We all aren’t given the luxury of a travel-full life. Many are tied to family, work, volunteer, church, and other commitments. They may take up what feels like all of your time and attention. Add on to that, getting sick or dealing with a chronic illness, and you literally have less time than the average person to explore and wander into a new life you imagine.
Despite all that, I’m convinced we were made to wander and explore this life we live. And I believe wholeheartedly that we are given the gift of time and energy to make it happen.
So how can we prioritize traveling new roads in this new year?
Here are four ways I’ve found have worked for our family.
Become a traveler in your own city’s neighborhoods
- Visit your local information center for ideas on what and where to visit.
- Join your local area Facebook page and ask for tips from others on what to see. Maybe even make a new friend and explore together.
- Take your camera or smartphone with you on a neighborhood photo walk. Select an idea or topic to focus on before you go:
- sidewalk cracks
Seek out unexplored sites in your own region
- Turn to Google for lists like “Top 10 Hole in the Wall Restaurants” or “Best Vegan Restaurants Everyone Misses.”
- Ask friends and neighbors what their favorite tourist attractions are in your own town. Pick one to visit every month, take the whole family, pack a sack lunch, and take photos to remind yourself of the adventure.
- We have friends who get together with their siblings and their families every month and do an adventure day. They rotate who gets to choose and plan and make memories along the way!
Explore how you could add travel to your job
- Brainstorm ways you could travel through your business (if you’re self-employed) or through other employment.
- If you own your own business, consider barter or trade arrangements that get you to your desired location at a fraction of the cost for what a vacation would be. Then build as much exploring into the trip as possible.
- Suggest the idea of going to a weekend training conference that would give you additional tools to support your role and business. That way you are combining travel with training and increasing your skills at the same time.
Plan a quarterly trip (or monthly or annually)
- If you commute to work on a ferry, bus or train, you could plan it during the time you are there. Download some podcasts to listen to for ideas or print out some lists of ideas or even check out some library books on places you want to go.
- If budget is an issue, prioritize locations that don’t require entry fees, barter or choose off-seasons. Look for air
- If time is an issue, select a location that is within reasonable driving distance. We’ve even chosen trips that were only thirty minutes from home to maximize the time away and minimize the travel time.
- Look for mom and pop style places to stay that will offer reasonable rates and are close to beaches, trails and other marvels of nature that require no entrance fee.
There are so many ideas and options. If traveling new roads is important to you, if gaining a new perspective from new sights matters, then make time for it this year. Make time for it every year. You won’t be disappointed!
Our family is taking the compulsion to travel even further by becoming global nomads this year. You can follow us as we sell everything we own, map our way into the wild unknown and set sail for adventure!