7. The Himalayas
Why: “Wait!” you say -- “that’s halfway around the world!” Well, if you dream of elite mountaineering, a trip to Nepal, where Earth’s highest peaks climb more than two miles into the sky, can cost 1/10th of a journey to the Swiss Alps.
How much: Yes, a flight from the US will run somewhere in the ballpark of $800-$1,000 from New York, Washington, D.C., and even Dallas. But once you arrive in Pokhara, you can get a three-star hotel, a taxi ride, a trip to a museum, three meals, and three drinks for $28 a day. You can’t even buy a link for the band of your fancy watch in Switzerland for that price.
What to see: Europe’s cool and all, but we know what to expect on the continent. As for the Himalayas? Culture shock may be an understatement. Although given the Nepalese propensity for hospitality and warmth, everyone you meet will probably try to help you fit in.