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The Best Education Is Travelling



That’s what Earth is filled with. Just imagine this – you get to meander through an enchanting African village, camping out in the Canadian tundra, or even hiking through the vibrant Amazon rainforest.

As humans, we all travel for various reasons – some for personal growth and self-discovery while others want to look at life through a new lens.

Many, on the other hand, consider the world as a never-ending university and travel as it helps to develop their intelligence. Much of the education that people mostly get, they are through 4-walled classrooms or through a textbook – and while they are not wrong, they certainly get the job done, but they are not as fun and eye-opening as travelling the world.

As you travel the world, you get to broaden your intellectual, spiritual, and cultural education in ways that you can never imagine. With ‘travel’ as your teacher, it will never fail you.

Still find it hard to believe?

Take a look at the following reasons as to why travel can be the best life-coach and teacher that you never knew that you wanted.

It will teach you to improvise

Travelling is not exactly a bed of roses – it is more of a test of will, patience, and endurance. Things can suddenly look bleak, and well-made plans can go awry; and of course, who can forget the unforeseen roadblocks along the way – remember, damaged luggage, misplaced boarding passes, and even booked rides can show up late.

Challenges, they may be, but they will teach you to improvise, of how you can deal and survive these unfortunate events. In the end, they will unleash your inner survivor and inventor, as you will learn to come up with hacks on the spot that will help you to make your trips cheaper and efficient.

It will take you back in time

Want to learn about the history and past of the world? That’s why museums and historical attractions are there.

But, you know what?

What you see and learn in history textbooks, it’s different from when you get to experience these wonders in person. Travelling can illuminate the numerous perspectives of the history and past of a place. When you visit these museums, galleries, and palaces, you can see the entire past of the country unveiling before your eyes.

When exploring a country, learning about its changes, dynasties, and conflicts can be easy, plus, you will also easily understand a country’s culture and history.

It will force you to step out of your comfort zone

After you go on an abroad trip, you won’t be the same ever again.

Travelling can help you to step out of your daily grind of life, and can release you from the cage that you have caged yourself in – it will help you to give a better perspective of yourself.

You will find yourself in unknown territories, and that will force you to step out of your comfort zone. Travelling can help you to become more confident, responsible, and independent. You will become much better at thinking on your feet and will help you to discover strengths, skills, and passions that you never knew you had it in you.

Travelling may seem glamorous on this side, but, in reality, it’s a challenge – be open, resilient, and tolerant.

It will teach you to learn new languages

Today, English is spoken around the world, and the chances are that it will work mostly for you when travelling. But, still, it’s important to brush up a bit on the native language of the country that you are going to visit.

The countries that you are going to visit, if English is not their official language, learn the native language either through a textbook or an audiobook.

After getting the foundations straight, you can try to stretch your new language skills by chatting it up with the natives of the country that you are visiting. It will help you in expanding your cultural horizons and develop your listening and speaking skills.

It will let you explore cultural differences

Travelling helps you to communicate and interact with other cultures, and in doing so, you can find out how you vary from them.

Say, for instance, in Mexico it is quite common to see people taking a nap after lunch, while, in Italy, people go on post-meal walks.

Different cultures have different manners and social expectations. Before travelling, make sure that you learn about all these aspects, or you are in for a big “cultural shock”. Different they may be from you, but learn to embrace them with an open mind when you are there. After all, learning is the ultimate point of travelling.

It will let you uncover cultural similarities

Okay, you have already observed that your culture differs from them, but what about the common ground?

Maybe, you and the people around you share a common love for art? Or maybe, your social and moral values align with each other? It’s quite easy to break and distinguish people who are different from each other.

When travelling, forgo these notions and break the barriers by finding common interests.

It will teach you to be free and independent

When travelling, don’t feel that you should adhere too strictly to a plan.

Feel free to get lost down a sun-soaked alley – and who knows, you may even end up discovering a new coffee cafe. Every place that you end up visiting will be unique and a new experience for you – in short, there are so many memories that are waiting to be made.

Travelling can also motivate you to participate locally – opportunities such as volunteer efforts and eco programs abound. Learn to indulge in those opportunities – after all, participating in a country’s daily tempo will be a rich and educated hands-on experience and demands that you lead with a curious and open mind.

It will teach you the art of connection

It’s very easy to connect with others if we share something similar. But with a country that is vastly different from ours, the same cannot be sad. But that doesn’t mean that you will forgo the country. No country is similar, and despite sharing a few similarities, they are vastly different.

Give each country a chance – be a witness to both the positive and negatively perceived places, and find a way to learn and connect with people of other nations despite them having dissimilar attitudes or beliefs.

Connecting with people from various parts of the globe provides you with a whole new insight and perspective about a culture that was earlier foreign to you. Nothing beats the experience of bypassing what the media tells you about a place and discovering it by yourself and connecting with it in real-time.

You will get to listen to the inspiring stories of people from around the world and will help you to connect with them on a compassionate note.

It helps to build up a community

From participation to discovery to connection to understanding, travel can help to build up a community.

Whether you plan to go solo, an exchange student, or simply take a break on the weekend, your community will grow. Travelling will force you to rethink your idea of a community – it won’t be exclusive to your hometown; rather, it will lead you to include a global community. Community is something that is something physical and tangible and can be created and sustained by connection and understanding.

Travelling, if done right, can help you to understand how dynamics work globally and with a heightened sense of responsibility to the greater community.

It leads to empowerment

Traveling can expand your worldview, and the more you travel, the more you can expand your world view and the more, you are empowered to embrace yourself and be your authentic self; it will also prompt you to take action that supports global development practices. You will gain skills that will make an impact on beyond life and community.

No matter how much you study in classrooms, travel will offer much more – not only you will gain a deeper understanding, but it will force you to rethink everything that you thought you knew.

Travelling can change your life – it will put you in unfamiliar territory, and in the process, you will re-discover yourself.

In times of conflict and hatred, the world may seem scary, but know this – there is so much to learn from travelling if you step out of the zone where you feel safe and secure.

The philosophy is simple – the best way to gain new insights and perspectives is through travelling. As such, you should approach professional travel agencies to create an enriching experience for you. An essential point to keep in mind is arranging the visas beforehand to have trouble-free travel experience, for that you can service of online visa companies such as

Combining the power of our motto with the thrill of travel, we can help –

  • Expand your knowledge of the world
  • Understand new people, and immersing yourself in new cultures
  • Discovering about you
  • Becoming more independent and confident

When you grow in these ways, you become more curious and open-minded and become more accepting of yourself and the world.

The post The Best Education Is Travelling appeared first on Travel Experta – Family Travel Blog.

By: Marina Villatoro
Title: The Best Education Is Travelling
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Published Date: Fri, 11 Sep 2020 18:57:01 +0000

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Would you dare baptism in the Devil’s Bathtub?




Close my eyes and count to three as I anticipate to dive into the deep, ice cold pool of water – The Devil’s Bathtub, located in Southwest Virginia. Jumping in is not recommended for the faint of heart. I stare into the aquamarine abyss and question the life choices that led me to this.

Deciding if I have the courage to jump into the Devil’s Bathtub. Photo by Maddie Luchsinger.

The Devil’s Bathtub is a place that no person can stay for very long – it is wicked in the way its cold can take the breath away of the people who dare to jump in. It is the type of cold that sucks the breath right out of your lungs and frightens every skin cell of your body. It is a bathtub-sized pool that is, perhaps, 25 feet deep, full of the fresh spring water falling off the mountains. You’ve hiked 2.5 miles up a mountains, crossing a river 17 times. Your muscles are sore. So jump into the Devil’s Bathtub and find out what happens when you dunk them in ice.

After I was baptized by the Devil in southwest Virginia, I felt cold for days. It was a deeply guttural coldness, like I was thawing slowly from the inside out.

Swimming in the Devil's BathtubPhoto by Maddie Luchsinger

In all the time I’ve spent exploring the world, there are only one of a handful of times I can remember being this cold – in the middle of the night, camping in the desert in North Central Mexico. I was there on a church trip, to build houses in the slums of Tijuana. This was something the church of my youth did a lot in the 1990s/2000s – took groups to do manual labor rural parts of Mexico. That year, in the desert of Baja California, El Nino brought on exceptional rains that flooded our campsite and soaked my belongings. The temperatures at night would reach just above freezing, and the lumber that kept our campfires roaring was wet and ineffective. I have this memory of huddling around the dwindling embers of a dying campfire, desperate to get warm, under a deep sea of stars. I remember feeling like I would never feel warm again.

The second time I’ve felt that cold was whitewater rafting the Upper Youghegheny River in Upper Pennsylvania in the early spring. My group spent the entire weekend camping in a pouring rainstorm, on 50 degree days, and then rafted a flood-stage river of class IV-V rapids. I fell out twice, and swam down a class IV+ rapid called the Meat Cleaver. I remember feeling cold for days after, and vowing to never go whitewater rafting again.

When I jumped into the Devil’s Bathtub, these were the memories that came flooding in. This was a uniquely painful kind of cold. And the thing that was so devilish about it – it was an enjoyable pain.

Maybe I’ve cursed myself, jumping into the Devil’s Bathtub. but in 2020, who can tell the difference?


Devil's Bathtub Trailhead Duffield VAPhoto by Maddie Luchsinger

How to find the Devil’s Bathtub

At the end of Highway 619 just outside of Duffield, Virginia. Duffield is located less than 2 hours from Knoxville, about an hour North of Kingston, Tennessee.

This is a popular hike with an established parking lot at the trailhead. Hikers can choose to go left when the trailhead splits for a 4 mile roundtrip journey to the Devil’s Bathtub, or take a right for a 7-mile loop through the mountains. The trail is clearly marked with a yellow square tag.

Plan for the trail to take an hour per mile, and wear shoes that can get wet. You have to hike across a river 17 times, and you are almost certain to get wet. There are a few areas of treacherous terrain and sharp drops, so keep an eye on young children and dogs at all times.

The hike can be found near Duffield, Virginia, about an hour north of Kingston, TN. I recommend camping at Natural Tunnel State Park, less than an hour away. NTSP has a well maintained and safe campground, good for car campers or RV tows.

Natural Tunnel is a rock formation that has naturally formed in the mountains, created a naturally carved train tunnel. The park offers a fun chairlift to the bottom, a fun activity for families or tired hikers.

Title: Would you dare baptism in the Devil’s Bathtub?
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Published Date: Wed, 23 Sep 2020 16:15:00 +0000

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Rediscover the San Juan Islands: Adventure-seekers will love this Northwest destination.




The journey starts with either a ferry or a floatplane—there are no bridges to the San Juans Islands. Leave stress behind as you board in Anacortes and set sail on the marine segment of the San Juan Islands Scenic Byway. You can relax, you’re on island time now.

The San Juan archipelago in Washington State is nestled between three great cities for visitors – Seattle, Vancouver B.C., and Victoria B.C., surrounded by the Salish Sea. Of the 172 named islands in the San Juans, three of them – Lopez, Orcas, and San Juan – have accommodations, attractions, and amenities for visitors.

The archipelago is blessed with a temperate marine climate and life in the “rain shadow” of the Olympic Mountains means an average of 247 days with sunshine annually and about half the rainfall of the Seattle area. San Juan County has more than 400 miles of shoreline punctuated by rocks, bluffs and beaches.

The arts, historic preservation and environmental stewardship flourish in the Islands. San Juan County is considered an “Arts Hot Spot” by the Washington State Arts Commission for the number of artists and galleries in the islands. It is also the first county in the USA to be designated a voluntary “Leave No Trace” area. Friday Harbor on San Juan Island, the archipelago’s only incorporated town, was named a Destination of Distinction by the National Trust for Historic Preservation.

No matter your style of vacation, you’re bound to find it in the San Juan Islands. For nature enthusiasts, there’s world-class wildlife watching including orcas, humpback whales, bald eagles, Steller sea lions, and red foxes. And there’s a variety of ways to see it: along a network of waterfront hiking trails, from shoreline parks, from tour boats and private vessels.

For adventure seekers, beautiful landscapes and a calm inland sea make the San Juans a prime sea kayaking spot. Paddle your own kayak or set out with one of the many knowledgeable kayaking outfitters on San Juan, Orcas, or Lopez Island for three-hour to three-day tours.

For foodies, find quality local products, and experience the sense of community shared by island chefs, growers, winemakers, distillers, brewers, and other agricultural artisans. Some local farms even offer stays for guests who want to get up close and personal to the islands’ bounty.

If art’s your thing, you’ll find a gem in the San Juan Islands Museum of Art, with three to four first class exhibitions a year. The San Juan Islands Sculpture Park at 20-acres is one of the largest outdoor sculpture parks in the Pacific Northwest.

Humpback calf ‘Slate’ breaching by Jeff Friedman

Find variety, beauty, serenity … day after amazing day.

As we navigate the effects of the coronavirus pandemic, we are following the guidelines set by the Washington State Department of Health and Governor Inslee’s office. San Juan County is currently in a modified Phase 2 of Inslee’s “Safe Start” plan. Accommodations are open at 100%, and restaurants vary between curbside pickup, delivery, and limited indoor and outdoor seating. Face coverings are required to enter all businesses and public spaces.

Editor’s Note: we are working with local tourism boards to highlight destinations that are ready for tourists. Given the ever-evolving situation on COVID-19, please make sure you check the tourism website for the most up-to-date planning information.

From Nature to Nurture the San Juan Islands provide inspiration for the senses (

Title: Rediscover the San Juan Islands: Adventure-seekers will love this Northwest destination.
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Published Date: Tue, 22 Sep 2020 15:18:00 +0000

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This interactive map shows where you can (or can’t) travel in the US




In an effort to make traveling easier, United Airlines has developed an interactive map tool that allows customers to filter and view destinations’ COVID-19-related travel restrictions in the US. The Destination Travel Guide provides a color-coded map to highlight if a destination is closed, partially open or fully open for travel, and notes if tests or self-quarantining are required for travel.

The guide currently highlights travel restrictions and leisure offerings in the US by state, and will expand to include all international destinations the airline serves in the coming weeks. Users can click on each state to view local regulations and travel guidances, and there is also the option to filter the map by state to view specific information on each destination. This information includes the medical certificate needed, such as a negative COVID-19 test, physical distancing measures and whether wearing a mask in public is required. It also outlines the visitor accommodation, restaurants, bars and cafés, museum and heritage sites and non-essential shops that are open.

The interactive map tool that allows customers to filter and view destinations © United Airlines

“We know it’s a challenge to keep up with the ever-changing list of travel restrictions, policies and regulations so we are offering a simple, easy tool that helps customers decide where to travel next,” said Linda Jojo, executive vice president for technology and chief digital officer. “By providing the most up-to-date information on the destinations we serve, customers can compare and shop for travel with greater confidence and help them find the destinations that best fit their preferences.

Check out the new interactive map tool on here or on the United mobile app.

Lockdowns are easing globally as the planet adjusts to a new normal. Find out how COVID-19 is changing travel.

Title: This interactive map shows where you can (or can’t) travel in the US
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Published Date: Thu, 10 Sep 2020 15:36:58 +0000

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