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A Simple Way to be a Better Tourist

- Justine

Okay, so everyone’s taken a picture in front of the White House, gone to the top of the Empire State building, taken a cable car in San Francisco… even if you haven’t, why bother? Gazillions of people have already done it. There’s no point in traveling to all these famous cities because you’re just going to do the same thing every tourist has done before you.

Whoa. Keep your fanny pack on. Traveling is SO much more than visiting famous landmarks and following some rigid itinerary. It’s all about what you make it and what you decide to remember. To illustrate my point, I’m going to travel back (figuratively) a year and a month to when I was in France. Of course I saw the Mona Lisa, ascended La Tour Eiffel, and ate a croissant (scratch that, try three hundred croissants). These are all activities that, arguably, you have to take part in when in France. I’m glad I did. However, I also rode a carousel with a bunch of school-age Parisians, listened to street performers singing a gorgeous duet in an ancient-looking stone archway, followed cross-dressers down the street, and counted the stars sitting on the steps of the Opera.

Sometimes, it’s the little things that really make your trip– the things that can’t be scheduled. Where did you travel last, and what sorts of moments made the trip a great one?

Oh, and P.S.- Happy 300th post, Teen Travel Talk 😀

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