Being a frequent traveller, I make many mistakes on my travels and I learn from them, too. Now that I am a more experienced traveller, I am more aware of certain things that normally happen during a trip. I believe travel costs a lot – money, time and energy. Thus, it’s important that we make the most of each travel experience. So how do we do it?
There are ‘smarter’ ways to travel that every traveller should know! The first thing that you should have in your mind is that you don’t need to do what others are doing. You can do your own thing and be perfectly happy, which means you can choose your own itinerary, skip places that you want to, eat at restaurants that nobody has recommended and still have an enriching trip at the end of the day.
SO WHAT EXACTLY SHOULD YOU KNOW AS A TRAVELLER?
1/ Every beautiful site looks more beautiful in the mellow sunlight – I have usually seen people hogging a site between 10 am to 3 pm when the sun is scorching like mad. I’d like to admit that even I am one of them sometimes. Although I realise (as a photographer) that everything (landscapes, monuments, markets and people) looks more appealing in the mild sunlight, I tend to start my day when the sun has ascended high. Sightseeing in the harsh sun is more of a task than a joy. So, start your day around 6 am. Divide your sightseeing in two parts – morning and late afternoon. Chill out at a nice café after 11 am or you can return to your hotel and relax in your room, have lunch, talk to your fellow travellers, read a book, listen to some good music and then set out again in the evening around 3:30 pm.
2/ Disappointment is part of travel – Not everything is supposed to be rosy on your trip. So, accept the flow of events as they come. Don’t blame yourself or others for anything that goes wrong. Just like life, travel is unpredictable. One really doesn’t know what to expect from a place – it may be great or a total disaster. So, travel with an open mind.
Also read My 5 Worst Travel Experiences So Far
3/ Lesser-known places are usually more inviting – It’s not just me, but there are many travellers who have found better experiences and more natural beauty in lesser-known places. It goes without saying that places that are popular among tourists have got some significance, however, that doesn’t mean that the places that have not been discovered are no good. In fact, there are quite a few benefits of travelling in such places – they are beautiful, less crowded, peaceful, and more affordable.
4/ Budget travel doesn’t mean filthy hotel rooms – Most travellers presume that if you are tight on budget, you have no option but to pick a dirty room to stay. That’s not always true. You can actually find a nice, comfy and a clean place to stay on a low price, too. All you need to have is a little bit of patience and research skills. I am a budget traveller myself, but I make sure that I get a decent place to stay.
5/ Being spontaneous is not always a bad idea – Although it’s recommended to plan things ahead and be well-researched, spontaneity can make your trip more interesting and memorable. So, always be ready to play around with different ideas on your travels. Perhaps you never planned to visit a certain region, but somebody mentioned it to you and now you feel intrigued about it. Go ahead and change your plan!
6/ Studying maps is a good practice – I have learnt this very important lesson lately that studying your destination geographically saves you a lot of time, energy and money. When you understand your destination from coast to coast, you are more confident about the distances, you can make better decisions with your transport and you won’t need to ask too many questions from anybody. For instance, there wouldn’t be such moments when you ask in wonderment, “Oh, I didn’t know it would be that far and it would cost me so much!”
7/ Photographs are the most precious souvenirs that you can ever bring home – Most people tend to get irritated by too much of photography. They want to just soak in the atmosphere, enjoy the vibe and not bother about snapping photos. But, remember that it’s the collection of photos that help you relive your precious moments again and again.
8/ It’s not always necessary to do what your companions want to do – If your companions want to sleep in, you can still wake up early to watch the sunrise. You don’t have to do everything together to enjoy your trip. If you like talking to locals, exploring the markets or casual strolling, you can set out alone for some time and join your companions later.
Also read Solo Travel vs Family Holiday
9/ To have preconceived notions about a place is the worst thing a traveller can ever do – This one is quite similar to point 2, but I want to stress more on the “open-mindedness” part here. Never ever travel to a place with preconceived ideas. Allow the place to surprise you. Different people have different opinions about places, but you don’t have to tune your mood or inclination according to what others have to say, right? I’d advise you to turn a deaf ear to what naysayers have to blabber and go wherever you want to go!
10/ Postponing your travel plans too often is a sin – Most people desire to travel as much as others do, but they fail to have the determination that others have. If you want to travel often, stick to your travel plans! Let nothing compel you to postpone your travel plans. Of course, there are situations when you are genuinely helpless and you have no option but to forget about travelling. But, don’t let that happen again and again.
Also read 7 Excuses To Travel Often
What have you learnt from your travels?
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