Going abroad on holiday or for a gap year should be the opportunity to discover a new country, or many, and new cultures. Travelling is not just about being away from home and ending up doing the same thing, there is more to it. So how can you make the best of your travels or holidays?
Living with the Locals
The best way to discover what a country really is about is to spend time with its population. There are now many websites where you can rent rooms in people's houses and share their daily life. Not only this way to travel is more friendly, it is also cheaper.
Volunteer work doesn't just apply to third world countries and there are many places you can spend time helping on different types of project during your holiday. From nature reserves in Central America to hospital building in Africa, you can donate your time and do something for a country and discover spots that are far away from the beaten paths.
Why stay in one place, or even two, when there is so much to discover in any country? You could see much more of it and meet many different people by moving from place to place. With a car, a camper van, or public transports, a road trip will give you a better idea of what a country really is. You can plan the trip or leave it to improvisation, whatever your taste.
Hike or Cycle
This one is for those who like to be outdoor and prefer active holidays. A cheap alternative to the road trip, hiking or cycling around a country is a unique way to take in the beauty of landscapes and cities. You will have access to another side of a country and if you double that with staying with locals, you'll have a memorable experience.
Work on a Cruise Ship
A good way to pay for your travel and get to many different places. Make sure that you will be allowed to get out of the boat during stops or this will be no more than just summer work without any benefits. With the right company, you could be paid to go to exotic places and discover other cultures.
Be an au pair
This one has many benefits: earning while getting free bed and bread, practicing another language, and sharing the life of locals. You will usually get a part of the day free as well as some evenings. If you want to work with children, being an au pair is a precious experience.
If you need ideas for places to go to, have a look here.