What I Learnt From My Travels

3 Nov 2014

Compared to many, two weeks of travelling with the parents is hardly an exciting adventure but to me it was a real learning curve. With an aim to travel alone in just a few years, this trip was a great way to experience travelling from place to place and has taught me things that will come in very handy when I travel in the future. Now I have finally written up the accounts for the few places I visited over summer I felt it might be useful to myself and maybe those of you who fancy travelling yourself in the future to share some of the things I learnt while I was away.

1. Not Everyone Speaks English: I'd be stupid not to already know this and sometimes I felt a bit guilty having to actually speak in English to waiters when eating out. I'm seriously considering carrying on learning French that I stopped half way through high school and maybe even German. What I will say is that it would probably would have been very handy to have a little phrase book full of mainly the names of different foods.

2. Travelling is tiring and stressful: With my family, I knew things would probably get a little stressful but just not as it did. When trying to find the right trains or when we hired the car in Austria, which way was the right way. I thought that because I would be enjoying myself so much I wouldn't notice my tiredness but I really did. When we got to Austria, after all the travelling, I just crashed out and was happy to be in the same place for a week.

3. Don't just have a plan A, have a B & C: I felt, especially in Austria and France, we lost time due to rubbish weather or things being too busy and then we were a bit lost as to what to do because we expected it to be all sun and no showers but unfortunately that wasn't the case. We only really planned outdoor activities and when we didn't know what to do we'd end up back at the accommodation. This is a big one for me and from now on I'll have three plans when going away; A first plan, a if-it's-wet plan and a if-that's-full plan so hopefully all basis will be covered and I will always have something to do.

4. Pack for all weathers: I definitely didn't expect Austria to be as cold as it was and I wish I'd brought warmer pyjamas and a scarf. When I say pack for all weathers I don't mean pack swimming stuff but then pack a woolly thick coat with ski goggles; I just mean things that might help me in the long run just a little bit like some thinner tops if it's too warm or a scarf if it's too cold.

5. Travelling really does take a lot of planning: I have take my hat off to my dad in managing to coincide trains with car pick ups and drop offs and getting planes. He has a lot of experience with travelling through work or camera trips with his friends in places like China so it was great to have him! There are websites that can help you plan your travel if you're going across a few different countries like we did;you can put in how many days you want to stay etc and it will give you the trains for each place.

5. Trains are a great option: This is more of a tip for you than me because I know I will be using trains if I travel through Europe or across land; it so much more cost effective and hassle free than a plane. Especially with me who had only flown once before and my mum who really doesn't like flying, it was perfect having trains from place to place. This also includes taking the countries train system especially in France which, while you get more beggars and shouting people on them more than in London, as long as you don't take them on you're fine and it's much cheaper than taxi's everywhere.

6. Just Keep Going: There were days where I was tired and just wanted to stay in bed and I hate myself for wasting this time especially when my mum and dad has spent so much on the holiday that I wanted. If you don't get up and explore the countries, you'll for sure regret it after for missing opportunities that you might not have again so go out there and explore.

7.How Lucky I am: This is mainly to do with the beggars on the streets as well as on the trains in France. They're walking round desperate for money and we're sat there having enough money to travel and go on holiday. All I can be is grateful for the amazing time I had and cherish that experience forever.

What are some of you travelling tips? I'd love to know!
hope you're doing great,

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