Travel Tip: Ditch the Guidebook

If you’ve spent a considerable amount of time learning Italian history and culture… sure. Go ahead and go to the Colosseum. Take pictures in front of it, go inside. But be aware you’re not actually experiencing Rome. You’re experiencing the Tourist Land of Tourist Things. It’s not authentic or real UNTIL you stop a stranger. Someone who doesn’t look like a tourist at all and ask, “Where is your favorite place in this city?” and “How do I get there?”.

Go there instead. Leave your sneakers behind. Open your eyes. Pay attention to the way people are walking and dressing. Don’t talk too much. Blend in. Not for the purpose of losing your individuality, but to understand what it’s like to live like them, even if it’s just for just five minutes.
Watch the sun set. Watch the sun rise. Repeat.
Post by Debbie Mosley (CLAS ’17)

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