Touring a new country is an exhilarating experience, and when you add some local flavors to it, it becomes a memory of a lifetime. While Google Maps and reviews are a good place to start, you can never really enjoy the entire gamut of experiences that a region has to offer unless you have someone local guiding you around.
Be it the most popular city on the planet or a secluded village, there are places and things to experience which are not listed on any travel sites. The next time you travel to a new country or city, make sure you go for planned tours by locals. Here are some benefits that you would enjoy, which would completely change how you travel.
Enjoy a More Holistic Way of Traveling
When you travel with locals, you have a more holistic experience while exploring the place. While a travel website would list all the major hotels and restaurants for you, a local would take you to a café hidden under an eighteenth-century archway or a hole-in-the-wall eatery that used secret recipes to cook their food, handed down through five generations. These are the places where you get to hear stories about the city or towns, which are not documented anywhere else.
Saves Time and Money
Even when you have the best maps with you, finding your way around a new city can be exhausting. You can keep losing your way in the alleys, or you could end up traveling around the same spot over and over, paying triple the amount to the cab driver who gets to make more money.
Traveling with a local will save you all that extra time- time you could spend exploring instead, and it will surely cost you a lot less. Locals will tell you about the easiest routes and quickest ways to reach your destination.
The itineraries that a professional travel website might make for you are not all that bad. You will get to enjoy all the major spots during the sightseeing for sure. However, if you are traveling with a group, you will not explore much yourself. Even if you do come to know about an out-of-the-way attraction, you won’t be able to visit it because you have to stick to a schedule.
On the other hand, traveling with a local gives you the independence of checking out whatever you want. You are not bound to a schedule, and you can move around at your own pace, marveling things with extra care, without anybody hurrying you on- which is what exploring should be all about.
One of the most significant advantages of traveling with locals is that you can avoid crowded spots. While the major sightseeing spots are historical sites or architectural wonders and are definitely worth a visit, you can visit them beyond the peak hours with locals.
You can have the place to yourself without the crowds of people ruining the moment for you. Then, when the crowds start arriving, you can slip away and go somewhere quieter and visit spots that hardly any outsider knows about. This will give you a chance to experience the best of both worlds.
Helping Local Communities
The local communities are greatly benefitted when you travel with local people because they help you discover people who work at the grassroots. From experiencing indigenous food, buying handmade items, to wearing local garments, rather than simply moving around the more expensive and touristy areas of the city, will help you see the city in a whole new light. It will not just be an entertaining but also a deeply educational experience for you. It will change your perspective and reward you with a more immersive experience.
Hence, try to go for tours by the locals as much as you can when you travel. You are going to go with memories that few others have a chance to make.