Travel Like A Local

Written by: Nina Grace

So often when we travel we want to travel like one of the locals. We want to skip the tourist and commercial areas and see what the city really has to offer. Yet, we end up eating in the same hotel restaurant and taking those cheesy bus tours just like everyone else. So is “acting like a local” easier said than done? Not really, here are a few suggestions that can help you think like a local when you travel to your next destination.

-       Limit your research – if you’re anything like me, online research before a trip is a must! However, finding all of your “must-see’s” online before you even arrive to your destination will limit your experience. Talk to a local once you arrive (and we don’t mean the concierge at your hotel!). Talk to the valet or doorman, or go to the local coffee shop, stir up a conversation with someone and find out where the best bars, shops, etc. are.

-        Eat Locally - In your before hand research, search for the safe neighborhoods, travel to those areas and just pick a restaurant that looks appealing to you. If you don’t like it, you’ll know not to go back next time, but that’s all a part of the adventure - trying something new. Some of the best food I’ve eaten came from unexpected places that could have never been planned out due to their lack of a website.

-       Skip the tours – unless the tour allows you to hop on and off as you please (like The Original London Sightseeing Tour), skip it! There’s nothing worse than being in an over populated bus headed to an over populated part of the city to take a quick snap shot in front of some major tourist attraction and get rushed off to see the next major attraction.  Enjoy the city for its culture and beauty, not its money-makers.