Now that 2018 is here, I’m sure all of you are excited about planning your upcoming trips and working on your travel bucket list as well. While there are hundreds of articles on the internet talking about the ‘Top Destinations Where You Must Travel in 2018’ and ‘The Budget-Friendly Countries To Visit in 2018’ (even on Travelettes you can find an unusual travel bucket list for 2018 and money-saving tips for the new year), I chose to share a few travel resolutions that you might just add to your list and try to follow them for creating incredible memories.
While most of us fail to follow our New Year Resolutions, I’m sure these are things we’ll all love to tick these off our list. So, before you kick start the year with your awesome journeys, here is a list of 13 travel resolutions that you must check out and that will actually contribute to satisfy your wanderlust!
Bon Voyage in advance!
1) Pick a place in your own city and start with it.
It surely feels like we know our city the best until we meet someone who mentions a café that we haven’t yet tried or an art gallery which we have knowingly skipped! Of course, we keep procrastinating about the things that are easily reachable, but in 2018, ditch your laziness and make the effort to see one place in your own city which you have never explored before. Whether it’s the museum you’ve always wanted to visit but couldn’t make time for it or the zoo, which you thought to be too clichéd – this year, try to explore your city and know it better than before.
2) Discover a new place in your own country.
You must be well aware of the popular touristic places of your land and I assume that you’ve visited them all! But have you ever thought of finding a new place – a place where there’s no crowd? Surely there would be some beautiful virgin destination that’s waiting to be discovered by you! Sit down with a map, and try to spot that beach or hill station which no one mentioned to you before, do your research properly and set out on your adventurous journey!
3) Go for an overnight train journey.
While flights are a more convenient and time-saving means of transport, I would urge you to take the train and go for an overnight journey. While there are several reasons to prove why traveling by train is the best, I would just suggest it for the sake of the experience! As it would cross over the town and villages, you’ll see the scenery changing beside you every minute. And the train will stop at a station whose name you’ve never heard before, and a stranger will pass on a smile at you. You’ll get to chit-chat with you co-travelers and know their stories. To quote a famous line, “Sometimes it’s not about the destination, but the journey that matters.”
4) Give up something for a month and save for your travel plans.
We spend a lot of money on shopping and clubbing, but when it comes to traveling, we always have the excuse of not having enough money! So in 2018, give up one thing for a month (Whatever it is: shopping, drinking/ smoking, cut down on your diet, spend less on your girlfriend/boyfriend etc.!) and save up for that trip you’ve always wanted to take. No more excuses this time – motivate yourself and start saving ASAP!
5) Visit a National Park or a Wildlife Sanctuary.
Whether you are an animal lover or not, you’ll surely enjoy the game drives and wildlife safaris where you can spot the animals in their own habitat. Considered to be one of the top travel trends of 2018, make sure to add at least one trip to a National Park/Wildlife Sanctuary, anywhere in the world! Live amidst the jungles, feel the eerie silence and listen to the calls of the birds and animals, stargaze at night and experience the thrill of the wild. Trust me when I say this, it’ll be an adventure of a different kind.
6) Visit a place that might vanish in your lifetime!
Sounds scary, right! Well, the adverse environmental effects along with increased level of global warming are causing immense damage to Mother Earth, and researchers have to say that there are some valuable and vulnerable zones that might just vanish by 2050. Before it gets too late, try to visit these places – because maybe after a few decades they will only be found on the pages of history. The most threatened ones on the list of crucially affected sites are the Great Barrier Reef (Australia), the Alps (Europe), and certain parts of Northern Canada including Athabasca Glacier.
7) Visit a non-English speaking country!
When things are challenging, it’s more fun! And not just that, it also endows you with chances of learning something new. In 2018, plan a trip to a non-English speaking country and try your luck to survive. No kidding – you’ll truly understand that emotions are better means of conversation than words and you’ll end up learning a new language, for sure!
8) Go for a volunteering trip and make a difference.
It’s never too late to take the initiative for contributing towards a social cause. Even in this, the 21st century, when development and globalization are reaching their peak, there are millions of underprivileged people living in developing countries like Uganda, Ghana, Rwanda, Malawi etc. in Africa and India, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Cambodia etc. in Asia. There are people surviving on the bare minimum, without proper education and healthcare facilities. In 2018, you can ditch the regular holidays in order to make a difference in someone’s life. You can either choose to join the teaching program in India and help the little ones feel the love or you can also volunteer for the Asian elephants in Thailand and live with the mahout (caretakers) community folks. No matter how small your step is, know that you can definitely make a big impact.
9) Pick a cuisine and visit that country.
Of course, your city has an amazing Thai restaurant or the famous Michelin-starred Mexican chain, but imagine what fun it would be to dig into a bowl of Pad Thai noodles while sitting at a beachside shack in Koh Phangan, or maybe biting on a spicy taco while walking down the lanes of Mexico city! It’s time to treat the foodie in you, so just pick your favorite cuisine and travel to the land where it originates from. Attend some cookery classes there, and who knows, you might just surprise your folks once you’re back from the trip!
10) Go for a high altitude trek.
Holidays aren’t just meant for relaxation and luxury! If adventure is your thing, then how about going for a thrilling high altitude trek in 2018? In case you’ve always thought that trekking is not your thing, then you should step out of your comfort zone and challenge yourself to experience something amazing – here are 20 beginner’s steps to prepare you for trekking. I’m not asking you to climb Everest! But just urging you to disconnect from the world in order to connect to yourself, breathe to fill your lungs with freshness and listen to the silence.
11) Take a trip with your grandparents.
While solo trips have become too common, and everyone has tried it at least once in the last couple of years, it’s time to change the trend! This year, take a trip with your grandparents to some exotic destination. Walk up for a morning tea with them, followed by a leisurely walk. Serve them at the breakfast table and make them feel important. It’ll be an amazing way to help them feel their younger times, and they’ll be happier than you can imagine! And for you, it’ll be one of the best trips of your life.
12) Try to go slow and enjoy every moment of your journey.
Most people try to fit everything in one trip, thus making it a more hectic and less enjoyable one! If you attempt to do too many things at one go, you’ll end up missing out a lot. Thus, I would suggest you to go slow and relish every little thing that comes your way. Walk down the lanes of an unknown town, sit at a quaint cafe sipping coffee, engage in a meaningful conversation with a native of a different land, and witness the beauty of the setting sun at some other part of the world.
13) Disconnect from Social Media while while you are traveling.
While sharing a ‘check-in’ status on Facebook or uploading photos on Instagram is a trend these days, I’ll suggest you to ditch social media while you’re traveling and focus more on the road! You can showcase your amazing photographs once you return back home, but as long as you are on the go, try to disconnect from the web in order to connect better with yourself and your surroundings. Immerse yourself in whatever you do and try to enjoy it to the fullest. Rather than thinking about how many ‘likes’ you’ll get on your new selfies, try writing down the best things your observed and the things you’d like to do the next day.
This year, tickle your wanderlust and try to explore as much as you can, as far as you can, and as long as you can, because…
Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover. (Mark Twain)
This is a guest post by Riyanka Roy.
Riyanka Roy is a traveler who is keen on exploring different parts of the world. She’s an Indian who did her masters in International Relations and then taught in rural tribal schools for a considerable period. Currently, she’s focusing on responsible tourism and freelance blogging. You can read about her journeys on her blog Words Weave Stories, and you can also follow her on Instagram.