Everybody says travel ideas are plans we make for escaping life and running away from responsibility and the future. It’s not just about quickly instigating travel ideas via travel sites or looking where to go on vacation on social media though. It’s about achieving complete freedom, fulfilling dreams, planning a trip or holiday and being the person that you always wanted to be. Often the process of ‘getting away’ starts with a small formative destination idea.[toc]
Recently we asked whether subscribers to our newsletter thought that traveling the globe for long periods was all about escaping life. To consider if extended travel is simply running away from all responsibility in life.
Consensus of opinion is that traveling the world is about applying travel ideas through discovery, expression and learning. About experiencing life at its fullest and on occasion at its worst. Travel is about personal choices, exploring strange places, travel destinations new and old. Travelers roam the planet to feel liberated from the mishaps of life, to satisfy burning curiosity and to fulfil the desire to learn. Then when the journey finally does end they return home fulfilled. As travelers of the world they have lived, laughed and cried a lifetime.
People Travel for Many Reasons
Poetess Elizabeth Barrett Browning once wrote, “How do I love thee? Let me count the ways”. Similarly, people try running away and escaping life through travel for many reasons. Some love a particular culture and want to see more of it. Others want an escape from their monotonous lives back home.
Some people just like to journey to the best vacation spots and realize their travel ideas and ambition. They travel because they want to, they have no real idea where to go on vacation. When they do finally choose a travel destination or holiday, they feel liberated and free.
Traveling and planning a trip is an addictive drug for escaping life but of a good sort. Once you are bitten by wanderlust (an irrepressible and strong urge to travel), there is an irresistible urge to go back, year after year. Each time trying out different vacation ideas from new travel sites.
There is no serious time limit placed on a trip or vacation built on the back of wanderlust. The road trip, trek or journey around the world just goes on for as long as the need to roam remains. This feeling is summed up very well in Jack Kerouac’s great American novel ‘On the Road‘.
Traveling is One of the Purest Expressions of Yourself
In the book, the main character, Sal Paradise crisscrosses across America with his motley gang of friends many times. He echoes the sentiments of every lonesome traveler when he says the only people that I want are the mad ones, people who are different in every thing they do. People with whom there’s never a dull moment. There a bit of Sal Paradise in every impulsive traveler when planning a trip.
Some people also travel because they think it will help them find meaning in their lives. Take the example of author of ‘Eat, Pray, Love’ Elizabeth Gilbert. She was hurting after her divorce and wanted closure. She found it on her travels. Now the book ‘Eat, Pray, Love’ is a major motion picture, starring actress Julia Roberts.
When you are traveling, you can be yourself all the time (and not just some time). No more horrible bosses and no more work deadlines (the only deadlines you have to keep are your plane or train timings). All that is needed is the trip planner and the trusty travel guide to the best travel sites. Now, lets look at the different ways traveling can help you become free.
Traveling to Experience New Cultures
When traveling, you get to see the world from different new perspectives. When you are at home, you are like a frog in a well. Your only connection to the outside world is the TV or the internet and these cannot compare to the real thing. There is a whole world waiting outside for it. And all you have to do is peer out to plan a trip.
When you are planning a trip in a different region, you also get to see what other people are like. In what ways they are like you and where they are different. You also get to eat different cuisines and stay in unusual places. Moreover, some experiences you cannot have unless you are planning a trip and intend to travel. For example, if you want to experience the famous Thai sense of hospitality, you have look for vacation places to go to in Thailand.
Traveling to see Events With Travel Sites
Planning a trip and traveling is the only way to see special events in other countries. For example if you want to experience Oktoberfest, or the Salzburg Summer Arts Festival you have to go to Germany in Europe. Similar events are held in other places. These events though are just pale husks of the real thing (Oktoberfest is the world’s largest beer festival and it is held annually in Bavaria, Germany in mid September or early October). Salzburg is a German summer arts and music festival of international repute.
Similarly, looking at pictures of the Door to Hell (a natural gas field on fire) cannot compare to actually seeing the event in person in, Turkmenistan. Equally, if you want to see the Northern Lights or Aurora Borealis, you must go to one of the Scandinavian countries (Iceland, Sweden, Finland or Norway).
You cannot begin to fathom the experience unless you witness it first hand. You have to go and see these vacation places. For planning a trip research cultural events using travel sites. Take printed travel guides or smartphone apps to new cities and festivals. Travel web sites will assist in travel planning, purchasing event tickets and finding safe accommodation.
Traveling to Meet New People
Most developed countries are cosmopolitan today. So you may think why do I have to travel to meet new people when I can meet people from different cultures right here. But you have to. If you want to cure an introvert, send him traveling; it is one of the best antidotes for it.
When you plan a trip and travel, you meet new people all the time via the trip finder. You may like some of them and some you won’t, but you have to deal with them nonetheless. Moreover, when you speak to people from other regions and countries, your perspectives on life change and you are not the same person anymore.
You become more appreciative of how other people live, even if it is much different from your lifestyle. You also become more respectful of others. For example, if you live in the west, you are already well off than the average person living in Nepal. When you see how poor some of them are but still manage to get by.
You will become more appreciative of your gifts and even wiser when you are spending money next. You learn new languages and cultural traits along the way. This is discovery as you travel.
Traveling to Sample Different Cuisines
Nobody travels just to sample a foreign cuisine (unless you are a continental chef and you host a food travel show in which case you must). But one of the perks of traveling is that you get to sample cuisines from other regions such as India. As you dig your teeth into Hyderabadi biryani in India, Fettucine alfredo in Italy, Moussaka in Greece or Steak tortillas in Mexico, you cannot help but marvel at the rich culinary traditions of other countries.
On your travels, you will also get to eat foods you would never have had a chance to taste otherwise. Where else would you get a chance to taste snake blood except in Thailand; fried tarantula except in Cambodia; wasp crackers except in Japan, century eggs (eggs stored for months) except in China or Haggis (assorted meats cooked in a sheep’s stomach) except in Scotland? Good travel planning connects people with a way to experience these unique and memorable international cuisines.
Running Away and Traveling to Learn Life Lessons
Like fantasy author J. R. R. Tolkien said, “Not all people who wander are lost.” Traveling is one of the best ways to learn life lessons. Consider you are traveling to Bali and you get down at Ngurah International Airport. You find that you have to stand in line to get clearance (to leave the airport).
Yet the queue is very long and you have to no option but to stand. You are going to come across many situations like this which will test your patience. There will be mistakes. There will be successes in life as well. Learn from them both.
You cannot complain you don’t have to go through all this red tape back home. You have to grin and suffer them because there is nothing else to do. But don’t you see what the experience has taught you? You become more patient, empathetic and understanding thanks to these experiences and when you go back home you are a better person. Now when planning a trip, let’s see how travel gets you closer to being a world citizen.
Traveling and the Concept of World Citizenship
Diogenes, the famous Greek philosopher, who showed us that poverty can be a virtue was once asked, where he came from. Diogenes’ answered, “I am a citizen of the world”. Socrates, who, the oracle at Delphi declared to be the wisest man in Athens is also recorded as saying that he was “Neither Athenian or Greek, but a citizen of the world”. 2000 years ago, a Tamil poet said, “The world is my home and all men are my kith and kin”.
Everyone’s favorite scientist Albert Einstein also considered himself a world citizen. In fact, he compares nationalism to an infantile disease and says it is the ‘measles of mankind’. The great humanist, Thomas Paine also declared, “The world is my country, all its citizens are my brethren and my only religion is to do good.”
We are all citizens of the world. We must not forget that national and state boundaries are drawn by men and they don’t exist in nature. So take a trip and realize your travel ideas, not because you have to; travel because the world is your home and you are a citizen of the world. Running away from life at home is more about freedom to explore than it is ever about escaping life.
Making new Friends on your Travels
When you travel, you make friends with people from other cultures and even other tourists who have come there. Some of them may even become your friends for life and you may meet them again. An American made a friend in a Chilean when he was running away by hiking in the Chilean mountains (the American hitchhiked in the Chilean’s car) and since then, they have met many times at various great vacation spots.
There are umpteen examples like this from around the world, where people have made lifelong friends in other countries; people who they met when they were backpacking through different travel destinations and vacation spots and fulfilling different travel ideas.
For sure, you will face cultural and language barriers in other countries. (English might be the lingua franca of the world, but it is still not spoken every where). It is true even of some developed countries. If you go to Ukraine, you will find that most people don’t know English. It will be a real test of your communication skills but you can use a travel guide or travel planner. After repeated experiences like these, you become a more likeable and social person.
Don’t Live Your Life on Other People’s Terms
Sooner or later, you are going to have to slow down, get a job and build a family. Running away and escaping life through travel will wind down. You will have responsibilities which you have to take care off. But before you do that, why not see as much of the world as you can. Don’t forget, you live only once. Even when it comes to traveling. Turn travel ideas and dreams into reality.
Travel the world because you want to; not because someone thinks that you should. If you want to plan a road trip then just go and do it. Use a road trip planner though to find the best road trip ideas. Plan trips very carefully. Perhaps you always wanted to hike the Andes, then go right for it. This conviction is at the heart and soul of true travel freedom.
The tragedy is, most people spend it thinking about the past or what they are going to do in the future. Like John Lennon said, “Life is what happens when you are busy making plans”. We fill our lives with unnecessary worries and strife and go through them like it is a dream, running away thinking of negatives, instead of the positives. But while we worry about escaping life and the past or the future, our life is passing us by.
This is why traveling can be liberating. When you are traveling, you are living in the moment. The thing is, people don’t travel because they have to travel. They travel because it makes them free. Do not spend an age working out where to go on vacation. Use travel sites, trip finders and social media to find the best trip destinations. Think of a great travel idea or destination. Spread your wings, pack the bags and go.
Why Traveling is Liberating and for Escaping Life
If you’ve always been a shy and insecure as a person, you will gain from running away, planning a trip and traveling. Traveling will help in escaping life at home, shed your inhibitions and move you outside your comfort zone.
On your journeys, you will experience so many feelings and emotions (if you are the adventurous kind), you will be a left a more wiser and confident person, ready to take on any challenges the world might throw at you. Use travel web sites or sense of inbuilt wanderlust to find the way to the best travel destinations.
Like Mark Twain says in, ‘Innocents Abroad,’ “Travel is dangerous to bigotry, narrow mindedness and prejudice and many people need it sorely on this account. You cannot acquire wholesome, charitable and a broad view of things and people by vegetating in one corner of the earth all your life.”
Apply Travel Ideas to Create Long Lasting Life Experiences
If you spend money on that big LCD TV or that iPhone you always wanted, no one is going to tell you anything (it is your money, you can do whatever you want with it, right?) but remember these things will become obsolete in a few years and then what will you do? But if you spend your money on running away and escaping life through traveling, you will gain life experiences from travel ideas that you can tell around your dinner table when you are older.
These stories of exploration will only get richer and richer as time passes by. Use the travel sites and implement travel ideas, do not just idly dream about travel planning a trip that ultimately goes nowhere.
When responding to travel ideas, actions speak louder than just words. Properly planning a trip requires researching travel guides and reading up on destination tips. Drawing a shortlist of the great vacation spots and working out where to go on vacation is essential. A trip finder can assist this process as well as the best travel web sites. Work out whether the trip is to be a relaxing holiday or a voyage of freedom and self discovery for escaping life. They are not always the same thing.
The Explorer’s Final Thought for Planning a Trip
So Carpe Diem! (seize the moment). Twenty years from now, you are going to be more disappointed by the things that you did not do than the things that you did. So throw off your bowlines, sail away from the safe harbor. What is so wrong with planning a trip by escaping life and running away for a time anyhow? Catch the trade winds in your sails and bring travel ideas to life. Explore. Dream. Discover.
Browse this great article from Psychology Today by author Julie Exline, Ph.D. a Professor in the Department of Psychological Sciences at Case Western Reserve University. This article explores in depth why certain ‘trapped’ people feel the urge to run and escape normal life. In some cases gaining their freedom through roaming the world as explorer style nomads.
This list of top ten books by the Guardian Newspaper is a great collection of summarized escapist reads. Books, travel guides and novels that offer some insight into escapism and why travel can be a popular medium for running away and a means for escaping the rigours and stresses of normal life.