Tuesday, November 21, 2017

LAGATAW'S OVERSEAS BACKPACKING TIPS (INTRODUCTION)

at the world's best airport
Filipinos travel a lot nowadays. Expressways get congested during long weekends. Yuppies now have more extra cash for travel. And some have already started going off Philippine shores. But still many hesitate to try overseas travel for two main reasons: logistics and cost. The fear of not knowing what to do once we get to a foreign land still haunts many of us like it used to scare the generation of our parents who would just avail of the services of travel agencies and tour operators if they wanted to go on an overseas trip. And many still think that it is very expensive to travel abroad. But the world has changed a lot. And these things that still hold us back should already be matters of the past.


In my next series of posts, I'll be giving you tips on how to do DIY backpacking while not burning your wallet.


It should be noted, however, that at the time of writing, I have just started backpacking. My first overseas trip was in 2014 and since then I've traveled to Thailand, Laos, Vietnam, Cambodia, Malaysia, Singapore and Sri Lanka. My advice may not be relevant if you want to go backpacking in Europe, America or Australia.


To make your travel worthwhile, consider answering for yourself these four questions.


1. WHEN?
It helps a lot when you pick a special time to travel. It gives additional motivation for you to really carry out that planned trip. In my case, I try to do it every year sometime around my birthday. I find it a good way to celebrate my special day. Most of us give ourselves a leeway to spend a lot during our birthday. Some try to treat all their friends to a booze-up till the break of dawn. I prefer treating just myself to an experience that will help me learn and grow as a person. I try to experience different cultures.


2. WHERE?



I prefer to put together 3 or more countries in one journey. If there's one possession of mine that I want to get dirty that's my passport. I love to see many stamps on the pages of my passport. They say you wouldn't know a country if you only spent a few days at its tourist destinations. I say I've lived in the Philippines for more than 3 decades but I still don't know all of it. It doesn't have to be your goal to fully know one country's geography or culture. Getting there alone is already something. Being there will definitely create a change in you. And that's basically my goal.


3. WHY?
awe-struck by the wonder that the hands of the ancient man have created
A few people travel abroad for special reasons like a Thai massage training at Wat Pho or Ayurvedic Medicine in Sri lanka. But most of us travel to other countries for the usual reasons. To see monuments or to try different foods and sports. In my case, I love to see the wonders that the hands of man have made. I love to see ruins of great empires. I also love to see the creations of contemporary architects and artists.
mesmerized by the creation of the hands of the modern man


4. WHO?
travel only with thy betters or thy equals; if there are none, travel alone - The Dhammapada
I love traveling alone. I believe that 'more companions' means 'more chances of your trip getting ruined.' I hate wasting (time, money and energy). But honestly, when I find myself alone in the monuments I'm visiting, I always wish that some friend or a family member was there. I always think that the happiness I am feeling when I'm at a good place would be greater if I was sharing it with someone dear to me. So pick the right companion or travel alone.


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