Traveling is the Best Way to Learn

Travel has always been a part of my life and memories I make while traveling are some of my happiest ones. I believe that if everyone traveled, they would be so much happier and the world would be such a better place.


by Lucy Doerflinger, BNS Editor

Travel has always been a huge part of my life and something I love. My most treasured life experiences have come from going to new places, experiencing new cultures and meeting new people. Some of my earliest and most vivid travel memories come from a trip to Scotland when I was about 10. This was my first trip abroad and it was one of the first times I really got to experience another culture and way of life. 

 One of my favorite memories from this trip was when we went to a small town and visited some relatives. I stood on their back patio looking out with this overwhelming feeling of not knowing much, and not having seen much, but the ability to change that. I had just met family members who I had not known until this trip and was looking out at places and ruins that had existed since before times I could comprehend. Each day on this trip was chalked full of excursions to castles, reservations at local restaurants, and hours of driving. Every single thing we did taught me something new or enriched my life in some way. 

I always come back from any trip I take having learned something. Sometimes this lesson is more serious, like having a native Hawaiian islander draw our attention to the horrible effects on local people and the land caused by huge resorts and hotels. Other times this lesson is something more light-hearted, such as that french fries are called chips, and chips are called crisps in Scotland.

I think that you can learn so much more spending a week in a new place, than you could just sitting at school. While the knowledge you gain at school is important, it can be difficult to recognize how much, or how little, you already know. An easy way to find out is to leave the comfort of your home and go somewhere completely different. One reason I love travel so much is because you are learning so much, and it is all knowledge you pick up in while in the real world, living it for yourself. I believe it is easier to learn the differences in degrees Fahrenheit and Celsius when you don’t realize how different they are and dress for the wrong one. 

Travel forces you into different cultures and this is a good thing. Staying in the same general place will cause you not to have a very good idea of the diversity of the world. Traveling to a new place, whether it is a huge beach resort, or a tiny B&B in the middle of nowhere, I find to be the most beneficial thing in the world. I believe that the world would be a much better place if people went out and actually experienced it. If people understood another culture or group before judging them, I believe a lot of conflict could be avoided. Going out, encountering the world and learning from it will be an enriching adventure that you will find continues to teach you, even after you have returned home. These experiences you have while traveling can teach you so much in the moment, but they bring you even more joy and knowledge looking back at them years later. 

My belief that travel leads to a fulfilling life comes from experiencing it so frequently, and now not being able to travel at all. For the first time in my life that I can remember, I haven’t traveled anywhere for almost a year. This has given me, a somewhat unwanted, time to reflect and think about past trips, since I can’t be planning future ones. I have done everything I can, from looking at pictures, to rereading journal entries, to cooking the food I ate, so I could relive these trips. Through doing that, I have realized how much these trips have actually taught me and impacted my life. I am somehow still learning from these trips even though they occurred years ago. I strongly believe that travel is the best way to learn, experience different cultures, and ultimately, live a fulfilling life.