WHAT IS IN YOUR 2019 BUCKET LIST?
We've selected the 5 destinations to watch in 2019, from Patagonia to Maldives, Lapland to Colombia or the Himalayas.
1. Hike an epic trail in Patagonia
Patagonia truly is one if not the most beautiful places on earth and there is a new astonishing trail on the world circuit to start to explore it. The Route of Parks of Patagonia is an epic hiking trail that connects 17 of Chile’s National Parks, links up the country’s most remote corners, running from Alerce Andino National Park on the northern tip of the Carretera Austral to Cape Horn National Park at the extreme southern end of Chile.
The Route was possible due to the donation of 408,000 hectares of land from the Tompkins Conservation, founded by Douglas Tompkins (North Face founder), who deceased in a kayak accident in 2015, and his wife Kristine, who was also CEO of Patagonia clothing company. The land was donated to the Chile State in 2017, and allowed them to create five new national parks, while at the same time contributing to the expansion of existing parks.
Nature lovers would be able to explore the crown jewel of Chile, Torres Paine National Park, famous for its rising peaks, and less renowned locations like San Rafael Lagoon National Park, where flows an enormous glacier. Best time to explore it is from November to April.
2. Discover Lapland in Winter
Explore one of Europe's last wilderness area, renowned as a winter wonderland complete with reindeer, sleighs and glittering Christmas markets blanketed in snow. Lapland in winter is an almost magical experience, located deep inside the Arctic Circle and blanketed in snow from December to April. Best known as being the official hometown of Santa Claus, this remote and untamed snowy wilderness has a lot more to offer, as an intensely beautiful landscape of snow-bound forests, frozen lakes and vast expanses of tundra.
It is an Arctic playground where you can lay down in a thermal glass igloo meanwhile you observe the Northern Lights. Known locally as ‘fox fires’, according to Sami legend the northern lights are caused by a fox running across the Arctic fells lighting up the sky with sparks flying from its tail. While there’s no guarantee of seeing it, away from artificial light sources, if you stay for more than a night or two, you have an excellent chance of witnessing the mesmerizing swirl of the Northern Lights.
If you want to be involved in more active adventures, you can choose between snowmobile safaris, reindeer or sledding, cross- country skiing and Ice fishing. The Lapland wilderness is an incredible place to escape civilization and truly get away from it all.
3. Swim with whale sharks in Maldives
An ultimate bucket-list destination, once out of reach for many but thanks to new properties and great offers that have increased competition, this paradise is now more affordable and accessible than ever.
Maldives is among the top diving destinations, have you ever fantasized of swimming along the largest fish of the ocean? Whale sharks are docile, shy animals that are safe to swim with, they feed mainly on plankton. They stay in the Maldives all year around, the abundance of plankton around the archipelago made it the perfect breeding ground for the largest of the shark family.
Why is a great place to dive and snorkel with this breathtaking creature? The government of the Maldives has endorsed a set of whale shark tourism guidelines, there is also charity research program, the Maldives Whale Shark Research Program (MWSRP) to find out more about whale sharks, focusing in conservation. There are many great companies working to support sustainable whale shark excursions and interactions, organizing a tour that suits you, consider operators who are members of the Big Fish Network. This means that information about the whale sharks and other mega fauna you encounter on your holiday would be logged into the central database and you could be part of that.
4. Wander around Cartagena de Indias
One of the most photogenic cities in the world, Cartagena is Colombia’s colonial Caribbean city. The country has increasing his tourism industry since the peace deal with Farc army in 2016, and Cartagena de Indias is the perfect destination with a tropical climate, access to the Caribbean Sea and a well-preserved Old Town, which is an UNESCO World Heritage Site.
This fantastic destination guards the secrets of its history, due to the city’s strategic location, it has the most extensive fortifications in South America. The wall once built to keep the city’s population safe from pirates and invaders surrounds the old city. As an open-air museum enveloped within 16 century walls; 400 years old churches, colonial pastel facades, cobbled streets are an Instagram material dream.
At the door of the Caribbean Sea, just 90 minutes away, you could be snorkelling and scuba diving in coral reefs off the 30-island archipelago of Islas del Rosario, sunbathing in Playa Blanca. Or you can enjoy a leisurely swim in a nearby mud volcano.
5. Trekking in the Himalayas
If you are a trekker at heart, who hasn’t dream to reach the Everest Base Camp? The Himalaya is the world’s greatest mountain system, containing nine of Earth’s ten highest peaks and stretching across India, Nepal, Bhutan, Tibet and Pakistan. Long associated with great adventurers and mountaineers. The picturesque presence of the Himalayas mountains has earned a worldwide fame, also for being one the toughest mountains to climb.
The most famous treks are:
- Everest Base Camp, Nepal.
- Annapurna Base Camp, Nepal.
- Drut Path Trek, Butan.
- K2 Base Camp, Pakistan.
Those with these treks on their bucket list will need to ensure that they are physically prepared. With high altitudes and steep trails, it is also important to check the best season to attempt them.
Which one do you want to tick from your bucket list? Where are you heading in 2019?
If you want to find out more about any of these fantastic activities or locations contact one of our friendly team members today!
Contact us on Contact Number: 03 9642 5138
Blog article by Erika Pablos