Travel Better

How To Travel Like A Local

What do we want? To travel like locals.

When do we want it? NOW.

Snapping away our adventures of slurping gelato next to the Colosseum and drinking wine underneath the Eiffel Tower – while both wonderful – doesn’t quite do complete justice in experiencing a destination anymore. These days, we’re all about getting off the tourist track, digging beneath the surface and blending in.

Why? At the heart of it, to gain an authentic connection with a place and its people through two things: truly observing and participating. Here’s how.

The latest addition to ‘Travel Better’ on TOA, read the full online article How To Travel Like A Local on your quintessential Australian lifestyle stream 5Why here!

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#6. Make it a habit to always ask a local you meet, “Where’s your favourite X?” Chatting to a diverse range of locals and quickly discovering their favourite thing to do in their city or their “local secret” almost always lead you in the right direction. That’s how I found out about an open-air jazz party in LA that wasn’t in the guidebooks, or on another occasion found myself sitting uncomfortably (at first) in a Sicilian small town bakehouse being stared down by old Italian men but downing perhaps the world’s greatest cannoli. Worth it. (Image: Pushkar, India)
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#1. Dig deep for local events from lesser known sources. Official tourism websites usually share large cultural festivals (hello chockablocked calendars of India and Spain) but local events pages like San Francisco’s sf-local and popular blogs like Singapore’s Ladyironchef are where you’ll stumble across the odd pop-up art display, opera in the park or yoga in a hidden alleyway. On the ground, look out for noticeboards in cafes, bars and the likes as they’re a goldmine of community events. (Image: Har Ki Pauri in Haridwar, India)
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#9. The more time you have to explore one area, the better. Instead of embarking on micro-scheduled days of scooting between attractions, travel slow to pick up on unique everyday living. Think visiting grocery stores (they actually tell you a lot about a place), reading the local paper to suss out social conversations, and catching public transport to who-knows-where-but-who-cares to feel the pace of the city. (Image: Los Angeles, USA)
#5. Stay in a local’s home located somewhere you’d love to live. To fully taste local living, shared home rental site Airbnb is a winner. Take it one step further: instead of staying near tourist attractions, opt for a location you’re interested in calling ‘home’ so you can really live and breathe the area. Everyone rushes to the French Quarter in New Orleans but it was much more fulfilling for me to stay in a candy coloured shotgun house in the neighbouring artful Bywater district where I spent most of my time bike-riding past local business gems.
#5. Stay in a local’s home located somewhere you’d love to live. To fully taste local living, shared home rental site Airbnb (receive $45 off your first experience here) is a winner. Take it one step further: instead of staying near tourist attractions, opt for a location you’re interested in calling ‘home’ so you can really live and breathe the area. Everyone rushes to the French Quarter in New Orleans but it was much more fulfilling for me to stay in a candy coloured shotgun house in the neighbouring artful Bywater district where I spent most of my time bike-riding past local business gems. (Image: Sydney, Australia)

Ready, set, participate!

Light and love,
Tiff

Read the full online article How To Travel Like A Local on 5Why here.


 What do you do on your travels to help you better understand and connect with a new culture? Write me a comment below.


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Published by Tiffany Tran

Passionate Human (also Travel & Lifestyle Writer based in Sydney, Australia). Say hello: tiffany@talesofardour.com. The backstory →

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