“You know, you should travel more!”
“Girl! You need a break”
“Dude, just go and travel. It’s life changing”
I have heard these phrases a lot, a lot more than I actually can recall. For someone like me who mostly travels for some specific job to be done, I picture myself wandering on a gravel footpath, birds chirping, luscious green forest and breathing that fresh air or either with the wind of mountains and losing myself to nature. But I haven’t got chances to travel much, sometimes because of the finance, personal and professional commitments, academics, and basically every excuses that I can find.
So what is it that is actually holding me back to travel? I could just pack my bags, grab my shoes, pocket some of my savings and just run to the adventure. Maybe my adventure story could perhaps create another “Into the wild” movie but the story where I get out just fine and alive(spoiler alert for the original movie). I mean I could actually do that but for a non-spontaneous person like me who loves travelling but is stuck in the first and foremost question “where do I actually start from?” . The first step is the most difficult, isn’t it?
So if you are a person like me who is actually tired of their own excuses, this article from a completely amateur traveler but your travel well wisher is here with some handy tips that might help you in your upcoming trip. Yes, I gotchu buddy!
Yep! Travelling is quite expensive but you don’t have to rob a bank to get to the winds of mountains nor do you have to squeeze every ounce of the money from your wallet. You just gotta save up in a smart way. Every month I save up 10-15% of my salary for my travel expenses. It’s like every other expense I separate the cost for. If travelling is a priority for you that you’d want to invest in, you gotta make some changes in how you spend your money. Thrifting clothes, cutting off unnecessary expenses and spending on only things you’d actually need would save you a lot of money and you can fund a trip for yourself. Be your own funder. That would be so worth it!
Separate a date!
You know how working on a plan for an event or a project, you fix a certain deadline and somehow magically you get the job done right near the deadline so similarly separate out a date for your trips. It’d be very easy for you to visualize your actual travel plans and would help to mentally prepare you, when you fix a certain timeline. Plus for someone like me who is missing some spices in life,as the date comes up close that builds enough anticipation to make things exciting for yourself. Create your own piece of happiness from that.
Research Research Research!
This very topic could come up in every article for travel up there but it is very very important. The destination remains the constant but it will depend on your own research how you customize it to your own interest. Lemme explain, you are planning to go to Bhajang to explore Khaptad National park. The time of the year you pick up really matters. You could pick up months like March and April to see beautiful rhododendrons and beautiful meadows with rare wild flowers. Or Mid-september to November could be the best time to observe winter migratory birds and resident birds. And if you are into understanding and experience culture you could target Poush month of Nepali calendar which either falls in December or January, where locals of Bajhang and other farwestern region celebrate Bhuwa Parba and it is celebrated gloriously and locals reenact longest religious epic of the world Mahabharata and joice pandavas victory over kauravas. The destination is the same but possibilities are endless with the right research. So folks do your own research about the place.
Contact a local person
Well this part kind of falls under research but I emphasized it on a lot because no one knows the place like the locals. If you get your hands on the contact details of a local person do make your enquiries about the place, food, accommodation and local culture. For beginners, hotels/guest houses could charge a lot if you aren’t good at negotiating prices. so contacting a local person could help you cut off unnecessary expenses and can also make you familiar with local etiquettes as well. And you might as well try local delicacies and surprise yourself.
Find your travel buddy
Adulting is tough especially when you have no one to accompany you for places. Everyone is carried away by their own hustle. If you want to travel solo, good for you but someone to befriend during the travelling could change the whole journey and is a much safer option for beginners. You could pitch in your friends to accompany you but we all know those plans get postponed every now and then so, there are facebook groups like Nepali travellers, Travel Nepal, Solo travel Nepal, Nepali female travelers (घुमन्ते सखी) and lot more others where you could ask for suggestions about the place, contact details of focal person, find a travel partner and every other information. This group of frequent travellers will help you give information on travel and encourage you more for travelling so you can count on them!
Phew! Travelling for the first time could be quite overwhelming but as you travel you gain quite a lot of experiences to make you wiser in no time. The tips are more for a Nepali traveler, travelling within Nepal but some of it might help you to take that first International trip and you gotta start somewhere. So manifest the travel energy and reach your dreams. Happy travels!