Today’s blog was contributed by Lynn Clare. She is a writer who shares my love of travel. Enjoy, darling!
When I turned 50, I noticed that my travel style was beginning to change. I was less interested in speeding from place to place and more interested in a slower, more relaxed pace. I wanted to visit fewer places and stay longer. Taking the time to savor the entire experience.
I always begin by listing locations I want to visit and what I might like to do while there. Keeping in mind that I don’t want a packed schedule, I plan my downtime as well as my activities.
Especially with overseas trips, I know that I will need a little time to recover from jet lag. So now I give myself a couple of days to relax without making a lot of plans. I can always do more if I’m feeling up to it, but I don’t feel obligated. It’s a nice opportunity to treat myself to a nice lunch or just a cup of tea on the patio.
SEEING THE SIGHTS
Something I love to do everywhere I go is to visit gardens and museums, so I usually will build my trip around that. It helps to narrow down where I want to stay and what type of transportation is available.
I like to book at a nice hotel with a restaurant so that I don’t even have to go out if I don’t want to. This also helps me feel more comfortable in a new area when I’m away. Especially as a woman over 50.
Even though I always carefully research the hotel and surrounding area before I leave home, sometimes it isn’t what I expected. Or my flight is delayed and I arrive in the middle of the night. Staying safe is always a priority.
Another nice alternative is a Bed and Breakfast. The family will often help you with whatever you need and provide great information about the local area. Remember that they only serve breakfast, so you will have to get lunch and dinner on your own.
One thing, the biggest thing, I have learned while traveling, is to Pack Light!
For some, this may seem impossible but I’ve found it is more of an art than a science and with a little bit of planning and some practice, anyone can do it.
After 40 years of traveling for work and pleasure I now know that there is very little that I can’t get wherever I am. And how easy it is to pivot when those unexpected issues arise if I don’t have too much baggage with me.
Everything from broken wheels and handles to the infamous cobblestone streets of Europe, I have never been sorry to have too little luggage.
I travel with one small carry-on bag with wheels and shoulder straps and one small personal item that will fit into my carry-on if necessary. Even for a 2-week holiday in the middle of winter, it must fit into my one carry-on or it doesn’t go.
Not only do I not have to worry about lost or stolen luggage, but it also makes it possible for me to quickly change flights or get on and off of crowded buses or trains.
If you are new to travel, the best thing to do is to start small and build from there. Plan one short excursion to do something you enjoy either in your own city or somewhere nearby for a short weekend stay and see how it feels.
Everywhere I go, I discover something new and interesting, not just about the place I’m visiting but about myself as well.
Do you like to travel? Has your travel style changed as you’ve gotten older? Share your stories.
Lynn Clare is a freelance writer from Denver, Colorado. She is a featured writer for several international publications. An avid traveler, she loves to write and share stories about her life and adventures all over the world.
Website: Women’s Independent Travel
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