Sleeping on a lumpy twin bunk bed in a European hostel, attending a Vegas foam party, and going barefoot at an outdoor music festival—when you’re a 20-something, these types of adventures usually get the green light. Once you hit the big 3-0, though, your travel game will probably change. Sure, you can be that one “experienced” partier wearing a glow stick necklace at Burning Man. But we would lovingly suggest you get that out of your system now. Other travel activities are appropriate at any age, but it’s still pretty cool to accomplish them at least once before your 401K plan ranks higher than your travel fund. In no particular order, here are 30 travel adventures around the U.S. we think you should have before you turn 30:
- Run a Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon
Strap on a new pair of running shoes and collect some serious marathon bling at a Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon! These events take place across the country, in cities like San Diego; Washington, D.C.; and Las Vegas. Run the one in Sin City before you turn 30—you can hit up the club afterward instead of retreating to an ice bath.
- Attend Coachella
In your 20s, a few days in the desert wearing flower crowns and short shorts and discovering new indie bands is fun. At a certain point, you may long for musical events with assigned seating and less free-flowing inhibition. Visit the festival before you turn 30, when you will no longer recognize the band list so it may as well be a Stefon sketch on SNL (“The newest Coachella lineup has everything: Haunted Tornado, Zombie Cummerbund, Time Traveling Squirrels, and Cyclops Lollipops.”).
- Climb Half Dome
Yosemite National Park is renowned for its hiking, and the piece de resistance is Half Dome. Reserved for fit and experienced hikers, climbing this monster with youth on your side is a wise decision. Even if you go on to accomplish the feat many times in years to come, it makes for a pretty special memory in your 20s!
- Eat Rocky Mountain Oysters at Testy Fest
While you’re riding the last gasp of your teenage invincibility, try eating something way out of your comfort zone. Rock Mountain Oysters, for one. If you need some moral support, the folks at Testy Fest in Clinton, MT are happy to supply it (along with a side of ranch).
- Race an Exotic Car at the Auto Club Speedway of California
If there was ever a time to speed around a track behind the wheel of a Ferrari or Lamborghini (aside from when you’ve just won the lottery), it would be before you find yourself parking a minivan in the garage. Do 24 laps at the Auto Club Speedway of California in Southern California, or test an exotic car in Vegas.
What’s on your travel bucket list?
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