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Selamat Hari Natal สุขสันต์วันคริสต์มาส Merry Christmas!
¡Feliz Navidad! めりーくりすます C рождеством! عيد ميلاد مجيد Joyeux Noël
メリークリスマス Buon Natale Καλά Χριστούγεννα
圣诞快乐 Frohe Weihnachten
Have you ever wondered what a new city would be like or how a new country would make you feel? What about constantly dreaming of taking vacations to tropical islands? If so, I’m happy to tell you that wanderlust fever has come upon you. Below I have listed five ways you can recognize that you have wanderlust fever. Don’t be fooled, there is no antibiotic that will cure this sickness. The only cure for it is to go out and explore the world. Travel as much as you can.
1. You daydream about a destination
The first sign of wanderlust fever is constantly daydreaming about a place you’ve always wanted to visit. You go through each day and you can’t get this trip or place out of your head. No matter how busy you are during your day, you still have time to sit and daydream about that place you want to visit. Most of us have many places that we want to see. Some are big trips and some are short weekend trips. Start curing this sickness by checking these places off your list. Take the small trips first if it isn’t a convenient time to take the bigger trips. Taking the small trips will keep you satisfied until you can go on the bigger trips. Not going on any trips can affect your life in a very negative way. Don’t let it get to that point. Book a trip now.
2. You look at pictures of beautiful places
Another sign of wanderlust fever is looking at pictures of these destinations daily. It is one thing to daydream about your destinations but now you are looking at pictures of the places you want to visit every single day. I believe that looking at pictures of what you want can inspire you to eventually take that trip but it is important to actually go on the trip instead of just dreaming about it. I found that when I got to this point, it was time to book the trip. After going on this adventure, you get to come back and look through pictures again, except this time they are pictures that you are in, not just somewhere online.
3. You hear the ocean in a seashell
I’m sure everyone has heard the old saying, “If you put your ear up to the seashell you can hear the ocean.” Some people hear it and some people don’t. After some deep thinking, I realized that I could hear the ocean in the seashell because that’s what I wanted to hear and that’s where my mind was when listening into the seashell. If you hear the sound of the ocean in the seashell, that means you are seeing signs of wanderlust fever and that you need to take a trip to a beautiful beach as soon as possible.
4. You get anxious to take a trip
Getting anxious to take a trip is a very obvious sign it’s time to go somewhere. When I say you get anxious to take a trip, I don’t mean the nervousness of going somewhere you’ve never been before, I mean the eagerness of finally taking a trip and going somewhere. I find that when I don’t take a trip in a few months, I start to get anxious about getting stuck in the same scene and same routine. To avoid this feeling, take some of those smaller trips every couple of months. This allows you to keep your happiness at a high level without feeling like you will never get to see the places you want to see.
5. You constantly check for deals
Constantly checking online for deals on hotels, airline tickets, and entertainment on specific destinations is a very clear sign that you have wanderlust fever and you are well on your way to curing the sickness. If you find yourself searching for good deals weekly, even daily, that means it is time to book your trip and get your satisfaction of traveling and visiting the place that is always on your mind. Everybody wants to save as much money as possible on trips but you can constantly search for good deals for a very long time and still not find the deal you are looking for. Which puts you off from booking the trip. Don’t spend too much time looking for the right deal - if you find one that is close, book it.
Traveling and seeing the places you’ve always dreamed of can give you an incredible feeling. Being able to see the places you’ve always imagined can enhance your happiness and help you enjoy your life that much more. So if you have caught the wanderlust fever, there is no better time to book a trip than right now. Go for it. Your happiness depends on it.
What signs do you get when you catch wanderlust fever?
Spain is a country with a plethora of diversities. Historic cities, art and cultural history, changeable landscapes, wildlife, full bodied wines and food to die for. Wherever you are there is always a lot to see, eat and drink!!!!
Here are some of our picks of 5 great places to visit in Spain:
Guggenheim in Bilbao
The Guggenheim Museum, Bilbao is a museum of modern and contemporary art and was designed by Frank Gehry in 1997. It has been hailed as the most important structure of its time and is said to have changed the way people think about museums and continues to challenge people's assumptions about the connections between art, architecture and collecting.
Madrid is the financial and cultural hub for Spain and much of Southern Europe. Due to the length of time this area has been inhabited, there are plenty of historical sites to explore. Madrid is a huge city with an excellent array of bars, restaurants, clubs and entertainment. If you are a sports fan you can visit the Bernabéu stadium, which is the home of Real Madrid. For art lovers there is the Prado and Reina Sofia museums which house works from Goya, Velasquez, Picasso and Rubens.
This destination will provide you with a true Spanish experience of the Costa Blanca which was originally a fishing town but has a fabulous town centre steeped in history with its blue domes 18th century church and picturesque alley ways. Enjoy the fantastic view which you can see if you are able to climb into the surrounding Cafali hills. There is something for everyone, including magnificent rocky coves to be explored by scuba enthusiasts. Restaurants include feasts of local seafood and you can complete your evening with a walk along the Benidorm promenade.
Every country has some rather strange, out-dated laws that have failed to keep up with modernity and now just seem weird. Thailand is no different and the list of antiquated ways to stray foul of the law in Bangkok includes:
Greece is an ancient country, as many people know. It will come as no surprise to find it has some unusual and different tourist attractions and things to do or try. Here are 6 of them:
2,000-year-old computer - Found by sponge divers off the coast of Antikythera an outstanding piece of engineering was found. My chance a 2,000-year-old clockwork computer was discovered on a wreck that had been submerged under the water. Known as the Antikythera Mechanism, the device is something that is sure to fascinate anyone with love of engineering or computers. It is housed in the Bronze Collection of the National Archaeological Museum of Athens.
Rock Pillar Monasteries - Churches in Greece are great at finding amazing places to build. One of the most spectacular of all Greek Orthodox churches must the Meteora monasteries in the Pindus Mountains. Once only accessible by frail rope bridges these buildings can be dated back to the 11th century. The monasteries are set in some of the most amazing scenery that seems very un-Greek and this really has to be a place to visit.
Psirri Street Art - For art lovers the Psirri Streets of Athens are a must. Many people choose to visit the main street but the real gems are found when you wander down the smaller streets. Speaking Greek will really help you here as you will be able to ask about the street art and locals may well take you on a secret tour. My speaking the language you may even be able to talk to some of the artists.
Cooking Class - One thing that anyone with a love of food must do when visiting Greece is to take a cooking class. Cooking classes are available throughout Greece and are a great way to spend a day and meet people. For the best experience, speaking Greek will be really helpful, allowing you to chat to the cook and pick up some inside tips.
Stinging Nettles - Most people want to steer well clear of stinging nettles, coming up in a rash is the last thing they want. However, in Greece you may want to get a little closer. The Greeks love cooked stinging nettles and there are some places that will make a day out of harvesting them. Boiled up the nettles lose their sting and taste a little bit like nutty spinach. If you really must try something unusual Greece this has to be it.
Speak Greek - No matter what you decide to do in Greece the country really opens up once you speak the language, especially in more rural areas. Greece is a country steeped in ancient history and full of happy, generous people who are just waiting to sit with you over a coffee and talk. Of all the unusual or different things to do in Greece surely sitting down with the locals and talking Greek is perhaps the most wonderful.
One of the biggest headaches around travel is money. The so-called wise people will always tell you to stick to plastic as you cannot go wrong. However, there is a lot more to travel money than many imagine and plastic is not always the best way to go despite it being one of the safest. Here are a few tips about money for travel.
Get your currency early. There is never a “real” exchange rate, and for the traveller, the odd percent dip or rise in the exchange rate is not going to make a massive difference. Getting your foreign currency before you leave is nearly always best and often saves on high commissions and fees at the airport or in the country you are travelling to.
Take a little more currency than you think you will need. It is easy to overspend a little when travelling and you may find something that you really want as a gift or memento to take home. Ordering or buying more foreign currency than you might need doesn’t mean you lose out if you cannot spend it as many places that exchange currency will have a favourable buy back provided you use them again. However, you need to ask as the special buy back rate is not always advertised that well.
Avoid ATMS overseas: Only in a real emergency should you use an ATM to draw cash overseas. While it may seem convenient, the charges are often high to withdraw cash, and you may well be in for a shock when you get your next bank statement.
Travel cards: Many banks and bureau de change companies offer a convenient travel card that is “loaded” with foreign currency that can be used much like a Credit, Debit or cheque card overseas. These cards are safe and reliable, the exchange rates and fees charged are very good, and you can “top up” using your online banking or via an app many providers offer.
Spending and storing your money - Don’t carry all your cash: As a tourist, you are a target for pick-pockets and other swindlers. Don’t keep all your cash on you, rather place what you need in your wallet or purse and ask your hotel or lodge to keep the balance in their safe if one is available.
Haggle: Many countries invite you to haggle, in fact, if you do have exchange currency overseas, this is also a consideration (if you don’t ask you don’t get). Haggling is part of the adventure of travel, and if you can speak the language, it can become even more fun as it is often not expected.
The magic $10 bill: One of the best kept secrets of any experienced traveller is the magic $10 bill. This is a $10 bill that you keep hidden in a place only you will know that cannot be accessed easily by a pickpocket and may not easily get lost in transit. Keeping a $10 bill in your shoe or sock can become a life saver, and depending on which country you are in, if you choose a US Dollar is as close to universal currency, $10 is just enough to get you out of a sticky situation.
Russia, once the iconic enemy of every Double O agent in England, the former arch enemy of the CIA and FBI with constant fear of a nuclear war breaking out at any moment and home of the feared KGB snooping around every corner, is now an open country that welcomes tourists and Moscow has even become an air travel hub for budget travellers looking for a cheap flight from Europe to the Far East. It is a country that has lifted its veil of secrecy and opened its cities and its countryside to tourists far and wide. The country has a rich and diverse history along with a fascinating culture to be explored by the tourists. Evidence of the communist past can be found and is still felt among many people but the country has moved on and is continuing to do so. It’s a country where the familiar and perhaps more well-known history old regime still hide a country with a great deal to offer.
To get under the skin of Russia and walk more than just a few paces away from the Kremlin and Red Square having an understanding of the Russian language can open up a number of wonderful surprises or turn something simple into something special and memorable.
The simple act of drinking a vodka can become a memorable part of a trip, having the language can spark up a conversation and you will, of course, know that you must NEVER toast vodka with Na Zdorov’ye because it is actually a thank you for a meal not a toast associated with a drink.
But Russia is a country you will love, in fact, if anyone asks you what you think of Russia there is only one right answer and that is that you love the country – there is no other answer. Having the language will help you even explain why you love the country and what you love most. And because you have some control of the Russian Language you will also be able to explore the country a little deeper thus being able to describe what you have seen to others in Russian!
There are many historical buildings and places that somehow survived communism and World War II that are beckoning tourists to visit, from cathedrals to monuments and museums and marketplaces. As much as the tour guides of the many places to see will speak English and a host of other languages with the ability to converse in the Russian language your tour can become better and you as a tourist will receive a high level of respect, speaking Russian shows you love Russia and her people and in Russia that matters.
Russia has really opened her doors to the world, the country is becoming a tourist attraction in its own right and for those who want to go beyond the Moscow’s and St Petersburg’s of this world speaking the language will open up a host of smaller towns and villages, encouraging tourists to more than ask for directions but to get an understanding of the people, the country and the journey Russia is on, starting a love affair with an amazing country that will always love you back.
Learning a foreign language can revolutionise your travel experience. English is spoken as a first language by approximately three hundred sixty million people out of a global population of over seven billion. Many English speakers seem to believe that wherever you go on holiday you can get by speaking English, so there’s no point in learning any other languages. They believe that if people don’t understand you all you have to do is speak slowly and turn up the volume.
You can more or less get away with this belief, as long as you stick to popular tourist resorts and hotels where you can usually find someone who speaks English. However, if you want to venture beyond such places, do more than just take photos and post them on social media, to get to know the locals, to read signs, menus, etc., knowing the local language is necessary and will make your travel experiences so much more exciting and authentic.
A basic ability in a foreign language will help you;
Ludwig Wittgenstein once said “The limits of my language are the limits of my universe”. Don't limit your travelling experience!
Travelling the world for many is all about exploring. For some it is for fun, others travel or business, but whatever way you look at it, you want to get something from it. Anyone can travel and see places, hop on a plane and you can go pretty much anywhere and be on the other side of the world in a matter of hours. But to really get the most out of any trip, a traveller needs to engage with people. People are the real way to open your eyes to what is going on around you, why something is, or just to understand more about a place. You may be lucky to find someone that speaks your language, but in many countries, especially when a little off the beaten track, the chances of finding that person are slim.
It makes sense then, if you want to get more out of a country that you visit, that you learn the language. For so long, many people have just expected people to speak English primarily, but for a real travel experience, a person who wants to experience that little bit more from where they are visiting, speaking the native language is a must. Speaking Japanese on a business trip to Japan shows respect and courtesy, two things that mean a lot in Japanese culture. This would transform your business trip to Japan and you will stand a greater chance of success if you speak their language.
Exploring the vineyards of France or Italy can become so much more rewarding when you speak even a little French or Italian. True, the guides and the wine makers may speak a little broken English and some will speak very good English, but this is their second or maybe third language and the little nuances that bring the real colour of the vineyards or other places get lost in translation. By speaking the language, you also get that little bit extra, and the very fact you have chosen to learn the language brings a smile to the face of a local and shows respect.
Learning the language becomes part of the journey, and leading up to the moment you disembark at that airport in Thailand or Germany you have already experienced part of the country through its language. Learning the language will leave you feeling confident, knowing that you will be able to ask for directions or have a conversation with a local while waiting for a bus perhaps, and as eager as you are to explore or get to your business meeting you are just as eager to put your new language to the test.
Learning a language allows you to become part of the country you are visiting and because you blend in a little better, the country and its people will open up to you, showing you more than you expect. With a language to use, your horizon has been broadened and all it takes to receive this benefit is a little time invested in language.
Travelling is an exciting opportunity which can be enhanced by learning the language before you go. This blog contains some interesting articles about language and travel.