And no, I’m not talking about the Curious Traveler PBS show 😆 . Today I wanted to touch on a question that I was asked last week on my Instagram page that asked: how to positively use travel as a form of exploration and curiosity.
If there’s a topic on travel and personal improvement through travel that you’re curious about, leave me a comment or send me a DM on Instagram with your question! Your question may end up being the next post on the blog or video!
If you prefer to watch the video version of this post, scroll down to find it! While you’re at it, make sure you like the video and you leave a comment sharing how YOU travel with curiosity.
As you know, curiosity and exploration pretty much go hand in hand when it comes to travel. Curiosity is key to guide your exploration in a unique way to you for the purpose of understanding something about someplace and/or yourself.
The question here is the following: What do you seek when you travel?
Learning about yourself?
About the world in which you live?
Something else you’re not sure of?
The possibilities are limitless, but one thing is certain; whatever it is that you’re seeking out is the same thing that sparks that question, that doubt, and ultimately your “why” when a certain part of the world comes to mind. Never lose sight of this. A curious traveler is someone that may look at a ruin or monument, and wonder about their meaning and how it connects to the bigger picture of the city, society, and ultimately the world and themselves. This is what changes perspectives and creates even more questions while it provides clarity for your “why’s.” It’s the ultimate seasoning to your travels, which below, we will go more in-depth as to how you can also start thinking like a curious traveler."A curious traveler is someone that may look at a ruin or monument, and wonder about their meaning and how it connects to the bigger picture of the city, society, and ultimately the world and themselves." Click To Tweet
Uncovering your reason and creating the intention to travel with curiosity and exploration in mind
Simply ask yourself, do I want to make the effort to think a little beyond what I see? We all have curiosity over many things, and traveling with the intention of finding out more is the best way to learn. However many still decide that they don’t want to really think about anything when they vacation somewhere, even if it can create a more meaningful experience. So it really does come down to you if you want to take the time to research a little beforehand of the place you’re visiting, take a walking tour when you’re there, taking your time at the museums to really read into what you’re looking at, etc.
Since recently sharing with you all about my experience with utilizing travel as a form of escapism, I have made the intention of asking myself a very basic question: why do I travel? The truth is, I travel for many reasons, but one of them that always comes to mind first is curiosity. The curiosity to learn more about the world, different cultures that add color to our world, to meet people with different lifestyles and ideologies, and to learn about myself. It’s a thirst for understanding and seeing for myself what the rest of the world is like.
For you reading this, this may resonate with you, and for others, there may be other reasons to use travel as a form of exploration and curiosity. Do you know yours? Let me know in the comments.
Creating intentions has power. In this case, creating the intention to be more curious when you travel will prime your mind to be this way. So as you plan for your next trip, start telling yourself that you’re ready to learn more and dive deeper into the place you’re going to.
How to positively use travel as a form of exploration and curiosity
So the way to positively use travel as a form of exploration and curiosity is to, first of all, realize why you’re traveling. Don’t do what I was starting to do and go down a path of using it as a temporary escape from an issue you don’t want to deal with. That’s a given. But also, either realize or get back to the idea that travel is the ultimate tool and avenue for exploring curiosity and exploration.
When you travel, there’s a feeling of complete freedom because you’re in constant motion and because you’re in a city where nobody knows you (if it’s a new place for you). This is very powerful as you have total liberty to shed any antiquated ideas that you have about yourself; who you are, what you do, and what you’re known for back home. That doesn’t matter anymore in this new destination. You should be aware of this, and use it to your advantage to really allow yourself to immerse yourself in the place that you are.
In a city where no one knows you, you can totally be whoever you want to be. You can be outspoken when back home maybe you were more shy, you can be more outgoing (because travel will often times force you to be) but also because you want to, and the list goes on.
The actual power of physically leaving your comfort zone, and entering a different part of the world holds so much promise for new experiences that will have positive impacts on your life.
A curious mindset
Now, this isn’t to justify doing something drastic that would place you in danger and any kind of harm. This is more about priming your mind to genuinely be observant and open to step out of your norm. To let the curiosity lead a bit more than it would at home, where we may feel a bit more restricted on what we can and can’t do. As a curious traveler, you have to understand that the previous rules do not apply to the current destination. That you must be open enough to take off the tinted societal norm sunglasses, and really look at your surroundings. To be present and listening.
If you stick to the end, you’ll be able to download a free checklist to actually help you prime your own curious mind that is necessary in becoming a curious traveler. It’ll be available at the end of the blog post.
Piecing it all together
When you’re aware and ready to explore beyond the sites on the itinerary and other things to do because everyone is doing them, that’s when the curiosity starts to take form. Once you have a question about something in the world, and you go to find out more for yourself, you’re allowing curiosity to lead you. As I travel, I love going to “the top sites” but I also love roaming neighborhoods and seeing where the local action happens. For me, my curiosity is to see how others live. What do their homes look like? Can you smell the aromatic scents coming from their kitchen windows? What sounds and actions happen in these pockets of the city?
It really does come down to what you’re curious to know, and just simply finding out for yourself. That’s what in my humble opinion adds seasoning to your trip. It’s what you’re going to remember because of the way it made you feel; not necessarily what you saw. That is what makes the experience a positive one – one with curiosity to explore beyond.
Don’t forget to download my FREE checklist that can help you curate your curious mindset, which again, is necessary in becoming a curious traveler. Simply click on the graphic below to get started!
I have put together a couple of guiding points to get you thinking of specifics when it comes to traveling with curiosity in mind, and how it can create meaningful travel experiences for you. Click HERE for yours now!
VIDEO: How to be a curious traveler
Let me know down below how YOU stay curious on your travels! Until next time travel bugs.