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The People behind the Places

Published On November 4, 2014 | By Matt | Extras

Travelling should be compulsory for all! Maybe it should be written into legislation that everyone be given at least a week a year to travel and they must use it, or else. And everyone should be given some free money to contribute exclusively to the travel kitty so there are no excuses not to go. The kids get their school fees paid AND you still get to visit an exotic place somewhere else in the world. Wouldn’t this is wonderful?

If you ran a survey most globetrotters would agree that the best part of travel is mixing with the locals. Yes, it’s really the people that make our holidays. If you think about every country you’ve visited, your memory tank has been topped to near overflow by your interactions with the locals. Whether it’s a more formal occasion and someone takes you to an unforgettable restaurant, that wasn’t in any guidebook, and you can never recall a wine so smooth or a steak so tender. In some odd cases, you may have spent an evening around a campfire in the middle of nowhere, sharing food, and a drink with someone who doesn’t speak a word of English, and you don’t speak his language either; but man, what an experience. Perhaps it was the best place to see the sunset, or best fishing spot, or the cheapest but best place to buy local fabric. How many have a story attached to a travel experience they never forgotten, and may never have been captured on film because the experience was emblazoned onto your heart.

There is a pride we all feel for the country we represent, and we want visitors to love it like we do, and we tend to put our best foot forward, don’t we? You’ve gone out of your way to show a visitor to your country the best time and you know you could be on the receiving end of that passion somewhere else on the planet. It’s beautiful how it often revolves around food, sharing a few words in each other’s mother tongue, and enjoying a local drink or delicacy that make you cringe and the locals giggle with delight. It’s universal, it’s beautiful and you can be convinced that it’s essential if we’re going to develop as an international society. Every country has something to offer, that has nothing to do with an historical building or other landmark, but oozes forth from the very soul of its citizens. They know their cities best, and their heart is for you to submerse yourself in it while you are there. Go online and arrange to stay in the home of a local by choosing one in the heart of where you want to visit. Track down a friend of a friend – you never know, they might become your new bestie. Immerse yourself in the local culture and people and you will have a truly memorable authentic experience.
Now make the plans, get away from it all and find the real assets of any country, its people, and have your life altered forever!

Image by Theodore Scott under Creative Commons license.

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