Instantly Optimize Travel – 16 Ways To Make The Most Of Every Trip
July 14, 2016
Here is an amazing checklist of 16 ideas to help you get the best out of any travel experience.
Do you want to make the most of your holiday or vacation? Are you new to travel and want to experience everything a city has to offer?
It is easy to get overwhelmed with locations, activities, and advice on the “right” way to travel. Travel experiences are so personal to your interests. What is one person’s dream vacation is a nightmare for another traveller. So instead of telling you where to go and what to do, I have created this list of ideas that can work with any style of travel. The idea is simply exposing you to a wide range of experiences to enhance your adventure.
Take public transport – Public transport is about observation - a suburb you wouldn’t have otherwise passed through, a local character, catching sight of a second-hand bookshop you could never find online.
Take a cheesy tourist photo – Don’t be shy - do it. Take that photo to commemorate the moment. Now put the camera away and enjoy the sights and sounds around you.
Learn the language – Just a few words, even local slang, will teach you things about a location and help locals open up to you.
Find a free community event or festival – If you are in town for a local occasion, celebrate like you live there - wander, eat and observe.
Challenge yourself – Choose something that makes you a little uncomfortable. It might be a foreign food or an adventure activity but choose something that pushes you outside of your comfort zone just a little.
Strike up a conversation – Talk to a local or expat. Ask simple questions and listen to their responses. Discover the big and the small differences and similarities. This is a great way to see another side of any location.
What is the city famous for? – Is it a sports team? A beer? A landmark? Make sure you experience this one iconic thing. (I lived in Vancouver for a year and never saw an ice hockey game. Shame on me!)
Eat the local speciality – Choose a restaurant where locals eat and try something specific to the area.
Send a postcard - Either to a loved one or to yourself. A little note and perfect picture preserve the memories forever.
Be spontaneous – Give yourself a day with no specific plan. Get lost exploring a neighbourhood. Eat when you wander past a restaurant. Stop when inspired. See a little of the city slow travel style.
Pay it forward – You could give someone a compliment, help an old lady with her shopping, volunteer, smile. Do something to give your culture and travellers everywhere a good name.
Try different categories - Try and do an activity in at least three different categories. Animals, history, entertainment, outdoors, traditional culture, nightlife, a day trip out of the city, something NOT touristy, shopping, adventure activity or landmark.
Keep a journal – Taking a minute to record your experiences, whether writing, sketching or scrapbooking, will consolidate the little detail you experience in a place.
Read a book based in that city – If you’re not a reader try a local movie or listen to local music but do something to sink into and be inspired by the local world view.
Shop - Not from a gift shop - get a little something from a local establishment or market. You put dollars into the local economy and have an authentic keepsake to remember your trip.
Learn something new - New skills and knowledge will last a lifetime. Learn something, whether it’s a visit to a museum or a local cooking class, to expand your knowledge.
Think of this as a kind of scavenger hunt that you can apply to any trip. A way to see a little more without all the stress. Print off a copy or keep it on your phone and try and put a tick next to each item as you explore. Get all 16 and you are sure to have had a diverse experience and a deeper appreciation for the location you have been visiting.