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A few years ago, I traveled with my mother when she — and I quote — wanted to see the Grand Canyon before she died. We flew to Las Vegas, rented a car and toured the Valley of Fire and the Hoover Dam. Once at the Grand Canyon, we were able to see quite a bit of it despite my mother’s mobility constraints — and a spectacular glass-enclosed helicopter ride allowed us to view the rest. It was a wonderful trip. I’m not certain how many times I annoyed her, but I do know that I threatened to toss her off the edge of the canyon only once, so I’d call that a successful trip.

grand canyon



grand canyon aerial view



Turns out that my mom isn’t the only senior who’s got the Grand Canyon on her bucket list. “National Parks in the West” made a recent list of the top vacations for senior travelers in 2012, put together by YMT Vacations. Here’s the full top five:

5. Ireland

4. Alaska Cruise and Train Tour

3. National Parks in the West

2. Rhine River Cruise

1. Hawaii

For all the seniors out there, do you agree with this list? What are your own must-see destinations this year (or before you die, if you tend toward the dramatic)?

For the younger set, have you ever traveled with a senior? Would you do it again? (Or are you serving time for tossing him or her over the edge of the Grand Canyon?)

Learn More About Senior Travel

– written by Jodi Thompson

6 Responses to “Top 5 Destinations for Senior Travel”

  1. Inga Smith says:

    I’m a senior and I’ve been to all of those sites, and more than once.

  2. Jean Maffia says:

    Love to go to Peru to see Macchu Picchu.

  3. Janet Pina says:

    I am fortunate to have visited 4 out of 5 Top Sites on list. Would substitute tour of British Isles for Ireland. Already did London as part of 4 week tour of Europe in 1984. London to Madrid, a wonderful trip. Explored all 48 lower states in our camper truck over a period of time, including most of the National Parks. First visited Hawaii for 25th anniversary trip, 2 islands, went back later and picked up other 2 main islands. Would gladly go back to HI again. Cruise of islands is wonderful way to see high points of what each island offers travelers. Enjoyed 2 week land and sea tour of Alaska in 1979, including Denali, Fairbanks, and White Horse Pass, concluding with cruise of inside passage. Just writng about these trips makes me want to book a trip right now!

  4. Genie says:

    These are all great places and some I’ve been lucky enough to visit already along with many more. My bucket list includes the Greek Isles, Scandanavia (specifically Denmark) and French countryside & wine country.

  5. Janet says:

    I still have Egypt, Coastal Norway, Burma, Antartica and a few return trips like the Cook Islands and Nicaragua on my list!

  6. Raymund says:

    I would highly recommend Bali, Phuket and the Philippines as travel destinations for seniors.

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