After many months of traveling, it became obvious that there are two distinct types of tourist in the world. There is the tourist who has everything meticulously listed and daily itineraries planned out according to their guidebooks, and there is the tourist who goes where the wind blows and assesses things as they come along. However even the most prudent traveler has the potential to be an un-average tourist by simply adopting the following qualities essential for every great adventure.
Sometimes the best decisions in life are the ones you make spontaneously. Your head might tell you the idea sounds impossible and in the end you succumb to bouts of sleeplessness at night mulling over your ‘crazy’ idea. This idea might be just to go bungee jumping, or it might be a far-fetched as taking your scooter around the world. The mind has a knack for over-rationalizing and usually it’s better to just listen to your heart. Don’t deny what your subconscious is telling you. Pay attention to your feelings, stop thinking and just do it.
Lone travelers especially require copious amounts of courage for their journey. When traveling alone, you are inevitably taken out of your comfort zone and thrown into many intimidating situations which you aren’t used to. This may range from having to approach people whose language you don’t speak, or just to check out a curious bar that you’ve accidentally stumbled upon. But some extra guts are all you need to face these challenges and eventually you will find yourself with more interesting stories to tell your friends when you get home.
Doing the opposite of what most people recommend may send you on exciting escapades beyond your wildest dreams. Listening to the majority means you will be doing exactly what everyone else has already done. Where is the adventure in that? Don’t be boring. Occasionally it’s fun to be the wildcard and do something completely unorthodox, such as camping in the desert or couchsurfing across Europe. However do remember to be safe while scheming your rebellious adventures.
It’s a good idea to rely on no one but yourself when traveling. People will help you when you get stuck but it’s always better to know you will be able to look after yourself in any circumstance. There will be times when cities will not be so friendly and those are the times when you need to be in charge. Always do your own research when it comes to accommodation and transport so you know exactly what to do if there are any changes or delays. This way you control your own fate and will be able to make alternative (but equally exciting) plans should the need arise.
Being an un-average tourist might require some if not all of the above, but the rewards are well worth the effort. These qualities will bring you to lands you once only dreamed of and you will find yourself doing things you once only gasped at. Go on. What type of tourist do you want to be?