Do you get itchy feet at the thought of all the places in the world that you want to see? At the same time you’re wondering how to balance studying, work, family, daily life and traveling? Welcome to the club!
No matter what’s your reason but the nomad life is not suitable for everyone.
I love traveling but I also enjoy coming back home where I’ve put down roots. Furthermore, as I work full-time in an office job, I only have limited vacation days per year.
That’s why I’ve developed the following strategies that keep my wanderlust mindset alive while moving through the routine of work and daily life.
Plan Your Next Vacation
Counting the days and feeling excited for the next trip is one of the best feelings. There are many advantages of planning your travels in advance. You can score better deals for flights and accommodation. Furthermore, if you do your research, you can make sure that you won’t miss out on interesting things to see or do.
Be a Tourist in Your Own Home Town
When was the last time that you went sight-seeing in your own city? Never or too long ago? Well, then it’s time to change this!
Caught up in our daily routine, we rush from one place to another and don’t pay attention to the beauty surrounding us. Take a walk through the city center with the eye of a tourist. It will make you appreciate your city and renew your passion for all that it has to offer. Visit a museum, a park, a market, a sports game or anything that you would also do while traveling.
Of course this doesn’t have to include the typical sights. Keep your eyes open and search for interesting places. You might discover some hidden gems that many locals often don’t know about.
Traveldreamfairy’s tip: Visit Atlas Obscura for a list of unusual and hidden places in many destinations.
Be a Tour Guide
Spending time with travelers can be as rewarding as traveling. Whenever you have friends or family visiting you, offer them to be their tour guide. Chances are high that you’ll learn more about the history and facts about your city you didn’t know before.
Go on a Weekend Trip
Short trips are a great way to break your routine and feed your travel bug. Use the weekends for a little getaway and save up your precious vacation days for longer travels. No matter how much (or little) paid work leave you have, every year has 52 weekends. Even if you only do one weekend trip a month, that makes 12 opportunities for a mini vacation. Now that’s quite a lot, right?
Explore the region around your hometown. Search for interesting places like: castles, mountains, lakes, churches, wineries or national parks.
Indulge in Exotic Food
My favorite thing about traveling is trying local cuisines and discovering new tastes.
Depending on where you live, you can even do that without having to leave your home town. Find a restaurant in your city that offers foreign cuisines. Many restaurants feature authentic decoration making you feel like being abroad.
Traveldreamfairy’s tip: For discovering new restaurants in Vienna, I can recommend you Tripadvisor and Quandoo. On these website you can search for restaurants from a big list of different countries’ cuisines.
I’m lucky because I live in Vienna where I have many choices.
But what if you are living in a small town that doesn’t have any exotic restaurants? Well, how about trying out new recipes? Invite your friends and fellow travel addicts for a fun evening of cooking together.
Learn a Language or Improve Your Language Skills
There is no better way to prepare yourself for your next travels than learning the local language.
Nowadays there are more possibilities than ever to learn a foreign language. There are various internet resources that you can use from specialized websites and apps like Duolingo, Babbel to Youtube videos.
If you prefer personal contact, then language schools might be your preferred choice. Universities often offer courses for non-students too at reasonable prices.
The best way to practice your language skills is with a native speaker. In many cities you’ll find networks that organize meet ups or provide a platform to find a language partner. One that I have used while living in Munich is SprachDuo. They have a database where you register and fill in which languages you speak as well as which ones you want to learn. This information serves as filter when searching for a language partner.
Not only will you be able to learn and practice a language but you can also make great friends and get insider tips by a local for your next travels.
Organize Your Travel Photos
Coming home from traveling with thousands of pictures and souvenirs in your baggage? Seize the time while you’re not traveling to organize your travel memories. Edit your pictures, create a slideshow, print a photo book or put them on the wall. Now you’ll have your travel experiences in a nice format to reminisce about and share with your friends and family.