“Well, of course, I picked the perfect place” everyone would say.
I woke up the other morning and I was thinking more about this question. The straight forward answer is yes, where I chose is amazing, everyone goes there! Ok, great! What if what’s perfect for someone else isn’t for you? This can be a mistake even I’m a culprit of. Other peoples fairy-tale holiday’s sometimes just aren’t your cup of tea, though we all get may get caught up in the popular hype. So, here I have compiled a list of questions to ask yourself before going to help you to make the most of this holiday.
Do you speak the lingo?
Yes? No? Kinda? Just because you can’t speak the language doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy yourself. No one expects anybody to learn a whole new language before you go to a country, but it can’t hurt to learn a few phrases. It not only makes the people of the country happier to help you, it also allows you to experience more and make more connections with others. While in Italy, Jacob knew enough Italian to get us around easily, but I didn’t want to rely on him constantly, so I learned some basic phrases. With those, I could go to stores and buy food for us or ask at clothing stores to try something on. This sort of communication makes a huge difference to the entire experience of your travels.
How much money should you bring?
For the Italian Summer dream-holiday, do you want to try Capri? The coast of Sorrento with its cobalt blue waters? The Amalfi coast, rubbing shoulders with the rich in private villas? Florence? Milan, walking the streets like it’s a runway? Easy, but expensive. Haha Do you, like Jacob and I, enjoy a private apartment where you have your own space and can cook for yourselves and have somewhere to escape to? In peak season, rent for a month in Sorrento is upwards of $1000 AUD on Airbnb to be right in that area or you can look further inland or try the surrounding areas starting at $890 AUD. With this option, you can still enjoy the essence of these popular locations and have more money to spend on activities and exploration. Despite hearing wonderful things about the Amalfi Coast. Jacob and I decided to stay on Lipari, one of the Aeolian islands and a beautiful, but far less traveled place.
Oh my goodness! Haha. Public transport in Italy can be brilliant or shocking and on a good day, you get something in the middle of both of those. Haha. Worst case scenario, Jacob and I were sitting at a train station after a day trip heading home and had been waiting for two hours! We heard from the Cafe across the road the first train had a problem and no one knew about the second train. We had our fingers crossed for the third and if that didn’t come along, we were looking at a taxi/bus or train to anywhere else that gets trains more frequently. (The train did show up.) So, if public transport is your means of travel, research the place you have chosen, make sure public transport is accessible! Ask around if you can, and check out buses and train schedules in *local* travel agencies, tabbachis and cafes. When planning a day trip, be sure to check the return journey as well. 😉
Confidence isn’t so much a question in this sense, but maybe more of a state of mind, because going anywhere overseas pushes you and brings you out of your confit zone. You want to be willing to do this and in doing this you build your confidence. You don’t want to be milling around your hotel area and not taking advantage of the surrounding areas. In my experience, having the confidence to take a risk can improve your holiday in every way. Whether it’s a spontaneous weekend or day-trip to a place you know nothing about, or a last minute decision to ditch the itinerary and sail to an island, your options can be hugely broadened with confidence. Talk to people, and trust that you can make an otherwise inconvenient or difficult situation the highlight of your trip.