Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Seeing your own backyard

When we think of travel, visions of faraway places come to mind. More often than not, though, we haven't done much exploring in our own hometowns.

Even if you don't live in a large city, odds are that within 100 miles of where you live, there are historic cites, monuments, parks, and attractions that you either haven't seen at all or haven't seen recently. The trick is that you have to approach your local area the same way that you would if it were somewhere that you were visiting. Do some research online. Ask for ideas of what's worth seeing. You'll be pleasantly surprised.

Besides helping you get back in touch with your community and its heritage, traveling locally has another big advantage: it's cheap. Travel cost is minimal. And while if you want the full immersion experience, you can stay in a local boutique hotel, it will be enough for most people to avoid the fast food chains and look for local cuisine.

Remember, being a traveler is less about destination than mindset. So even if Paris has to wait until you can save up for the plane ticket, don't put off your adventures. Be a Spontaneous Tourist at home.

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