When I first arrived to New Zealand I met a girl from Finland whom I hit it off with immediately. After hanging out for a few hours, she apologized for acting a little weird. “What do you mean”, I asked. “Well I just finished this 10-day silent Vipassana meditation course yesterday and it feels strange to be back in the real world. “10 days of silence, that sounds horrible, I can’t even imagine, tell me more,” I urged. “It’s hard to explain and I can’t even begin to describe it although I will say it was the hardest thing I’ve ever done but the most rewarding experience of my life, everyone should experience it at least once in their lifetime.” She left it at that so I made a mental note to look it up upon my return home.
When I decided to take a 7-month trip I was terrified at the thought of traveling with nothing but a backpack. Before I left I compiled a list of everything I thought I would need and it turns out that only half of it fit (after I packed my beauty supplies, some things are necessities that could not be skipped)! Even after removing a few things, it turns out that I still packed way more than was necessary. Here is the list that I put together after my return with the only items I really needed while I was away. I’ve added some links of some of my favorite products because they made life on the road so much easier and I absolutely loved them! In a future post Amy and I will tell you why we love some of these products so much. This packing list is a combination of necessities if you plan on staying in hotels, hostels or other basic accommodations.
Recently at a wedding in Madison, my friend Val asked if I had any upcoming travel. I told her I was going to spend a week at a resort in Mexico in December. I added “I’m going to lay on a beach all week, so it’s not real travel.” Immediately, I started wondering what “real travel” meant, what I event meant by it, and if you could define such a thing.
Luckily before I could get too deep into a rat hole of my own thoughts, Val said something that was both simple and profound: There’s a difference between travel and a vacation.
“There’s a difference between Travel and a Vacation”
Traveling alone to a foreign land can sometimes seem daunting. But you’ll find that solo travel will be one of the most rewarding experiences you’ll ever have. Here are the top 10 benefits of traveling alone.
Do What You Want, When You Want
Spontaneity is the spice of life! The freedom to do what you want is much easier when you don’t have to ask for someone else’s input, whether that’s skipping out on the castle tour that sounded like a great idea yesterday or staying a few extra days in your current location. You are in control and can go wherever the wind blows you. One day I arrived to a beautiful city in the Philippines and I was so tired from moving around that I spent 24-hours in my hotel room, watching BBC and surfing the web. It was exactly what I needed!
If wanderlust is getting the best of you, and you’ve been daydreaming about getting out of a town for a while, it’s time to start thinking practically about planning a trip and the different types of travel you can choose from.
There are so many different ways you can travel, and each of those ways is going to affect almost every aspect of the trip. If you’re traveling with young chidren or your 60-year-old parents, bar hopping is probabbly not in your future. (Unless you have really adventurous parents, in which case, first beer is on dad!)