Last month as I sat in the movie theater to see T2 Trainspotting I was reminded just how picturesque Scotland is. As viewers get to catch up with the characters created 20-some years ago by one of my favorite authors, Irvine Welsh, we are treated to some lovely shots. Indeed, I feel like I know Edinburgh already as most of Welsh’s novels are set in the city, albeit in rather working class areas. Whether it is the scenic park with panoramic views or a charming old city with cobblestone streets there’s something special about Edinburgh. That’s why Edinburgh is on my Must See travel bucketlist!
With my next trip to Munich a matter of weeks away and me unable to contain my excitement, now seemed like the perfect time to highlight another Must See on my travel bucket list. For this month’s Must See travel feature we’re traveling a bit southeast of Munich to the Chiemsee!
On our first trip to Munich some years back, we traveled by car to Salzburg with friends. As we passed a seemingly unending body of water on the left side of the car, one of our friends turned to my husband and I in the backseat. “That’s the Bavarian sea,” she said, with a smile. She meant the Chiemsee.
Imagine a 79 acre park with more than 7 million flower bulbs. Sound too good to be true? It’s not! That park is Keukenhof in the Netherlands and it is one of the world’s largest flower gardens. Every year, the park opens in late March for two months. Visitors flock to see these spectacular flowers. As a tulip lover, a visit to Keukenhof is undoubtedly on my travel bucket list.
Last spring, my husband and I started watching the Grand Sumo Tournament Highlights that NHK World aired. It’s a roughly 25 minute recap of the best matches of the day. We were hooked. As with so many things in life where you make assumptions without knowing all the facts, sumo wasn’t quite as straightforward. I can only speak for myself, but what I felt had always been depicted as two very overweight men pushing each other actually had a lot more nuance. Since then we haven’t dared miss a day of highlights. That’s why attending a sumo tournament is on My Must See List.
When you read the word “Zeppelin,” the first thing you think of might be a famous classic rock band. Admittedly, “Whole Lotta Love” has its merits. But what I’m talking about is taking a ride in a dirigible, not a stairway to heaven. No, I’m talking about taking a ride in a Zeppelin. And in Friedrichshafen, Germany you can still take a ride in what is really a unique form of transportation.
Count Ferdinand von Zeppelin (or Graf Zeppelin, in German) of Germany is noted as the pioneer when it comes to Zeppelins. In the late 19th century he started designing the rigid airships. By 1910, the first Zeppelin had been flown commercially. During World War I, they were used by the German military. The airships crisscrossed the world. They flew from Europe to America, South America and even Asia. They were a wonder of their day.
Regardless of whether or not you have the ability and opportunity to travel, everyone has a bucket list, a dream collection of travel must see sites, places and cities. Each month, I highlight a different Must See that is on my own bucket list. In 2016 I managed to feature twelve vastly different sites. From the real Downton Abbey (aka Highclere Castle) to the Sagano Bamboo Forest in Japan to Mont Saint-Michel in France. Take a trip back through the past year. Travel and explore through the magic of the digital world. These are My Travel Must See List from 2016.
Each month I try to highlight a Must See. Usually this means a city, location or museum that I have on my own travel bucket-list. This month I want to do things a little different. Visiting a true European Christmas Market is undeniably on my Must See list. But there’s so many! To select just one would be too difficult and not fair to all of the other wonderful ones. So instead this month’s Must See pulls together five Christmas Markets to put on your own Must See list.
For the United States, and perhaps much of the Western world, Times Square is our central reference point when we refer to a large, busy, crowded intersection. It’s a site that draws people together, whether it be to watch the infamous crystallized ball “drop” on New Year’s Eve or simply to gawk at the larger than life signs that made the otherwise normal street into an animated zone. In reality, however, Japan’s Shibuya Crossing is the “real” Must See.
If you think you aren’t already familiar with Shibuya Crossing, you’re almost certainly wrong. The multi-directional crossing is a common go-to in any movie set in Tokyo or Japan. When those traffic lights change, masses of people swarm the streets to cross.
If it weren’t for those famous scenes in the movie Rocky of Sylvester Stallone running up the steps at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, the world might never have known about this fantastic landmark. Not really. But for some smaller towns and sights this is definitely the case. Take for example Görlitz, Germany. After seeing the town used as the filming location for Wes Anderson’s whimsical The Grand Budapest Hotel and doing some research into the town’s beautiful architecture, Görlitz has been on my Must See list.
They say that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. However, it might be difficult to convince the Austrian lake town of Hallstatt. A Chinese mining company built an exact copy of the town in Guangdong. But you really can’t blame the Chinese. Many consider the village to be the most beautiful town in the world. It’s easy to see why Hallstatt, Austria is this month’s featured location on My Must See List.