We see a lot of travel photos almost everywhere. You may have even posted some of the pictures you took from your previous adventures too. Whether it’s on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter or even on magazines and billboards, we see and pay attention to it probably more often than news reports. We see beautiful images of famous sights, popular restaurants, busy streets, quiet alleys, and editorial-like shots of people. But, traveling is like an iceberg— what we see from the photos we post isn’t just what we get. We don’t normally share the nitty-gritty things we experience during our trips.
Pretty and perfect pictures capture our attention and make us want to travel. They’re like a dream that we wake up from when we experience the difficulties that come with traveling. But what makes our trips memorable are both the beautiful moments and the not so perfect things our photos don’t show.
This is the most gruelling yet exciting part of the iceberg. If you’re joining a tour group, then all you have to do is pay, pack your stuff then go. But, a DIY travel is a different experience. You’d have to spend time and patience in searching for a cheaper transportation to and from your destination.You also need to book an accommodation. Some prefer place just for sleeping, showering and leaving their luggage. Others would splurge on posh places. While some would look for a nice and comfortable place that won’t break the bank. Aside from that, preparing an itinerary is also a must.
Choosing which places to go are easy. What makes it difficult is trying to fit them all in your schedule and finding out how to go around. Some are located far apart, some are just walking-distance and some fall in between the two. In spite of those gruelling preparations, planning for a trip is as exciting as leaving your classroom to sneak a peek at your crush who’s in the next room. Planning makes you feel like you’re about to enter a fairytale, like you’re a step closer to turning your dream into a beautiful reality.
One of the difficulties you might experience when you travel is making sure you bring everything you need and not exceed the weight limit per luggage/bag. If you’re the type who doesn’t really mind not repeating clothes during your trip, then I guess packing wouldn’t be too difficult. But, if you like dressing up and like carrying a lot of baggage then it becomes a challenging thing to do. Especially if you’re visiting different neighbouring countries by crossing borders, it’s hard to carry around a big luggage with you so packing-light is a must. Picking what to bring, what to leave, and what you can’t leave without becomes a whole new level of difficult.
Upon leaving for your chosen destination, we’d all probably feel giddy and stuff. But our the next difficulty we might encounter is upon our arrival. If you know someone from the place you’re going to or if it’s an English-speaking country, then going to your accommodation from the airport, pier or bus station isn’t going to be a problem. However, if you’re visiting a place with a language barrier, know nobody from there, and your hotel doesn’t offer pick-up services, then finding your way to where you’re staying can become challenging.
The usual things we might get trouble managing during the trip are budgeting, time management, transportation and getting your photos taken. If you’re travelling on a limited budget, you might prefer eating at affordable places; visiting places that require cheap to no entrance fees; joining a tour group to save on transportation fees; skipping the shopping part. A trip also becomes challenging if you’re keen on visiting many places in just a couple of days because some if not most of the sights take hours to arrive at. Add the unfamiliar and vast transport system to the equation and you’d definitely end up with a headache trying to visit every place on your list. Lastly (and maybe a crucial one nowadays), pretty photos just don’t come easy especially if you’re travelling alone. Not everyone you ask will shoot an editorial cover-worthy photo of you. It’s sad but it’s true. These things can be tricky and stressful but keep in mind not to let it get in the way of having a good time during the trip.
One of the hardest things to do is leave a wonderful place. Aside from making sure you’re able to fit everything you bought inside your bags and not exceed the weight limit, saying goodbye to the people, their culture, and the place is difficult. Just the mere fact of knowing that the trip is over and you have to go back home is already depressing.
The iceberg won’t go away but it will melt as we keep traveling. It’s normal to come across difficulties during a trip but it won’t always be too difficult. Traveling becomes easy through time, repetition and documenting the hardships we encounter along the way. We should share it in the same way we share our picture-perfect moments. Showing those moments too will make our travel albums feel not just dreamy like a fairytale but also a sincere reality.
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