Best places for a midlife crisis
Feel a midlife crisis coming on? Whether it’s a genuine case of midlife muddle or simply a good dose of wanderlust, an off-the-beaten path adventure just might do the trick. In the recently released guide 1000 Ultimate Experiences, the experts at Lonely Planet list some top spots where you can shake things up, and perhaps even reinvent yourself.
Route 66, USA
Find your freedom by following the route of film, literary and music legends on this iconic stretch of open highway from Chicago to Santa Monica. The best way to ‘get your kicks on Route 66’? In a classic convertible, of course — or if you’re feeling daring, on a Harley.
If life seems more meandering than meaningful, there are any number of places that can inspire a spiritual epiphany. (See 8 sacred sites.) Lonely Planet’s top pick to help you find your calling? Rishikesh, located on the banks of the sacred Ganges in the foothills of the Himalaya. Made famous by the Beatles, the region is a centre of Hindu philosophy and learning and dubbed the yoga capital of the world.
Monte Carlo, Monaco
If it’s glamour you seek — and your pockets are deep — join the jet set crowd in sun-drenched Monte Carlo. Take in the beautiful people (and their yachts), try your luck at the famous casino or attend the adrenalin-fueled Monaco Grand Prix.
Round the Bend, Silverstone, England
Speaking of adrenalin, it’s never too late to seek your dreams — you, too, can become a racing driver (at least temporarily). Book a thrill package at the legendary Silverstone track, home of the British Grand Prix, and you can take your victory lap in an Aston Martin V8 Vantage.
Time for a nip and tuck or two? Cheaper prices and state-of-the art facilities combined with a chance to recuperate in privacy (and sunshine) make surgery in Phuket a popular choice among many medical travelers. Other popular destinations for facelifts (and other surgical procedures) include Manila and Kuala Lumpur.
Journey back in time, to a place so magical it seems it can only exist in a film. Described as “a rose-red city half as old as time” in a prize-winning sonnet by John William Burgon, Petra is one of the New Seven Wonders of the World. Located in the large valley from the Dead Sea to the Gulf of Aqaba, the ancient city is famous for its rose-colored, rock-cut architecture.
Sydney and Melbourne, Australia
In the centuries-old tradition of humans pitting themselves against beasts (think trophy hunting in Africa or running with the bulls in Pamplona), head to Australia if you have a desire to get up close and personal with sharks. For those with no diving experience, tank dives are available in Melbourne’s aquarium and Sydney’s oceanarium.
Badda bling! An expedition to Dubai means retail therapy gone mad. Fashion is serious business in this designer-laden, shopping-mall heaven. Just to give an example, according to some estimates no less than 25 tons of gold are on display in the city’s jewellery shop windows.