Lately, it seems as though just about everyone is travelling in one way or another. Whether it’s jet-setting across the world with a backpack, interrailing to see Europe by train or having back-to-back holidays all summer adventure wanderlust is more real than ever before. Travelling is a great way to become cultured, gain valuable experience and be open to new perspectives. Plus, it offers some pretty Insta-worthy snaps. But, whilst it looks like a faultless experience on social media, is that what it is really like? Turns out digging a little deeper reveals that it might not be…
Recently, a close friend of mine packed her bag and headed to the Australian coast for the adventure of a lifetime. I couldn’t have been more envious. Before long, her Instagram had transformed to match those of an experienced travel blogger, she had become the ultimate “beach babe” and it appeared as though she had made friends for life. Naturally, this is bound to be the image that social media shows. You’ve given this experience your all, you want it to look the best it possibly can. But, beneath the surface, it turns out all wasn’t as it seemed. In reality, there is a whole other side to travelling that people fail to display. Whilst it shouldn’t cause your wanderlust to waver, there are some things that it might be worth being aware of before your adventure begins.
1. The actual travel part
So, the fact that you have to travel is kind of a given considering the name of what you’re doing. But, surprisingly it’s actually the bit that most people admit to not really considering. What’s a 20-hour coach, a few connecting flights or a boat with no safety regulations? Turns out it has quite an impact on the travelling experience. Whilst the journey to a destination should by no means put you off it, it might be worth considering more. If the travel time is too long are you going to be too tried to enjoy the destination? Is the mode of travel you are taking definitely safe? Have you planned your trip with the acknowledgement that not all countries have the same standard of travel as the U.K?
2. The trouble of Instagram filters
We’ve all been there. Lusting over the gorgeous Bali sunsets, the stretches of sea in the Philippines and the delightful elephant sanctuary in Thailand. But, have you ever thought that they might not look exactly like they do on Instagram? After all, isn’t the purpose of a filter to make it look better than reality? Don’t be surprised if the places you find yourself in aren’t exactly as you imagine them to be. You might find that the most popular Instagram destinations aren’t your own favourites and you end up loving those that aren’t too picturesque.
3. Feeling left behind
Travelling is a wonderful adventure, but it’s exactly that. For most of us, it’s not real life. Essentially, life back home goes on. Whilst people readily talk about the sense of venture, they rarely admit the feeling of being disconnected from their real life. It’s more than just feeling homesick, but realising that things are moving on without you. Time is moving and you simply aren’t moving with it. You can’t help think how you will ever fit back into it all when you return. The escape you get when travelling is exceptional, but don’t be surprised if you miss the normality of home.
4. Getting fed up
Wanderlust makes you feel as though travelling is all you want to do. Who could get bored of island hopping, long, lazy beach days and sleeping somewhere new each night? Well, it turns out it’s actually pretty exhausting. Once the novelty has worn off, the whole thing can easily feel a bit repetitive. Sometimes, you just want to feel settled and long periods of travel are far from that. That doesn’t mean you won’t love everything new you discover, just that sometimes you might crave the comfort of safety on your journey.
5. Post-travel blues
The travelling experience is all anyone will want to talk about. But, the blues they feel after are far more likely to be kept hidden. After the adventure of a lifetime, it’s inevitable that adjusting back to your mundane life back home will be a struggle. It doesn’t matter how many parts of travelling you didn’t enjoy, your home is more than likely to feel inadequate in comparison.