Ever since I was little, I always thought travelling meant that we had to see as many places as possible within the week or two we were on the road. Constantly active, constantly “visiting” places. When I purchased tours, I looked for ones that covered as many sights as possible, I thought I had to make the most out of my vacation.
The older I got, I realized that this wasn’t how I wanted to travel. I got exhausted, overwhelmed, and constantly jealous. The jealousy came from watching people at the places I was visiting and seeing them enjoy themselves. In my opinion, slow travelling is choosing to vacation rather than simply visiting a destination. A vacation where you get to be like locals, live an entirely different lifestyle, and escape reality (instead of letting it catch up with you all through your trip).
When I went on tours, I hated packing and unpacking my luggage every two days as we were constantly arriving in a new destination. By choosing to stay at least a week in one city you’re able relax, get comfortable, and not live entirely out of your suitcase. This way your day doesn’t consist of you constantly your toes or following a super hectic itinerary.
The process of checking-in and checking-out of hotels is the absolute worst and tiresome. When staying long-term, you can look at staying at guesthouses, homestays, or Airbnbs which are much more comfortable, stylish, and gives you a real taste of local culture - preferably one with a kitchen.
Guesthouses prefer long-term guests and generally price their accommodation at a discount to encourage you to stay longer.
Having a kitchen is super convenient, you can easily swing by local grocery stores to pick up your favorite breakfast and lunch goodies. It’s the best way to try out local delicacies as well, you never know what you’ll find in a foreign supermarket!
It’s always nice enjoying the simple things, like eating a ham sandwich on a museum bench or local park rather than finding an overcrowded over-priced café serving small quantities.
For families or groups with children, slow travelling is 100% the way to go! Having your kids comfortable and happy is a vacation on its own (or so I’ve heard). When planning your itinerary, choose a city that is central to everything you are wanting to visit and make it your home base. Over the duration of your trip, do day trips to the beach or monuments so that it doesn’t become overwhelming. At the end of the day, they come home to the same place and can sleep in the same bed.
This is way better than having to pack your bags, spending the day at the beach, and then driving all the way to a new destination (probably getting lost a long the way, if you’re like my family), and then on top of that, checking in and getting used to a whole new style of accommodation. Slow travelling is the way to go!
This one is most definitely my favorite reason! I love having a routine, a busy schedule, and knowing exactly how my day is going to go. I absolutely hate wasting time trying to figure out what to do today and desperately trying to put together a last minute schedule.
My dream is to spend a month in Greece in a small house owned by a Greek family. Just like Ali, in Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants. I’d love to have my own little kitchen, a little desk to blog, and a patio that overlooks the ocean. In the evening, I would go to the local markets or a friends place.
Vacationing like this, there’s so much more you’d be able to do with your day. Tanning on the pebble stone beaches, work out at the gym, visit your local parks, or do anything else you’d like to add to your daily routine! Vacation life doesn’t mean good habits go out the window (unless you want them to).
This is way cooler than constantly lugging a backpack around every few days jumping from hotel to hotel.
Similar to my current life in Bali, living that crazy Greek adventure would let me create the coolest friendships! Image all the amazing people I’d get to meet! Rather than having that one big night, it’s a month long of super great memories. It’s more meaningful and you really get to know people for what they are, instead of a moment of kindness. For some people, you’ll even become part of the family.
There’s so much to see in the world, and there’s no rush to see everything all at one go. You’ll always have the chance to return to places, it’s never a “once in a lifetime moment”. Enjoy each opportunity you have and really soak it in for what it’s worth.