In celebration of my 30th birthday today, I'm sharing 30 of my favorite travel experiences around the world. This was quite difficult to narrow down, because I love exploring, so I hope you fall in love with it all, too!
30. Panama: wanting to move to Casco Antiguo
I fell in love with Casco Antiguo's architecture, food, culture, music, and caribbean vibes. So much that I even put it on my list as a possible new home! Read more about my visit to Panama on the blog >>
29. Bolivia: meeting the Aymara people of Lake Titicaca
On the border of Peru and Bolivia is Lake Titicaca, where the Aymara people live on floating villages.
28. Italy: learning to cook in Rome
Yes I am a chef! I even have a certificate to prove it. This Roman cooking experience was awesome and now I can officially say that I learned from an expert. See what I learned to cook while in Rome, Italy >>
27. Iceland: swimming in the Blue Lagoon
An overpriced gem, but a gem nonetheless! Flying to Iceland (basically) for free made splurging on this Blue Lagoon visit totally worth it. See how I got the free Iceland flight >>
26. Aruba: safari along unspoiled nature
I returned to Aruba for my 30th birthday because it is full of unspoiled adventure.
25. Amsterdam: taking a stroll along the canals
Amsterdam is gorgeous and a canal cruise is perfect for those who want to explore without getting hit by a bike. Here's free Amsterdam info >>
24. USA: riding the NASCAR experience in Nevada
Back when I was a conference planner I used to get perks like these all the time. Well, actually they were given to the C-level execs but they never wanted to use them. This was definitely a favorite. The adrenaline lasted for over a day.
23. Greece: dining 160+ feet high, hanging from a crane
I can't believe I did it but am so happy I did! I hung over 160ft. high with 360 degree views of Athens for a special evening dinner. View more photos of Dinner in the Sky Athens on the blog >>
22. Thailand: caring for elephants in Chiang Mai
Help protest the abuse of elephants and avoid tours that promote riding elephants. Instead, join a sanctuary where you can assist in the cleaning, bathing, and feeding of rescue elephants.
21. Mexico: wine tasting in Valle de Guadalupe
Baja California's best kept secret is the vineyards of Valle de Guadalupe and I have the scoop! Read more about Mexico's wine country here >>
20. Thailand: Full Moon Party!
Young travelers flock to Thailand to experience the famous full moon party. Watch this video for a peek and some survival tips!
19. USA: stumbling upon the Luray Caverns in Virginia
This was such a delightful accident. My first ever road trip with Alex led me to one of the best cathedral caverns I've ever seen in my life, in the Shenandoah Valley.
18. Cambodia: visiting Angkor Wat
Did you know Tomb Raider was filmed in the Angkor Park? How awesome is that!?
17. Central America: backpacking solo for the first time
What an important time for me! And the birth story for this blog. Follow along from my first ever post >>
15. USA: holy Harry Potter at Universal Studios
Of course this is on my list! It was a phenomenal experience. And I cried a little.
14. Abu Dhabi: exploring the Grand Mosque
The perfect stopover experience! We took Ethiad Airways from Venice to Bangkok with 20+ hours in Abu Dhabi - totally worth it!
13. Italy: romance in Florence
Follow this guide to falling in love with Florence and you will finally understand "Under the Tuscan Sun".
12. USA: Yosemite with loved ones
I feel so lucky to have shared this experience with Alex's family. It was one of a kind, and so are they!
10. New Orleans: architecture / music / food heaven
How can you not fall in love with NOLA? There is so much to choose from. Here are 21 more photos that perfectly describe a New Orleans weekend, if you're not convinced.
9. Belgium: exploring Bruges
My visit to Bruges literally felt like a time machine vacation. I was suddenly in a provincial town's quiet village just a short train ride from Brussels. Add it to your Belgium itinerary with this free Brussels travel guide >>
8. Vietnam: junk cruise to Ha Long Bay
Limestone pillars and floating boat houses made this Vietnam experience one of a kind.
7. Ecuador: trekking 12,000 feet in altitude to Quilotoa
One of the most challenging adventures I've ever endured! The green lagoon inside the Quilotoa crater will always be a travel favorite. Check out all of the amazing places you should see while in Ecuador (including hiking Quilotoa) >>
6. Peru: Lares Trek to Machu Picchu
Of course this is on the list! A bucket list item for many, Machu Picchu was truly a spiritual experience for me. Read about my four day trek through Lares Valley on the blog >>
5. Costa Rica: temporarily living in Puerto Jimenez
From turtle hatchings to waterfalls and road trips, life in Costa Rica was the sweetest ever. Read my Costa Rica blog posts here >>
4. USA: Petrified Forest National Park (Painted Desert)
Along our cross country road trip we visited a number of National Parks; this one was a favorite. Enjoy this US National Park YouTube video I made (below) and follow our National Park adventures here>>
3. Thailand: scuba diving in Koh Tao
My first time scuba diving! But not my last...
2. Iceland: exploring the golden circle
Rent a car for a day in Iceland and explore open and thrilling nature. Here is a guide for visiting Reykjavik and the Golden Circle >>
1. Living my life like it's golden every. single. day.
The best travel experience I've had is being able to live fully and freely, while giving myself permission to explore more and fall deeper in love with the natural beauty of our Earth.
#TravelGoals overload, right?
Which adventure will you take on first?
Share these 30 amazing travel experiences and use these photos to convince your friends to make a group trip out of it!