I must admit – up until last year, my travelling CV wasn’t all that. Although I’d been to New York and Rome in my teens, my only other holiday was a horrible sweatfest in the ever-luxurious island of Zante.
Now, with a few barnstorming trips away under my belt I can confirm that getting away from your comfort zone and experiencing new parts of the world is definitely one of the building blocks to a happy and fulfilling life.
It doesn’t have to be expensive (travel is cheaper than it’s ever been) but it does have to be outside of your living room in Gillingham.
Man (and woman) has always had a strong relationship with travelling. We have wandered to the furthest corners of the world in search of exploration and adventure. Only, now it doesn’t take months to sail across the ocean whilst surviving on a diet of salted fish and rum.
Unique benefits of travel
The great thing about going on holiday is that everything is classed as exploration. Lost down a grimy back alley? *Wanderlust*. End up in a different city? *Finding yourself*.
Basically, no matter what you do, you’re always going to be finding and experiencing new things, places and people. The stressful element of being at home is completely taken away and you can enjoy travel for what it truly is.
Being less stressed can lead to a decline in levels of cortisol. Cortisol can be attributed to a lot of negative effects in the body such as lower testosterone, lowered immune system function & poor sleep quality. By reducing your stress levels (and thus cortisol), you are improving all of these factors. Just another reason to get away.
Whilst here in the UK, we do have a good food scene – it’s almost always food from other countries. Wouldn’t it be great to go over to the source of your favourite dishes and eat fresh, local and authentic food?
There is something so startlingly refreshing about trying a signature bit of grub from its actual origin, you get the full experience and your palette will thank you forever. Your backside won’t if you’ve travelled for a curry though.
Along with the natural foods on offer from lesser populated travel destinations, their quality of air, sea and sun all seem to be of a higher quality to boot.
When visiting a coastal area, you can get your fill of unpolluted air, go for a dip in non-green sea and soak up all the vitamin D from the plentiful wee rays of sunshine (providing you don’t visit the Antarctic).
Enjoying a pollutant free break can do wonders for your health and your psychological wellbeing, giving you a welcome break from your day-to-day and leaving you feeling rejuvenated when you return to the fray.
Top picks for your holiday this year
I could wax lyrical about your standard holiday to London, Berlin, Paris etc but everyone already knows how good these options are and you don’t need me to regurgitate how good Camden Market is and how special the Eiffel tower can be.
What you really want is something different and because I can read your mind, I’ve got a few doosies to whet your appetite.
My latest travel destination and by far and away the best place I’ve visited. Stockholm is a place often overlooked by those who are after a city break. Whether this is because people think it is too expensive or whether people don’t think of the city at all remains to be seen but I can certainly vouch for the Swedish capital’s credentials.
Iceland is starting to make a big impact on the travelling scene. Your first stop should definitely be their natural spas. This has been the city’s main attraction to tourists for donkey’s years and will leave you feeling like a whole new man. Just avoid those who look like public urinators…
The Amalfi Coast
Not technically a city but you could sink your teeth into the Amalfi Coast over a few weeks and enjoy everything it has to offer. Take a fiat 500 on a coastal drive, taking in every last bit of scenery, visit the multitude of cathedrals and museums, relax in their spas – or even just sit down in a hidden away café and eat pizza until you go blind.
Travel is more accessible than ever, get out there.