Wanderlust is highly infectious and symptoms should not be ignored. If not treated properly it can result in serious cases of regret and remorse later in life. Break out of the cubicle or the dorm and embark on adventures! Travel deeper, travel wider. Or simply travel shallow, laze around on a beach and get your travel feet wet! Take a modest road trip on the highway to happy places or burn through your PTO and take off to a foreign destination. Go there, take the plunge!
Belize, Central America
Sure, Belize is a hugely popular retirement destination for US citizens, but don’t wait until the end of your lifetime for a dive of a lifetime at The Great Blue Hole. Belize is a short hop from many parts of the US, yet vacation dollars go a long way. You can stay in a thatched hut or overwater bungalow for a fraction of the cost of similar digs in the South Pacific and airfare deals are not hard to find. Home to the second largest barrier reef in the world, snorkel or dive crystal clear waters with 500 species of fish or journey inland for a steamy jungle adventure teeming with wildlife and hiking to Mayan ruins at Caracol. Belize is a top pick for soft adventure and flashpacker getaway. #TravelShallow
The Banana Pancake Trail, Asia
A backpacking route through South-East Asia, and a rite of passage for generations of shoestring budget travelers, yet an entire cottage industry of travel writers now publish very earnestly on how to avoid it.
With no real route, the Banana Pancake Trail is more a state of mind and culture, with hippie roots, and yes, banana pancakes available in a bunch of very different countries. In the eighties, hardcore travelers were wringing their hands, clutching their love beads and whinging that Koh Samui was ruined, just not what it used to be. And that was before a single international hotel brand had broken ground on its hallowed sands. Heck, Lonely Planet ain’t what it used to be back in the day, nothing is. Of course, it is well-trodden, but that should not deter anyone with a passport from taking a journey of a lifetime, especially while still of an age not to sweat it if you don’t shower for a couple of days.
Explore Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam, Laos, Burma, Malaysia, Bali and India, travel as little or as much of the Banana Pancake Trail as your budget, time and stamina can take. Incredible street food, full moon parties, temples, beaches, jungles, volcanoes, mountains and the opportunity of immersion in truly foreign cultures awaits yet another generation of entry-level travelers. After traversing even a small, bite-sized portion of the Banana Pancake Trail, travelers will return home changed, with perhaps more insights into the human race than any college education could possibly impart. To make the most of this “trail”, wander off it, and we don’t mean staying a few blocks off Khao San Road. Take a gap year or take a gap month, this adventure is highly recommended. #TravelDeeper
Pacific Coast Highway, California
Jump on Highway One for a couple of days, or motor the entire length from San Diego to San Francisco, either way, this legendary route is renowned as a road trip of a lifetime and it’s literally right on our own shores. Round up your posse and visit California, a remarkable scenic highway runs through it, screaming for convertibles and sports cars to drive it. Pop the top and get into gear with adventures in San Diego, La Jolla, Huntington Beach, Los Angeles, Malibu, Santa Barbara, Big Sur, Carmel, Monterey, Santa Cruz and San Francisco. Visit wineries, craft breweries, foodie temples and roadside diners. Stay in rustic creekside cabins, chic clifftop suites, and retro highway motels. Surf, fish, golf, dive, windsurf, sail, hike, and paddleboard along 655 miles of highway hugging the California coastline. This is a classic trip, worth doing with good friends. Then wonderfully, perhaps years down the road, in a minivan with kids in tow, revisiting the small towns and hidden beaches you discovered along the way back in the day. #TravelHighways
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