How to travel a little bit different than other people
Tell me how you travel and I tell you who you are…
There are 8 billion people in the world and almost as many possibilities to travel. Personally, I don’t like to do and see what hundreds of other people already have seen. Therefore, I choose to travel a little bit different. Let me tell you about the different means of travelling I use:
Easily my most favorite means of traveling. You get to see aspects of the country you travel to that you wouldn’t see while traveling with mass tourism. There are many different kinds of volunteering for all kinds of budgets. Some projects will not charge you to volunteer, but most projects need to, just to cover the basic costs like food and lodging. And because it is very trendy now, some projects use the opportunity to even make a decent amount of many. So research well!
Volunteering can be more rewarding than spending 2 weeks at the beach. At least for me. And in some projects, you can even spend the volunteering time at the beach (check out the „volunteering in costa rica“ post). To know what kind of volunteering you would want to do narrows down the possible projects: wildlife conservation, nature conservation, building fountains/schools etc., teaching overseas, wwoofing etc. If you need addresses, send me a message, I’ll be happy to help.
Yes, that word is not a real word, I just made that up. It sums up pretty good how I research what to see in a country I visit. Open Google, insert the country/city you are traveling to plus "what to see“ and hit enter. You will easily get a few hundred pages. Now jump to page 50 or even higher and look at the results there. These will be your destinations. And I promise you, they will not be highly touristic, but totally worth seeing.
Of course, in historic cities, there are a few landmarks from the top 3 pages I want to see as well, but the rest of the holidays, I degoogle.
Also one of my favourite ways of traveling. If you are open minded and have no problem with not having a fixed program while traveling, this is something for you.
Book your flight/train and maybe a hotel for the first night and that’s it. the rest you will plan along the way. Just see where the country takes you. If you are one minded and up for it, you will get to know many people, locals or other tourists and they will give you many ideas or even join you.
I recently discovered this. There is an agency called bbacksoon. Basically, you give them a budget, a timing and your no goes for traveling and they do the rest. You will not know what is planned until the night before you travel. That works locally in Switzerland as well as overseas. Surely there are similar agencies in other countries. I just travelled a few days in Ecuador with them and it was amazing (read more about Ecuador soon on my blog or check out travelflavour on instagram for some recent pics).
Travel couch surfing
If you are young or young at heart and don’t need your comfy mattress every night, you might give couch surfing a try. Every country in this world has Hosts, offering their couch or a bed in a spare room to guests, for free. You get to stay a few nights with a local and if he/she is up to it, you even get to spend some time with them, getting to know the local culture even better. Or if you don’t have the time to travel, you can offer your couch or spare bedroom and have couch surfers from everywhere staying with you.
Have you ever tried one of those means of traveling? What are your experiences, would you do it again? And if not, why not?
I am a swiss photographer (www.sustainable.photography), a travel, wildlife, volunteer and outdoors addict who cares about zero waste, the environment and simply our planet.
older posts ...