Travel Challenge: My 10 favourite photos

Thank you again to Angela at Suitcase Travel for inviting me to participate in the Travel Challenge, where I shared 10 of my favourite photos from around the world, over the course of 10 days. Many readers successfully identified the featured destinations, while a few were more obscure. Here’s a recap!

Jump ahead…

Day 1 | Day 2 | Day 3 | Day 4 | Day 5 | Day 6 | Day 7 | Day 8 | Day 9 | Day 10

Day 1 – Alcatraz Island, San Francisco

This view of Alcatraz Island, set on a backdrop of the San Francisco coast, was captured on our boat tour to the infamous island best known for housing a federal prison from 1934 until 1963. I was surprised at how much I enjoyed the audio tour of Alcatraz, and would recommend it for your itinerary if you ever find yourself in the Bay Area.

Day 2 – Maras Salineras, Sacred Valley

These striking salt ponds are set in Maras, a town north of Cusco, which we visited during our tour through the Sacred Valley in Peru. Past visitors were able to walk right onto the ponds, but they have now been barricaded off — leaving only a small viewing platform as the vantage point for those coveted Instagram photos.

Day 3 – Roman Forum, Rome

This one was easy to identify — a literal piece of history set in central Rome, none other than the Roman Forum as seen from Palatine Hill. We were able to visit on our first day in the Italian capital, as we had landed right on time for Free Sunday, when cultural sites run by the state offer complimentary admission.

Day 4 – Lake Bunyonyi, Uganda

Set in southwestern Uganda near its border with Rwanda, Lake Bunyonyi is a gorgeous freshwater lake that we had the chance to admire while staying at Arcadia Lodges. This was a much appreciated reprieve following our treacherous gorilla trekking excursion in Bwindi Impenetrable Forest.

Day 5 – Byodo-In Temple, Honolulu

It looks like a scene in Japan, but this photo was taken in O’ahu, Hawaii. The Byodo-In Temple is a replica of a 900 year old Buddhist temple in Uji, Japan, located in Valley of the Temples Memorial Park and dedicated in 1968 to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the first Japanese immigrants arriving in Hawaii.

Day 6 – Yoho National Park, British Columbia

This epic view was found while hiking the Iceline Trail in Yoho National Park, featuring dramatic vistas over Yoho Valley and a stretch that runs alongside Emerald Glacier. While Banff gets a lot of attention, Yoho in neighbouring British Columbia is a lesser known gem that is well worth the visit.

Day 7 – Trang An, Ninh Binh

Ninh Binh, Vietnam was the last place we travelled internationally pre-pandemic. I still dream about our day riding a rowboat through Trang An, a scenic landscape complex made up of a wide river surrounded by massive limestone karsts and evergreen jungles. This photo highlights “Skull Island” as shown in the 2017 reboot of the King Kong movie franchise.

Day 8 – Magnificent Mile, Chicago

This view of the nicest street in the Windy City was seen from the Riverwalk while we waited to board a Chicago Architecture Cruise. Magnificent Mile is the upscale section of Michigan Avenue, extending from Chicago River to Oak Street in the Near North Side, dotted with grand skyscrapers including many of the city’s greatest architectural landmarks.

Day 9 – Elephant Nature Park, Chiang Mai

We met Lucky and her mahout at Elephant Nature Park located just outside of Chiang Mai, Thailand. Lucky is one of the older females in the sanctuary, brought there after being rescued from the circus industry where she had been abused for years and eventually became blind. Elephant Nature Park, along with its partners via the Saddle Off program, continues to care for over 80 rescued Asian elephants from around Thailand.

Day 10 – Barcelona, Spain

This sweeping view overlooking the city of Barcelona was seen from atop the towers at La Sagrada Familia. In the distance, you can spot Montjuïc Castle, an old military fortress dating back to 1640. Also visible is the Montjuïc Communications Tower, which was built for the Spanish telecommunications company Telefónica to transmit coverage of the 1992 Summer Olympic Games.

Coincidentally, the conclusion of my Travel Challenge lands on New Year Day. Happy 2021! Here’s hoping that we will all have 10 new travel photos to share at the end of this year. 🥂