Rules for Intentional Travel: Stay A While - Intentional Travelers
Simple Rules for Intentional Travel (guest post by Ingrid H) | Intentional Travelers

01 Feb Rules for Intentional Travel: Stay A While

This is the a guest post by Ingrid Hannan in our series, Simple Rules for Intentional Travel, by – and for – intentional travelers.

Rule #4: Stay A WhileSimple Rules for Intentional Travel

The pressure to squeeze it all in and see everything is real. And understandably so- we often only have so long on our vacations before we have to return home. But consider breaking up the manic icon-hopping with longer visits to one place. Sink in to the pace of the city or town you are seeing. Learn some street names and maybe leave the map/gps behind after getting to know your way around. Become a face that someone would recognize after seeing you for a few days in a row. With certainty, stretching a visit longer will only expand your understanding and appreciation for the details and history and inner workings of the place.

It’s exhausting to be continuously re-adjusting to a new landscape. Euro-trips are the classic example. Two days in Venice, three nights in London, a quick half day in Paris, then off to Amsterdam. But you usually end up giving up more than you gain. The struggles of transportation, finding lodging, finding food, knowing where to find toothpaste, switching dialects or languages; all take their toll on your energy and wear down patience and appreciation. So you got a picture in front of the Louvre, the Tower of Pisa and the Colosseum. But did you really see those places? So you have five new stamps in your passport, but did you really experience all five countries? Cramming in more to your itinerary is tempting, but spreading yourself too thin translates directly into more harried moments, more rushing, more panic and less digging in deep, less appreciation for individual moments, less chance for spontaneity, and less calm and relaxation.

Stay tuned for more great stories and reflections as Ingrid digs deeper into more of the Simple Rules for Intentional Travel.

Intentional Travelers: Rules for Lightening Your Cultural Footprint by Ingrid H.About Ingrid: Ingrid is a wanderlust at heart. She’s lived all up and down the west coast, studying environmental science and Spanish at the University of Portland and studying how to grow vegetables in Colorado and Washington. Her favorite activities include rock climbing, eating ice cream, and writing letters. Her travels have taken her from the Caribbean to East Asia and many destinations inbetween. The next places she hopes to travel to are New Zealand, Japan, and Norway.

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  • Angeline M
    Posted at 20:07h, 01 February

    Can so relate to this, and have only found later in life how important it is to stay and relax in one place. Very good advice.

    • IntentionalTravelers
      Posted at 04:54h, 02 February

      Thanks, Angeline. Perhaps the tendency toward slower travel does have something to do with age – having more experience and wisdom to dig deeper in our travels.

  • LB
    Posted at 16:47h, 16 May

    Great point. In the past, I was overzealous with going to as many locations as possible due to limited travel time, but I have learned to soak up only a few destinations rather than rush between many. The reality is, you’ll spend more time on buses and trains than actual exploring!

    Living abroad has taught me this. Even though I’ve been living in Korea for almost three years, I still have much to learn about the complexities of the culture. In fact, I’ll probably never thoroughly understand the concept of “jeong” and “nunchi” as well as a local. So, when I travel to a place for a month or two, it is certainly not enough time to get to know a culture well enough. It takes almost a year to get yourself situated before feeling settled and really getting to know a place.

    I’m currently planning one month in India followed by an indefinite amount of time in Southeast Asia. India is vast and complex; there are almost too many areas to soak up and it’s hard to decide where to spend my limited time. I was originally thinking about exploring Kerala and then some of the northern area, but ultimately decided to just spend time in the south. I can always go back to explore more. This is how I decided: if somebody sought advice about a one-month trip to the states, I would recommend only one region. Visiting both California and the northeastern cities would be far too ambitious in my opinion, so I took my own advice regarding travels in India.

    • intentionaltravelers
      Posted at 18:10h, 16 May

      Hi Lianne. Slow travel definitely allows for a deeper understanding of the place. We have to get over FOMO, the “fear of missing out” of all the other places and just dig deeper in one. Your upcoming travels sound very exciting!

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