W Trail in Torres del Plaine National Park with glaciers and turquoise lake in Patagonia, Chile

Exploring the World: Your 2024 Travel Bucket List

Published: January 15, 2024

As we enter the new year, the excitement of exploring new bucket list travel destinations is in the air. Whether you’re a seasoned globetrotter or new to travelling, now is the time to check some destinations off your bucket list. Getting to Pearson Station has never been easier with UP Express. With extended hours now available, UP Express takes you to from downtown Toronto to the airport more conveniently than ever. Enjoy a comfortable, traffic-free ride to the airport before you set off on your adventure! Travelling to Pearson Airport with a group? Take advantage of the new UP Express Group Passes. The hardest part will be deciding where to go. From vibrant cities to tropical rainforests, or breathtaking views, this curated guide of bucket list travel ideas promises to make your 2024 an unforgettable year of exploration.

Bucket List Travel in Canada

Toronto, Ontario 

UP Train track with UP train approaching westbound with CN Tower in the background

Picture this: a city that has it all – from the iconic CN Tower to neighbourhoods bursting with character to large green spaces. Whether you’re a tourist or just treating yourself to a staycation, Toronto is the place to be. If you are arriving to the city via UP Express Union Station,  there are plenty of sights, restaurants, and attractions near Union Station. Then, venture north to world-class museums such as the Royal Ontario Museum or the Art Gallery of Ontario. Ready for a break? Head to the Toronto Islands for a chill day on the beach with breathtaking views of the city. For the locals looking for hidden gems, be sure to check out Kensington Market for the best thrift shops, Ossington Street for the best food scene, and Queen Street East for some local boutiques.

Vancouver Island, British Columbia

Island coast with pine trees on the coast of Vancouver Island

Escape the hustle and bustle of the mainland and take the ferry over to Vancouver Island, where the pace of life is much slower. Explore the lush rainforests of Cathedral Grove, home to the Douglas fir and red cedar trees that have stood for centuries. Nature lovers will adore the island’s diverse wildlife, from orcas in the surrounding waters to bald eagles. There’s also plenty to do and see in the City of Victoria with boutique hotels, world-class attractions, and top-notch dining. You don’t want to miss Tofino for a taste of Pacific Northwest coastal beauty. This surf town offers not only incredible waves but also hot springs and stunning vistas at the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve.

St. John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador

Costal town overlooking the water in St. Johns, Newfoundland

Prepare to be enchanted by the vibrant and picturesque St. John’s, the capital of Newfoundland and Labrador. Perched on the eastern tip of Canada, this city has a rich maritime history and a unique charm reflected in their infamous brightly coloured row houses. Take a stroll along Signal Hill for panoramic views of the Atlantic Ocean and the iconic Cabot Tower. Discover stories from the sea at The Rooms, a public cultural space with collections, exhibits and programs. And, of course, no visit to St. John’s is complete without experiencing the lively atmosphere of George Street, known for its pubs and live music.

Bucket List Travel in the United States

Oahu, Hawaii

Beach coast in Oahu, Hawaii during sunset

For those looking for the ultimate tropical escape, Oahu is the perfect destination. Head to the iconic Waikiki Beach to soak up the good vibes and sunshine. Next up, spend your day or part of the day exploring a slice of history at Pearl Harbour. Composing of five historic sites, the Pearl Harbour Visitors Center is a free attraction and the gateway into the other historic sites. Want to do some shopping? Head to Ala Moana Center to check out the world’s largest open-air shopping centre. A hike with a stunning view not to be missed, hike up Diamond Head for the best views of the Pacific Ocean. Oahu has the perfect mix of chill and thrill, it’s a must-hit spot for your travel plans this year! 

New Orleans, Louisiana

Street in New Orleans, Louisiana

Known for its soulful music, rich history, and mouth-watering cuisine, New Orleans is a city that embodies energy. Start your adventure in the French Quarter, where old meets new with a lively atmosphere, historic architecture and street performers. Immerse yourself in the jazz culture of the city by exploring the music scene on Frenchman Street. Be sure to check the dates before planning your trip as the city is also known for Mardi Gras, a late winter carnival famed for costumed parades and street parties. Indulge in the food scene by trying iconic dishes like gumbo, jambalaya, and beignets. To top off your trip, don’t forget to take a steamboat cruise along the Mississippi River for a unique perspective of the city.

Boston, Massachusetts

Historic street in Freedom Trail in Boston, Massachusetts

Step back in time by exploring the historical richness of Boston, a city that played a pivotal role in shaping the United States. Walk the Freedom Trail, a 2.5 mile path that takes you around to 16 historically significant sites, including the Massachusetts State House and Paul Revere’s House. Visit the Boston Common for a relaxing afternoon surrounded by nature in the heart of the city and the iconic Boston Public Library. For a cultural experience, explore the Museum of Fine Arts or catch a performance in the Theatre District. Boston’s culinary scene is also not to be missed, from fresh lobster rolls to traditional New England clam chowder.

International Bucket List Travel

Patagonia, Chile

W Trail in Torres del Plaine National Park with glaciers and turquoise lake in Patagonia, Chile

Ready for the adventure of a lifetime? Straddling the southern regions of Chile and Argentina, Patagonia is a haven for hikers, mountaineers, and wildlife enthusiasts. Embark on the world renowned W Trail in Torres del Plaine National Park, where you’ll be met with jagged peaks, glaciers and turquoise lakes. For a unique, “off the beaten path” experience, visit the Marble Caves, a series of natural rock formations that will be sure to take your breath away. Lastly, don’t miss seeing the penguins, with Patagonia being home to five penguin species.

Tokyo, Japan

Busy street at night in Tokyo, Japan

Tokyo, Japan’s bustling capital is one of the world’s largest cities where ancient traditions are seamlessly blended with cutting-edge technology. Start your exploration in Asakusa, where you’ll find the historic Senso-ji Temple standing in contrast to the modern skyline. Witness the iconic Shibuya Crossing, a symbol of Tokyo’s energy, and delve into the otaku culture in Akihabara. For an escape from the city, visit the Meiji Shrine and stroll through the peaceful gardens. You can’t come to Tokyo without indulging in the world-class sushi in the Tsukiji Outer Market and taking in the futuristic vibes of Odaiba. Tokyo is a city of contrasts that offers an experience for every type of traveller.

Copenhagen, Denmark

Nyhavn canal lined with colourful houses and boats in the water in Copenhagen, Denmark.

Immerse yourself in the sophisticated charm of Denmark’s capital city, Copenhagen! Begin your journey at Nyhavn, where you’ll find the iconic colourful buildings lining the canal with cozy cafés and restaurants. Explore the historic Tivoli Gardens, a historical amusement park that has welcomed visitors since 1843. Do you remember the Little Mermaid? Copenhagen is home to the iconic Little Mermaid statue, located by the waterfront. Bicycles are the preferred mode of transportation so hop on a bike and ride through the cities many parks and green spaces with the locals. Copenhagen’s commitment to sustainability, kind locals and café culture makes it a unique destination for anyone! 

El Nido, Philippines

Big Lagoon, a cove with blue water surrounded by green mountains in El Nido, Philipines

Looking for an adventure or a serene retreat? El Nido in the Philippines offers it all! The tropical paradise boasts limestone cliffs, hidden lagoons, and powdery white sand beaches against the Coral Triangle. Start your trip off snorkelling in crystal-clear waters or set out on island-hopping to discover many of the secluded coves, such as the Big Lagoon. Don’t forget to hit the town and immerse yourself into the local life. There’s plenty of markets, boutiques and local restaurants serving Filipino food and fusion. Check out the Scape Skydeck for panoramic views of the city and delicious food. Whether you want to slow down and relax or ramp up for an adventure, El Nido has something to offer for every type of traveller! 

The travel destinations to tick off your bucket list for 2024 are endless! Whether you’re seeking the serenity of nature, a vibrant city, or a staycation, these destinations offer something for everyone. With UP Express enhancing the journey to the airport with affordable fares and trains every 15 minutes, rest assured that the excitement begins long before you reach your destination.