Whether you’re pondering your first adventure, planning your next trip, or looking for beautiful places to dream about, here are three sources of travel inspiration.
You can use these sources to explore destinations you’re curious about, activities you’ve never done, and places you don’t think are possible to get to for the average traveler.
1. Trip descriptions from tour operators
Browsing through our itineraries is an excellent way to discover the different countries and cultures of the world. You can even see sample activities geared to different travelers, for example, travelers who want variety, cultural experiences, or physical challenge.
Most tour operators offer free tour brochures which contains the descriptions of all their trips along with photos and other details. Even if you don’t plan to book a tour, flipping through theirs trips can give you lots of ideas (in fact, this is how I found my first adventure).
Some group adventure tour companies offer over 1,000 flights on all continents so that a visit brochure can light a spark for even the most seasoned traveler.
Here are two small group adventure tour operators to check out (the link takes you to the print/online brochure request page, you can also browse trips on the website):
- GAP Adventures, one of the best ‘Do It All Outfitters’ according to National Geographic Adventure magazine
- Imaginative Traveller, another “Do It All Outfitter” featured by National Geographic Adventure
2. Photos from other travelers
When travelers explore ideas for their next trip, it’s common to only search for places we’re already familiar with, or that we know how to get to easily.
Let’s stretch our imaginations and dare ourselves to dream beyond what we think is possible by doing the following exercise.
Think of 3 places or activities you think are ‘magical’ or ‘unreachable,’ for example, seeing the Pyramids in Egypt, hiking at Mount Everest, or going to Antarctica.
Still, don’t believe these are possible? Search for it on a photo sharing site like Flickr. Not only will you find plenty of hypnotic pictures of these activities and places, but all photos are also all taken by real travelers.
Here are a few places to browse (keep clicking on what catches your eye, you’ll have a great time exploring photos):
3. Travel and adventure websites
Here are some travel sites with frequently updated and well-research travel articles. You may have heard of these companies already, but not go on their websites.
- Matador, an independent online travel magazine with lots of fresh writing
- National Geographic Adventure, a group under the world-known international conservation organization. Go to this site to see stunning photography.
- Lonely Planet, a publisher and best known for their travel guide books. They also have forums where you can talk to other travelers (very helpful for planning your trip).
Other sources of inspiration
Many adventure ideas can be found from talking to travelers you know, browsing photography or guide books at the bookstore, or even by visiting ethnic areas in your city and sampling different foods.
If you’re curious and open to new experiences, you’ll find ideas everywhere.