Everyone makes lists of the places they want to visit, and obviously I have a list, too. However, because there are so many places I do want to go, it’s helpful to me to be clear on places I really have no interest in visiting. Some of these places don’t exactly have a geographic location, but specific attributes I’m not interested in partaking in. This helps narrow down the list, and keep the list succinct. It also means that you can be selective with your travel plans, and not miss places you actually did want to see for a place you didn’t really care that much about. Otherwise, you just have the entire world on your list. Some people have goals of trying to visit every single country, or see everything… I just don’t have that desire. There are some places better left unseen, in my opinion, and I’m positive I won’t regret ever visiting. So here is my anti-bucket list.
Note: I hope you won’t take offense if these places are your dream destinations. If they are, go for it. They’re just not my dream. I’m sure I have places on my list that you would never want to go. Totally understandable.
Anywhere I’m promised to have diarrhea. I kid you not, this is a direct quote from a guidebook for an African city I was considering visiting: “When you get diarrhea, make sure to drink plenty of water.” What startled me was the “when.” It doesn’t say “if you get…”… no, it says “when you get.” Call me crazy, but my idea of a vacation doesn’t include diarrhea. I just can’t get myself to say, “yes, I want to go here so bad that I’m willing to be ill the entire time.” There are plenty of places to visit where I won’t have diarrhea, so why do I need to go here?
India. India’s history is fascinating to me. Of course, the Taj Mahal is there, and I would love to see it. That being said… a few years back, I saw a PSA video encouraging Indians to stop pooping in the street. I thought it was a joke. It is not. In fact, check out this line from a Huntington article from 2014: “According to UNICEF, the international relief organization behind the “Poo2Loo” campaign, an estimated 620 million Indians poop out in the open every day, dumping more than 143 million pounds of solid human waste and putting the public at risk for “life-threatening infections, diseases and epidemics.” No thank you, India. I don’t want to see the Taj Mahal that bad.
Most of China. I’ve read stories of travelers visiting cities in China and feeling nauseous from the air pollution. It might not be as bad as some of these people have experienced, but seeing as how I have a sensitive stomach, I’m not sure I can handle this. The mayor of Beijing was quoted saying (last year, mind you) that “To establish a first-tier, international, liveable and harmonious city, it is very important to establish a system of standards, and Beijing is currently doing this. At the present time, however, Beijing is not a liveable city.” In my opinion, if their own mayor is saying this, maybe I should take note and stay away. The reason I said “most” is because there are a few rural areas that would be interesting to visit, such as Wuyuan. However, I’ll have to brave the air-polluted large cities to see that, so not sure if that’s going to be in my future or not!
Any of the “Disneys.” I used to dream of going to one of the Disney theme parks, but now I just can’t get myself to care about it. (Yes, I am an adult now. But still.) Mostly, it’s paying $200+ a day (park ticket alone) to wait in long lines for hours for a 2 min thrill ride. Also, it’s all the extra fees for everything you have to pay. (I will provide one caveat to visiting Disney: if someone offered to pay for the entire trip. Yes, I’m talking to my dad who promised to take me here when I was 11.) I’ve looked at planning budgets for a couple to visit here and it’s in the thousands. So $2,000-$3,000 for us to visit, plus airfare. I can go to Europe for that… thus, I can’t get myself to want to go to any of these.
Places where I’d be forced to eat guinea pig, horse meat, bugs, rodents or sea creatures that crawl on the seafloor and eat garbage. I am not that adventurous with food, but I will try some new things. Not all, however. I know some countries have these options, but plenty of other things that I can and will eat, so visiting there is no problem. However, if the country’s cuisine is so bad that I’d be hard-pressed to find anything I want to eat, forget about it. I wasn’t raised a hunter and gatherer, so doing this on vacation doesn’t sound fun.
I’m sure my anti-bucket list will grow as I get older and realize some places just aren’t that appealing anymore. However, as of right now, these are just a few of the places I’ve crossed off. How about you? Do you have an anti-bucket list?