5 Travel Rules for the Explorer
I believe there are a few small things that each great explorer does when they travel outside of their hometown. These are not rules that are posted anywhere or even rules that have to be obeyed, but they are great suggestions to apply so that you can gain the greatest experience from the new place you are at.
1. Don’t eat at a chain restaurant
Avoid the temptation to eat what you are comfortable with or already enjoy. Even though many of these nationwide chains have great food, take a chance and try something different. Who knows when the next time will be you get a chance to visit this new location. A great way to learn about the city or country you are in is to eat what the locals eat! Many times it is at these places you will meet the most interesting people and get to know the area you are in.
2. Go to the local coffee or tea shop
In almost all cultures around the world, tea and coffee is widely revered and you may find some for the best drinks you have ever had there. These too are places where you can find locals at and chat with them about things you should do in the city or experiences that you shouldn’t miss.
3. Tourist vs. local
Take some time to visit the “tourist attractions” and take some time to visit the “local attractions.” For instance, if you are in Paris, go to the Eiffel tower, but also look in to a local play or show you could go to as well on another day. Balance your trip between the activities everyone does, and the activities only great explorers know about!
4. Book a different type of accommodation
Depending on your destination, look in to an Airbnb rental space. While they don’t work every time, this type of housing will give you that extra “local feel” when you wake up inside your own house and cook your own meal a time or two. Many times, your rental host will give you suggestions on what to do because they have lived in the area for some time. This option can also give you some of the best deals and even beat out many hotel chains on price.
5. Know when to take pictures and when to just enjoy the moment
While taking pictures is a big part of exploring, sometimes you have to just put the camera down and enjoy the moment. Tourists are the ones with cameras everywhere. Try to blend in and put your camera down and act like you live there!
Don’t be afraid to look into some travel agencies to help plan your trip if you haven’t ventured too far from home. Don’t let them over program your trip but use them as a resource for ideas and tentative plans. A few agencies or resources you can use are:
Wherever your travels take you, always keep an Eno Hammock close by so that you have a place to rest!