I am a big fan of the idea of a bucket list. It is not because I am dying that I want to have such a list, but because I want to challenge myself to experience things very few people in the world attempt, or have the opportunity to do. Such a list of destinations can’t have common places like “Italy” or “Greece” because really, who doesn’t want to go there? Such a list should have places that appeal to you personally for one reason or another, even if they are not popular tourist spots at all. After reading a blog I love about bucket lists, it got me thinking, where would I go if I could go anywhere. Here are my top 5 unusual bucket list destinations in the world with a brief explanation as to why I feel they are unique.
#5 The Maldives
This is probably the place that could be considered the most “touristy” in the list. The Maldives are a set of islands off the coast of India, and have some of the most beautiful beaches in the world. Most of the economy is based on its amazing natural beauty with high end resorts galore. The expense is the single biggest reason I have not visited yet (the second being how far away it is). However, on a bigger, more serious scale, it will probably be underwater by the end of my lifetime (I’m 26). Volcanic islands are forming all the time all over the world, but an equally extraordinary (but far more sad) reality is that the rising seas, due to the increased global heating of our planet, are putting some areas of the Earth, underwater. This is not something that might happen, or will happen in a few generations, we are talking about the complete exodus of the entire Maldive population within the next 30 years if patterns continue. This is a real life Atlantis in the making.
#4 Easter Island
For those that don’t know, Easter Island is “off the coast” of Chile, and belongs to that country. Really though, it is a good 2000 miles from Chile, and is one of the most isolated populated places in the world. It is still debated how such a remote island came to be populated by the Rapa Nui people, as it would have taken an extraordinary navigational job to even arrive (let alone have a civilization flourish). It is a classical example of what is known in environmental science (originally economics) as the “tragedy of the commons.” The Rapa Nui people apparently kept using up the islands resources, including the local palm tree (the main source of timber), until there were none left, leading the a catastrophic collapse of society.
To add to the mystique of the builders of the Moai statues, the language Rongorongo seems to have no predecessors and evolved uniquely on the island. No one has yet managed to decipher the language, but many are keen on studying it. If confirmed as a unique language, it will be only the fourth language in the history of the world that developed a writing system independently without external influence.