It’s important to make the time to pause and enjoy the moment – to be present in your travels, so that inspires this week’s article…
Be Present and Appreciate Where You Are – Local Experiences
Many vacations may be planned around relaxing time by the pool or the beach, but quite often we end up traveling to cities and towns around the world with an intent to discover new cultures and see famous attractions.
It can be so thrilling to see a sight that’s been on your bucket list for years, like seeing the ‘David’ at the Accademia Gallery in Florence or visiting the fountains at Peterhof Palace outside of Saint Petersburg. These are amazing experiences and should not be missed – but the other part of travel is the unstructured part where we are just in the moment, enjoying where we are with time to observe and reflect.
Whether you are traveling on your own with an itinerary of things to do and see, or you are part of a group tour or excursion, make sure that you use your independent time to really create those moments of being present in your destination. Don’t go take a nap back in the room – you can sleep when you get home. Relax and rejuvenate in ways that deepen your travel experience – here are some of my favorite ways to just be present in the moment when traveling.
I love taking a long break at a sidewalk cafe for a cappuccino or a glass of wine, depending on the time of day, and taking that pause in my travel journey to be present. There something about being in a little foreign town or city, sitting at an outdoor café, leisurely drinking a cappuccino, watching the people go by that gives you an appreciation for your travels and the amazing sights and experiences you are blessed to have. It’s a great way to absorb the culture and feel connected to the vibe of the town.
Finding little alleyway restaurants in European cities is one of my favorite ways to quiet down and appreciate where I am. There are always going be restaurants in on the main streets, but if you walk around you can find little cut through areas that are typically pedestrian only, and will be lined with little restaurants. They tend to have more locals and I love to go discover one of these little hidden type restaurants. I sit outside, watch the neighborhood people cut through the alley, and it just gives me such a feeling of belonging and being part of the culture.
Rooftop bars are another one of my passions when I travel. I love to read articles about them – there is something so exciting about being up high, getting a bird’s eye view of the city and see where all the key sights are, and where I’ve been and plan to go. Enjoy a cocktail and relax as you plan your sightseeing or next travel plans. It’s the perfect way to feel refreshed and present in the city you are visiting.
So, on your next trip don’t use all your free time for shopping or packing up, but make sure you get outside to relax into the contentment of enjoying the present moment.