Humor, Life, Travel

Where Do You Wanna Go?

 

california, lax. LA, hollywood, airport

 

I have assembled a travel bucket list over the past couple of years because it is in my 40’s when I first realized my love of travel.

Maybe it’s because I realize that time is fleeting or it’s my oldest daughter and her wanderlust that pushed me outside of my boundaries.

Can you say California alone with her last summer?

I never would have thought I could do that before I actually DID it.

But man, it was the best thing ever and I have absolutely no regrets.

Here is my travel bucket list of places I want to explore, areas I want to return to or visit for the first time.

I also love to look out for unusual or quirky things in every place that I visit, so I am adding those to each bucket list item too.

 

#GOALS. Unique and funny travel quotes by Bold Tuesday
Courtesy of Bold Tuesday

1- The Dirty Dancing filming location

Maybe this is a bad one to introduce you my list because as much as I love the movie Dirty Dancing, it is the cheesiest movie ever.

Which makes it a cult classic.

The movie was filmed in the Lake Lure, North Carolina area (NOT the Catskills) and it is pretty beautiful there.

 

Image result for mountain lake lodge dirty dancing
“Kellerman’s” courtesy of Mountain Lake Lodge

 

And get this, you can stay IN Kellerman’s!

Well not actually Kellerman’s; it’s called Mountain Lake Lodge but it is the filming location of the movie.

They even have a Dirty Dancing Weekend package where they offer dance lessons, dance parties, and dancing themed activities.

WTF, that is a lot of dancing.

Maybe just go in the off-season.

Quirky thing to do near Lake Lure, North Carolina- I feel like the above IS the quirky thing to do but Asheville is only a 50-minute drive away and honestly, it is full of amazingly quirky things to do. But if I had to choose only one, it would be the American Museum of the House Cat. Because QUIRKY but also because SCREENPLAY.

Three words: cat-related curiosities.

 

 

2- Back to Los Angeles 

When Anna and I went last summer, it was so much fun but we were really only there for a solid three days which includes travel from Chicago because of our budget. Not enough time to see much more than the touristy things Hollywood and L.A. have to offer

And while I do recommend seeing those things if it is your first visit to that area, it isn’t all that LA is about.

 

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Olvera Street in LA courtesy of Los Angeles Magazine

 

We didn’t get to go to the Griffith Observatory, Hollywood Forever Cemetery, Olvera Street, and this place looks cool:

Old Zoo Picnic Area courtesy of Atlas Obscura

Old Zoo Picnic Area is also my quirky pick for the Los Angeles area as well!

You can eat your picnic in an old zoo! I mean, if this doesn’t give you an insight to who I really am, I don’t know what else will.

 

3- Chinatown in Chicago 

I’m aware that this is an hour from my kitchen but in the almost 30 years I have lived in the greater Chicagoland area, I have never been to Chinatown. I have been past it many times on the way to White Sox games but never as my destination.

This needs to change immediately.

 

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Chicago’s Chinatown courtesy of Enjoy Illinois

 

In fact, in Chicago alone, there are so many amazing cultural villages within the city such as Pilsen (Mexico), Greek Town (Greek, duh), Little Italy (Italian, also duh), which are the well-known areas of the city but there are many more. I personally would love to do my own little cultural food tour of the city, who wants to join me?

Quirky thing to do in or around Chinatown- PopKTV is a karaoke bar in Chinatown where you can even rent out a private room for $38 bucks an hour for you and your friends. Or just you and your hairbrush. That sounded horrible. I’m leaving it in though.

 

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Montreal at night courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

 

 

4- Canada (particularly Vancouver, Spotted Lake in rural British Columbia, the city of Quebec, and Montreal) 

Hey, guess what? There is a whole other country above our country! It’s called Canada and it’s huge. But to be honest, Canada is a tad bit confusing to stupid Americans like me.

There are provinces and territories. Quebec is a country AND a city. Thankfully, I found a map to help us stupid people.

 

Image result for map of canada provinces and cities
Courtesy of Knight’s Canadian Info Collection

 

Vancouver is the first place I would want to visit in Canada and that is in British Columbia.

Spotted Lake is also in British Columbia, another place I’d like to visit because look at this:

 

Spotted lake surrounded by lush, green mountains.
Spotted Lake courtesy of Super, Natural British Columbia

 

The lake! It’s spotted! Head here to read why because I am not Bill Nye OOH I MADE A RHYME!

After visiting Vancouver and Spotted Lake, I’m going to need to hop on a plane and fly to the province of Quebec and the city also named Quebec because I was too chicken to go on the French class trip my freshman year. Long story. 

 

Things To Do In Quebec CityThings To Do In Quebec City
Old Quebec City courtesy of To Europe and Beyond

 

So many things to visit in Quebec and Quebec City but I am really hoping to use my 15 words of French that I learned over a three-year period.

Quebecers are gonna LOVE me.

I also want to visit Montreal but primarily because one of our Uber drivers in LA last summer told us to. He was from Montreal (thick with a French accent) and homesick when he began raving about his hometown. I love when people are so proud of where they come from and when I can get a travel tip for a place I never imagined going, I want to go.

In fact, I promised him we would. So I kind of have to go now.

Quirky thing to do in Vancouver, British ColumbiaDude Chilling Park.  Read the backstory and you will want to go there too.

 

Dude Chilling Park courtesy of Atlas Obscura

 

Quirky thing to do in Quebecvisit the prison turned library in the Morrin Centre.

Quirky thing to do in Montreal- Habitat 67 looks like a really cool place to hang but only after you’ve explored Underground Montreal first.

 

Habitat 67 courtesy of Atlas Obscura

 

 

 

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Underground Montreal City courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

 

 

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Highclere Castle courtesy of Flickr

5- Downton Abbey Castle 

 

I know, I KNOW. But I loved this show and I would love to visit a castle someday, so why not knock out two birds with one stone? The castle is called Highclere Castle, not Downton Abbey so don’t call it that or you’re gonna look like a tourist. Also, speak with a British accent, the people over LOVE that. (I am kidding)

Actually, Highclere Castle caters to Downton fans by offering DA tours and they also have a gift shop. But you have to log in and create an account to get tickets which isn’t really appealing to me, so I have no idea how much they are.

But Downton er Highclere is only an hour from London and I definitely want to see London and all it offers someday as well. Gotta use my fake British accent, you know. (I am kidding)

Quirky thing to do in Londonget coffee in a bathroom (or loo, as they are called there) in Fitzrovia.

 

Courtesy of The Attendant

 

6- Above ground cemeteries New Orleans

If you’ve never been to New Orleans, you really need to go but not only for Bourbon Street.

We got a chance to spend an afternoon in New Orleans two years ago and loved it so much.

Go for the locals, the food, the side streets:

 

And the cemeteries.

 

 

Quirky thing to do in New Orleans- The Singing Oak is a tree in a park full of wind chimes.  It’s about as awesome as it sounds. If you can’t make it down there, here is a video that I have been playing over and over and you will too.

 

7- Sedona Arizona with a side trip to the Grand Canyon

I am drawn to Sedona and I don’t really know why. Apparently, there is positive vortex energy (energy that projects out of the Earth’s loins) in the air out there AND I AM HERE FOR ALL OF IT EVEN IF I DON’T KNOW WHAT IN THE HELL IT MEANS. I do know they have spas there like none other, shops with lots of quirky metaphysical and essential oils stuff, and UFO sightings.

I am moving.

 

Image result for sedona arizona
Sedona courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

 

I also want to go to Flagstaff while I am out there (only 45 minutes away), as well as the Grand Canyon (less than two hours away), because I have never been; I mean, it’s a massive hole in the ground!

 

 

Quirky thing to do near Sedona- Vortexes, people! If the energy that spews from Mother Earth doesn’t tickle your quirky pickle, then I can’t help. Cathedral Rock offers one of several vortexes.

 

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Cathedral Rock Trail courtesy of Flickr

 

8- Gettysburg, Hershey, and Pennsylvania Dutch 

After reading some of the exotic locations above, I am sure this sounds like an afterthought but it isn’t. I have been to this area before when I was around 10 or 11 years old and I loved it and so it stuck with me. Pennsylvania is beautiful, especially in the central part of the state.

Did you know there are mountains in Pennsylvania?

And tunnels you can drive through those mountains?

 

Image result for hershey pennsylvania
THE STREETLIGHTS ARE HERSHEY KISSES! Also, the town smells like chocolate. And also like road construction, it seems.

 

 

They also make chocolate there! No wonder I was so enamored as a kid.

They had historical battles and speeches were given here.

 

 

Image result for gettysburg battlefield

 

And then there is a whole different way of living.

Image result for pennsylvania dutch
Lancaster County PA courtesy of Flickr

Growing up in central Ohio, we were surrounded by Amish, so I really didn’t appreciate it all when we would visit other Amish communities. But if you’ve never experienced it, I would head here first because there is so much to offer in such a small area.

Like this:

 

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Tee hee

 

COME ON! This is worth the toll road alone!

Quirky thing to do in Central Pennsylvania– Intercourse, Lititz, Blue Ball are actual names of towns and you need to go if only to take a picture with the signs. Extra points if you do something disgusting while posing. WHAT?

 

No photo description available.
Courtesy of Gettysburg National Military Park

 

Quirky thing to do in Gettysburg– Visit the monument dedicated to General Dan Sickles because he is related to me. His history is really interesting, so click on the link above to read all about him and there is also a street named after him in Gettysburg which was really cool to visit when I was a kid.

 

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The Temple Bar Dublin courtesy of Pixabay

9- Pub tour in Dublin

If I ever get to Ireland, I plan on being drunk for most of it. Oh sure, I will sightsee before I get all sorts of drunk because traveling to Ireland is a huge deal. But I mostly want to experience Irish culture and drinking, singing, and merriment. This is exactly what I expect from Ireland and it better not let me down.

I do want to visit other parts of Europe someday including Germany where I may even have some long lost relatives but for some reason, Ireland calls my heart more.

When my husband and I were dating, I made a genealogy-report style gift for his birthday one year about his family’s roots in Ireland. His dad has dual citizenship and I know his heritage means a lot to him, so I worked feverishly to create a gift to show I cared. In our basement to this day is the framed 2003 Word document in Comic Sans (bless my heart) all about his family’s beginning in Westport, County Mayo, Ireland. I really need to update that.

Personally, I would start our trip in the city of Dublin and do a pub tour there first. They have lots of pub crawls that you can pay for or you can just stumble down the street with your new Irish friends and that is exactly how we plan on doing it. And I hope to GOD one of them is named Seamus. 

After sobering up, we are all hopping on a train for the four hour trip to Westport and heading to this place:

 

Image result for mj hoban westport
Courtesy of Trip Advisor

 

M.J. Hoban’s in downtown Westport.

A “family” pub.

There is some mystery surrounding if this is indeed a family pub or not. The name is all family but apparently, there are lots of Hoban’s in Westport, so there are some Irish-style kerfuffles over whether or not it is indeed my husband’s family.

There were also some lawsuits by other Hoban’s claiming they wanted a stake in the pub which I believe led to all of the Irish-style kerfuffles.

I don’t plan on fighting for the ownership, I just want to sit inside, drink heavily, and listen to this:

 

Oh look, I’m already there at the bottom of the screen!

I feel like Seamus will love this place.

 

Quirky thing to do in Dublin- The Hungry Tree; a bench-eating tree!

Quirky thing to do in Westport- Titanic Monument. 14 residents from one little village in County Mayo were lost when the Titanic sunk. At the church in the town, there is a little memorial for those lives lost. I hate using the word quirky for this one but it is a definite must-see to pay respects.

 

10- Lake Hillier, Australia (Pink Lake)

 

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Pink Lake in Hillier Australia courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

 

There is a pink lake on an island off the coast of Australia and the only way to get there is by scenic plane. The lake is pink because of salt or something (again, I’m not Bill Nye), so read this to get the complete story. I already read it and it is quite fascinating but I am not good at summarizing which is why I am a blogger and not writing for the New York Times.

It is suggested to fly from the mainland out of the town of Esperance. Esperance is not near any large city, so to get to Esperance from say, Perth (the largest city nearest), it would take you almost 8 hours of driving or you could fly, which is about an hour and a half.

But man, if I ever (BIG ever) get to Australia, I am doing this because why the hell would you NOT?

 

Dingo Flour Sign courtesy of Atlas Obscura

 

Quirky thing to do near Perth- Dingo Flour Sign looks cool only because I hear this whenever I hear the word dingo:

 

 

There is also this cool sculpture in the ocean to commemorate an engineer who killed himself. Morbid, yes but the sculpture is really pretty cool.

 

C.Y. O’Connor Horse and Rider Sculpture courtesy of Atlas Obscura

 

I also want to add one thing, I hear a lot of people saying that they wish they could go on vacation or that they can’t afford to or must be nice to other people when they share pictures of travel on social media.

We get it, you can’t afford to go places but please stop making people feel like shit who can.

That might be a trip that they saved up for 20 years for or maybe they have lots of disposable income or have you ever heard of Groupon?

So if that was going to be your comment, I wish I could travel, please just stop.

That, my friends, is why I created a bucket list!

That being said, if money was no option, where would you go? Or if you went to any of the above, I want tips!

 

24 thoughts on “Where Do You Wanna Go?”

  1. I’ve seen the Dirty Dancing Lodge from the water many years ago. I didn’t know you could stay there, so thanks for that!
    I’m enamored by the pink lake in Australia! I think that must be where Hello Kitty takes a bath. 😉
    I just had my first (2) visits to Pennsylvania last year and I was shocked at how pretty it is; I’d love to go back and explore some more.
    Sedona is gorgeous and spiritual. If you dig that kind of stuff.
    I’ve never been to Ireland.
    We love to travel and I don’t share too many pics on FB because I know most people can’t do as we do…but, it is one of the best parts of life I think.
    I have Vancouver on my bucket list!!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Sedona is a magical place, and it does have a super energy, and the Grand Canyon is one of my favorite places. I lived there once for a month back in 2001. I planned on living there longer, but it was right before 9/11 and literally all of my family was in NY at that time.

    Vancouver is such a beautiful city, and it’s where a ton of CW shows were filmed. I have a media travel bucket list that includes a few spots from there for shows like Smallville.

    That cemetery is creepy and beautiful in the most wonderful way.

    PA really is beautiful, and if head up that way please let me know! I’m only about an hour or two from there!

    Did you know that you can see the Temple Bar 24/7 on a webcam: https://worldcams.tv/ireland/dublin/temple-bar I’m a bit obsessed with webcams of the world, it’s a quick way to travel with your eyes.

    Also, can I please go with you when you see that pink lake? Let’s plan a trip. I need to see that!

    Like

  3. Sedona is a magical place, and it does have a super energy, and the Grand Canyon is one of my favorite places. I lived there once for a month back in 2001. I planned on living there longer, but it was right before 9/11 and literally all of my family was in NY at that time.

    Vancouver is such a beautiful city, and it’s where a ton of CW shows were filmed. I have a media travel bucket list that includes a few spots from there for shows like Smallville.

    That cemetery is creepy and beautiful in the most wonderful way.

    PA really is beautiful, and if head up that way please let me know! I’m only about an hour or two from there!

    Did you know that you can see the Temple Bar 24/7 on a webcam: https://worldcams.tv/ireland/dublin/temple-bar I’m a bit obsessed with webcams of the world, it’s a quick way to travel with your eyes.

    Also, can I please go with you when you see that pink lake? Let’s plan a trip. I need to see that!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Sedona needs to be next on my list but now I really want to do PA because it is ONLY TWO HOURS FROM YOU!
      I need to do webcams of places!! That is amazing!!

      Let’s plan a Pink Lake trip!!!!!

      Like

  4. Love the bird quote. Hilarious! I am not big on testing out cuisine from other cultures so count me out there. I am more of a meat and potatoes kind of gal. Plus celiac.

    I loved Vancouver. I promise to blog about it soon. Irish dancing also dragged my butt to Montreal once. Hated it. Might have something to do with visting during winter. Look for more on that in my future best selling, Irish dancing tell all book.

    Love Ireland. Obvie. That is my new favorite trendy thing to say bc it drives my kids CRAZY as in ‘Clean up the mess you made in the kitchen, OBVIE!’ I have been to Westport.

    I would go back to places in Europe in a heartbeat. I travelled around over Christmas break while studying in Ireland my junior year. I was travelling with my brother Pat. By the time we got to Paris we were exhausted and low on funds. We looked at the city but did not pay to go in the buildings. We were also staying with an American family who my dad knew from work. We were so thrilled not to be staying at a youth hostel that we lounged a lot. What I am saying is we were DUMB!

    I would also love to chill in a beautiful beach. Somewhere fabulous.

    I have always wanted to go to Australia and California.

    At the moment travel is dictated by Irish dancing and Lad’s water polo games (mostly east coast), but fun to dream. Oh, Irish dancing dragged us to New Orleans. We did NOT enjoy it. Yuck. And Grand Canyon is awesome- so is Waterton, which is the Canadian part of Glacier National Park.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I don’t want to be a Debbie Downer on the Dirty Dancing thing but I’ll just say do your research before staying there especially if A/C is a must for you. Sadly, the lake has been dried up for years so no practicing the lift. :-\ I can give you the name of a beautiful place to stay within 25 minutes of the area though.

    We almost went to Montreal but all of the rentals looked like they were from IKEA so I think Quebec is definitely where I want to go. My parents went there for their honeymoon and the pics are beautiful. I’m thinking at Christmas it would look exceptionally beautiful! Actually, I’m going to start looking for rentals since next year is our year to travel for Cmas! Thanks for the reminder! WOOT!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Wow, that is quite the travel bucket list! There are so many places I’d love to visit – both here and in other countries – but I’m also an extreme homebody. So I basically contradict myself. There’s also the money factor. Who would’ve thunk?

    Can you believe the last vacation we took was almost 10 years ago?! We went to San Francisco for our 25th anniversary. We loved it. Amazing city.

    I’ve been in England – Bristol/Bath/Somerset area. That was back in 2000 to visit a friend. Gorgeous there and I would love to see so much more.

    My cousin and his wife move every few years (she’s a news anchor; he works for a Chinese tea company and also does freelance work). They recently moved to Istanbul after living in Bejing for five years. They travel all the freaking time. They are always jetting off to some other country; some which I’ve never even heard of and have to look up! I love seeing the photos and videos on FB.

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    1. I love that so much. I have someone I know who just got this amazing travel opportunity for work and I am insanely jealous in the best possible way. She is young and single, so I am living my travel-life vicariously through her. 🙂

      Like

  7. I fast-scrolled/skimmed because I wanted to see if you were going to come anywhere close to ME. Come to Portland! We can go to the coast one day and to the mountains the next. We can go hipster-spotting. We have pornographic donuts. (Highly over-rated and tourists stand in loooong lines at this shop. We also have really kick-ass donuts that tourists don’t know about.) We have a cemetery and shows/tours where some of the people buried there come and tell you about their demise. We have Darcelle’s, a drag show that I once went to with my Grandma and the other women in my family to celebrate my grandma’s 75th birthday. You want quirky, we got quirky. And really good food. And free accommodations if you come stay with me. 🙂

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    1. OMG, I NEED TO GO TO PORTLAND!!!! You, my friend, are the biggest and best attraction for me going there. But also I really, REALLY want pornographic donuts.

      Like

  8. LOVE Quebec! My husband and I went for a weekend away when my youngest was still breast feeding and now that my middle son is chomping at the bit to practice his french we’re trying to get him to go again. Living in New England Pennsylvania has long been a vacation destination of ours and I’m not sure there’s any spots left we haven’t visited (one nice thing about living where all the states are small– makes it quite easy to visit many of them!).

    I love to travel (well, not the actual travel part but the discovering new places when I get there part). I keep saying I want to visit all 50 states before I die but if I really want to do that I need to stop re-visiting places I’ve been a bunch of times.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. What a great bucket list! Living only 45 minutes away from Lake Lure, we go over there a few times a year. Next time, stay at the Lake Lure Inn where the stars stayed while filming. Cool place, with a haunted room and an antique orchestron in the lobby. In Asheville, see the Moog Museum, or go to the Hendersonville Cemetary to see the actual angel from Thomas Wolfe’s novel.

    Liked by 1 person

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