For the second leg of my Ultimate Bucket List For the Next Decade And Beyond (but really, I’m shooting for a decade)™, voy al sur- I’m heading to Central and South America. Over the past few years, I’ve had the pleasure of knocking off a considerable chunk of must-sees by visiting Cozumel, Lima, Peru; Santiago, Chile, and Easter Island, but it’s time to branch out even further. Since I’m a bit of a completist, wanderlust is taking me beyond the confines of the Caribbean and the Western coast of South America, into parts unknown.
MY ULTIMATE TRAVEL BUCKET LIST PART II
- Monteverde Cloud Forest
Nightmares come to mind when one thinks of getting lost in the forest. But getting lost on purpose? Sounds like a dream come true! Nestled in the northwestern corner of Costa Rica lies a magical forest- a cloud forest, containing an abundance of two of my favorite things: orchids and exotic birds. Yes, I’m easily impressed by a fancy feather or a pretty petal. A guided tour will ease you along the many elevated bridge pathways suspended high above the forest floor, between the tops of trees. If it all goes to plan, I might encounter Aztec royalty in the form of a Quetzal sighting. I’ll try not to scare it away by yelling, “Pretty bird!” Maybe a whisper instead.
- Salar de Uyuni
I have a preference for landscapes. Photography is a big reason I love to travel so much. It’s a challenge to capture the perfect shot in an instant; a picture that will simultaneously evoke the smells, the sounds, and the adventure of a sliver of time in your life. I’ll admit that in the past I’ve focused on perfecting the shot and not living in that moment.
Salar de Uyuni presents a unique challenge due to its remote location in southwestern Bolivia. The sea of flat terrain allows an unobstructed horizon. Sporadic pools of water create a mirror effect. Hopefully, as I dip my toes into the reflected sunset, I can preserve the moment in my mind before I even reach for the camera.
- Perito Moreno Glacier
Previously, I mentioned seeing glaciers from the relative safety of my balcony suite on an Alaskan range cruise. Now it’s time to walk on one. It just got a lot colder in here all of a sudden. As a lifetime southerner, ice hikes combine two of my least favorite words, but I like a challenge. Although this adventure would require another cruise, albeit on a smaller boat through Glacier Alley, once on land, I’d take several hundred deep breaths before embarking on the hike of a lifetime. The stunning views will help take my mind off the fact that I can’t feel my face.