Open your mind as a traveler

lady doing yoga on top of rock at famous rocky landmark

People choose to travel for a variety of reasons.  Some wish to simply relax on a beach away from everyday worries, others aim to see a different country's history or visit famous landmarks. Some might want to try and catch the next total solar eclipse. Active individuals can also pursue adventure travel, taking trips focused around hiking, kayaking, skydiving or a trek through a place where most travelers do not go.  Everyone who steps out of their comfort zone to take a trip elsewhere will learn something new.

Travel can make a person more open-minded, comfortable with themselves and confident. Some individuals take their trips to a whole other level, Cassie De Pecol, a 27-year-old traveler, visited every country in just under 19 months according to Travel + Leisure.  Those belonging to this group set themselves travel "challenges" in a way similar to how others choose to set travel "goals," for instance, traveling to Paris to see the Eiffel Tower at night or visiting the East Side gallery in Berlin and photographing every mural.

One man featured in The Guardian aims to walk every street in New York City.  He already walked from the U.S. East Coast across to the West Coast. Being that New York City is laid out in a grid- like fashion, it can be easy to track the streets he has covered and which ones are left to see. According to his blog, he has been walking the streets for 2,061 days and by the end of his adventure will have covered 8,000 miles.  While this might be a bit extreme, those planning to travel to a major city can select an offbeat area to explore: perhaps setting a goal of trying at least three local coffee shops, rather than chain stores or asking locals for three different meal recommendations to sample local cuisine.

Another individual also featured in The Guardian aimed to hike every New England peak in the U.S. She achieved her goal of hiking these mountains; there are 67 peaks over 4,000 feet high. Those who aim to book adventure travel can set more attainable travel goals - hiking one peak over 4,000 feet on every continent, visiting the most famous peaks of Australia, or hiking every peak in England's Lake District. Becoming acquainted with locals can open your mind to new perspectives.  

Perhaps on your next trip, you can challenge yourself to meet at least three new people at your new destination to ask the about local life, what they enjoy in their city or country, and find out a bit more about what it's like to live as they do.  You might also want to try three new local dishes that are unfamiliar and, if you're a fan, try and obtain the recipe to make at home.  However you choose to set travel goals for yourself, you will certainly gain knowledge, and becoming more adventurous on your travels may inspire you to be a guide or a friend to travelers in your hometown.

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The information contained here is provided by Brafton. AIG Travel assumes no responsibility for the use, accuracy, or interpretation of the information contained herein.