Amidst the mundane, repetitive chores and duties of our daily lives, we all urge for a break. Thankfully journeys and vacations give us that opportunity. While each journey is unique, some of them turn out to be a life-changing travel experience. It may be the sheer magnanimity of nature or watching the ruins of a place once bubbling with prosperity and power. They help us realise our minuscule existence and give us a lesson in humility.
Here are 7 unconventional vacations, which should be on your bucket list trips for an overwhelming experience.
1. Mount Kailash, Tibet
Mount Kailash is revered to be the most sacred place on the earth since last 15000 years. Hindu, Jain and Buddhist pilgrims believe that going around the 32.5 miles trek of Mount Kailash erases the sins of a lifetime. Whether you are there for getting closer to nirvana or just looking for meaningful places to travel, Mount Kailash will not disappoint you. The stories you gather about the beauty, mystery and rich culture of Tibet are a bonus takeaway.
2. Drive Along The Ring Road, Iceland
If you are ready to be awed by the surreal experience in the land of extremes, this might be the place for you. This drive on 832-mile loop, also called the ring road, around Iceland, is an experience of a lifetime. With constantly changing landscape consisting of glaciers, majestic waterfalls, weathered lava lands and geothermal areas, a surprise is always there around the corner. This unique vacation has an air of solitude that reminds you that you are a mere human in the palms of mother nature.
3. Bagan, Myanmar
If a sublime and quiet place is your calling, then Bagan it is. On the banks of Irrawaddy River, Bagan in central Burma has the remains of Buddhist temples, built a thousand years ago and ruined by Mongolian attacks and natural calamities. This place is an archaeological delight, a sight to rival Cambodia’s Angkor Wat. At the sunset, it’s an unforgettable experience to watch the sky light up with a shower of different hues of orange over the temples meeting the horizon. A sight like this makes one reflect on the uncertainty of life and on the things, that really matter. It’s a life-changing vacation for sure.
4. Atacama Desert, Chile
A lesson in humility is perhaps the takeaway from this destination. It’s a sprawling 78,850 Km square desert sitting at an elevation of 2408 meters and yet the most persistent dry corner of the world. Because of its altitude and nearly non-existent cloud cover, it is the best place in the world for watching astronomical phenomenon. As you gaze into the enchanting night sky, you can’t help but wonder how insignificant our lives on earth are when compared to the infinite, mysterious universe. Quite a life-changing travel, we would say!
5. Great Barrier Reef, Australia
A vanishing natural wonder of the world, this marine park stretches over 3000km, parallel to Queensland to up past the northern tip of the Cape York. Larger than the Great Wall of China, this is the only living thing on earth, visible from space. Going underwater reveals the world’s most astounding and largest collection of corals, coral sponges, dolphins, over 1500 varieties of tropical fish, birds and 20 types of reptiles including sea turtles and giant clams. You might have to hurry up to take this life-changing adventure as global warming is increasing the water temperature resulting in the bleaching of these corals.
6. Ganga Aarti, Haridwaar
If you are looking for a life-changing trip on a budget, then you must experience the most unique and mesmerising Ganga Aarti at Har ki paudi, Haridwar. The enchanting banks of Ganga come alive at dusk with the hymns and aarti accompanied by the rhythmic sounds of the bells from the temples. Watching those hundreds of lamps of faith floating in water is a celestial experience no words can describe. It’s a soul-stirring moment that inspires something deep in you.
7. Gorilla Trekking, Rwanda
If there is any safari that brings you closest to an animal which shares 98% of human DNA, this is it. This life-changing adventure trip is a tough hike through the rainforest of Rwanda’s Volcanoes Nation Park . The park has 10 habituated gorilla families open to tourists. Gazing into the impassive eyes of a mother gorilla cradling her infant in her lap is like looking in a mirror. It makes you think about how different and yet how similar we are from these neighbours of ours on the evolution chain.