The Thanksgiving holiday has had me reflecting on the long list of things I have to be thankful for this year! Travel is obviously near the top of my list. I am so thankful that I have been able to explore the world. Travel and adventure have definitely improved and enriched my life in so many ways. There are many things that make my travel experiences even better! Here is a list of the big (and small) things that greatly improve my travel experiences.
1. In-flight Entertainment
Many of you don’t know this about me, but I am terrified of turbulence. Every time I set off on a long flight I spend 75% of the time praying for a smooth ride. So when I get on a plane and see comprehensive in-flight entertainment, I am so relieved. The distraction of TV and movies helps me to stay calm. I normally end up watching some kind of kid’s movie. On the way to Australia I started by watching Sing!
2. All Expenses Paid Work Trips
Who doesn’t love free trips? It is so awesome that I can travel for free, get paid and not have to use any of my vacation days. Want tips on how to make the most of your work trip? Check out my post here.
3. New Friends
Meeting new people while traveling is almost as exciting as exploring a new destination! It is really sweet that I can travel basically anywhere in the world and find like minded traveler souls to hang out with. I may not stay friends with them forever, but we always seem to make lasting memories.
4. Having Something to Look Forward to
To me, planning a trip is half the fun! I love having something to look forward to during the long days that I spend at work. Being able to come home and spend my time researching my next adventure helps to to de-stress and keeps me motivated.
Although I do enjoy meeting new people, I am an introvert so I need alone time or I’ll go absolutely crazy. This makes staying in hostels for long periods of time a little difficult. Hence, why I am a huge fan of Airbnb. With Airbnb I can rent out a studio or apartment which allows me to have some much needed peace and quiet. I also get to avoid those socially awkward situations like sharing a bathroom or kitchen when I don’t feel like being social.
6. Packing Cubes
I am probably one of the least organized people when it comes to things, so when I found out about packing cubes I had to buy some right away. Now I never travel without them because otherwise my suitcase or backpack would be a hot mess.
7. Traveler Friends
Having like minded friends who love to travel makes me really happy. I love that I have friends who are basically up to going on any adventures with me. Recently, my best friend and I went to Australia for 10 days. I don’t think I would have made the trip without her.
8. Excitement of a New Place
I love that feeling that you get when exploring a new place! If you are a traveler and have been bit by the wanderlust bug, then you know exactly what I’m talking about. It is a feeling of wonder. I have a strong suspicion that this feeling can be addictive (like adrenaline).
9. Finding Peace in Nature
I stress so much as a social worker (who would have thought?). I find my peace in nature. Whether it is on a hike through the forest, walking on a beach or scuba diving. I feel the most peaceful looking at the breathtaking world that God created.
10. My GoPro
I’m obsessed with my GoPro. I am amazed that I can use it so easily while scuba diving. I wish I had invested in one sooner. I’m still learning how to edit the videos, so hopefully you will see some of my shots up on my blog soon.
11. My Beautiful Home State
South Carolina is so cool!!!! I have a list on my phone of all of the hikes in South Carolina that I want to complete this year. There are so many! We also have a bunch of awesome towns and cities like Greenville and Charleston that I have been exploring. Why am I thankful for a beautiful home state? Because it allows me to have awesome adventures in my own backyard. It means that I don’t have to fly anywhere or miss work to have a travel experience.
12. Other Travel Bloggers
I am so happy that I am able to follow and interact with other travel bloggers. I am so inspired by their passion for travel, amazing photography and out of the box destinations. I also get some awesome travel tips by reading their blogs and following them on Instagram. Two of my personal favorite travel bloggers to follow are Traveling Petite Girl and Girls that Scuba.
13. Good Airport Food
I don’t know about you, but when I travel my body gets all out of whack. I won’t feel full if I don’t eat something that I am used to (I always travel with granola bars). Don’t get me wrong, this doesn’t mean that I don’t like trying the local cuisine. It is just so nice to be able to find some good and familiar restaurants at the airport when you are traveling for 24 hours straight.
Is it a feeling? A curiosity? A love for life? Whatever it is, I wouldn’t give it up for the world. My wanderlust has driven me to so many grand adventures, new friends and lasting memories.
15. Vacation Time
Working for the school system is (mostly) the bomb! I am blessed with summers off as well as Christmas, Thanksgiving and Spring break. All this vacation gives me ample time to quench my wanderlust spirit.
16. My Blog!
I love working on my blog. It has helped me to keep a record of many of my amazing trips. It is also super fun to work on (I love reminiscing) and a great way for me to relax. I would definitely say that it has improved my quality of life and inspired me to travel even more!
17. The Beautiful World God Created
Thank you God for creating this beautiful, awe inspiring world that I have had the chance to explore. Enough said.
What are you thankful for this year? Is travel at the top of your list?