a global culture tour

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What if you could spend the next two years of your life travelling around the world, taking the time to really get to know each place you visit and nurture long lasting relationships with locals at each point? Which destinations would you choose, knowing that you want to cover as much world as possible but don’t want to feel in a race?

Mostly inspired by slow-travellers like soultravelers3, who have found the way to engage on an open ended trip around the world, taking time to settle in each community they visit and making it a way of life, I realized it was possible to engage on a similar experience by splitting the journey into one to two month long segments, each one of which would be done every year. So this year you devote your summer to a little village in Spain and the next year you immerse yourself into the calm serenity of the northern Italian alpine villages. Each year you complete another leg of this tour around the world…

The nature of such journey allows you to engage in meaningful discovery of the culture that makes each destination unique, and not just the landmarks that have made it famous. Every year you grow wiser as a global citizen, a contemporary Phileas Fogg. With each year you become more engaged with your community because you’ve learned of all the things that you took for granted and find new ways to give back throughout your journey, because you know what value you can add to each destination.

You grow more cosmopolitan as each destination thrives on your cosmopolitanism.

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3 thoughts on “a global culture tour”

  1. I can’t be away from work for months at a time, but I slow travel regularly. I and many people I know stay in vacation rentals or with friends a week or more at a time in one location. We get to know the people at the newspaper stand and the coffee (and wine 😉 shops, and enjoy living like a local for a while.
    There are several places I’d like to return to and stay for longer than a couple of weeks, but until that time, I feel satisfied with my slow travel style.

  2. In the first post I read on this blog you wrote about a ‘global citizen’ who would be equally at home drinking coffee in Paris as bargaining for fruit in a market in Mexico. I’ve been mulling over the feasibility of this ever since (it made a big impression!)

    I’m living in Turkey at the moment and the longer I stay here, the more I realise how complex the culture is, and how far I am from moving like a local. Even buying fruit at the market is a whole lot more complicated than it looks.

    Obviously you can get something out of a 1-2 month trip (and clearly a lot more than a few days’ trip) but I’d argue that to get the most out of it you need to choose countries which are fairly similar to your own culture-wise. I like the idea though.

    Maybe a good strategy would be to move progressively away from your own culture, each time choosing a new country which has cultural similarities with the one you just came from. That way you can build each time on what you already assimilated.

  3. a few years ago i escaped from nyc and lived in israel for three years — before ultimately returning to nyc and staying put. it’s a trend called “repats” — expats who come back home. Read about it Wallpaper’s June 2008 issue — by your’s truly

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