Picture of ocean in Coron, Philippines
Destinations, Planning, Posted by Amanda
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Choosing Your Destination

Hooray! You’ve finally decided that you deserve a vacation; the next question is where do you want to go?  For many of us there are always a few places on our bucket list that we are dying to get to; the problem is choosing your next destination!

When I started planning my 7-month trip the first thing I did was pull out a world map and start highlighting countries of interest.  That lasted all but 5 minutes because I ended up highlighting the entire map!

What are Your Interests?

A way to simplify this process is by first deciding what you’re looking to get out of this trip.  Are you interested in activity and adventure, history and culture, nightlife or something where you don’t have to think and just relax? Hey, there is absolutely nothing wrong with wanting to be a beach bum, this is vacation after all and you are free to spend it any way you choose!

Nothing Wrong with Being a Beach Bum! Dumaluan Beach in Bohol, Philippines
Once you decide what interests you, figure out a time of year that would be suitable to fit your needs.  It may sound like fun to “hang-ten” on Bondi Beach in Sydney but if you go in the month of June it will only be 45 degrees since that is the middle of winter in Australia!  Timing is everything to get the most out of your trip and this doesn’t only apply to weather.  If you only have a week, going somewhere on the other side of the world with a 12-hour time change may not be what you are looking for since 2-3 days will be spent traveling and getting over jet-lag.
Summertime at Bondi Beach in the month of February

Comfort Levels

Something else to keep in mind is comfort-level. If luxury and pampering are your thing a country that provides comfortable amenities besides a nice hotel would be in your best interest.  What’s the point of being in a 5-star hotel if your only option to get around is a tuk-tuk in 110 degree weather? But if you feel like you can sleep anywhere, there is truly something incredible about sleeping in a bungalow with nothing but a mosquito net, a fan and an outdoor shower that will give you an experience that you will never forget!  Are you an experienced traveler?  If this is your first trip abroad, India and Nepal may not be the best choice and you may want to stick to a place that feels different but still has some familiarity to it. However, if you have a few countries under your belt maybe it would be fun to pick a place that would be a bit more challenging that would test your limits (and negotiating skills if you plan on shopping in the markets)! Whatever you end up choosing, whether it’s Paris or Phnom Penh; with a little bit of research you’ll surely find what you’re looking for.

Rooftop View in Paris

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