A no expectation kind of travel….

Sometimes when you travel, there is an expectancy as a traveler to see the right things. We Google our things to do and see, backpackers spread the word about the tourist sights we have to see.Sometimes when you travel, there is an expectancy as a traveler to see the right things. We Google our things to do and see, backpackers spread the word, tourist sites get more expensive and so on. Sometimes it looks like backpackers are walking zombies going to the same spots. You see the same pictures like Machu Pichu, Quitos Equator, Cristo the Reedemer. And then I think, we are just a little bit more adventurous than most but we still are getting shipped about like canned tuna from one destination to be next. Everyone wants that photo or to say they have been there. And we all follow suit.

I’m beginning to realize that my favorite travels are of when there is no expectation, no line of backpacker zombies doing the same thing as each guide book more or less draws them too. I kinda like the more independent, less tour based and I admit more sketchy off the beaten track travel. For me, there is a bigger sense of appreciation for this kind of travel, it’s more challenging, more locally orientated and more personal. You are you. You do your thing. And that kind of travel may just be experiencing the life of the place. Rather than doing everything that is ‘beautiful’ or a ‘must see’.

India for example is like that. Not out off by all tourists but certainly a large factor of your SE Asia nymphs aren’t overly keen on India. It’s dirty, food is dodgy and the people are too harassing. There’s not a party in every town and there’s not a hostel that boasts WIFI, western food or air con. For me this is real travelling though. You are travelling like a local would. You are seeing and judging things with your own eyes. You have the energy to go and see things during the day, and just appreciate the life around you. Whether it’s the colorful alleys of Jaipur, the historic wonder that is Hampi or the scorching desert of Jailsalmer, you don’t need a mesmeric activity to make you like this, it’s just the life. And what I mean by that as I keep writing it is, just the way things are done, people watching, the shapes and colors, the foods and smells – then you are really induced into the culture, seeing it from the inside out.
get more expensive and so on. Sometimes it looks like backpackers are walking zombies going to the same spots. You see the same pictures like Machu Pichu, Quitos Equator, Cristo the Reedemer. And then I think, we are just a little bit more adventurous than most but we still are getting shipped about like canned tuna from one destination to be next. Everyone wants that photo or to say they have been there. And we all follow suit.

I’m beginning to realize that my favorite travels are of when there is no expectation, no line of backpacker zombies doing the same thing as each guide book more or less draws them too. I kinda like the more independent, less tour based and I admit more sketchy off the beaten track travel. For me, there is a bigger sense of appreciation for this kind of travel, it’s more challenging, more locally orientated and more personal. You are you. You do your thing. And that kind of travel may just be experiencing the life of the place. Rather than doing everything that is ‘beautiful’ or a ‘must see’.

India for example is like that. Not out off by all tourists but certainly a large factor of your SE Asia nymphs aren’t overly keen on India. It has a reputation of being dirty, food is dodgy and the people are too harassing. There’s not a party in every town and there’s not a hostel that boasts WIFI, western food or air con. For me this is real travelling though. You are travelling like a local would. You are seeing and judging things with your own eyes. You have the energy to go and see things during the day, and just appreciate the life around you. Whether it’s the colorful alleys of Jaipur, the historic wonder that is Hampi or the scorching desert of Jailsalmer, you don’t need a mesmeric activity to make you like this, it’s just the life. And what I mean by that as I keep writing it is, just the way things are done, people watching, the shapes and colors, the foods and smells – then you are really induced into the culture, seeing it from the inside out.

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Like Myanmar also, my short time there. Walking around Yangon, you cannot help feel like a local with what you see. There isn’t a great deal to ‘do’ as a tourist but just enjoy what is there and what the life is about.

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On this trip Guyana and Venezuela have been my off the beaten track destinations. I think it’s important to mix it up like that. It took me a whole to get in the gringo mood because I headed to these two destinations early. And tough they were. Guyana. Because it doesn’t invite tourism really nor needs it. It’s off the beaten track and almost like an African country. Not many backpackers go at all. I loved that an I remember the excited feeling of when I was about to go there? Why? No expectation. A bit of a challenge. Honestly thoroughly enjoying what the life is there. That could be sitting at a bar drinking El Dorado talking to the locals. I loved that. Or visiting the markets near the Georgetowns clock. Meeting a fellow writer and an award win in one at that in a local cafe. Even just visiting a local pharmacist for some more malaria tablets but for the store to look like an old 1920’s European styled house.’ That’s travelling seeing what’s what for yourself.

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Too much is forced on us on the backpacking routes and we are all seeing the same things..

Venezuela, politically unstable since their much loved president Chavez died in 2009, dangerous in the cities with it’s capital Caracas the #3 in the world right now. Don’t go there it’s dangerous I’ve heard. Why are you goin there for? When was backpacking a walk in the park? When people who haven’t suffered or had many bad times before start getting paid for to travel from their parents thinking it’s a giant holiday. Backpacking isn’t meant to be easy. I wanted to see Venezuela because it appealed to me. The dangers, how the people were, the local foods, the challenge. But the no expectation again. I had no real info on Venezuela until I met Maria, a awesome girl in Brazil. She filled me in on everything. Los Roques was one of the ones which took me insanely by surprise. The best beach I’ve been to date. I went alone and did what I wanted to do. No party’s or expectation. It was relieving and something that more of us should do. Go away somewhere relaxing alone. In Venezuela I felt like a traveler though. I felt I was exploring places not many were going and that in itself brought great satisfaction to me. There was times when I was alone, worries, had to make decisions. But that’s what exploring the real insights of places is about. For instance I didn’t dress like a tourist either. I took off my 2 dollar watch from Brazil, hid or removed jewelry, wore pants and sneakers rather than shorts and flip flops. This aided me and gave me a more sense of being there for the country.

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The Middle East, Central Asia are in the list. Believe me when I say I want that places because it’s a different more appreciated kind of travel. So when I say my next dream trip is Africa, and they say ‘where in Africa?….I say everywhere.

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