What kind of traveller are you?
I have always believed that if you really want to know a person you can adopt two infallible methods: live together or travel together. While travelling, as in everyday life, you share moments of joy and enthusiasm, as well as stress and tiredness. Being out of your comfort zone for 24h with another person reveals their true colours, allowing us to observe their interests and their most peculiar and unexpected habits.
Since everyone is different, there are countless types of travellers. To make things easier, I singled out nine main categories in which I hope you can identify with, at least partially. The posts published in the section “Travel” are dedicated to one or two categories, so before reading keep an eye on the classification at the top left. Whenever possible, I will add some suggestions for other types at the end of the posts. Alright then, let’s start: what kind of traveller are you?
Travelling families can be easily spotted because they take the shape of a pile of suitcases, bags, teddies and strollers. From afar, you can distinguish them thanks to the children’s screams or babies crying. I am always fascinated by these octopus-parents that miraculously drag two or three children, an equal number of big trolleys, and a baby at the airport. If you are travelling with offspring, it is often difficult to find activities that satisfy the adults’ expectations and entertain the kids. Generally, the grown-ups just want to relax, whereas the others want to have fun. The articles classified as “Travelling family” will recommend places and activities that aim to meet both needs.
If the first question you ask yourself before leaving is, ‘Where can I buy souvenirs?’, then you certainly fall into this category. Since I am not a fan of souvenirs and of shopping in general, I should warn you that this blog might be useful only if you are hunting for handmade pieces or high-quality local products. Thus, if you want to avoid fast-fashion chains (great!) or predictable plastic souvenirs made in China, here you’ll find targeted suggestions.
Who said only lovers can enjoy romantic getaways? Anyone who has a fixed travel partner, no matter if they are friends, relatives or fiancées, belongs to this category. Holding hands or arm in arm, lovebirds are looking for unique experiences to share with the other person, and, observing them from afar, it is clear they are caught in their bubble. Here you will find ideas to propose to your travel buddy, but also pieces of advice on how to travel together.
Let me guess. You have your favourite bookshop and at the library you strategically sit near the shelf with your preferred books. As a gift, you only ask for books and more books, although what you would actually need is a new bookcase. Or a bigger house. You spend hours in the bookstore unsure on which of those two novels to buy, but the verdict is always the same: you buy both! On your travels, you don’t miss the opportunity to visit a library, even better if it’s old and full of dusty tomes that rest on wooden shelves. I totally understand you, because I too fall into this four-eyed category who prefers a good book to the new version of the I-Phone. Well, I will provide recommended readings for your travels, literary reviews and suggestions on beautiful bookstores and libraries to visit.
Nose in the air to observe the birds flying or on the ground to pick up a stone or admiring an insect that for anyone else would provoke only terror or disgust. Nature lovers are those who would live outdoors all year long, and are not intimidated by a five-hour walk in the woods. When they travel, they are equipped with binoculars, maps, walking shoes…and generally a camera as well. I won’t forget to inform you about interesting walks and natural sanctuaries to explore.
Let’s face it, without TripAdvisor you’d be lost. Good food is important to you (almost) as much as admiring the Mona Lisa in Paris. As soon as you leave, you carefully read the list of the best restaurants and meticulously evaluate reviews, menus, prices and locations. Eating out for you is part of the holiday, so it’s natural you only want the best. I share with you the love for good food and, even though I will never be as efficient as TripAdvisor, I won’t overlook recommendations on typical dishes to taste!
Artists are a complex category because art comes in various shapes. Some observe with a critical eye the architecture, the colours, the light; others listen with enthusiasm to street musicians, trying to remember author and title of the song; others spend hours cherishing the brush strokes on canvas in an art gallery. According to their artistic disposition, they bring a suitable equipment: a camera, a palette or a drawing book, a musical instrument, and so on. It’s always interesting to travel with them because they unveil (often without been asked) curious information on whatever they see. If you are at least a bit interested, then travelling with an artist can be a fun and instructive experience. However, patience is sometimes required. If your artist-buddy has been staring at the first artwork for twenty minutes, you won’t be leaving the exhibition any time soon.
Fearless when facing steep rocks, blazing deserts, ferocious lions, and so on, adventurers are unstoppable thrill-seekers. I would say that they are a niche, but they immediately come to mind when thinking about travelling. Nevertheless, I believe that to step out of your comfort zone, you don’t necessarily need to go on a safari. For many, even tasting a foreign dish may represent a great step towards the unknown. Hence, if you like to challenge yourself while travelling and dare to do something different from what you are used to, you can define yourself as an adventurer, well done!
TTT- The Typical Tourists
Holding a list of the must-see monuments and a camera, typical tourists mosey around the city frowning in front of the map. For them, it’s important to have a mental picture of the place, be sure not to miss the main tourist attractions and take a good souvenir photo. They don’t disdain sightseeing, often following the umbrella of the tourist guide or sitting on tourist trains and buses that locals make fun of all the time. Whether we like it or not, we all have fallen into this category at some point in our life.
A special thanks to Paola Rassu for her beautiful illustrations! Have a look at her website!