2014 was a great year filled with travel to amazing places, but now it’s time to look ahead to 2015!  Believe it or not, narrowing this list down to only 15 locations was pretty difficult for me, but here’s my top 15 bucket list destinations for travel in 2015:

1.  KOTOR, MONTENEGRO

I’ve been dazzled by Kotor for quite some time after I saw photos of the walled city situated on it’s gorgeous bay.  In fact, the city was heavily considered as an option in my November European Off-Season Adventure, but I concluded that beautiful seaside Kotor would be better saved for a warm weather vacation.

2.  LAKE BLED, SLOVENIA

Like Montenegro, I’ve been trying to squeeze Lake Bled (and the rest of Slovenia) into a travel itinerary for the past few years.  Because of this Balkan country’s location, I foresee myself combining Slovenia into a trip with Montenegro and Croatia.

2549183058_fc5b8bdda1_z3.  SAN JUAN, PUERTO RICO

This is the only place on my list which I’ve already been to!  It’s been a while since I’ve traveled to a warm weather destination, so at some point in 2015, I foresee a beach in my future.  That said, Old San Juan offers so much more to visitors than just pretty beaches – while walking the historic city center, you’ll feel transported across the Atlantic to Spain.  Puerto Rico’s culture, history and food makes this island my favorite spot in the Caribbean.

370019682_5b784b8766_z4.  TIGER’S NEST, BHUTAN

I love hiking, so why not put my skills to the test in the Himalayas?  I’ve been drooling over pictures of the Tiger’s Nest Monastery, so hopefully I’ll be able to weave pricey Bhutan into my 2015 travel plans.

4744241983_34023bf303_z5.  BIG SUR, CALIFORNIA

Despite traveling to San Francisco and Napa in 2014, I wasn’t able to squeeze Big Sur into my itinerary.  This destination could end up being (what I consider) my relaxing getaway for 2015.  I want to rent a yurt, watch sea-lions and enjoy the sounds of the waves crashing on the cliffs.

1107899575_c3fd41e604_z

6.  IRELAND

For as many “less conventional” places I’ve traveled, I’ve not been to several “common” European vacation destinations.  After exploring France in 2014, it may be time to drink a pint (or five) in Dublin, kiss the Blarney stone and explore Skellig Michael.

Related Posts: The Ultimate Ireland Road Trip

3809191385_fe294cc802_z7.  PATAGONIA

My 2014 travel started with a January trip to wintery Banff in Alberta, Canada.  I wasn’t certain I could truly be sold on a cold weather destination, but Banff’s beauty blew me away!  Banff set the bar pretty high, but I feel confident that I would also fall for South America’s wild southern frontier, Patagonia.

14696961023_afd335a721_z8.  SEATTLE, WASHINGTON

A bustling metropolis that offers stunning natural beauty just outside the city limits? Sounds pretty amazing. I’m surprised that I haven’t made it to Seattle yet, but lucky for me, that will change in 2015.  I’ve been asked to stand up in a bestie’s wedding this July, and I can’t wait to explore the city, Washington wine country and visit Mount Rainier.

Related Post: Are the San Juan Islands the Most Underrated Destination in the Pacific Northwest?

4972189987_f8391a14f1_z9.  THE FJORDS OF NORWAY

When speaking of natural beauty, Norway tops many travelers’ lists.  Okay, so I may already have a trip to Norway planned in 2015… and, I may be leaving very soon.  Details to be revealed shortly!

Related Posts: The Perfect 3 Day Norway Itinerary, Should You Do Norway in a Nutshell in Winter?, Save Me, Scandinavia 

8237971913_bdf483eae2_z10.  NEW ZEALAND

If I was forced to choose a “favorite” travel destination, it would have to be South Africa.  Several travelers who have been to both South Africa and New Zealand have told me that the two countries have a lot of similarities.  Dramatic Landscapes?  Check.  Wine Country?  Check.  Friendly Locals?  Check.  I’m pretty much dead-set on the fact that New Zealand will be included in my 2015 travel plans.

3090205496_f1916d7560_z11.  WROCLAW, POLAND

Since the moment I left Krakow, I’ve been planning my return to Poland.  I loved Krakow – the city, the people, the food… everything!  I want to explore all of Poland, but if I were forced to choose one city, it would be Wroclaw.  I can’t wait to combine sightseeing with seeking out the city’s famous dwarfs!

Related Posts: Why I Was Wrong About Warsaw, Headed Back to the Homeland: Krakow, Poland

8125903412_b2d84ca447_z12.  ST. PETERSBURG, RUSSIA

My husband’s great aunt (who has more or less traveled everywhere in the world… twice) stands by her opinion that everyone must visit St. Petersburg before they die.  I hope to experience it soon since I’m fairly certain I’ll end up agreeing with Great Aunt Pat.

245393814_6aebeee16e_z13.  SOUTHWESTERN CHINA

No, my first trip to China won’t be to see The Great Wall or one of the country’s bustling metropolises.  Instead, it will be to the gorgeous mountains and rice terraces found in rural Southwestern China.

4182935001_46258c690d_z14.  BAGAN, MYANMAR

Aside from Southwest China, Myanmar is the next country in Asia that I intend to explore.   Although Myanmar still seems to be working out the kinks that have naturally come with opening the country to tourism, I imagine that seeing those gorgeous temples will be worth any travel mishaps that may occur.

3953195764_40aefb0b12_z15.  THE GALAPAGOS ISLANDS

This one is a no brainer for any nature lover.  I love animals and I love photographing them, so I can’t wait to experience the pristine ecosystems of the Galapagos!

There you have it – my top 15 travel destinations for 2015!  Unfortunately, it’s highly unlikely that I’ll be able to hit up all 15 of these destinations in the upcoming 12 months.  If I did, I’d probably be broke…and, with all that time away from lawyering, I’d probably also get fired from my job (so then I’d really be broke)!  That said, I intend to check several of these locations off my list in the next year and can’t wait to find out what (and where) 2015 has in store!

Have you traveled to any of these destinations?  What’s on your travel bucket list for 2015?

CC photo credits as follows: (1) Kotor, Montenegro by Mark Turner.  (2) Lake Bled courtesy of Jim Crossley. (3) Old San Juan by James Willamor. (4) Taktsang Monestery (Tiger Nest) by Bob Witlox. (5) Friends, fun and finally a waterfall by Dawn Ellner.  (6) skellig-st-michael by Hector Pastor Fernandez. (7) Patagonia Boa Semana by Ana Cotta. (8) Seattle Moon by Howard Ignatius. (9) The Fjord at Ornes by Laszlo Ilyes.  (10) Milford Sound by Paul Bica.  (11) Untitled by Piotr.  (12) Church on Spilled Blood by Fotorus.  (13) Guilin – Longsheng by Jack French. (14) Myanmar (Birmania-Burma) Bagan by Jose Javier Martin Espartosa. (15) Galapagos Islands-44 by Peri Apex