Bucket list before moving back to America in summer of 2014

After moving to Belgium in August, 2011 for my husband’s work purpose, we have travelled the world quite a bit, especially Europe and little bit of Africa and Asia. My husband’s assignment was for 2 years; so, according to that we were supposed to go back to Portland, Oregon early August of this year. I won’t’ lie, I was excited to go back to my own familiar place, to my old job, to our friends, to a familiar culture, and finally, to Taco Bell and Olive Garden. But another part of me didn’t really want to leave this laid back and always-on-vacation mode of life so quickly. We weren’t done with our travelling yet, I told myself. The idea of leaving a place like Belgium, or Europe as a whole, is now a bit of scary thought for me. We are seriously spoiled having all these great places to visit within few hours of drive or few hours of flight. It’s not like living in West Coast where you have to cross the whole country and then Atlantic to come to this side of the world (and not to mention the high ticket fare).

So, my husband and I were waiting for his supervisor to give us a green signal to extend to another year in Belgium. I like waiting, it gives you some time to think about and plan for the things that you are waiting for…both the positive and negative sides. But I didn’t really like waiting for the question, “to leave or not to leave?” After about two months, few days ago my husband’s boss said, “yes” for one more year…oh YES, one more year of vacation; after that we can gladly thank the lord for giving us this wonderful opportunity and say good-bye to Europe for a long time (but we would definitely like to come back here again when we are old and retired and dine in up-scale restaurants which we can’t do now with toddlers).

While we were waiting for our answer whether we are staying here or not, we made a bucket list of all the places that we want to see before heading back to America. There are lot more places than these below ones but I only added the places that I know we can practically make it with little effort. The list only contains cities/countries from Europe, Africa, and Asia since it’s easier to reach there unlike South America or Australia (we will cover those once we return to Oregon). So here these are:

1) Europe: People ask me jokingly, “aren’t you done with Europe? Are there any places left for you to visit?” I wish I could say, yes to these questions. But unfortunately we are not, not even close.

a) Scotland – Edinburgh

b) Sweden – Stockholm

c) Finland – Helsinki

d) Norway – Fjords of Norway

e) Portugal – Lisbon

f) Spain – Seville, Cordoba, Granada, Malaga, and Gibraltar

g) Albania – Tirana

h) Ukraine – Kiev

i) France – Disney World (for my kids), Etretat, Alsace region (Strasbourg, Colmar, Obernai), and French Alps – Mont Blanc

j) Italy – Trulli, Florence, Tuscan villages, Italian Alps – Dolomite Mountains

k) San Marino

l) Malta – Valetta

m) Cyprus – Larnaca

n) Greece – Crete, Santorini, Mykonos

o) Germany – Dusseldorf, Frankfurt, Dresden, Leipzig

p) Belgium – Mons, Liege, Namur, Charleroi, Bouillon, Dinant, Luxembourg, Hainut, Tournai, Durbuy, Leuven, and Mechelen

q) The Netherlands – Utrecht, The Hague, Eindhoven, and Breda

r) Switzerland – Bern and Interlaken

s) Austria – Innsbruck

t) Croatia – Dubrovnik

u) Bosnia and Herzegovina – Sarajevo

v) Serbia – Belgrade

w) Macedonia – Skopje

x) Montenegro – Podgorica

y) Bulgaria – Sofia

z) Poland – Warsaw, Krakow

aa) Latvia – Riga

bb) Lithuania – Kaunas

cc) Russia – St. Petersburg and Moscow

dd) Iceland – Reykjavik and driving the ring road

2) Africa:

a) South Africa – Johannesburg, Cape Town, Durban, Kruger National Park Safari

b) Ivory Coast – Abidjan

c) Egypt – Alexandria, Luxor, Aswan, Abu Simbel and Sharm-El-Sheikh

3) Asia:

a) China – Great Wall of China

b) Jordan – Amman and Petra

The list is long but the good news is we will be here until August, 2014. My husband, my 2 girls, and I are ready for more annoying plane journeys, waiting at the airports, being in the car for many hours, waking up or going to sleep at odd times to catch flights, dealing with fussy kids (or cranky parents for our daughters), and not to mention writing more posts on our fascinating experiences.

10 Comments on “Bucket list before moving back to America in summer of 2014

  1. Pingback: Wallon capital of Belgium – Namur | Journey Around The Globe

  2. Pingback: A historic university town – Leuven, Belgium « Journey Around The Globe

    • Thanks for stopping by. We are actually flying to Malta in June. How far is Gozo if you dont mind me asking? Can we take a day trip there? Thanks again.


  3. It is a great list! So many beautiful places. I’m originally from Poland, where I’m with my husband visiting my family and friends at this moment for 6 months. It is so fun to have everything accessible so much easier as you mentioned. I noticed you have Poland on your list and I want to recommend to you going to Gdansk and Sopot at the seaside instead of Warsaw. Krakow is such a magical place, I’m sure you will love it.


    • Thanks for your great advice Ania. My husband was in Krakow 2 years ago and he loved it. I think we have to make 2 trips to Poland to visit both Krakow and Gdansk. I saw Gdansk in TV during the EURO 2012…looked pretty. Will add it in my list too…thanks for the reminder.


  4. Consider yourself blessed to have the opportunity to visit so many beautiful and historic places throughout the world. Thanks for writing many interesting posts that help others dream.


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