So we’ve written a post about the top 5 places that underwhelmed us, then we wrote about the top 5 unexpected places and now is our top 5 that was everything plus more than we expected. We should also qualify that we have had lots of “overwhelming” moments on our travel but we narrowed it down to our top 5 for this post – which wasn’t easy.
5. Galapagos Islands
The place where Charles Darwin came up with his evolution theory.
The place where there is abundance and diversity.
The place where animals and humans can swim together and walk together.
The place we would recommend to everyone in a heartbeat!
In the centre of our home country lies the monolith that is ever so famous. It wasn’t only seeing Uluru itself that made this the most jaw-dropping memory we have in Australia, but it was the entire experience itself; seeing Uluru during the day, seeing Uluru changing colours, watching the sunset, being under the stars in the red centre, understanding more about the Indigenous Australian culture and beliefs.
We published a photo essay recently on Uluru if you want to see more photos.
3. Yellowstone National Park
Being the first National Park in the world and with 9000 square kilometres to explore, one cannot really not pass up the opportunity to visit here. We visited in October and we had snow – lots of it. And it only made the scenery so romantically magical.
We were able to catch glimpses of different wildlife, we visited Ol’ Faithful Geyser and we were mesmerised by the sweeping landscapes and colours.
This is one of the first places we ever visited that as soon as we left, we said, “We’re coming back here again!”
2. Lake Titicaca
Floating reed islands? The minute we heard about these many years ago, we knew we had to visit it one day. And when we finally did, we fell in love. It didn’t matter that we were 3000+ metres above sea level and that every few steps we felt out of breath. Because as we stepped on the reeds and realised that we were actually walking on a floating island, the moment was ingrained in our memories forever. Looking around us, we saw the local residents waving to us in their colourful sweaters – welcoming us to their home. On this planet, there are plenty of unique places to see and this is one of them.
1. The Hanging Monastery
In the side of the cliff, 50 metres above the ground, there stands the monastery/temple that conjures up images of ancient China immediately.
This is the first place that we have visited in the world that brought tears to our eyes. We were so overwhelmed with emotion, peering upwards at it that we did pinch ourselves to see that we were really awake. Then walking through it was another thing altogether – held by what look like only wooden logs – we prayed that it was still architecturally sound. We held our breath when we saw it and we held our breath when we walked through it.
There you have it – our TOP 5 places that met and exceeded our expectations. Any surprises?
There were a few others that were close contenders such as Machu Picchu, Neuschwanstein Castle, Carcassonne, New York City…… plus many more!
Where have you been that you had high expectations of and it delivered?
Leave us a comment.
Back in 2006, we worked over 60 hours per week (for 6-months) so we could afford a 4-month trip around Europe. Every time, we travel – the experiences we have are our rewards for all the hard work leading up to make it happen.
One of our earliest memories of that Europe trip was witnessing a Santorini sunset – famous for a reason :)
What photo would you share to show reward? See other people’s interpretations here.
Happy weekend everyone!
And as always, feel free to leave us your thoughts.
Once commonly known as Ayers Rock it is now better known by its indigenous name of Uluru.
Uluru is sacred to indigenous Australians.
This magnificent monolith that is located in the Australia Red Centre is 340 metres high and has a circumference of about 9.4 km. Made from hard red sandstone, it doesn’t stay red all the time – Uluru changes colour during sunrise and sunset and is a sight certainly worth witnessing. It is at its brightest red in the middle of the day.
We were fortunate to walk around part of the base of Uluru and looking up, is really something. An experience we will never forget. It still gives us goosebumps thinking about our time here as it really was so extraordinary and magical.
Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park was listed as a UNESCO Heritage site in 1987.
To see the other UNESCO sites we have visited, visit our unofficial bucket list
Hope you enjoy our photo essay of Uluru :)
Have you visited Uluru? Or is it on your bucket list?
We welcome your comments here.