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Vacationers vs. Travelers

D488949CCF6C97C9608D0A1FAAB31357.jpg I recently had a conversation with a friend and we shared our travel experiences and where we have lived. She brought up a good point, saying that there are vacationers and then there are travelers. She hit the nail on the head. Let me explain.
Most likely you start off going on a vacation, lets say you have a week off from school or work and decide to book a hotel in you region. Usually in the beginning, people want to get their feet wet, going on vacation not too terribly far from home, still needing their comfort zone and choose a destination less than 8 hours away. Since a hotel or resort is booked for that week of vacation, all activities will most likely occur in that location. Its paid for and safe, I get it.
This type of one week vacation will become the highlight of your year and you will return to the same destination every year or venture out to another neighboring state once you get used to that resort and are ready to take on something new. Breaking out of the comfort zone is not easy. Unless you work from home and can carry a laptop with you, your vacation time is limited depending on how long your boss will allow paid vacation per year.
A vacationer will finally fly and leave the nest for that week. A safe resort on a nearby island will be the most exciting adventure ever, putting some distance between work and fun and quickly you call yourself a world traveler- not so fast, back up! My bad, you can't be a world traveler if you haven't left the states. Let's try this again. So you arrived in a resort on an island and roam around and return to that resort from now on. Okay, you have broadened your radius of miles, but are still doing the vacationers thing of laying by the beach during the day and hanging around the resort at night. It sounds fun and relaxing, but here is where a traveler does things different. IMG_20181128_143831_821.jpg
Like I said, becoming a traveler takes time, because your mindset is completely different. Here is why. As a traveler you allow more than just a week to wander around. Sometimes you don't put a time cap on your trip at all. It all depends on your lifestyle. You might have a destination, but you seek the journey that gets you there. A traveler does not always book a place for the night, usually they improvise and carry a backup shelter with them, called a sleeping bag. 😉
Travelers like to interact with like minded people and locals, to learn from and gather information useful to make the trip unique. Exploring, hiking and eating local dishes are a must. All your senses need to be awake to appreciate and fully experience your surroundings. I usually close my eyes and take a really deep breath, smelling the air when we hike somewhere and stop for a break. It is rejuvenating to be surrounded by nature. D4876CEBD4543913BB47C76316C93D56.jpg
A traveler will most likely walk the path less traveled and stay away from tourist hot spots. We rather hike with our packs thru the woods a couple of miles to find a deserted beach, instead of sunbathing amongst hundreds of vacationers lined up on a strip of sand. 20190101_072116.jpg
Usually days are not planned, they will unfold themselves depending on where you are, who you talk to and how the weather is.
A traveler cannot stay put in one place for too long, before getting the itch to explore something new. Material items become a nuisance, adding strings that you don't want to be attached to. Owning a home is another burden that you have to worry about while traveling, and fashion will definitely not fit into the travelers lifestyle. Columbia, Mermot, Underarmour,Northface, Merrell etc...will be your go to fashion designers while traveling the world.
Anyway, I am glad that I had this conversation with my friend, which ultimately made me ponder the differences of vacationing vs. traveling.
Until then...happy travels!

Posted by Meike Carter 01:44

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