Slow Travel: this topic has recently caught my attention. In the past I have always been a pretty hyper traveler. Usually, travelers have a short time in one place and I try to cram in as much as possible before moving on. It was on my last trip to New York City that I started to seriously thing about going slower. During that trip my husband and I stayed in the same hotel for 6 days. It was nice to spread my stuff out, hang clothes in the closet, plug in the white-noise machine, and really settle in. After that trip I started to examine other ways to take it slow.
Hotels– Boutique hotels have become the new trend, replacing the popularity of B&B’s of the 80’s and 90’s. For the slow traveler a hotel is more than just a place to sleep at night. It is also considered part of the location experience. If you are in Inverness, Scotland, do you want to stay at a sterile chain hotel? On the other hand, it could be dangerous to enjoy your hotel so much that you don’t want to get out and sightsee. I remember staying at a hotel in Beijing, where there was a large breakfast buffet area with floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking a tranquil garden. Each morning there would be a Tai Chi class going on outside the window. Watching participants dressed in white and moving slowly together in unison made you want to eat slow and linger. I’m sure the hotel had that arranged on purpose.
Cruises– There is a new flavor of international cruises which feature ships staying longer in a port. I know that Azamara was one of the first to start this. Usually a ship stays in port about 8 hours during the day. More and more, some cruise lines are staying in port overnight. This way people can visit a city in the evening and enjoy the nightlife. Sometimes, the feel of a city is very different at night than in the day. Another type of cruise that fits this slow pace is the repositioning cruise, where you can be at sea for 5-6 days at a time.
All-Inclusive Resorts– To me, this is the kind of vacation that people with stressful, high-pressure, and physically-demanding jobs crave. They love the idea of falling into a beachside lounge chair and hardly moving from it for the week. This is the ultimate slow vacation. Drinks are brought to you and the restaurants are only a few steps away.
Everyday I discover more on this topic, and I plan to continue reading up on this immersive style of travel. But I will be doing it slowly…
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