I’ve been traveling for a long time. I’ve been to most countries in Eastern and Western Europe. I spent a summer living and studying British Literature in London. I’ve been to Isreal and Malaysia and traveled throughout most of the United States and I lived for nearly a year and a half in New Zealand and Australia. I’ve been a lot of places, but whenever I think about where the road will take me next, I still get flush with waves of wanderlust just like I did in those early days on the streets of Barcelona, with an empty wallet and only my wits and my Lonely Planet Guide book to show me the way.
When I look at a map of the world, I feel dizzy from all the possibilities. And when I find myself wandering the through the streets or hiking through the jungles of foreign lands, I still feel that same rush of excitement I felt so many years ago. Thats how I know I’m not ready to stop traveling, and I probably never will be. Travel has a special way of grabbing hold of you — and for some people, it never lets go.
It certainly hasn’t let go of me. It grabbed me many years ago and it still regularly shakes me until I fall, flailing from my comfort zone and breaks me right down to the core of my personal insignificance and reminds me of my inherent smallness in this big and wonderful world.
It keeps me grounded. And I know I need it.
And if that’s not reason enough for you, then here are 3 more reasons why you should quit or job, leave your life behind, and travel around the world!
- #1 – Because Rolf Potts knows what he is talking about.
Rolf Potts is a travel writer who has written for practically every travel mag from National Geographic to Conde Nast Traveler and he is the author of Vagabonding, a book about long-term, independent travel. He’s a proponent of Slow Travel (he walked across Israel) and he encourages people to travel for long periods of time (He taught English in Korea for a few years). Besides all that, he’s a great source of inspiration for would-be travelers.
Check out this Video of Rolf Potts talking about travel for The Do Lectures. He’ll give you plenty of reasons to quit your day job and try out life on the road!
- #2 – Because There is So Much to See.
The world is a big place (that it’s a small world theory doesn’t work for me, Disney!) and there are so many amazing places to see. From London Bridge to Bangkok Thailand, www.1000awesomeplaces.com has a simple list of some of the most Awesome places in the world, with some beautiful photos to get you excited about the journey!
How can you stay home when places like this are just waiting for you out there in the world?
- #3- Because You Can.
Seriously. You can. People are always saying things to me like, “I wish I could trade lives with you for a year!” Maybe it’s because they don’t think that they have what it takes to travel the world. Well, I’m here to tell you that most of you DO have what it takes. If you’ve got kids and a mortgage, then yes – it’s going to be a bit more difficult for you, but there are still plenty of short-term travel opportunities out there for you too.
I’m not special. I’m not rich. I wasn’t born with some kind of traveler’s gene that makes me better at this than any of you (though I do like to think I’ve got a little Bessarabian Gypsy blood in me). You’re probably better than me at fixing cars or cooking dinner or whatever it is that you’re are good at (we’ve all got something). Learning to travel well is like learning to type or learning to play the guitar, or learning to speak another language. It might not be easy at first, but it certainly gets easier with time. The trick is to just do it. Just dive in and do it. You’ll never get started until you get started – so get started!
If you’re reading this article, and if you’ve gotten this far, then there is a good chance you’ve been thinking about whether or not you should quit your job, pack your bags, and hit the road – if only for a short trip. I can’t tell you it will be easy, and I can’t tell you it will be all sunshine and sex with attractive foreigners (although there is a bit of that too), but I can tell you that it will be different. And if you’re looking for something new and exciting in your life, then I assure you – it’s out there. You’ve just got to go looking for it.
Travel well, and travel far, my friends. I’ll see you on the road!