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Where to next?
Old 04-27-2013, 06:09 PM   #1
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Where to next?

My wife and I just turned 40 and are looking at a "reduction in labor" by mid-40's and probably full FIRE at 48.

We had a conversation this weekend about trying to knock out a few of what might be more expensive trips the next few years while still working and while in our prime as far as fitness/health, etc.

The two biggies we've talked about would be Europe (London, Paris, Germany) and the other being Italy.

We've travelled to:

Oahu (Hawaii)
Alaska via cruise
Anguilla 3x (Caribbean)
Washington DC
Chicago
Seattle
Disney World
Rocky Mountains
Las Vegas
Cancun

We are always looking for new experiences...the best part of memories is making them!

We love a relaxing day on the beach with no set schedule to follow; but we've also done the "scheduled" vacation like Washington DC and Disney World, so we are open to just about anything.

Love to hear some of your "must do" vacations for a couple in their early 40s.
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Old 04-27-2013, 07:14 PM   #2
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Do carnival in Rio.
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Old 04-27-2013, 07:58 PM   #3
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Knock-out the 7th one now: Ushuia to the Antarctic Peninsula. Some cruises you listen to PhD researchers on board, then go ashore with them. Pretty awesome. Even better, but I don't think you can do it anymore is the Galapagos. I did 10 days on a little ship in the late 70's. All of the professors on board both those 'naturalist' cruises were awesome.
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Old 04-27-2013, 08:04 PM   #4
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We want to go to S. Korea and Australia. Like you - we have already been to England and Germany. Another trip to England would be nice though...
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Old 04-27-2013, 08:34 PM   #5
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There's lots to do in San Francisco. If you liked Oahu, maybe consider a different Hawaiian island. Maui is my favorite.
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Old 04-28-2013, 12:21 AM   #6
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I have visited Maui and Oahu on my current vacation and I concur with daylatedollarshort.

An expensive trip for consideration which requires that you be fairly healthy is Macchu Picchu, Peru. It could be combined with the Galapagos or with a tour of other South American countries.
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Old 04-28-2013, 08:11 AM   #7
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I would suggest Ireland; DW and I have been twice and loved it. Lots to do and see; rented a car and drove around the country, stayed at B&Bs and castles. Plenty of hiking, biking, and walking tours wherever you go.

Been to the UK, Germany, Italy, Spain, and a lot more, but Ireland seems to be pretty laid back once outside of Dublin (which wasn't that bad).
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Old 04-28-2013, 08:51 AM   #8
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I'd suggest adding Switzerland to your Europe list. If you like mountains the Bernese Oberland is among the most beautiful places in the world.

Maui is a good suggestion.

We liked Costa Rica a lot.

Places I haven't been that are high on our list are Australia/New Zealand and Spain/Portugal.
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Old 04-28-2013, 09:29 AM   #9
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some of my favorite spots....

Buenos Aires
Rio De Janero
South of France (Cannes, Monte Carlo, St Tropez)
Sydney
Oregon Coast
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Old 05-07-2013, 07:34 PM   #10
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The two biggies we've talked about would be Europe (London, Paris, Germany) and the other being Italy.
Italy was the first European vacation for us. We stayed in Rome, Florence, and Venice.

Germany was a pleasant surprise for me. I went for a business trip and stayed an extra week. I loved Berlin and I drove around the countryside near Heidelberg.

London coupled with a drive through the countryside is good. I've driven through the Cotswolds and up into Scotland. I didn't have trouble adjusting to the driving. Probably something you should do while you are still young.

Paris with some day trips outside the city is worth it.

I would say that England, France, and Germany are each separate vacations though it depends on your style of travel.

I would put Spain your European list too. We loved Andalucia.
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Old 05-07-2013, 07:53 PM   #11
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Personally we did places that would be shut down due to political reasons years ago. IE Egypt. Id start with the places outside of your comfort zone but still relativly safe. I think the world is getting smaller for particularly US citizens.
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Old 05-07-2013, 09:37 PM   #12
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some of my favorite spots....

Buenos Aires
Rio De Janero
South of France (Cannes, Monte Carlo, St Tropez)
Sydney
Oregon Coast
Great list. Some of my favorite places also. I'll add the following to the list:

Florence/Tuscany
Rome
Aix en Provence
Beijing - Great Wall
Hong Kong

So much to see...yet, so little time...
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Old 05-08-2013, 06:11 AM   #13
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Add some countries in Asia to your list. It's a different culture and mostly developing countries. Since its likely a lot of flying time, best visit when you are not too old. For Europe, I love Italy and Turkey.
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Old 05-13-2013, 08:32 AM   #14
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I did some international travels in my 40ís and 50ís. In Asia/Pacific I really enjoyed my travels to Singapore and Kula Lumpur the best. Tokyo was also interesting but I found the language challenge there was a bit of a problem for me. In the Atlantic/Europe areas I liked the UK (really enjoyed London and have been there many times over the years) I also liked my visits to Amsterdam in the Netherlands and Rome in Italy.

In the US, Iíve always liked to see the US by driving. Now that Iím retired, I can really just take my time on these longer driving trips. Iíve been coast to coast several times and plan many more in the years ahead. Favorite destinations in the US are Las Vegas, San Francisco, Las Vegas, Key West, Las Vegas, Washington DC and did I say Las Vegas.
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Old 05-13-2013, 06:56 PM   #15
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We are planning a train ride/vacation through the Canadian Rockies - we've heard it is amazingly beautiful, so we are gonna find out for ourselves!

Another favorite place is the island of St. John in the USVI. We've been there a half dozen times, and stayed from 1-2 weeks, which always seems so much longer, because of the slow pace of the islands. It's a great place to really get away from it all and relax, unwind, and enjoy the beauty of the island. Truly one of our most favorite destinations.

You are right - GO NOW while you are both healthy and will enjoy - wherever it is you decide to go!
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Old 05-13-2013, 07:01 PM   #16
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We really love San Antonio Texas...when we FIRE, that is where we will go!

Dominican Republic is very nice too
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Old 06-04-2013, 08:33 PM   #17
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If you do go to the U.K. trying staying in Brighton rather than London (or stay fewer day in London). Brighton is a whole lot cheaper and is a lot more relaxed (and accepting of people) than London. There's quite a lot to see and a good selection of food and pubs to partake in.
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Old 06-04-2013, 09:42 PM   #18
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New Orleans, LA
Santa Fe and the Enchanted Circle, NM
Napa Valley, CA
Quebec City
Prince Edward Island
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Old 06-22-2013, 11:55 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by Retire44 View Post
We had a conversation this weekend about trying to knock out a few of what might be more expensive trips the next few years while still working and while in our prime as far as fitness/health, etc.
...
Love to hear some of your "must do" vacations for a couple in their early 40s.
It's easy to rattle off favorite vacation places but you asked for expensive and or requiring fitness.

On my bucket list:

Kingdom of Buthan - Expensive. It's on the edge of the Himalayas. Elevation and terrain mean fitness will be needed. The Kingdom limits the number of tourists per year. Those I know who've been there said it was the trip of a lifetime. When I can draw from my tax deferred accounts without penalty, I'll be there. Kingdom of Bhutan | Bhutan Travel | Bhutan History, Culture | Bhutan Tourism

Walk part of the 88 Temple Pilgrimage in Japan. Get in backpacking shape, learn 200 words of Japananese and just do it. Break up the walk with more conventional tourism. Can be done with 2 sets of luggage. Carry a backpack, send the suitcase ahead to your planned rest spots. 88 Temple Pilgrimage travel guide - Wikitravel

Pick a sport you've never done, find out where the best seasons and places are and go learn it for a few weeks. Even better if you never intend to do the sport after the vacation.

On my bucket list if I can recruit some friends:

Italy. Eat your way from Sicily to the Alps, following spring north. Best done in a group of 4 so you can taste more and all fit at one table. This one would be a challenge to do inexpensively. Fitness is required because you'll have to do significant exercise daily to avoid coming home looking like the Michelin Man.

Taken off my bucket list when I gave up bicycling:

Converted barge through the canals of the low countries of northen europe: Belgium, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Germany, France. Barge keeps a schedule, guests get off and then rejoin the barge by walking, biking or using public transit. Was a favorite among bicyclists I knew in the '80s. Cost depends in large part on your daily wine purchases. There used to be both luxury and budget barges but it's been many years since I looked at this.
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Old 06-22-2013, 02:40 PM   #20
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If you are into hiking or cycling, here are a few I have done that are my favorites:

1. Hike the Cinque Terre trail along the Italian coast. It is an 18km hike between 5 Italian coastal villages that is one of the nicest hikes in the world. Easily done in one day, but many people take longer and explore the little villages.
2. The Classic Inca Trail hike is a 4 day hike that ends up at dawn overlooking Machu Picchu. It is strenuous but you have porters to carry your tents and food.
3. Hike from Jinshanling to Simatai along the Great Wall of China. This is a 10km hike along a remote section of the wall, away from the tourist crowds of Badaling. It is a nice day trip while visiting Beijing.
4. Bike and barge trip along the Danube. A 7 day trip where you sleep on a converted barge and get up every day to cycle on paved trails while the boat goes down the river and meets you at the next stop.
5. Cycle along RR tracks that were converted to biking trails in America. I've done the Katy Trail in Missouri and you can sleep at B&Bs along the way.

All of the above are easily doable if you are moderately fit and like to walk or ride bicycles. Inca Trail was the hardest but worth it. Do a Google search for images of these areas.
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