How to Travel Without Being a Tourist

The word “tourist” can have some very big connotations around the world — some positive, and some quite negative.

There is a certain type of traveler that spends their entire vacation comparing the place they’re visiting with home, usually in a negative way. “These people don’t know how to build a house…”, “These people don’t know how to make an omelet…”, etc. They’re not really open to a new experience. What they’re really doing is trying to recreate their world at home while they’re away.

There are plenty of opportunities to have a vacation experience that won’t move you out of your cultural comfort zone too much… Disney World and cruise ships come to mind, and so does the old standby – the “staycation.” There’s nothing wrong with these types of getaways. For many people, they provide the ideal escape. Even the most adventurous mountain climber can sometimes crave the comfort of a resort hotel.

localculture2Luis Molinero / Shutterstock

Comfort vs. Adventure

Sometimes, though, we want our vacations to be more than just a respite from work. We choose to go to new places, have new experiences, and meet new people. And we want our experiences to differ from the ones we have every day. It’s hard, however, to let go of our America-centered prejudices (and there’s a reason these exist – we enjoy one of the highest standards of living in the world) and truly embrace the culture of the places we are visiting. Here are some tips for better immersing yourself in the daily routines of your destination:

keepanopenmindzeljkodan / Shutterstock

Keep an Open Mind

Just because a culture does something you’re not used to, doesn’t make it wrong. There are places where the pace of life is a lot slower than it is in America, and many Americans are of the opinion that “These people just never get anything done.” Cultural customs, traditions, and even daily life have evolved differently in different regions. Try to enjoy the differences.

PAGE 1 OF 2
SHARE ON

Advertisement

How to Make the Most of Your All-Inclusive Resort

For quite some time now it seems that all-inclusive resorts are all the rage. What’s not to like about them? You have pretty much everything sorted for you, from the kids’ activities to the quality fine-dining restaurants, and varied entertainment. It’s really focused on customers who don’t want to worry about any travel planning.

The 11 Best Episodes of Bourdain’s Parts Unknown

Since the untimely passing of Anthony Bourdain in June 2018, people in the food industry, as well as those who watch from the sidelines and appreciate his cooking, have been involved in a discussion about his legacy. His show Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown, which ran on CNN for five years, is a treasure trove of his best and most adventurous eating moments. Here are some of the best episodes that are definitely worth a re-watch.

Martial Arts Around the World

Human beings knew how to defend themselves long before guns, tanks, or military helicopters were created and used in wars. Every civilization developed some sort of martial art in the past and they’re now part of their culture.