6 reasons why travelling is the best education

Map and other travel gear

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Travelling is one of the best things you can do in your life, but there’s so much more to it than taking cool pictures for the ‘Gram and drinking yourself into oblivion on a sunkissed beach. Arguably, the most important thing about travelling is that it teaches you things that you could never learn elsewhere, which is why many people consider it the best education you can gain. If you’re unsure, here are six reasons that will change your mind.

You Can Learn Languages

Many travellers will take a quick backpacking trip to countries like Thailand, Vietnam, Colombia, or India, and then be back in time before the next full moon. For this, it’s arguably not crucial to learn the language, especially if you’ll never use it again. However, experienced travellers who want to get the most from their adventures will still make an effort to learn the local language wherever they are. It makes communication easier and will endear you to those you interact with. You never know, you might even develop a passion for the language, and this could drive your decision to stay just a little longer.

You Can Learn About Cultures

There are so many cultures out there that it can be overwhelming to consider them, and there’s no chance you will encounter all of them. You don’t need to experience all of them, though, because wherever you go, you’ll learn something about the local culture. This can be religion, society, or even education and folklore. Whatever you learn, learning more about the culture will give you a greater appreciation for their country, and it will help you develop a level of respect that you wouldn’t gain from merely passing through.

You Can Learn About History

Wherever you go, there has been a history that has come long before you ever arrived, and this is what makes travel so exciting. There are always nuggets of history for you to uncover, walking where people have walked the same path hundreds (and sometimes thousands) of years ago, such as the trail taken by the Jacobites in Scotland or the Inca Trail in Peru. Learning about history, both good and bad, is crucial for helping you expand your worldview and realise there is much more to life than your cosy Western existence. Sometimes it is ugly. Sometimes it makes you uncomfortable. But without the lessons of the past, there is no opportunity for you to grow and develop a greater appreciation of the world.

You Can Learn To Do Something New

Many countries give you the chance to do things that you can’t do at home. In Thailand, you can get Muay Thai training from the experts. In Australia, there’s the chance to bungee jump or skydive (although this is possible in other places, too). With so many options available, you can try as much as you like every single day and you might find something that sticks. Learning new things can inspire you to push yourself even further, too, which will open up your world to even better opportunities.

You Can Learn Social Skills

While many people travel with at least one or two friends, some go it alone. It’s an admirable venture, for sure, and as it forces you to socialise with others, it will teach you vital social skills, which is crucial if you’re fresh out of university or college and still finding your way in the world. Hostels are the best place to do this, but you can also take advantage of the many tours all over the world that could help you meet friends you’ll keep in touch with for the rest of your life.

You Can Learn About Yourself

Okay, this sounds lame, but it’s true. Travelling will introduce you to a variety of experiences that will continue to teach you about yourself. You will find out that you are capable of much more than expected, and you might realise what you really want from life. When travelling for the first time, don’t be surprised if your plan completely changes whenever you go somewhere new. You might find out that you prefer going with the flow rather than sticking to a regimented itinerary. And you know what, that’s okay.

The School of Life

Yeah, it’s a cliche, but it’s like this for a reason. While you can watch all the documentaries and read all the books you like, there are few things in life, if anything at all, that can provide the education that travel does. Because of this, it’s something that everyone should try to do in their life, at least once, anyway.

About Simon Petersen 506 Articles
Travel blogger, journalist, sports and movie fiend. Chronicling the life and times of a Kiwi at home and abroad.