The Highs and Lows of World Travel Dreams

China farmhouse, Yangshou (pic - Natasha von Geldern)

Do you dream of long term travel? Of taking off for a month, or three, or even a year? Of taking not just a vacation or a trip but really travelling?

Some people call this ‘slow travel’. Not just seeing the sights but moving at a leisurely pace through a country, using public transport, and taking time to observe ways of life that may appear very different from your own.

Slow travel allows you to get to know a country or five but it is also a journey of self-discovery. Leaving behind the cubicle, the housework, and the routines of everyday life is immensely freeing.

The further you get from your normal life the more you will learn about that life. About how people all over the world have the same hopes and dreams as you do; about how you need so little in the way of possessions to be happy.

Cowherd-in-Cambodia-pic-Natasha-von-Geldern

I have embarked on slow travel dreams a number of times now over the past 15 years and while I highly recommend this style of travel there are frustrations and low points to be dealt with along the way.

There are times when you feel hot and tired and really ‘over’ the basic bathroom facilities of developing countries. If you are travelling with a partner it’s almost guaranteed your sex life will go into hiatus.

But the joys, of both the infinitesimal and the waving your arms in the air variety, that make it all worthwhile.

Like watching the unique landscape of Australia unfold through the window of a train. Like watching a trio of young boys in Cambodia march along like soldiers carrying sticks (that made my heart ache). Like people dragging me over to appear in their family photo in Nepal.

Natasha von Geldern in Nepal

Like being invited into the farmhouse of an old women in rural China. Like the taste of my first cup of chai on any day in India. Like having a proper shower after going without for days or weeks. Like a sense of the world outside my door becoming real to me.

There is no doubt that nearing the end of all my periods of long term travel I have started to look forward to home. To having my own bed and fridge and bathroom. Even to having a job!

But within weeks or months of returning home I have started to dream of my next travel adventures. Those joys are just so addictive and that’s why I dream of just selling up everything and going on the road (one day I might just do it).

Keep dreaming of travel!

Natasha

 

The following two tabs change content below.
Natasha von Geldern is a travel writer, editor and blogger who is passionate about making the pages of the atlas real by travelling the world. Her big dream, apart from travel blogging world domination, is to launch her own e-magazine. She is a contributor to Travel Wire Asia, Wild Junket Magazine, Yahoo! Total Travel and Travelbite. You can find her on World Wandering Kiwi. Natasha’s post day is Saturday.
If you aren't sure how to comment on this story, click here.

Latest posts by Natasha von Geldern, Travel the World (see all)

  • I love your imagery – in words and photos – that make me want to truly experience slow travel. Letting go of possessions and freeing yourself on the road is such a wonderful dream goal. Thank you for sharing!

  • Oh lordy your travel images make me want to get up from my chair, walk out that door and drive to the nearest airport! After living on the road traveling for work I know what it is to miss home and your very own bed, but it is so addicting to see the new. I so miss it…

    Cath

  • Beautiful post! There have been so many times I have taken a trip that was too fast – and did not give me the time to really enjoy the flavor of the area – and most of all, meet its people and just take in the lifestyle. I could grow to love slow travel! Too bad my life is a frenzy of airports and hotels – I go to all these cool places and don’t have time to stay. Bummer. Maybe one day.