In recent years, many people have come to the conclusion that experiences rather than material possessions are what makes you truly happy. In line with this, one of the most common activities that people cite as bringing them happiness is travel. If you’re a frequent traveler, this probably comes as no surprise to you. Yet have you ever stopped to think about the specific reasons why travel is so good for your wellbeing? It’s a worthwhile exercise, because it can not only help you to enjoy your vacations more, it might also give you some ideas of how you can raise your happiness levels even when you’re stuck at home. So, let’s get started!
Vacations are a chance to destress
A reason that traveling is so good for your mood is that it offers you the rare opportunity to relax. In today’s busy society, you’re pressured to always be on and available. Whether it’s replying to work emails out of hours or keeping up with the latest news, switching off can feel impossible. On vacation, however, it’s different. You give yourself permission to disconnect and unwind for a few days or weeks, and take a break from the stresses of daily life. You also let yourself indulge in treats you wouldn’t normally have, whether it’s a decadent dessert or a relaxing massage. All of which does wonders for your mood and wellbeing.
Travel offers new and diverse experiences
One of the most valuable aspects of travel is how it broadens your horizons. Most people have had that feeling of visiting a country for the first time, and being excited and enthralled by everything that surrounds them. New foods, different music, beautiful scenery. By immersing yourself in a different culture or unfamiliar location, you have endless opportunities to learn new things. These could be physical skills such as mountaineering or pottery, or more academic pursuits such as a second language – either way, these novel experiences offer an instant mood boost. It’s also a fantastic way to keep your brain active, which is hugely beneficial for your cognitive powers too.
Perhaps surprisingly, even planning a trip and the subsequent anticipation of taking it can increase your levels of happiness. So start searching for top recommendations of things to do in San Francisco and feel your smile grow!
Travel enables you to spend quality time with loved ones
If you go traveling with a friend, partner, or your family, you get to spend much more quality time with them than you would normally. Even when you live together, the demands of work and school often keep people apart. On vacation however, you’re free to not only spend time together in general, but time doing fun and interesting activities.
Don’t worry if you have no one to travel with though, because vacations are also a wonderful opportunity to make new friends. People are often more willing to strike up a conversation with a stranger on the road compared to at home, particularly if they’re a solo traveler too. Regardless of whether you remain friends for life or never see each other again, that momentary social connection is sure to boost your happiness levels.