Why do we travel? Is it the places or the people we meet? To let go and forget reality? Or is it to experience the world, to learn, grow and step closer to who you were always meant to be?
Whatever the reason you chose to travel, you cannot deny that after every adventure, you don’t remain the same person. We all grow, and inch closer to the ideal image we have of ourselves.
Without further ado, we bring you the ten destinations which can inspire you, and push you to be your best self.
1) Japan – Learn appreciation and punctuality
No better country to start with than the Land of the Rising Sun. With its roots in Buddhism, the entire culture here is about appreciating everything people do. A common phrase you’ll hear here is ‘Otsukaresama deshita’, which translates to “Thank you for your hard work”, which is what colleagues tell each other after a long day of work. Sure, you might look a bit creepy at first if you tried this outside Japan, but your co-workers will eventually start feeling appreciated for the work they do, and this can help build trust in the long run.
Secondly, the Japanese have a very important relationship with time. They never make anyone else wait for them. It’s seen as downright rude and it’s the fastest way to lose their trust. And if they lose your trust, they will do everything in their power to get it back. For example, a Japanese train company in 2017 had to issue an apology for leaving the station 20 seconds early. As they say, if you want to learn something, you learn from the best. And if you want to be more punctual, learn from the Japanese.
2) Brazil – Embrace love and embrace life
Brazil, the country that occupies half the landmass of Latin America.
They place a huge importance on relationships and love. Friends and families always come first here. Their strong social circles connections are valued the most, and tend to last a lifetime. So when you make a new Brazilian friend, which is quite easy as they’re open to foreigners, you tend to get invited into their homes as an honorary guest, and the treatment you get there will be close to spectacular.
3) Bhutan – To find happiness in the environment
Bhutan is the ONLY carbon negative country in the world which has made environmental conservation a priority over economic growth. With 800 million trees in a country with a population of 700,000, Bhutan has more than 75% forest cover.
Research suggests that being around trees is good for our mental and social well-being. Being in nature leads to better health, creativity and even kindness.
4) Italy – Worry less and to live in the moment
There’s no better place to learn the art of destressing than Italy. The Italians even have an expression for doing nothing: dolce far niente. They are masters at taking the world at a leisurely pace, and just enjoying the moment.
Here, you’ll soon learn to appreciate the little things in life. To stop and smell the roses, to enjoy that cup of coffee, and hardly ever complain, It sure sounds very cinematic, but well, that’s Italy for you. Their upbeat attitude towards life helps them convert every day activities into experiences worth remembering.
5) Germany – Learn to be efficient and effective
Germany is the most powerful economy in the EU, and yet the German working hours are fewer than nearly every other nation. If you were wondering what the secret ingredient is, and how the Germans always stay in their top game, you’ve come to the second best place. The best place being Germany itself.
They follow two simple rules.
a) They never let themselves burn out.
b) They love the process.
So when you see someone in Berlin relaxing, it’s because they know how to apply the concept of work smart and party hard. A trip to Germany can easily help you soak in the self motivation to do the work you love. And you’ll end up with nearly twice as productive as before.
6) Australia – Learn to embrace multiculturalism
86% of Australians believe that multiculturalism is good for their country and economy. They love meeting and interacting with people of different nationalities and trying out various cuisines they have to offer. And they’re proud of their multicultural society.
One trip to this country and you’ll soon have friends from all the seven continents.
7) Morocco – Learn to find an opportunity in everything
The most beautiful thing about the country is that their culture is based on an opportunistic approach to life. Everything they do is a means to get ahead, and Moroccans are always solution oriented. The locals try to convince you to stay a bit longer for tea, the shop owners try and get you to buy that extra carpet, and the taxi drivers try to make more money. You might even get a ton of marriage proposals.
If you start looking at life like a Moroccan, you’ll never find anything in life as a problem. They’re all just opportunities to get ahead, learn more, grow and live for the better.
8) Kenya – Reconnect with the wild
As one of the world’s foremost wildlife destinations, Kenya is home to close to around 25,000 different animal species. And given humans originated from Africa, it’s possible the savannas were our home too. So when we travel here, we’re basically going back home. And the best way to learn about ourselves, is to learn where we’ve come from.
Watching the zebras grazing, or the cheetah chasing the antelopes or a herd of elephants strutting majestically. Watching the animals in their natural habitats is a million times better than any zoo in the world.
9) Egypt – Patience, the pyramid weren’t built in a day
The magnificent pyramids of Giza. The only surviving wonder of the ancient world. But all we see now is the final magnificent structures in the heart of Cairo. But, thousands of years back, with a workforce of over 100,000 people, the Great Pyramid of Giza took over 20 years to build. And that is just a rough estimate.
Each stone weighed around two tons. And with 2.3 million stones which were transferred from distant cities like Aswan on the Nile, and carried to the top by building ramps, it wasn’t an easy task. Sure, we’ve all read about the pyramids and can imagine to an extent how majestic they might look. But actually standing in front of and staring at this structure, it’s hard to not think of the limitless potential of the human race if we just take the time and not rush things.
In Egypt you’ll learn that one stone at a time, you’ll build your pyramid too.
10) Turkey – Making friends with strangers
The biggest thing you’ll take back from your friends in Turkey will be their desire and eagerness to create close bonds with everyone. Even in the large cities like Istanbul, different communities share food, lend furniture, drop in for lunch or dinner or just help each other out in anyway possible.
While you’re travelling and someone asks you if you’d like a cup of tea, they’re more than just checking to see if they need a drink. A shared cup of tea is like a brief social contract, a mutually enjoyable interaction. And before you know it, they’ll soon be warming up to you and begin sharing their life stories and family photographs.
Making friends in Turkey isn’t difficult. Proactiveness and a general interest in the country, and you’ll soon forge quality relationships which can last a lifetime.
So no matter what you do, or who you meet while you travel, we want you to have the best experience and growth possible. So one day in the future, you’ll look back and be glad to have made that decision to visit a new country and learnt something new.