There are places I would love to return to-Costa Rica, Spain, Italy, Korea. But there are also places I would love to visit one day, places I’ve never been-Turkey, Peru, South Africa, Vietnam. Although it’s hardly a matter of life and death, it’s still a bit of a quagmire for me-should one use what are precious and not unlimited funds and paid time off from work to travel to a beloved spot where she knows she will have a great time or try someplace new, check another destination off the ol’ bucket list?
My travels this year included visits to two completely new places (Asheville and Maui), one perennial favorite (Chicago) and one that was a mixture of old and new (I had been on a Disney cruise before but this year’s trip was on a different ship). We had a great time in Chicago but we already knew this as it’s one of our favorite cities. And although we do some of the same stuff every time we visit (shopping on Magnificent Mile and eating its famous pizza), this time we visited Frank Lloyd Wright’s house and studio in nearby Oak Park. Not only had we never ventured outside of the city limits on previous trips, but with how large a city Chicago is, it would take years of living there to see and do everything. We’re both looking extremely forward to Maui simply because everything that we’ll see and experience will be completely new to us-the flora and fauna, the local dishes, the people, the history, things that are native to just Maui. Although I can’t guarantee it prior to actually going, I’m pretty sure D and I will have a great time and love everything about one of Hawaii’s most popular islands.
While travels remain in 2011, I have already started to think about next year’s locations, a top contender being Turkey. The farthest east I have been in Europe was Italy and so I am desperate to venture deeper into the Mediterranean, experiencing more of the famous civilizations from the Classical Period. Even from pictures, Istanbul’s Blue Mosque looks incredible and the fairy chimney rock formations in Cappadocia look like something out of the movies and yet they’re real. However, I would love to return to either Spain or Costa Rica and show D my former stomping grounds while I lived there. And even though I lived in both places for months, there were still plenty of things I never got to do, places I never got to visit.
Obviously when you’re paired with somewhat of a permanent traveling partner, it’s first and foremost all about the compromising and then from there, the choosing. I’m not giving up on Turkey and yet the shorter flight, cheaper plane ticket, and familiarity with the language certainly make Costa Rica a worthy contender.
So you the reader-do you prefer traveling to a tried and true favorite or do you like going someplace new?