5 Reasons to Travel
Do you need any more reasons to travel other than it's...travel?
Sure, why not?
I'll start off with a disclaimer, though. These are my top five reasons for traveling. They may not all apply to you, but I bet there's some overlap. Other travelers will have a slightly different top five list, I'm sure.
My second disclaimer is I really can’t put them in any particular order. It’s all of these reasons put together that send my husband and I - and oftentimes along with friends and family - off traveling around the world.
1. To See Beautiful Places
When I was growing up I had the opportunity to do some regional traveling with my family. In the days preceding our trip, we spent hours reading brochures and looking at maps and deciding where to go and what we'd see. When we hit the road, we looked out the window and enjoyed what we saw.
What I remember seeing on these cross country trips were mostly green trees, grassy rolling hills, beautiful rock formations, and flowers. Bridges of various types, rivers, and lakes also dotted the countryside. Growing up in a suburban environment I also found it fascinating when I would see horses, cows, pigs, goats, and sheep from my window view.
When I was a teenager, I enjoyed studying the history and culture of our own country and of other countries. As I grew into adulthood I've had the opportunity to travel both domestically and internationally and see many of the historical sites that I had read about.
2. Meet People from Other Cultures
Growing up in the Chicago suburbs I had the opportunity to be positively influenced by many people of other cultures and ethnicities. I also studied Spanish for all four years in high school and a few years in college and was interested in other cultures.
I am definitely not as outgoing as Lyndon is so when we travel I would probably be content to experience another culture by reading and eating their food. Thankfully, Lyndon has never met a stranger so he is always talking to the people we meet on the way.
This has most definitely enriched our travel experience. Meeting people from the towns, cities, and countries we travel to - and other travelers from all over the world - has definitely been a positive experience for us.
3. Disengage from the Daily Grind
Well, I have to admit our current daily grind of semi-retirement is not really a grind. But when I was working well beyond 40 hours weekly, travel was a great way to leave that all behind for a while.
Don’t get me wrong I like work, and I find work meaningful, but my ability to disengage from work while at home was just not very successful. Once we leave on a trip, I realize how tired I've been. You can ask Lyndon if it’s true, but I often actually fall asleep on the plane while we are on the runway before we even takeoff or as we are ascending!
Studies have shown that travel can help reduce your blood pressure and improve your heart functioning. There are definitely benefits to being able to relax in a different environment.
4. To Try New Things
For those of you that know me well, you might find this a little hard to believe but sometimes trying new things is difficult for me. But that doesn’t mean I don’t enjoy the challenge of trying them.
Yes, we did just pick up and move from our Kansas home of 26 years to Vega Baja Puerto Rico, and this certainly is a new experience. It also has its challenges! But trying new things is good.
Other new things that I’ve tried while traveling include hiking while carrying my own backpack; hiking up mountains even though I'm very afraid of heights; trying new foods and drinks (I’m a fairly picky eater); driving a moped; kayaking in the open ocean; snorkeling in the ocean; going up in the Millennium Wheel in London, the Arch in St. Louis, and the Seattle Space Needle (all high spaces that I am afraid of); crossing a river by foot instead of a bridge; parasailing; and many more!
5. Building and Strengthening Relationships
My fourth reason really leads me to the fifth reason I travel. For me traveling is a way to build relationships and strengthen them - be it with my spouse, family, and/or friends.
In fact, I don’t think I would’ve done any of those experiences I mentioned or at least not very many of them if I was traveling by myself. Certainly traveling with family and friends has definitely helped me work through and overcome some of my fears.
Not all, mind you. Sometimes I have watched others enjoy their experiences that involve open heights and I'm content to let them do it!
I have really enjoyed traveling with my adult children and their partners. It allows us to get to know each other as adults even though we don’t live with each other anymore. It's great to plan new experiences and create new memories together in this chapter of our family life
It’s also been fun to travel with other friends and family members. I really think you get to know each other better and differently as you travel. You have more time to chat and relax outside of your everyday environment.
And yes, sometimes you even get to work with your family and friends to iron out travel difficulties, minor disagreements, or help each other during injuries! These experiences are just a part of strengthening relationships.
I look forward to traveling again soon! We’d like to hear from you. Tell us your motivations and reasons for traveling!