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5 Places I’ve Never Been (and Why I Want to Go)

Like most people who love to travel, I have a list of places I’ve never been. And I add to the list each time I read or hear about another place that fascinates me.

Most of the places I’ve never been are historic. This surprises me because I was never interested in history.

Some are sacred, and that surprises me too.

All have been designated UNESCO World Heritage Sites, and each resonates with me in ways I can’t explain.

As there are more than 20 places on my current list, it was difficult to choose the five I wanted to write about for this challenge. But if I were to stop traveling tomorrow, I’d kick myself for not seeing these places.

Peru – I was just out of high school when I visited Chichén Itzá and my interest in ancient civilizations was sparked. The trip, I believe, set the tone for future trips and the things that would eventually capture my imagination. I was fascinated by what the Mayans were able to accomplish without the sophisticated building equipment that we have today and wanted to see Machu Picchu, the estate the Incas had constructed for their emperor.

Machu Picchu

Machu Picchu

Spain – The Alhambra. I attended school in Barcelona for 4 months but never had the time nor the funds to visit southern Spain. I had become intrigued by what we had learned about the Moorish presence in Andalucia and have longed to see the historic palace. The closest I’ve come however (if you call that close) was in 2011, when I visited the New York Botanical Gardens’ celebration of the Alhambra in an exhibition titled Spanish Paradise: Gardens of the Alhambra.

India – Taj Mahal. This unbelievably beautiful symbol of love and loss, was built by Emperor Jahan for his third wife who died in childbirth. It’s hard for me to imagine or even understand love so deep and loss so profound.

A Love Poem Written in Marble

Taj Mahal

Ethiopia – Lalibela. The city of rock-hewn churches, is Ethiopia’s holiest cities and a center of religious pilgrimage. It is considered to be a representation of the old city of Jerusalem. I learned about Lalibela from one of my Ethiopian friends — can’t wait to go.

Jordan – Petra. I had a pact with my Jordanian friend: she’d take me to Jordan to see Petra, the city made famous by its rock-cut architecture, and I’d show her Jamaica. I was hoping to go in 2011, but only made it to Paris. Unfortunately, my friend passed later that year.

What places have you never been that you’d like to visit?

This post is part of the Traveling Brown Girls Blog Carnival hosted by BrownGirlsFly.

photos by: Matito & laszlo-photo


  1. Yes, Marcia, from my experience there, you must see Peru, including Machu Picchu. Spain, Portugal, Scandinavia and Brazil are at the top of my list, but there’s so much more than that…
    Andrew Graeme Gould recently posted..Santiago, Chile: Photographing with a friendMy Profile

  2. DonnaP

    Great post, Marcia. Spain and Chichen Itza — lucky you! Those are two of my five. #3, Machu Picchu — let me knowif you decide to go. #4, South of France. #5, Germany – moving forward with solar energy. And I have to add #6, the far north — to experience the midnight sun and see the Northern LIghts up close.

  3. Thanks, Donna. Ah, yes, the Northern Lights. Too many places, too little time.

  4. Hi Marcia

    Sorry to hear about your friend.

    I haven’t travelled overseas, and don’t feel too deprived. But if all of a sudden I had the motivation to travel, Machu Picchu and the Northern Lights would be a lovely experience.

    I was discussing travel with my in-laws a few weekends ago. They have done some trips and seen some things. I don’t have the desire to see things in a whirlwind and to check them off a list. I would like to have the time to stay in a village and live the life there. So, France for example, it wouldn’t worry me if I never saw the Eiffel Tower and the Louvre, but I would like to stay in a little cottage, and talk to the locals, and ride a bicycle on cobble stone roads.

    That sort of thing. But I’m guessing that would take quite a lot of money?
    Hakea recently posted..only in the presentMy Profile

  5. Great list!
    I SO want to go to Ethiopia! I am fascinated by the culture. India too. Spain too. LOL #Wanderlust wins.
    OneBrownGirl recently posted..Five Places Calling My NameMy Profile

  6. Niiiiice list, Marcia!! I definitely have Peru on my list, and am excited to be visiting Barcelona this summer for the first time. Ireland and London are also on my short list, especially since Hurricane Sandy grounded my London plans last year : ( Here’s hoping to getting all we wish for from the travel fairy!
    Carol recently posted..Oh, The Places I Should Go!My Profile

  7. Oh Peru – YES! Have been to India but not seen the Taj Mahal. There are too many places. I love your places you’ve been widget.

  8. Ha, I don’t even have a valid passport. Maybe once the kids are grown I’ll have a list like yours.
    Lisa recently posted..{Tech and Toy Tuesday} using iPads in the classroom-innovative technology for childrenMy Profile

  9. I have have India and Peru on my list too. I also have Ethiopian friends, although one of my friends goes back home yearly I am still unsure about visiting. You have certainly got me thinking about it now… 🙂
    Bianca recently posted..Travel Envy: Five places on my listMy Profile

  10. I’m with you on wanting to see more of Spain and going to Jordan. Let’s go!!! 🙂

    Thanks for participating in the carnival and “enjoy the journey”.
    Monique recently posted..From Pines to Palms on the Bernina ExpressMy Profile

  11. India would definitely be on my list, too!
    Jess recently posted..UYC’s Guide: 5 Non-Cafe Spots To Study In NYCMy Profile

  12. Cool list, Marcia! I’ve always been curious about Macchu Picchu & Ethiopia.

    But I’ve got India — and particularly the Taj Mahal — on the brain right now. One of my colleagues just returned and just yeseterday we spent a long time talking about both.
    Chelle Roberts recently posted..5 Places We’ve Never Been & Why We Must GoMy Profile

  13. Thanks for sharing your list! I hope to see India someday soon. I heard the Taj Mahal is truly breath-taking—it even takes my breath away in photos! I am sorry to hear about your friend but I truly hope you make it to Jordan….
    Aliah recently posted..I Want To Go To There: 5 Places I’ve Never Been (And Why I HAVE To Go)My Profile

  14. Hey Marcia, great list! We are definitely on the same page with Spain I see. The Taj Mahal was on my secondary list and I was reminded of Peru last night as well. I need to put my vision board together of ALL these awesome destinations. The world is so big and beautiful.

  15. I dream of climbing Machu Picchu too! It’s so hard to choose, Jordan looks amazing as well.
    meandmypassport recently posted..5 Places I’ve Never Been (And Why I Want To Go)My Profile

  16. I have a list too – well a mental list. I would love to go to Italy and Spain and Morrocco and Gallipoli and Antartica… list is too long to write here. Currently we are planning a trip to central Australia – still lots of places in my own country to see.
    Have a wonderful week and thanks for stopping by my blog. I have been absent and am catching up!
    Jill recently posted..On the waterfront, Bunbury, Western AustraliaMy Profile

  17. I don’t have enough years left to go everywhere I’d like to go. I have a bucket list of sorts but I’m like a kid with ADD – I can change at the drop of a hat. The last three on your list have huge appeal – even though they aren’t on my bucket list per se. But if someone said – here’s a ticket do you want to go – you know the answer.
    Top three after I’ve done all my Canadian trips – Iceland, Patagonia, and a bike ride through Eastern Europe. But really that just scratches the surface.
    Leigh recently posted..Dear Mr.Ross and Mr.Runnels @enterprisecares – What Gives?My Profile

  18. Definitely some of the most amazing places on the planet. 😉
    ElizOF recently posted..Chinua Achebe: Celebrated Nigerian Author Dies at 82My Profile

  19. I was in Peru recently, and it was amazing, but I would actually rate Machu Picchu quite low overall in my list of highlights. Maybe it’s because I knew so much about it already that it came as no surprise. By all means go, but also consider Arequipa and Colca Canyon, the hiking in Huaraz (just stunning) and chilling in the heat of the desert in Huacachina. The Peruvian side of Lake Titicaca was also more interesting that the Bolivian side in my opinion – especially a homestay on Amantani island.
    Arianwen recently posted..Death on the Lapa stepsMy Profile

  20. Would absolutely love to go to India and Jordan! Jordan has been calling me forever 🙂

    Thanks for sharing your list!

  21. I’m with you on the Taj Mahal being worth a visit. I didn’t think so until I saw it last year but it’s an incredible sight to behold. Machu Picchu too!

  22. Great choices you have there! I am a historical and cultural enthusiast myself, so my life plan includes a lot of travelling. While Spain sounds incredible, I would much more choose a country on the African continent. Ehtiopia sounds reasonable, I would never say no to an opportunity to visit it.

  23. Interesting choices! I’d love to see the Taj Mahal and Jordan. There are just too many places to see, aren’t there?
    Debbie Beardsley recently posted..Pesky Travel DetailsMy Profile

  24. Love your list too! India and Spain seem to be very popular among the carnival crew. Now if I can just stay out of Jamaica long enough to plan these trips, I’ll be great!
    April D. Thompson recently posted..Five Destinations on My Travel Bucket ListMy Profile

  25. I have been to Machu Pichu but not to Taj Mahal. Taj Mahal is on my wishlist but I will probably not go there.
    NatureFootstep Travel recently posted..Morocco Oued Massa 121112My Profile

  26. Many of these are on my list as well. Maybe we’ll meet at one of them soon 🙂
    Sophie recently posted..World at a Glance: Beslan memorial in San MarinoMy Profile

  27. Yes, that’d be great, Sophie!
    It’d be lovely to put a face to the name. Enjoy your week.

  28. Glad to hear you’ve been to Machu Picchu but I’m curious why you’ll probably not go to the Taj Mahal.
    Curious what you thought of MP.

  29. Hahaha, that’s funny. You could also try to plan them while you’re here.

  30. No matter how many places we see, there are so many more places to see. I haven’t seen Machu Picchu, and looks like a great place to visit.
    Salika Jay recently posted..Visit Barcelona In SpringMy Profile

  31. Peru, Spain, and india are making many of the Traveling Brown Girls Carnival Blogs list. I hated that we didn’t participate, but family comes first. My sister is just coming home from surgery last week. When she’s well, believe me, we’ll be back to our jetsetting ways. Tops on our list- Madrid, Spain; Dubai; Paris; London; and Maldives.
    Sharee Washington recently posted..Flying High with Medical ConditionsMy Profile

  32. Sorry to hear about your sis, Sharee. Hope she gets better soon so you can resume your jetsetting ways.
    Oh, Dubai, yes. I added that to my list after seeing several TV programs about it. Really want to see it now.

  33. The list is endless! But if I was to name only some (tried to go with five but didn’t feel right :D), I’d say India, Namibia, Ethiopia, Tanzania, Italy, France, more of South East Asia…and the list goes on 😀
    Mina Mahrous recently posted..Map for your Belly in Alexandria – Part TwoMy Profile

  34. You’re right, Mina, the list is endless! I also have Namibia, Tanzania, Italy and SE Asia on my list as well. Hope you get to visit all the places on your list!

  35. That’s so true, Salika. I guess that’s why we keep traveling.
    I hope you get to see Machu Picchu, maybe we could meet up there.

  36. I agree, Debbie. We could be exploring for the rest of our lives and not hit the same places twice!

  37. Thanks, Simona. Ethiopia is definitely worth a look, as does Mali, when things calm down there. Fortunately, though, for history and culture buffs, there are lots of places to choose from. Thanks for visiting. Happy trails!

  38. It’s been on my list for a while — the Taj Mahal. I’m trying not to imagine too much how incredible it’ll be — I want to be surprised. Ditto Machu Picchu. Have you been?

  39. You’re welcome, Lola! Hope you make it to India and Jordan soon.

  40. Thanks for the heads up on Arequipa, Colca Canyon, hiking in Huaraz, the desert and Lake Titicaca.
    I’ve made notes based on your comment. This is great, thanks again!

  41. Thanks, Elizabeth.
    Hope to see all of them!

  42. Oh, so many places, eh? I’m like you, Leigh, my list just keeps getting longer. Of course, if I get a ticket or if any of my travel buddies mentions another place, I’m ready to go. Patagonia and Iceland sound fabulous, especially Patagonia.
    Looks like you still have a bit more of Canada to do.

  43. You’re welcome, Jill. Hope you had a good trip.
    It’s great to see what’s in our backyards. I’ve been exploring Jamaica for more than a year now and still have lots to see.

  44. No worries! It’s such a great country. You’ll love it, I’m sure 🙂
    Arianwen recently posted..Educational holiday ideasMy Profile

  45. I’ve always planned to visit Taj Mahal. I really love the story behind this structure and how it is sacred to the Muslims.
    Dylann Andre recently posted..Business to Business Marketing StrategiesMy Profile

  46. I hope you get to visit the Taj Mahal soon, Dylann. It definitely is an amazing place with a beautiful backstory.

  47. Thanks, Arianwen. I’m looking forward to visiting.

  48. Hope you get to visit Peru and Jordan soon. Who knows, maybe we might meet up there.
    Happy travels!

  49. You’re so right, Tawanna – about the vision board and about how big and beautiful this world is.
    Hope you start making our travel goals a reality.

  50. Thanks, Aliah. I do hope to visit Jordan even more so now for my friend.
    The Taj Mahal is indeed beautiful, even in photos. I hope you get to see it very soon.

  51. I’m sure that having someone who’s just returned must make India come alive for you, Chelle.
    Hope you get to visit soon.

  52. It’s such a spectacular country with so much to see and do.
    Hope you get to see it soon, Jess.

  53. You’re welcome, Monique. Yes, let’s go!!!!

  54. Hahaha, great minds? I hope you get to visit India and Peru soon, Bianca. I’m sure they’d make for unforgettable travel experiences.

  55. Haha, minor detail, Lisa. Hope you start your list and get to travel when you can.

  56. Sorry you missed the Taj Mahal, Lynda.
    I agree, there are just too many places but I guess if you pick or two one each year (and not add anything else!), your list would eventually disappear. I’ll try to do the same.

  57. Thanks, Carol! Oh, I can’t wait to hear what you think about Barcelona.
    I hope travel fairy smiles on your Ireland and London trip.

  58. Yup, wanderlust definitely wins! I hope you get to Ethiopia, and India, and Spain very soon, Tracey.

  59. I like spending time getting to know people, seeing how they live, how they do everyday things. It’d definitely way more interesting. Actually, Narelle, there are so many creative ways of traveling these days and if you do your homework and plan carefully, it doesn’t have to cost an arm and a leg. The cottage sounds idyllic.

  60. You’re right, Andrew, there’s so much more to see in this big world that we live in.
    I hope you get to see all the places you want to.

  61. Aloha,Those sound like some of the sights I would like to include on my bucket list, so far the only thing I\’ve seen is the Alhambra and its spectacular.

  62. Peru and India are both AMAZING!! I’d go back to either in a heartbeat to explore more. Ethiopia and Spain are both on my list! Nice list!
    Tamara ( recently posted..Don’t Skip: Hoi An, VietnamMy Profile

  63. Thanks, Tamara. I’m always glad to meet someone who has the same places on their list that I have. I’m not surprised that you want to go back to Peru and India – both are pretty impressive countries. Hope you get to cross off Ethiopia and Spain off your list soon.

  64. Aloha, Noel! That is fantastic. I can’t wait to see it myself.

  65. The Taj … I’m still wanting to go there someday. But I can’t bare to do it alone (as I travel solo often). Maybe I’ll go with a lover – much more fun to visit the palace of love.
    Sherry recently posted..In the Irish CountrysideMy Profile

  66. So true. Like you, I do a lot of solo travel and sometimes I shy away from places like these.
    I still remember a photo of Princess Diana before she divorced from Charles taken at the Taj. She looked so forlorn.


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