Travelling across Europe was always a dream of mine – so I chose to make it a reality. It was, without a doubt, the most rewarding experience of my life. With the heavy heart, I returned home to the UK, filled with a thousand memories, dirty clothing and the odd scar and bruise.
I made a few mistakes along the way, and I embraced new experiences that allowed me to embrace my trek across the continent. So, I thought I would share tips from my adventure with you. I hope you enjoy!
Food has the power to transport you back to a space and time. Scents, sounds and flavours can instantly take me back to a French café or a Prague market. I experienced many dishes during my travels, trying different cuisines – tasting food I never knew existed. I fell in love with food.
Whenever I felt like going home, I would head on out to a street food vendor or an intriguing restaurant and realised I had to stay. I had to carry on with my journey because there were still so many experiences, dishes and countries I had yet to try.
I didn’t want to return home the same person as I left. I wanted to bring back knowledge and skills that would remind me of the best time of my life. So, I enjoyed cookery courses in each nation I visited, learning how to make delicious dishes that I could recreate back home.
Needless to say, I am now a dab hand in the kitchen, if I do say so myself. Now, whenever I long for a walk along Amsterdam’s canal or wish I was on a horse-drawn carriage ride in Bruges, I can take myself back to the moment through the gentle aroma of the local cuisine.
Learn a Language
Us Brits are a little bit ignorant when it comes to speaking foreign languages. If you don’t know a language, and don’t have the time to learn one before your trip, I strongly recommend at least learning basic words so you can communicate with locals.
You are a tourist in their nation, so it is respectful to learn words such as “thank you”, “hello” and “please”. It is so easy to pick up a few words – and it could be the difference between a warm or hostile welcome from locals. You can guarantee they’ll appreciate you attempting to speak to them in their mother tongue, even if they do speak the English language.
Embrace the Moment
One thing you must do when travelling the world is to just learn to appreciate each and every moment. Whether you are enjoying a luxurious stay in a Liverpool hotel or viewing nature at an African safari, you have to live in the now. Trust me, when the adventure finally comes to an end, you will want to remember every second of your trip – before the reality of life sets in.
Climb a mountain. Go on a road trip. Sleep outdoors. View the architecture. Just learn to appreciate each and every culture – and absorb each day like it’s your last. Those little moments will add up to one unbelievable memory, so take it all in and appreciate the ease of travelling life.