Park is a travel bucket list idea
Arches National Park, Utah

The western states in the US boast an array of amazing road trips. Combining the awe-inspiring national parks and the beautiful beaches into a trip makes for a true American outdoor adventure. Explore areas such as the arid desert landscapes in Arizona and Nevada, the Rocky Mountains in Colorado, the famous Yosemite National Park in California, or the lush forests of Oregon and Washington. Whether you are renting an RV or simply traveling by your own car and tent, nothing beats the freedom of the open road.

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US National Parks Scratch Off Map

Made by: Marvel US Maps

Ride your bike through the wine regions of France

travel bucket list idea to visit dordogne

France enjoys a strong cycling culture together with a long history of world-class winemaking. So why not combine both? Experience the quintessential French culture like never before by cycling through diverse landscapes of the wine regions. From the countryside along the Alsace Wine Route, to the gentle hills and stunning vineyards in the Aquitaine region, the “chateaux” of the Loire Valley, the medieval towns in the Burgundy region, and the lush green valleys of Dordogne. Each region will bring you closer to the French locals, villages, and culture!

wine route France book for travel bucket list

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Adventures on the Wine Route

By: Kermit Lynch

Go hiking in the Canadian Rockies

Extending 1,200km (745.6mi) from the American border over the east of British Columbia and the west of Alberta, the Canadian Rockies are a true nature lover’s dream. The hiking opportunities are endless: from easy day hikes to challenging multi-day hiking in the alpine region. The Canadian Rockies offer trails for everyone who wants to explore the wild nature filled with cascading waterfalls, flower-filled meadows, turquoise lakes, and glacier-clad peaks. And amidst the jaw-dropping mountain scenery, you will find a variety of wildlife and charming alpine towns. Whether you travel to Banff National Park, Jasper National Park, Kootenay National Park, or Yoho National Park, you’ll find yourself in awe.

Learn more about traveling to the Canadian Rockies!

Go camping in Norway

Camping in Norway is a travel bucket list idea for 2021
Camping in Henningsvær

Home to some of the world’s most dramatic mountains and fjords, Norway should be on your bucket list for 2021! Wild camping is allowed almost everywhere in the country, keeping the cost down in what is otherwise an expensive country to travel to. Sleep in some of the most amazing places earth, like right on top of the famous Trolltunga or at the shores of the deep blue Lake Lovatnet. Take in the views at magnificent fjords, cascading waterfalls, impressive glaciers, and pristine lakes. Do it all while drinking your morning coffee right outside your tent!

Make sure to bring the essentials on your camping trip!

Visit the remote Namib Desert

Put Sossusvlei on your travel bucket list for 2021

Your travels can't get much more remote than Namibia! With a total population of roughly 2.5 million and an average of 3.13 people per square kilometer, Namibia is the second most sparsely populated country in the world. And you will totally understand this once you visit... Namibia is one of those few places left in the world where you can drive for hours without seeing anyone. But besides that, Namibia has some of the most spectacular scenery in Africa. Enjoy the vast Namib Desert, a wide variety of wildlife, and an endless coastline.

Learn more about traveling to Namibia!

Explore the towns of Cinque Terre on foot

Cinque Terre should be on your travel bucket list for 2021
The town of Vernazza

Located along the rugged Riviera Coast in Italy, Cinque Terre should be on your travel bucket list for 2021! Cinque Terre is comprised of five centuries-old seaside villages, characterized by its colorful houses, vineyards clasped to steep terraces, small harbors with fishing boats, and charming restaurants with exquisite seafood. The Sentiero Azzurro (translated: the blue trail) is a cliffside hiking trail that connects the romantic towns from Riomaggiore all the way to Monterosso al Mare. It is only 11km (6.8mi) long but offers sweeping sea vistas and allows you to visit all the towns on foot! And even though the trail was under construction for most of 2020, it is expected to reopen in the spring of 2021!

Love hiking? Find the world's best hikes here!

See the Northern Lights in Iceland

travel bucket list idea to watch the northern lights
Northern lights dancing in the Icelandic sky

Besides its grand volcanic landscapes and unique waterfalls, Iceland is known for its Northern Lights activity. The northern lights, also called the aurora borealis, can only be observed from countries in the far north, such as Canada, Norway, Lapland, and Iceland. They often appear in the sky as dancing lights and vary in color, from green to purple, red, pink, orange, and blue. Iceland is a prime location to chase them and therefore a must-do when planning a trip! They are even visible in the months of May and August, though September through March is the peak season because of the long nights.

iceland travel bucket list book

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Iceland Travel Guide

By: Fodor

Discover the castles of Scotland

castles in scotland should be on your travel bucket list for 2021
Kilchurn Castle

Home to over 2,000 castles, Scotland is the ultimate destination for history and architecture lovers. Ranging from ancient hill forts and tower houses to affluent Victorian country homes, a self-driving tour of the castles promises to be a magical journey. And the icing on the cake? You can find castles in the most idyllic locations, whether it's deep in the rolling hills, on the serene lakeside, or along the rugged coastline. Visit the famous Edinburgh Castle, the iconic Eilean Donan, or the majestic Dunrobin Castle.

adventure awaits in 2021 poster

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