There is a fine line between a traveller and a tourist. To spot a tourist, it’s usually easy especially for the locals. A tourist may carry a camera, guidebook and a map all the time and wear slightly a better clothing he or she would wear at home. They tend to stay in their comfort zones all the time, speak only English or their own native languages instead of trying to learn phrases in the local language, stick to major cities instead of venturing to smaller towns or off-the-beaten-path locales, and stay in areas where the amenities are similar to what they have at home.
On the other hand, someone who considers himself a traveller will try to immerse himself in the local culture rather than standing out. If you’re a traveller, you may try to explore the less-travelled areas and explore locations where tourism doesn’t drive the economy. You’ll interact with locals. Your goals for a trip will be to learn and experience new things, rather than to take a relaxing break from everyday life. A traveller may consider a trip a journey rather than a vacation.
“Try out a traveller’s hat for a few days and surround yourself with locals, blend in with them. You’ll find your trip this time will be way memorable than before.”
Whilst being a tourist is perfectly okay, but sooner or later you’ll find it a bit boring doing the same standard sightseeing with so many people heading to the same spot. Try out a traveller’s hat for a few days and surround yourself with locals, blend in with them and you’ll find your trip this time will be way memorable than before. Here are some tips how to begin.
Enjoy a local bus ride or public transport. Bring your pen, note book and smartphone along, then blend in with the locals. Snap some scenes in the bus, talk to people sitting next to you and jot down some memories during that short journey. Hey, you might want to keep that bus ticket too and stick it down in your journal there.
Learn their language. Travelling to countries that don’t primarily use English as their language can be fun. Prior to the trip, it would be good if you could prepare yourself with certain key phrases just in case. On the other hand, blend in locally and find a local friend who can speak both English and native language. Going deeper into the town you’re visiting will be fun if you can speak their language to ease the interaction.
“Stop eating in your hotel, McDonalds, Starbucks or similar crap.”
Eat street food where local people eat and recommended. Stop eating in your hotel, McDonalds, Starbucks or similar crap. Instead, get your local friend to recommend you the best street food available for you to try out. By trying out their food, it’s the only way you can actually appreciate the local culture the most.
Adventure local activities. Unlike travellers, tourists always miss this part. They hardly aware that there are great waterfalls nearby, night market, a local marriage or special ceremony going on somewhere and the best beach spot just a few kilometres away. How does a traveller get to know all these? They have a local friend, simple.
Make new friends with local people. It pays to have a local friend when travelling. Not only you’re able to avoid all the traveller’s traps, you’re also know all the hidden gem of the town you’re visiting and avoid just going to the normal places other people are going.
So bro, dare to wear a traveller hat this time?