what’s your favorite part about visiting a new place?

taco punk

Is it the food? The architecture? The people watching?

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Actually the best part of traveling is not what we know, but what we don’t know. In other words, the unknown, the new, the not yet personally experienced are all included in the best part of traveling. You might be the type to visit the same place every year, but I enjoy variety. In fact the two places I have no interest in going is to the beach or to Disneyland.

I know somebody out there is gasping or at least smirking. Its ok, you don’t have to travel with me.

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This country, no less, this world is an interesting place and what I enjoy most is experiencing something I can’t at home. Now don’t get me wrong, that doesn’t mean something weird or something dangerous. It doesn’t even mean something unusual. It just means searching for at least one thing that makes a location unique. Finding what kind of food is truly unique or original to a locale can be a real joy to discover. Meeting new people can be fun. And yes, experiencing architecture in person rather than in the glossy magazines is part of my soul.

Suburban and roadside development has homogenized our country so bad that when you travel you are everywhere and nowhere at the same time. If we were blindfolded and taken to any random suburban area, we’d all have a hard time knowing where we were when the blindfold came off. McDonald’s is not going to be a surprise and there is a Wal-Mart every 10 miles. When you are in these areas (and at times it is necessary), there is nothing new. To be honest, this is what has made these places successful. We all know what to expect when we go inside any of the major retail chains. It has been a successful and smart marketing plan. I am not opposed to chains or franchises, but I find it useless to eat in a restaurant chain when traveling that I can eat at when we’re home. What’s the point?

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I can’t say my family (or me personally) has traveled extensively, but we’ve gone somewhere different every year we’ve taken a vacation. We’ve seen our share of places on this side of the map and what is most enthralling is looking for things to do or places to eat in each and every place. Now the thought of that may make you mentally exhausted, but we find the challenge fascinating.

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Yes we (ok I) look at and visit the architecture, we may watch people from time to time and the food is high on the list. However, I can’t tell you what the best part is because it is unknown to me.

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what’s your favorite part about visiting a new place?

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