With so many remarkable cities, sights and places around the world, it is often easy to bring together long lists of must-see places, and there will always be stunning sites that get cut from lists like this.
However, if you were to visit these 25 places, not only would you be extremely well-traveled but you’d also have seen some of the most amazing sights this planet has to offer!
In no particular order, here are 25 destinations to visit in your lifetime!
25. Chiang MaiNot only is Chiang Mai a popular destination in Thailand, it is also home to the Yi Peng Floating Lantern Festival. People from around the world come to the festival to release thousands of lit lanterns in the sky and make a wish.
24. OsakaJapan has many highlights, but one of the most beautiful places to visit is Osaka for cherry blossom viewing (hanami). You can see the blooming trees in many parts of Osaka, but Osaka Castle and Kema Sakuranomiya Park are particularly stunning in early April.
23. Plitvice LakesOften referred to as the home of fairies, Plitvice Lakes in Croatia might just be one of the most naturally beautiful places on the planet. Its cascading lakes in hues of green and blue are a feast for the eyes.
Read Next: Tips for Visiting Plitvice Lakes in Croatia
22. The AlhambraThe Alhambra is a palace from the Moorish rule of the 14th century located in Granada, Spain. For math whizzes and design buffs, the Alhambra is a great treat because of its remarkable architectural symmetry.
21. Great Barrier ReefThe Great Barrier Reef is the largest coral reef system in the world located just off the coast of Queensland, Australia. Unfortunately, the reef is rapidly disappearing due to climate change, pollution and the overpopulation of certain species.
20. The Golden CircleThis 300km loop features some of the most stunning scenery in Iceland. While there are plenty of other natural wonders sure to impress in Iceland, the Golden Circle features everything from geysers to glaciers!
19. Las VegasAlso known as “Sin-City,” Las Vegas is located in the Nevada Desert and is famous for being a place where almost anything goes. From amazing hotels to world-class restaurants to fantastic night life, this is a city that has to be visited at least once.
18. Tiger’s Nest MonasteryHigh in the mountains of Bhutan, Paro Taktsang (known by many as the Tiger’s Nest Monastery) is a sacred Buddhist site that appears to be precariously located halfway up a cliff face.
17. Iguazu FallsOn the border between Argentina, Brazil and Paraguay, Iguazu Falls sees huge volumes of water drop down several hundred feet, and it is a truly one of a kind sight that dwarfs other huge waterfalls such as the Niagara Falls.
16. The MatterhornThis iconic mountain is on the border between Switzerland and Italy and is one of the most iconic peaks in the Alps. The Matterhorn has even become a landmark at Disneyland California!
15. The ColosseumRome has so many attractions that it is hard to pick one favorite but, for history buffs, the Colosseum is one of the most impressive sites in the world. It’s a stadium from nearly 2,000 years ago, where chariot races and gladiators once entertained the citizens of the Roman Empire.
Read Next: What to Do in Rome in Three Days
14. PetraMaybe it’s the movie magic of Indiana Jones or the incredible history of this UNESCO World Heritage Site, but Petra is one of the most incredible places on Earth. This 312 BC ancient city in Jordan is carved out of a sandstone rock face and is considered one of the 7 New Wonders of the World.
Read Next: Ten Things to Do in Amman, Jordan
13. Uyuni Salt FlatsOn a 4-day Uyuni Salt Flats tour through Bolivia, you can see everything from pink flamingos to blue lagoons. On your final morning, you arrive at the salt flats before sunrise where white stretches as far as the eye can see.
Read Next: Uyuni Salt Flats Tour (Part 1)
12. ParisThe city of romance is an amazing destination for cuisine, sightseeing and for simply enjoying the atmosphere. Whether you climb the Eiffel Tower or examine the stunning art collections of the Louvre, Paris is a must- visit.
11. The Pyramids Of GizaBuilt around 2560 BC, the Great Pyramid of Giza is the oldest and only remaining Seven Wonders of the Ancient World still intact. Historians are still amazed at the methods used by the ancient Egyptians to create the giant pyramid complex of Giza.
10. Grand CanyonGrand Canyon National Park is located in northwestern Arizona, and is the United States’ 15th oldest national park. Named a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1979, there are stunning views, and you’ll be overwhelmed at the beauty of the gigantic landforms.
9. Galapagos IslandsThe superb wealth of natural life in these islands is second to none. The Galapagos Islands make a wonderful destination for scuba diving and nature cruises around the islands.
8. ChinaChina is a country that is rich in history, culture and tradition. My first trip was to the Xi’an region, home of the Terracotta Soldiers, and it was one of my more memorable trips.
Read Next: Ten Tips for Your First Trip to China
7. The Maasai MaraThe migration of the wildebeest on the Maasai Mara is one of the world’s most amazing sights. Taking a safari here is one of the most desirable nature travel experiences in the world for a chance to see the big five animals – lions, leopards, elephants, buffalo and rhinoceros.
6. Ha Long BaySeeing the columns of stone rising from the waters of Ha Long Bay in Vietnam is an amazing sight, particularly on those misty mornings when each one appears to be an isolated peak. Take a junk boat cruise for a once-in-a-lifetime experience!
Read Next: Ha Long Bay Junk Boat Cruise
5. New YorkThe Big Apple of the United States is a true feast for the senses. From the amazing shopping to the thriving arts scene, New York has something for everyone.
4. Machu PicchuThis once forgotten temple in the highlands of Peru is now one of the world’s premier historic tourist attractions, and whether you arrive by bus or on foot on the Inca Trail, the remarkable views and the history of the site will take your breath away.
Read Next: Inca Trail to Machu Picchu, Peru
3. Mount EverestExploring the majesty of Mount Everest, the highest mountain in the world, is something that many people do every year. While it takes approximately 18 days, the view from the summit is described as life changing.
2. RioHome of arguably the greatest party in the world, Rio Carnival is a festival of dancing, music, drinking and celebration. Parades, floats and Samba make Carnival one of the best times to travel to Rio!
Read Next: The Ultimate Guide to Rio in a Weekend
1. Angkor WatAngkor spreads over 400 sq kilometers and consists of temples and structures from the Khmer Empire. Watching the sunrise at the Angkor Wat temple is one of the most incredible sights on Earth!
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