There is no right way to travel. Overly opinionated and self absorbed travelers everywhere will tell you that their way is the only way, that no other quite satisfies the soul, and that the way you are planning is just not the right way to go about it. Nonsense! Travel is as universal as the whole globe and all of its happenings. There is no right way to travel. There is only the world to explore.
This does not mean that you should not listen to the advice of other travelers. They may be able to set off a spark within you, a burning flame of desire to travel to a certain place, or in a certain way. Their stories might resonate, and the way they lead the travel lifestyle may seem to you authentic and soulful. If this is the case then great! You should draw inspiration from everywhere. All that is important is that you be true to yourself, and your own desires. Travel how you want to travel.
Travel -Vs- Tourism
It is tempting to get wrapped up in the debate of what makes a traveler. What is the difference between a traveler and a tourist? Some would say the amount of time your trip lasts. Others would say it is your approach that makes the definition, or your itinerary or route. The word “tourist” has even become a bit of a snobby insult, thrown about by sandal wearing hipsters as they take a snorkel in the Great Barrier Reef.
The truth is that there isn’t that much difference between the two. There are ways to approach traveling that help you to experience the local culture and customs, and this is great, but if you really enjoy taking photographs of landmarks then this is also valid travel. Every traveler is a tourist at some stage, and every tourist is a traveler. So forget about the metaphysical debate and just do what you want to do. Three days in Paris? Fine. A year in Bermuda. Fine.
Hotel -Vs- Hostel
Hostels are the great way to travel. They are full of other travelers having a good time, mingling, and exchanging ideas. You might make some friends there. Hotels give comfort, luxury, service, and a much better breakfast. You will find a great retirement awaits after your day of exploring. The choice is again, up to you, so don’t feel obliged to do one or the other.
Luxury -Vs- Roughing It
Everyone enjoys varying degrees of luxury. Some people don’t need it at all, and can happily sacrifice it, live rough, and stay on the road much longer. Others love to go to the finest restaurant in the city, splash the cash in Vegas, or visit the finest theaters and attractions. These approaches are both vastly different travel experiences, and again you can only know for yourself how much luxury you want. Usually it is a direct trade between luxury and how long you can stay out for, so think carefully about your priority.
Speed And Pace
Eurostar from city-to-city? Walking through a country border to border? Hitching, driving, cycling? Will you see the whole of one country, and really come to know its culture and customs, or will you aim to skim over may countries and get a broad view of the world? Your speed and pace will be determined by your own inclinations. There is no right way to travel remember.
Some travel routes are very popular, and the trends tend to change gradually over time. At the moment, South East Asia and Australia are very cool circuits for travel. There are good reasons for this; the work in Australia, and the affordable and extravagant experiences of Asia make a pretty good combo. That doesn’t mean you should confine yourself to these tracks, and this also doesn’t mean you should avoid them either.
How will you know what approach to travel is best for you, if you have not experimented? You could stick to what you know, and what you are comfortable with, but it is much more rewarding to try everything at least once. Rough it even if you have plenty of money, stay in a hostel if you prefer hotels, or treat yourself to the odd hotel if you always stay in hostels. Variety and experimentation add rich depth to your experience, helping you to make the most out of travel. However you travel, there is only one way to do it; your way.