Life & Stuff

10 things I love about travelling

20120225-SA_02_Big_Rocking_Horse - Amy McPherson
Take me anywhere! (Image: Amy McPherson)

To me, there is no experience so enriching, so challenging and so exciting as to travel. My travel experiences are what continue to make me who I am. Of course, not everyone share the same curiosity for other people’s cultures and traditions, and not everyone has the same reasons to travel.

I will however, share my reasons for my passion with you.

Here are 10 things I love about travelling:

1. People

It amazes me that so many people can be prejudiced and racist against certain cultures/religions, without actually having been to the country and regions to experience what life is really like for these people. People have constantly been the highlight of my travels, and reminders who much we all have in common, despite our geographical and religious differences. It has always been the people that make my trips special, and continue to enrich my experiences abroad.

Image source: Morgue File | Credit to: EsquadrilhadaFumaa
Image source: Morgue File | Credit to: EsquadrilhadaFumaa

2. Wonderful and colourful cultures

No cultures are alike, even if they share similar origins. The cultures can be experienced through their cuisines, markets and festivals. I found that even within the same country I find different regional cultures to explore and embrace, and through this I have learned not to stereotype, and to see each person as whom they are, not what race/religion they are.

Monk and child in Cambodia - Amy McPherson
Monk and child in Phnom Penh, Cambodia (Image: Amy McPherson)

 

3. Learning our differences

I love learning the differences of how to do things in different countries. This isn’t always linked to culture, but to social ideas, education, and attitude towards work and government efficiency. Without travelling, I would never have learned that life can be tougher, our attitude can be directly linked to traffic congestion and only getting 20 days annual leave really isn’t all that bad.

I have learned different ways of doing the same thing; broaden my mind to see the big picture in life and most of all, to appreciate what I currently have because not everyone is so lucky in the world.

It isn't always about the sunny days! (Image source: Morgue File | Credit to: quicksandala)
It isn’t always about the sunny days! (Image source: Morgue File | Credit to: quicksandala)

4. The journey 

It is true that travelling is not about the destination, but the journey itself.

Sure the flight might be long and uncomfortable, and it’s true that sometimes the train might be running late and the bus bursts a tire which resulted in a 3 hours roadside wait. It might have rained the entire time you were stuck on a boat!

However, I find it is always through these experiences that we tell the most heartfelt stories, and it is in these situations I’ll meet the most fascinating people and hear the most incredible tales.

5. The scenery and the natural world

The Himalayas. The Grand Canyon. The squeaky white sands of the Pacific Islands. The mountains, the rivers, the oceans and the deserts. Enough said!

Peru_MorgueFile_clarita
The world is beautiful. You just have to be willing to see it. (Image source: Morgue File | Credit to: clarita)

6. Seeing wildlife

I am a fan of David Attenborough’s documentaries, but what drives me to travel is to be able to see the wildlife in their own habitat. Many are under threat by modernization of their environment and being able to see them out there surviving is special.

7. Food glorious food!

To me, there is no such thing as bad food. There is however, such a thing as bad eaters. The cuisines around the world are truly amazing, with multitude of flavours and textures, methods of cooking and serving and the ways teas are poured all fascinate me, and picky eaters will just have to miss out!

Pepper crab from Kampot - Amy McPherson
Pepper crab from Kampot, Cambodia (Image: Amy McPherson)

8. Life lessons on the road

I have learned a lot from my travels. There has not been a trip that didn’t teach me something new.

There are so many things you can learn while on the road, things that you’ll never learn in text books. This is the wonder of travel, this is what travel is really, all about.

9. Getting lost 

It is always going to happen, getting lost, so I have learnt not to fight it. In fact, I rather enjoy getting lost, because without having been lost, I would not have found all the wonderfully quirky places and tasted some of the best foods.

By getting lost, I have also received warm hospitality and help from complete strangers, proof that we really can get along if we tried!

Image source: Morgue File | Credit to: Noboru
Image source: Morgue File | Credit to: Noboru

10. The challenge

Travelling can be challenging, and the process is always like project management: from the point of planning, to working with transport logistics, to dealing with unexpected events and incidents. Everything will be foreign: the food, the people, the customs and the beds, and not everything will be comfortable. However, that’s why travel is exciting because I am able to challenge myself in ways I never will at home, and I know, in the end, I will always be the victor, and I know that I am able to deal with anything life throws at me, because I travel.

What do you love about travelling? Comment below to let me know!

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