Minnesotans Erica and Matt Chua quit their jobs and set off in 2010 for a trip around the world and didn’t return until mid-2013, when they had visited all seven continents. Matt is currently writing a guidebook, Days to Travel, about experiencing the best of the world on limited time and has launched the website daystotravel.com.
North Korea: “Visit now: Its larger-than-life monuments and unique global perspective will likely crumble quickly after the regime falls. It’s surprisingly easy to visit on government-approved tours.”
Myanmar: “Just a few years ago, Myanmar was closed like North Korea. It’s worthy of a visit now because it is rapidly changing as it opens up to foreign tourists and investment. It is Southeast Asia of ages past, before 7-Elevens and motorcycles took over.”
China: “More than two decades after opening up, China is more modern than much of the USA. The development is not without its drawbacks, but getting out of the typical tourist- and pollution-inundated cities of Beijing and Xi’an reveals a China that will surprise most Americans.”
Nepal: “The reason to visit Nepal is simple: It’s a lot of work to hike at altitude and, honestly, you’re not getting any younger. Kathmandu is a surprisingly nice city with historical sights, but the Nepal to see is high in the mountains. No mountain range in the world can rival the Himalayas.”
Antarctica: “Antarctica is changing. Get there now for wildlife scenes that are nowhere else, from curious whales, dolphins, and seals to the waddling penguins. Best of all, this trip is readily accessible for all ages as much of the experience is on a cruise ship or Zodiac boat.”