Five things you learn whilst travelling the world

Well, these are the best things I learned when I was travelling, nope not the whole world, not yet anyway, but south-east Asia and Australia.

I set off for Australia when I was just 18, with so many dreams and adventures waiting for me I was bursting with excitement. I had been wanting to travel and explore since I was little, now my dream was coming true and I couldn’t believe it. I learnt so much on this trip that has helped me in my life overall. I also learnt that I never want to stop travelling and finding new experiences.

I was 20 when I set off for Southeast Asia and it was a trip of a lifetime. This was a very different trip for me and involved more partying, friends and many different experiences out of my comfort zone, including swimming with sharks!!

The top five things I learnt when travelling around these places and many more in between

How to live simply- I learnt how to live simply and I think that everyone that backpacks and travels know this too. You realise you don’t need as many things and clothes to experience wonderful things in life. When I went to Australia I took so many things with me and didn’t use the majority of them. Like I literally took 5 pairs of shoes and only used two pairs (my flip flops and trainers) such a waste of space! One of the best tips for travelling and backpacking is less equals more. You don’t need a lot and trust me you will regret it when you are carrying your backpack from place to place. In fact, when you are moving from one place to the next if your bag is too heavy you’ll wish you only took the clothes on your back. So learning how to live simply is a huge thing you learn when travelling. This is also something that you will take with you through life. You learn that as long as you have good company you don’t need much. This makes holidays and trips much easier as you know what you don’t need and that you only need to take exactly what you use. It will also make your home life simpler as you know you don’t need to have everything you can have just the necessities. This has helped me live more of a minimalist lifestyle.

Try new things- Before I travelled I would never try new foods and would be scared of new activities, especially if it included the sea. I didn’t think that a few years later I would be swimming with sharks and jumping off cliffs. When you are travelling you need to throw yourself into every activity and everything you can. You will grow in confidence and will release so many things you don’t actually need to be scared off. I was terrified of the sea when I went to Australia to the point I couldn’t put my feet on the seafloor. I had to stand on my boyfriend’s feet, and I wouldn’t get in the sea unless he was next to me. But by the end of the trip I was going swimming alone, cliff jumping and overall not shitting myself at the thought of what was in the ocean. So try new things, try things that terrify you. This makes your trip so memorable and special. You will have so many fun memories and it will grow you as a person. You will carry this on when you stop travelling or just in your future, you will be scared to go for your dream job but if you go for it what’s to lose. New things help you grow into an amazing person with amazing memories.

Find beauty in everything- When travelling you plan out and try to do all of the amazing things that country or place has to offer which is great and you will love this but one thing that you will learn on your trip is that you can find beauty in everything and anything. The goodness in everything will come out and make the trip magical if you know how to see it. I picked up this skill when I was in Australia and I have kept it with me even in rainy old England. I find beauty in everything now and this makes life so much more enjoyable. From laughing in the rain to watching the clouds change. It’s like unlocking a new world full of beautiful and exciting things. Even when things go wrong and shit happens (which it will) try and find some happiness within it, try to laugh at the pain it’s causing you, smile when you want to cry. In daily life now I’m back home if I ever find myself in a funk when nothing is right and it’s an overall shit day, I smile. I smile at nothing, at the car the let me out, at the woman across the street and this makes me feel so much better. Forcing yourself to smile makes you overall smile inside and feel a little warmth and happiness. So even when life gets you down look for the beauty and you will find it. Which leads me on to my next point…

Shit happens! – Shit happens and it won’t stop happening, that’s just life. When your travelling and something goes wrong it might feel like the worst thing in the world and it will make you just want to fly home (well that’s what it made me want to do the first time). You need to remember that even though you’re in a magical place where your dreams are coming true, shit will still happen. For me, it was in the form of a broken van. In the middle of nowhere. Literally. The middle of the outback in Aus! We had brought a van about 3 weeks before with little to no experience with cars or vans. I had been driving for about a year and my boyfriend had only passed his test two weeks before we set off. But know that no matter where you are in the world and what you are doing, stuff will go wrong. You will grow from this and it will make you a better person. By dealing with things going wrong you are learning how to deal with different life situations and you will be more confident in knowing that you can either fix it or learn from it. This skill can be used in every situation and shit you will go through. You need to learn how to let things go and understand that sometimes things can’t be helped. If you want a happier overall life this is such a good thing to learn.

About myself- Lastly, I learned so so so much about myself! I learnt so many likes and dislikes as well as my personality. Learning about yourself might be one of the best things you can do in life. You will be able to learn, grow and improve yourself leading to a better and more fulfilling life. My time travelling has helped me figure out who I am and what I want to be. I now know where I want my life to go and this has helped me figure out my life situations. Leading to me being in such a good place in life as well as so so happy. Generally happy with my day to day life which might seem boring and not exciting for some, this might also be a little bit from my point earlier on finding beauty in everything. You should definitely travel to learn about yourself and figure things out. Try new things along the way and it will open your mind to a world of things you want to do and how you can make it happen. You will gain world knowledge which will help you in so many different ways. This is one of the main things my dad was worried about when I left the first time, that I didn’t have enough world knowledge. My words to him were ‘well how am I going to learn, you get knowledge from scaring yourself, from trying new things and from jumping in at the deep end even if the deep end is halfway across the world.

When you are travelling try to think of what you want to gain from your trip, which could just be to have fun or grow in confidence, experience new things or just fall in love with life. Whatever your reason remember it and when things get tough remind yourself why.

Travel and see the world with your own eyes and thoughts. Travelling helps you improve your problem-solving skill which is going to help you with everything in your life. It will help you be more creative and smarter in so many different ways. So if you need a sign or reason to travel here it is!

Start now, do more and collect moments along the way.

So, where are you going to go?

If your planning to travel here is my post on how to plan the adventures of a lifetime!


How to plan your once in a lifetime travelling adventures

Firstly you need to know where in the world you want to go or have a start destination in mind. If you’re not sure about where you want to go, have a look at Pinterest for different guides and keep your eye on my blog as I’ll be making blog posts on different places to consider. 

Pinterest will give you an idea of what the places look like, but ensure that you RESEARCH them!! Read some blogs, talk to people you know have been there, and just google everything! One of the main things that I always google is the rules, you need to know these and be able to stick to them to keep yourself safe in all locations. For example, did you know that chewing gum is banned in Singapore and you need to watch your PDA in many countries, if you’re not sure you can, don’t kiss in public.

After finding out these you need to know how long you can travel for. This depends on money, commitments, and visas. If you are wanting to travel for 6 months that’s great but know that you can’t stay that long in certain countries due to the visa running out. If you have an income whilst on the road that’s perfect but it’s ok if not (i never have). This will lead you down different routes, whether or not you get a job whilst there or just saving a ton of money beforehand. 

So once you have a little idea of how long you are going to be travelling for, or if it’s just until your money runs out (i did this). You want to pull out a MAP!! This is such an exciting part of the process! Have a look at the place you want to start at and see what is around there. What countries are nearby? Is there somewhere you didn’t realize was so close? Make a list of all the places you want to go to that are nearby, then RESEARCH these ones too. This will help you get an idea of where things are and it might make you realize that it might be best to start in a different place to stop you from going back on yourself. For example, if you were planning Europe and the first place you wanted to go to was France but you wanted to go to Spain, Italy, and Germany as well. It might be best to start in Spain and then carry on to France, Italy, Switzerland and then Germany. 

So you have an idea of how long you want to go for, where you want to go and a little knowledge of the places you need to find out when you should go. This is down to the weather and seasons. If you have a set time in the year that you are going you might alter the places you are going to, to ensure that you are there for the best weather, you might want to go to southeast Asia in the drier season from November to February (if you’re escaping the British winter it’s perfect!!). So just have a look at the best time to go and it might change your mind on a few of your places and what order you are visiting them so that you are in that location for the best weather and then move on to elsewhere when it changes. 

Next, you need to plan out your route. You need to know the order of countries, states, or cities you are going to. Then have a look at the map of each place and do a list of all of the places in between the main areas you are going to. Research these places and ensure that they are nice places to go to, you need to ensure that everywhere you go is safe for tourists. You can then draw lines from one place to the next until your map is full of lines and dots of the places you want to see. Put all of your maps together and see what the routes look like together. This is the basic route that you will use throughout the trip. 

You now need to research VISAS. This is the bit I didn’t enjoy when planning each of my travels. You’ll find that they are expensive and will limit how long you can spend in places. They are also so important and even more important that you don’t exceed the length of them. If you do you might be deported, possibly pay a pricey fine, and often banned from returning. If you love the place enough to want to stay over the visa surely you want to visit that place again at some point in life, so you want to ensure that you can! If you’re going to a couple of different places you need to make a list of every place, the price of the visa, and how long you can stay for. You also might want to find out how to get the visa, some places you need to have sare passport photos, etc so you might want to have these before you set off to avoid surprise fees and delays in your travels. 

Now you need to find out the best way to travel from and to these places. Is it easier to get a flight but cheaper to get a bus? Just see what the options are and how much money you are willing to save for the longer routes. I used Rome2rio to find out the prices and lengths of different places, it also shows you the map of the journey. Have a look at the prices and lengths of all of the different places on your route. Make a list and this will help you when knowing how much money you need. Also research about what type of travel is best to travel around the little local areas, whether it be a taxi, hiring a moped or car, boat rides, etc. 

Once all of this is done have a look at the prices of different accommodation in a few different places you are going to. This will also help you decide what accommodation you are mostly going to be staying in. Ensure that you look around the dates you’re going to be there as there might be festivals/events that alter the cost. For this use a couple of different websites, is great to give you an idea of hotels and hostels, Airbnb is often cheaper if your a family/couple and even look at couch surfing which is often FREE. It just depends on your preference. When looking at this you might want to look at the prices of campervans to hire as that will help cut the costs of travelling place to place and accommodation, it’s also a super fun way to explore the less known areas. Please note that this isn’t possible in many places around the world. When you have a little list of different prices for places you might have more of an idea of how much you will be spending on accommodation for the trip. 

Find out the prices of different things in that area of the world. Some places it might be super cheap to dine out but other places might be pricey. It might be cheap to buy clothes and other bits that you might need on your travels. Just find out what the prices are like on average. You can find this from reading travel blogs, google, and word of mouth. Also, find out how much the activities you want to do are and if they are cheaper in a different area on your travels. This will help you pick what you are going to do and where. For example, it might be cheaper to skydive in Sydney rather than Perth. This will give you an idea of how much you are likely spending in a day. 

Now you have an idea of prices for food, accommodations, activities, and transport you can work out how much money you need. Once you have added all of these up and taken into consideration how long you are spending there, you might know how much you need for your trip. For example, you might find that you need around £6000 for 6 months in southeast Asia. You need to now look at flights from your location to your first destination, if you need to buy anything before leaving (backpack, suitcase, clothes, etc), also take into consideration the price it is to fly home from each of the locations. You need to know the price of the flights home in different places and ensure that you have that at all times, this is because you don’t know what the future holds. You might need to fly back for an emergency or if a huge pandemic takes over the world! You never know! After adding these into the price of the trip you worked out this is the final amount you need to save up. It’s also always best to have more than this just to ensure that you are travelling and also doing everything you want to. It’s a once in the lifetime opportunity so once you are there you don’t want to have to say no to activities that you are really wanting to do. I never budged to go on a day trip and swim with sharks but things pop up and when they do sometimes you can’t say no!!! These surprises are often the best memories too! 

From here you are nearly ready to go. You just need to SAVE, SAVE, SAVE! It’s worth it. You also need to know what to take but that is a whole different ballpark. I will be doing a blog post on everything you need when travelling so keep an eye out for that. 

Finally my favourite part. MAKE A BUCKET LIST!! A list of all of the things you want to do, places you want to see, and foods you want to try. This is a list that can go on forever. Keep this list with you on your travels and tick of anything you complete! It will help you remember some of the little places that are the most beautiful and the different activities you can do at each location! Add anything on this list from bungee jumping to having a picnic on the beach or hiking a mountain at 3 in the morning for the best sunrise! 

Let me know how you are getting on with planning your trip and email for some little tips and tricks that I can share with you personally!! 

Finally, enjoy this planning however stressful you might find it, it will all be worth it when you’re relaxing on the most beautiful beaches or climbing the most magical mountains. Wherever you go, enjoy, and stay safe. 

Top tip- take hundreds and hundreds of photos!