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How travel broadens perspectives

By Sukanya Sharma

· rural tourism,Travel,Responsible Travel

Today ‘travel’ has become a default dream for pretty much everyone we encounter. What do you want to do in life? “Oh, I want to travel the world. Witness culture, climb mountains, taste authentic flavours, revel in the exotic setting”, and on goes the list. While this has become a ‘trend’ today, there are only few who understand the authenticity of travel and exploration.

Now before you start pouring hate over this, I understand that we have a rather subjective take on this topic. One of the main outcomes that come out of travelling is a new gained perspective on things, I believe. Travel for me means a change, a change that will inspire or instill something new in my lifestyle or me. Otherwise we are just an audience to the zoo that is the world – enter a new land, witness everything through a glass, and get back to our comfort zone.

Why more and more people are attracted to the idea of exploring a new place is because as humans, we’ve evolved to not just witness but also be a part of this ‘something new’.

What does travel exactly teach us?

Breaking stereotypes

Stereotypes speak of only one side of the story, and that is what creates a barrier. Exploration does not mean getting to a new piece of land, but it also ensures new, hopefully refined answers to questions. Heena D’Souza is a 30-year-old filmmaker in Mumbai who has her heart set to exploring new destinations; be it on a bicycle or on foot, Mumbai streets, the Sahyadris, or even diving in Philippines. Heena continues to stretch her avenues of travel. “It is more than just discovering a destination for me, it’s about what I learn through the journey.” Travel has made her break the stereotypes she’s set for the unknown people and undiscovered land.

picture credit - Sukanya Sharma

Importance of a community

Community.living.matters. Period. Why are we afraid of stepping out of our comfort zone?

In my recent travels to the Konkan Coast, I came across communities who welcomed me into their homes even though I was a stranger to them. Families looking out for one another while also respecting personal space, exchanging smiles and laughter, extending a helping hand are the small pleasures of life that we often overlook or even forget.

Another globetrotter Chriselle Baptista from Mumbai shares her experience of a community living - “Summer of 2016 was spent traversing through the countryside of several smaller countries in Europe. I spent days next to a river, took pottery classes in the local community, met generous people who looked out for me in a land which was unfamiliar to me.” What Chriselle takes away from her travels is the knowledge, consideration and importance of a varied lifestyle that keeps the diversity of a location intact.

picture credit - Sukanya Sharma

Budget travelling

A concept that is not just economical, but even lucrative if you are looking for a more refined travel experience. Sometimes stumbling upon the local lifestyle has a profound impact on us than designing our way around it. Who doesn’t love a hotel room? Sure, we do, but we often forget to get in touch with our roots, and budget travel allows for a desi, raw experience. Imagine this – Travelling in the midst of foggy hills of Darjeeling, would you rather stop for a kulhad chai on the roadside, or sit in a posh AC room with your Darjeeling tea only to be an audience of nature?

picture credit - Sukanya Sharma

Interaction builds communication, which further builds experience. Rewind back to your travels, and discover your happy place; did it involve sitting in a room or was it amongst strangers who taught you how to fall in love with the world?

Cover Image Source - CalvinAndHobbes - WallpaperSafari

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