Vacations in other countries can be daunting even to the most seasoned traveler. You can spend a lot of money and effort when organizing the perfect trip, so it’s no surprise you want it to be the best. While your enjoyment is, of course, one of the top priorities when visiting a new place, you also have to consider the impact you may or may not have upon that place during your stay. Even though you might only be there a matter of days, it’s still important to remember these three things when traveling abroad.
One: Respect the Culture
As technology and the digital age allows us to communicate with people on the other side of the world much faster than ever before in history, it can sometimes feel as if people know everything about everywhere once they’ve done a bit of research on the place. It can be tempting to make assumptions and behave accordingly, such as throwing yourself into a local festival that is not actually intended for tourists to participate in. Different people in different countries have their boundaries and willingness to share their culture with strangers. For example, Heavenly Tours offer excellent Holy Land tours from South Africa, and this can be a very sacred, important journey for certain people of faith. Attending this kind of tour means you must respect the feelings of those around you regardless of your own opinions. That doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy the experience alongside fellow travelers, but you should bear in mind their relationship to the culture around you. Avoid seeing locals as caricatures of common stereotypes and start to experience the similarities and differences in other cultures with curiosity rather than prejudice. You will have a more memorable and worthwhile experience by making friends and learning about the country.
Two: Take Care of Nature
The world is becoming ever more crowded and, as a result, pollution is on the rise. When traveling, pay attention to local environmental laws that deal with recycling, water and energy usage, and even souvenirs. The Great Barrier Reef is slowly dying, partly thanks to tourists hoping to take a piece of it home as a memento which in turn ruins the habitat of many aquatic lifeforms which are becoming extinct at a frightening rate. Camping is an excellent alternative to staying in hotels as it uses less energy and brings you closer to the local environment, whether that is the forest, beaches, or maybe even tundra depending on your courage levels. Just make sure to follow any countryside codes that exist in the area and never leave anything behind, including litter.
Three: Live in the Moment
Even though travel has become quicker, cheaper, and easier than ever before, visiting a country on the other side of the world is something people rarely do more than once or twice in their lifetime. As sad as it might sound at first, treat your first time in a new country as if it is also your last. Soak up the atmosphere and find as many things to do as possible. The whole point of traveling is to broaden your horizons and have an adventure, so don’t hold yourself back!