We all have those holidays when we pick an all-inclusive hotel and sit by the pool most of the time sipping a cocktail and watching the world go by. However, every now and then we need to travel to explore more of the world that surrounds us. Whether you are inspired by the natural beauty, cultures, or people, there are several ways you can have more advantage and experience more than simply meeting the hotel staff. Below you’ll find a few tips on how to plan a trip that will change your perspectives and potentially your life.
Take Your Home With You
Image via Eugene Quek
You might think it is silly to take your home on a holiday, but it is a great way of traveling. Whether you are hiring an RV for the trip or a trailer tent, you will be able to adjust your itinerary and spend as much time at a location as you want. In case you are looking for more freedom than booking a hotel allows you to have, you can get a map of all campsites on your route and stop whenever you get tired or the sun sets. You can stay in comfort, and avoid sticking to a strict schedule that can make even the best holidays boring.
Off the Beaten Path
If you want to see the true colors of the country you are visiting, or become a full-time traveler, the first thing you must learn is avoiding tourist attractions and resorts. They will not represent what the country is about, only the image the tourism board or the government would like you to see. To really connect with people and learn about their values, lifestyle, and customs, you should choose small places to stay. Whether you prefer small fishing villages or rural industrial towns, you will find a place that will capture your heart and imagination.
If you would rather connect with nature than people, you can start shopping for Coleman tents right now and take them with you on your next adventure. Taking advantage of public transport deals and tourist cards can save you a lot of money, and help you connect with the culture as well. You can print out a list of local campsites and stop wherever you feel like, so you can go hiking, fishing, boating, and even try horseback riding on the shores. Camping is a great way of exploring a country and staying on budget at the same time.
To allow yourself a bit more comfort than camping or RV would, you can book an AirBnB accommodation in a small town or big city. You can stay with locals and benefit from their insider tips on where to eat, what to see, and how to find quality entertainment. Without the salespeople of tourism agencies turning up at your doorstep, you can avoid the distractions and find places truly worth visiting during your stay. If you are lucky with your hosts, you might even be invited to local parties or outings, so you can experience local life.
Image via Christopher Sardegna
There’s something magical about sitting back on the train and watching the landscape change. No matter if you would like to explore Europe on the train or the vast desert, you will find picturesque scenes you wouldn’t see otherwise. Traveling by train in India, for example, is a life-changing experience, but the best option if you would like to cover vast distances in a short period of time. Book a sleeping cabin and you can be in a new magical city every day.
In case you would like to stay for longer and see everything the country has to offer, you might consider volunteering abroad. The good news is that you only have to save up for your plane tickets, and you will get the food and accommodation at your location. Whether you would like to help disadvantaged communities or do some research, you will have a great chance of finding out more about the population than any other way. You will also be likely to make local and international friends who can help you find attractions and cultural sites you are really interested in.
For many people, visiting distant countries remains a dream, as they can’t afford the price of plane tickets. The good news is that if you have English teaching certification, you can become a teacher anywhere in the world. You should find jobs abroad that pay for your accommodation and your training, as well as your travel. You will not only earn money but also connect with locals and have enough time to explore the country.
Image via Christoph Bengtsson Lissalde
If nature makes your heart skip a beat, and would like to explore some of the rarest and most endangered species of the world, you can also sign up for wildlife project volunteering opportunities. Choose your location and write a great motivational letter that will tell the organization about your passion for wildlife and preservation. You will get your accommodation for free, and take part in interesting research projects. Some organizations will even cover the cost of your language courses.
Hiking or Biking
In case traveling in comfort is not your first priority, or you would like to set yourself a challenge, you can arrange a hiking or biking trip across the country. While this solution is not for those who haven’t trained for the trip before or aren’t on top of their fitness routines, it will allow you to see the world from a different perspective and explore nature and communities in a brand new way.
The traditional way of traveling among 20-somethings is still backpacking, and you can save a lot of money by planning your tour booking youth hostels and cheap accommodation. Consider the safety of the country before you start off, and start learning the language weeks before you set off, so you can get yourself understood even in the most remote areas you are visiting.
Summer Road Trips on a Motorbike
When the weather is nice in Europe you can rent a motorbike at your destination and explore the coastline, the hills, and the small villages unreachable by car. You will be able to see much more of the country and cover longer distances if you rent a bike. You will, however, need an international motorbike license and adequate insurance. Some companies will have a minimum age limit for riders and ask for a large deposit when you rent the vehicle.
Hire a Car
To stay in comfort and remain flexible at the same time, you might want to hire a small economy car at your destination, too. You will be able to keep your luggage with you all the time and stop whenever you want, instead of relying on taxis, public transport, or transfer companies. Make sure that you have a satellite navigation system that covers your destination, so you can find your way around the unknown.
Get Invited by Locals
If you are good at making friends, you can take advantage of your friends’ hospitality and invite them back to your place. Whether you would like to stay in Australia or Spain, you might be able to use one of your friends’ villas or apartments. Save money on your accommodation and exchange your home with your friends around the world.
No matter if you would like to save money on your accommodation or simply engage with the culture and traditions of the country you are visiting, these ways of exploring will help you.