What if I win a lottery?
Well, that is an interesting question and I am sure you have thought about it at least once in your life. We all have dreams and sometimes they are a bit more expensive than we can afford.
However, unlike most people, my dreams are somewhat more extreme and adventurous. I don’t dream of luxury, in fact, big cities don’t attract me at all. I have no intention of going for a Eurotrip and nor does the US excite me. With more resources, I’ll still go for the remotest corners of the earth that offer great natural views as well as rich history. Considering the vastness of these regions, you really need to be a lottery winner to be able to afford such trips!,
Central Asia: The Silk Road
I love high mountains, most of my travels have been in the Himalayas. Given a budget, I will go further to the adjacent regions of Central Asia as well as Pamir highlands, Xinjiang Province, Tibet, and finally Mongolia! This is a vast region and will probably take years to cover even if I focus on it full time without doing anything else. Apart from sheer landscapes, the history of this region is fascinating. This is where civilizations collided with each other but this is also where they cooperated through the iconic silk route. Epic is an understatement for these lands and the only region I have visited that is located on the periphery of this region is Ladakh, which itself was a sensory experience.
Kamchatka: The Russian Wild East
I don’t know if GRR Martin wrote A Song of Ice and Fire after visiting Kamchatka but this place suits this description the most. This Russian peninsula is the southernmost part of the arctic tundra, still cold, wild, and sparsely populated. However, it is a very geological active zone with dozens of live volcanoes, geysers, and hot water springs too! The sheer remoteness of this land means that even getting there would take some work and a lottery can definitely help.
Amazonia: Into the Lungs of the World
What can I say more about the Amazonian rainforests? They have faced numerous threats but still remain the most impregnable jungles in the world and I’d like to visit them someday. You may have seen it in the movies or TV programs but my fascination started with The Lost World by Arthur Conan Doyle, where they find dinosaurs deep inside the Amazons (Don’t confuse it with the Spielberg film though)! If the lottery amount is hefty, I can always take a detour to Machu Picchu or extend the trip to explore Patagonia!
Central America: The Mayan Trail
Of all the ancient civilizations, the Aztecs and Mayans fascinate me the most. Films like Apocalypto and 2012 have given them a fearsome reputation but I find them the most intriguing. Colonial rule destroyed those cultures but many major monuments still stand tall all over Central America, across the countries like Mexico, Guatemala, and Belize. If I still have money left, I can go to the jungles of Costa Rica and relax.
Tahiti: The Jewel of Polynesia
My fascination with Tahiti dates back to the time when I read Somerset Maugham’s Moon and SixPence, which was based on the life of Paul Gauguin. Both of them spent significant time on this Polynesian island. Apart from that, the whole Pacific islands fascinate me due to the people out there. The aboriginal people in these islands got here in prehistoric times. How did they even cross the oceans? How good were those primitive rafts? These are fascinating questions, at least for me.
Lapland: The Aurora Trail
This is probably my most “mainstream” wish. I would love to see the aurora borealis and that means I will have to reach Lapland, the northernmost part of Finland. While most people know about it, not many manage to get there due to distance as well as costs associated with them. While at it, I would love to explore the rest of Scandinavia, where the Vikings once roamed around. (Never watched Vikings or Norsemen? What do you even do in your free time?).
North Africa: The Cradle of Civilization
This is another cradle of civilization (yes, I love history in case you are still wondering). Egypt needs no introduction while there are other great civilizations such as the city-state of Carthage, which no longer exists, but used to dominate present-day Tunisia and Morocco. There are many epic historical cities in this region from the Hollywood favourite Ouarzazate to Marrakesh, and from Tangiers to Alexandria, the options are endless. And yes, I forgot Casablanca! Anyone who has a decent taste and has seen the film would like to visit the city at least once, isn’t it?