Back in 2005, when my husband and I got married, we embarked on a luxurious honeymoon where we booked round the world flights and visited five different destinations that included Los Angeles, Sydney, Brisbane, Singapore & Dubai. The whole trip was amazing, but Dubai in particular was just incredible with the hot sands, crystal clear waters, superb shopping centres and some of the nicest food we have ever tasted. Every person we met was so friendly, it felt incredibly safe and it really is a stunning place. Since then, we have seen Dubai tourism continue to grow and have seen just how much there is now on offer for families too. Whilst our dream holiday 12 years ago was all about the luxury and relaxation, Dubai is now on my bucket list for the fun, entertainment, waterparks and beach activities that are all on offer for a great family holiday.
Atlantis - The Palm certainly ticks all the boxes for me, offering the perfect combination of 5 star luxury with the added bonus of a wide range of family friendly attractions. It would be incredible to go swimming with dolphins at Dolphin Bay, enjoy the thrilling rides at Aquaventure and be wowed by the 65,000 incredible marine animals in The Lost Chambers Aquarium. The fact that there is also a kids club with an extensive activity schedule would also guarantee my husband and I some quality time together, whilst knowing our children were being well taken care of. It would be lovely to enjoy just a couple of hours of relaxation in the spa together, or have an evening meal in one of the restaurants, making it the perfect holiday for both kids and grown ups.
Although we have visited Dubai before, I have no doubt that it has changed considerably since our last visit. It would be amazing to see how the skyline has changed, as well as visiting all the new attractions on offer. A sunset boat ride would certainly be a treat for all of us, in addition to a Dubai Desert Safari where we could ride over the dunes and enjoy a delicious evening barbecue dinner.
Does any of this make you want to try Dubai? If so then Destination2 Holidays have some great deals, as well as lots of other ideas for places to stay or visit.
Photo Credit: Christoph Schulz on Unsplash.The Maldives
The Maldives is one of those idyllic picture postcard places that just looks stunning. With beautiful white sandy beaches reaching into the Indian Ocean and luxurious resorts situated on their own private islands, it is definitely a destination where you can indulge and relax whilst enjoying the tropical climate.
If my husband and I were to travel without the children, perhaps as a second honeymoon for our anniversary, then The Maldives would probably be our first choice for an adult escape. Whilst a lot of the resorts do offer activities for children, I can just picture myself enjoying the peace and quiet whilst sunbathing by a stunning water bungalow.
Although a peaceful romantic break here sounds perfect, there is also plenty to do to keep us entertained such as snorkelling or diving and exploring the coral reefs. A speedboat trip to the capital of Male would also be amazing, so that we could enjoy the local culture and shop in the markets.
With such a wide choice of resorts to stay in, the only difficulty would be having to pick just one.
Photo credit: Ishan @seefromthesky on UnsplashThailand
Next on my bucket list is Thailand, which is a destination that I have not had the chance to visit before. You may be starting to see a theme with my list, since they all feature beautiful sandy beaches, however I have actually picked Thailand for a few different reasons.
Of course the beaches would be stunning, but Thailand is a place that I would love to visit with my children because of the wide range of diversity and cultural history. With so many places in Thailand to choose from, I think I would definitely consider a multi-centre holiday in this destination in order to make the most of our trip. Koh Samui definitely appeals to me because of its pristine beaches and luxury resorts, but at the same time I think Phuket would also be a great place for some family fun thanks to the water sports and theme parks on offer.
A trip to a temple would be a must do activity to learn more about the history in the area. I also know that my children would love to see some elephants. I wouldn't want to ride an elephant or go on an elephant safari, but perhaps a trip to Phuket Elephant Sanctuary would be ideal. This would allow us to see some rescued elephants being cared for, whilst watching them enjoy their surroundings at a respectable distance away. I believe this would be both educational and inspiring for all of us.
Another reason I would love to visit Thailand is the cuisine. I love food and I love trying new flavours and ingredients, so it would be the perfect opportunity to try out some of the delicious dishes available.
Photo credit: Peter Nguyen on UnsplashSingapore
Singapore is somewhere my husband and I have visited before on our honeymoon, however this was the fourth destination on our travels and by this point we were so tired that we literally spent our days sunbathing by the pool. Whilst there is absolutely nothing wrong with this and we had a really enjoyable time, I do feel as though we missed an opportunity to go exploring and head into the city to see the sights. For this reason Singapore is definitely on my travel bucket list for 2018.
We previously stayed on Sentosa Island which boasts some fantastic hotels and attractions, but I would love to return to the city with our children and show them some of the amazing architecture as well as visit Orchard Road. For some excitement and adventure we could visit Universal Studios Singapore™ and KidZania and for a more relaxing day out, then a trip to Gardens by the Bay would be a must.
Gardens by the Bay is located next to the Marina Reservoir and covers a staggering 101 hectares. Featuring a wide array of floral displays, trees, plants and unique features such as the Flower Dome, and the world's tallest indoor waterfall.
In terms of a hotel, I think I would choose a city centre hotel with an outdoor pool. There is so much to see and do in the area that I would want to concentrate more on exploring than relaxing if we were to return.
Which countries would you put on your 2018 Travel Bucket List? Have you visited any of the places I have mentioned?
Photo credit: Mo Baghdadi on Unsplash*Disclaimer - This is a collaborative post with Destination2.