April 21, 2024

THE ALLURE & ENRICHMENT OF WORLD TRAVEL

EDUCATION IN ACTION ON PEOPLE & PLANET

By Carmen Greger

“Travel makes one modest. You see what a tiny place you occupy in the world.” – Gustave Flaubert.

The world, in all its vastness and variety, beckons the curious soul. With each journey taken, we unveil myriad layers of customs, cultures, landscapes, and stories that continue to sculpt our collective human narrative.

The beauty of traveling transcends mere visuals—it’s an education, an experience, a pilgrimage to understanding our planetary siblings and the tapestry they weave.

As one navigates the diverse landscapes, from the Sahara’s golden expanse to Costa Rica’s verdant rainforests, from Alaska’s icy vistas to the shimmering beaches of the Isle of Capri, the world exhibits its richness.

Each location, be it the historical avenues of Portugal or the buzzing bazaars of India, provides a unique lesson in geography, architecture, art, and business.

Each corner of the Earth reveals an abundance of people—each with their customs, cultures, lifestyles, struggles, and triumphs.

Witnessing a Maasai dance, embarking on a crop to cup coffee bean excursion or gorilla tracking in Africa, partaking in a traditional Japanese tea ceremony, or experiencing the carnival in Rio de Janeiro—every experience broadens one’s perspective, making the traveler realize how diverse yet interconnected the world truly is.

For those seeking a peaceful solitude, destinations like Sea Island or a yoga retreat in Bali offer tranquility. Couples, on the other hand, can find romance in the narrow alleys of Venice.

Families looking for a luxurious escape will find Baha Mar Hotel in the Bahamas an epitome of relaxation and beauty, with plenty of ‘kids club’ activities to satisfy the most vivacious of children. Adventurous teens and young adults might consider expanding their horizons with programs like a semester at sea, studying abroad or a service oriented trip with Outward Bound or Rustic Pathways.

“To travel is to discover that everyone is wrong about other countries.” – Aldous Huxley.

But as enticing as traveling is, preparation is paramount. Safety should always be a priority. It’s vital to be aware of potential scams and to always have a basic kit of necessities. A valid passport, essential medications, comfortable footwear, and versatile clothing items are must-haves. And remember, packing light not only eases transport but also makes room for the treasures you might find along the way.

A crucial aspect of a fulfilling travel experience is finding a comforting and safe place to stay. With platforms like Airbnb, VRBO, Booking.com, and TripAdvisor, sourcing accommodations has never been easier. Agencies such as Expedia and Travelocity also offer comprehensive packages for those wanting a one-stop solution.

Large hotel chains like Marriott and Hilton are often a good option, as they have established precautions and proper amenities in place relative to given location. Hidden ‘word of mouth’ gems are great choices as well, just be thorough when investigating the details before booking, and ensure you will have a reliable and reachable point of contact during your stay.

And speaking of unique experiences, have you heard about the 3-year cruise that’s the talk of the town? Once Miray Cruises and their Life at Sea secures their ship, Imagine jumping on board and circumnavigating the globe, one exotic port at a time, for 1,095 days!

Travel, at its core, is education in action—an eye-opening endeavor that molds, informs, and enriches. The exposure to diverse ways of life, the firsthand experience of history and culture, and the sheer joy of discovery make traveling one of the most transformative experiences.

It’s time to contemplate. What corners of the world have you always yearned to see? Dive into research, list out places, find that perfect spot to call home during your stay, and book that flight.

The world, with all its wonders, awaits your footprints (and not those of the carbon variety; be sure to be mindful, respectful and not unnecessarily wasteful as you travel).

And as you consider your next journey, remember the words of Mark Twain, “Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So, throw off the bowlines, sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.”

Your voyage, whether it’s a meditative sojourn or an adrenaline-packed adventure, promises to be a journey of enlightenment and memories. So, to all the wanderers, the seekers, and the dreamers—embrace the beauty, the lessons, and the magic of travel. The world, vast and varied, is yours to explore.