The Ultimate 2015 Travel Bucket List – 52 Adventures in 52 Weeks

Plan your whole year of travel with Random Vacay’s ultimate 2015 travel calendar. There’s 52 different destinations and events, that’s more than enough ideas to journey to the most exotic destinations on Earth.

January

January is a month for exploring exotic destinations and doing things a little differently.

2 Destinations

  • New Zealand – Journey to Middle Earth and explore the astonishing beauty of New Zealand, the country enhanced by long hours of sunlight and the year’s best weather.
The Blue Lake in New Zealand. Don't come in winter as you'll need an axe to get through the ice...

The Blue Lake in New Zealand. Don’t come in winter as you’ll need an axe to get through the ice… (credit)

  • Goa – Hit the beaches of Goa, India, and jump headlong into the vibrant mix of sandy paradise, all-night partying, and insatiably fresh seafood curries.

2 Dates

  • 31st December – 11th January – BPM Festival, Mexico – Kick the year off in style by dancing on the Playa del Carmen beach to the planet’s best electronic music DJs. Expect gigs in jungle clearings, Colombian marching powder delivered to your hotel room, and 10 days without sleep.
  • 7th – 14th – Benin Voodoo Festival – Feel the spooky spirituality and eerie atmosphere as the world’s greatest voodoo chiefs convene in Ouidah, Benin. This annual celebration at the home of voodoo culture is as bizarre as they come.

February

By February it’s time to revert to party mode with some of the world’s most memorable festivities taking place.

2 Destinations

  • Snowboarding – Dust off the snowboard and hit the slopes around the Alps in Europe or Alberta, Canada.
  • Morocco is wonderful in February. The cities aren’t overrun with tourists, the Sahara desert has cooled to bearable temperatures, and there is still snow on the Atlas Mountains.
Fes, the world's largest walled city isn't for fragile. But it's wonderfully charming.

Fes in Morocco: The world’s largest walled city isn’t for fragile. But it’s wonderfully charming. (credit)

3 Dates

  • 6th – National Bob Marley Public Holiday in Jamaica – For most of the year, Jamaica is a place of getting stoned and hitting impromptu reggae parties on the streets. That’s intensified on Bob Marley day. Visit his birthplace for extra revelry.
Bob Marley's former house. The best place to be on National Bob Marley Day.

Bob Marley’s former house. The best place to be on National Bob Marley Day. (credit)

  • 13th – 17th – Brazil’s Carnivals – Hit Brazil and party like a maniac during carnival season. Rio is the most famous, but Salvador in the northeast is home to the world’s largest carnival and street party. Every town and village has its own fiesta, so come for at least a week and soak up the vibe in different destinations.
What's not to like about Brazil during carnival time...?

What’s not to like about Brazil during carnival time…? (credit)

  • 17th – Mardi Gras, New Orleans – Another carnival of parades, Fat Tuesday, colors, and getting wasted at 10am.

March

Winter might be getting too much so escape for some early summer heat in march.

2 Destinations

  • The Caribbean Islands are now in low season, which means cheaper prices and less footprints on the beach. Check out Turks and Caicos on this A-Z of the world’s best beaches to get an idea.
March is the time to hit Turks beach...

March is the time to hit Turks beach…

  • Southeast Asia – It might be the hottest time of year but Southeast Asia is a great bet in March. You’re missing the college vacation months and the rain has ended, so expect to soak up a relaxed atmosphere and easy pace.

3 Dates

  • 5thYanshuei Beehive Fireworks, TaiwanDon the full body armor and participate in a firework fight. Once a year, the mad Taiwanese charge towards a wall of exploding rockets and somebody always gets seriously burnt. Still, if you’re looking for genuine adrenalin…
  • 6th – Holi Festival, India – This Holi Indian paint festivals has been taken around the world but the original is still the best. At the culmination of Holi, locals parade through the streets throwing powdered paint at everything, including the cows. It’s India at it’s most vibrant best.
  • 17th – St Paddy’s Day in Dublin – You’ve probably already party once a year to celebrate St Paddys. Imagine how insane that party is going to be if you’re at the Guinness Brewery in Dublin, the Irish capital.
Temple bar...the epicenter of Dublin's backpacker revelry.

Temple bar…the epicenter of Dublin’s backpacker revelry. (credit)

April

April could go in many directions. Enchantment perhaps? Or partying?

2 Destinations

  • Japan – It’s cherry blossom season in Japan and the streets are consumed by elegant soft colors. Winter has ended as there’s added enthusiasm on the streets, particularly in Tokyo, one of our 11 places to see before you die.
  • Lebanon – Immense Roman ruins, charming cedar forests, evocative hilltop towns, dazzling Beirut…Lebanon has much to offer and it’s perfectly safe, despite it’s precarious Middle Eastern location. April is the best time to visit.
The ruins of Balback in Lebanon.

The ruins of Balback in Lebanon. #RV

2 Dates

  • 13th – 15th – Songkran Water Festival, Thailand – Part water fight and part street riot, the Thai New Year is celebrated by running street battles between gangs of supersoaker wielding locals. You can’t avoid it as all foreigners are singled out for double punishment.
Nobody is safe when the water is flying...

Nobody is safe when the water is flying… (credit)

  • 27th – Dutch King’s Day – Put on an orange t-shirt and join the whole Dutch population as they celebrate the annual King’s Day. Amsterdam is always a good party, but on King’s Day the street revelry reaches stratospheric levels.

May

May is a month for exotic once in a lifetime destinations and experiences.

2 Destinations

  • Vanuatu – How does idyllic Pacific island beach paradise sound? But that’s not all. Every Saturday in May sees islanders dive off wooden platforms with vines tied to their ankles. It’s was the first ever form of bungee jumping, except the vines can’t propel you back skyward, they merely slow down the crash.
australian-desert

Exploring a small area of Australia’s vast desert landscape. #RV

  • Australia‘s climatic variations are at their most subdued in May. It’s cool enough to explore the desert and West Coast, still warm and welcoming in Sydney, and dry season along the Great Barrier Reef.

2 Dates

  • 27th April – 3rd May – AfrikaBurn, South Africa – You may have heard of Burning Man, well AfrikaBurn celebrates its eighth regional incarnation this year in the Tankwa Karoo Desert. If you don’t know Burning Man, then think naked people on acid, immense art pieces covering the desert, a concept of no money, and seven days of riotous good fun.
Freedom of expression is part of the deal when you head to Burning Man or Afrikaburn.

Freedom of expression is part of the deal when you head to Burning Man or Afrikaburn.

  • 13th – 24th – Cannes Film Festival, France – Not only is Cannes a showing of the world’s best cinematography, it’s an immersion in the luxuriant excess of the French Riviera. You’ll need a couple of credit cards to get involved as this is a place for opulent attitudes in lavish surroundings.

June

The summer has landed! Let’s party!

The Swiss landscape highlights the colors of summer. #RV

The Swiss landscape highlights the colors of summer. #RV

2 Destinations

  • Ibiza – The best time to visit the famed white island of Ibiza is early June when each club hosts its own extravagant 24hour plus opening party.
  • India – Traveling to India has always been hindered by having to apply for a visa in advance. That all changes in June as the country introduces an e-visa on arrival system. It’s not the best time weather wise but this bureaucratic change means there’s no excuses.

2 Dates

  • 22nd – Summer solstice in St Petersburg – Discover the feeling of 24 hour daylight and join the street festivities in charming St Petersburg, the northern Russian city a perfect place to celebrate the summer solstice.
  • 24th – 28th – Glastonbury Music Festival – Get wasted and explore Glastonbury, the 200,000 capacity British festival that has just about everything that’s cool about a music festival. It’s one of Random Vacay’s picks for 2015 music festivals.
Take a flag to Glastonbury because you'll never find your mates when there's 200,000 people around

Take a flag to Glastonbury because you’ll never find your mates when there’s 200,000 people around. (credit)

 July

As the whole of the northern hemisphere starts to frolic in the sun, there’s loads of random events to get involved with.

2 Destinations

  • Eurorail trip – For a first time solo adventure there’s little more enchanting than a summer rail journey across Europe. It’s going to test your wallet, but July brings millions of similarly intrepid young people to Europe, meaning nonstop partying in the continent’s famous cities.
  • Iceland is seriously cold for most of the year. So visit in July when clear skies and near 24 hour sunshine supplement the exploding geysers and dramatic fjords. Check out 11 places to see before you die to visualize the beauty of this island.

3 Dates

  • 3rd – 4thWife Carrying World Championship, Finland Another bizarre sporting event you need to know about is Wife Carrying. Men carry their spouse over a grueling mud course, aiming to win their wife’s bodyweight in beer.
Dropping your wife in the water obstacle is not advisable. Another competitors might pick her up.

Dropping your wife in the water obstacle is not advisable. Another competitors might pick her up. (credit)

  • 6th – 14th – Running with the Bulls in Spain – Grow some balls and run through the streets of Pamplona with some crazy horned beasts chasing after you. It’s a whole week of festivities, sangria, and the occasional tourist getting mauled.
  • 15th – 18th – Eskimo-Indian Olympics, Alaska – These annual Inuit games feature such traditional sports as ear pulling, the Seal Hop, and the Walrus Blanket Toss. All of which make for great entertainment in Fairbanks, Alaska.
We're not quite sure how to train for the Eskimo ear pull...

We’re not quite sure how to train for the Eskimo ear pull… (credit)

August

You’ve probably got some summer time off so the world is your oyster.

2 Destinations

  • Bhutan – Tiny mountainous Bhutan has arguably the most completely intact ancient culture on the planet. You’ll have to visit on a government approved tour, but that’s to prevent any of your Western influences rubbing off on local traditions.
Just part of everyday life in Bhutan...

Just part of everyday life in Bhutan… (credit)

  • Peru and the South American Smile – The heart of the dry season makes for an idyllic journey to Peru and Machu Pichu. In fact, the whole trail through the Andes is excellent in August, including Bolivia, Ecuador, and Colombia.

3 Dates

  • 9th – Turkmenistan Melon Day – It’s national day of the melon in Turkmenistan, the whole country getting a day off work to celebrate their obsession with the immense fruit – just one reason why Turkmenistan is the most mental country on the planet.
  • 15th – Elvis Midnight Vigil – Admire the spectacular sight of 100,000 Elvis impersonators as they walk through the streets of Graceland, performing a midnight vigil as their annual ode to the king of rock and roll.
  • 26th – La Tomatina, Spain – Join the world’s largest food fight and get pelted by 120 tones of tomatoes at La Tomatina, the 90 minutes of madness preceded by climbing up a greased pole in the village of Bunol, Spain.
Yes, La Tomatina isn't fictional...

Yes, La Tomatina isn’t fictional… (credit)

September

A great month for intrepid travel and discovering traditional celebrations around the world.

2 Destinations

  • Nepal – The Nepalese mountains will have come out of the monsoon but the tourists won’t have arrived just yet, making September the perfect time for a Himalayan trekking vacation.
A stop on the Annapurna trekking circuit in Nepal.

A stop on the Annapurna trekking circuit in Nepal. (credit)

  • China – Tibetan mountains, southern beaches, charming ancient cities, lost rural kingdoms…September is just about the only month – weather wise – when you can visit China and get to experience its complete diversity.

2 Dates

The annual Reed Dance ceremony in Swaziland.

The annual Reed Dance ceremony in Swaziland.

  • 24th – Festival of the Virgin of Mercy, Barcelona – Barcelona is proud of its individualism and always enjoys a party. The four days around the 24th form the city’s chief celebration, with street festivities, endless art, and a mix of ancient tradition and cocktails of beach terraces.

October

A month for easy to reach sunshine or journeying to the desert.

2 Destinations

  • Botswana / Namibia – These wild and rugged countries offers some of the planet’s most surreal natural experiences, including 100,000 elephants charging through Chobe National Park, camping next to wild lions in the Kalahari, and sandboarding down the world’s highest sound dune. This dry season month is ideal.
Each waterway in Botswana's Okavango Delta swarms with hippos and elephants.

Each waterway in Botswana’s Okavango Delta swarms with hippos and elephants. (credit)

  • Southern Europe – By October the crowds will have dispersed yet the sultry summer evenings stay in place. In particular, try Lisbon, Madrid, Istanbul, Venice, or Rome.

2 Dates

  • 1st – International Festival of the Sahara, Touz, Tunisia – There’s a few indigenous Saharan festivals throughout the year but traveling to the world’s biggest desert is usually tricky. This one in Tunisia is the most accessible, and comes complete with Bedouin camel racing and mass belly dancing. Here’s a few more deserts to think about in 2015…
  • 17th – 26th – Fantasy Fest, Florida – Prepare some vibrant costumes and get involved in Fantasy Fest, a 10 day offering of reverie and revelry.

November

It’s getting cold and winter is setting in. So lets lighten the mood with your vacation.

2 Destinations

  • Iran – Don’t worry about suicide bombs and terrorists, that’s all media invented hype. Iran is safe, welcoming, and hypnotically beautiful. Check out Jefferson Taylor’s guide on how to get the most from the country.
  • The Philippines – How much more chilled can you get than thousands of islands, swaying palm trees, and beaches without footprints. Oh wait, the local rum is excellent as well.
EL Nido, in the Philippines, is the jumping off point for hundreds of deserted islets

EL Nido, in the Philippines, is the jumping off point for hundreds of deserted islets. (credit)

2 Dates

  • TBA (a saturday in November) – UK Rock Paper Scissors Championship – Hosted in a London pub with a roaring drunk atmosphere, you can participate and attempt to be crowned  UK champion of rock, paper, scissors. Some participants are deadly serious. Others get ridiculously drunk and blag it.
  • 23rd – 27th – Cannabis Cup, Amsterdam – Five days of stoners getting stoned and celebrating the best weed on the planet. There’s not much more to say, except for…if you can’t roll then don’t turn up.
Probably Amsterdam's most famous coffee shop - The Bulldog.

Probably Amsterdam’s most famous coffee shop – The Bulldog. (credit)

December

Time to plan 2016? No, not just yet. Let’s check out a few final 2015 festivities.

2 Destinations

  • Arctic Circle – Experience the eerie tranquility of complete darkness by traveling to the northern reaches of Sweden and Finland. The sun never comes up, but who cares when the local transport is either a snowmobile or a team of huskies, and every house has its own sauna amidst the snow.
Drinking vodka is an essential coping mechanism for the snow and saunas of Finland.

Drinking vodka is an essential coping mechanism for the snow and saunas of Finland. (credit)

  • Central America – Dip down to Belize and Nicaragua for some dazzling sunshine and marine exploration.

2 Dates

  • 25th – Weird Christmas Celebrations – Screw the family! Do something unique at Christmas like trying to burn a goat in Sweden or roller skate to mass in Venezuela. Try here for the weirdest Christmas celebrations.
  • 31st – Anywhere – It’s New Year’s Eve baby! Let’s celebrate 2015 and remember all the unique experiences as you journeyed to the most random destinations on earth.

Featured image credit / flickr