A tourist in the U.K.

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I love travelling; I love everything about it. I love arriving at the airport early to explore all of the food options (I’ve heard that airport food is actually calorie free). I love wondering around the shops, considering how much duty free I can fit in my hand luggage, and if I really need all the spending money I’ve saved. I love that little bit of trepidation you feel when you turn up somewhere random and you have no idea what to do next, and I even love returning home to my comforts; sad that the adventure is over, but happy to climb back into my own comfy bed. Therefore, when I say I love travelling: I really love travelling – the good, the bad and the wonderfully inspiring.

My dad has always said: ‘The adventure starts from the moment you leave your house’ – and that is the perfect outlook to have. If you choose to view it all as part of the journey, then that long bus ride to the airport, the queues with more bags than you need, and the uncomfortable flight with your knees up around your ears, all become part of the adventure.

My passion for travelling abroad is largely driven by my desire to wiggle my toes on the ground of every country in this beautiful world, and therefore each new country I visit gets me one step closer towards that goal. However, I have come to terms with the fact that I have more dreams, ambitions and travelling aspirations than I do disposable cash, so lately, the prospect of exploring all the hidden gems within the U.K. has become increasingly appealing to me. Don’t get me wrong; the opportunity to visit a new far away blob on the map still wildly inspires me, but with a constant need to explore, I have had to adapt. Through this – I have found that a lot can be said for being a tourist in your own country.

A change of scenery

With an increasing amount of accommodation options, exploring the beauty that your own country has to offer really does open your eyes to how much you can affordably see on your own doorstep. Every town has something unique to offer and, as you all know, I love booking into random little Airbnb homes and just getting a change of scenery.

On a drive home from Wales a few months ago I saw in the distance some truly beautiful hills. Being a little Dora Explorer, I excitedly found on the map that I was driving through Malvern and made plans with Paul to visit. So, last weekend, Paul and I picked up our walking boots and headed to the beautiful hills of Malvern. We were going to walk the hills, explore the majestic mountain tops and spend hours hiking through the wilderness. The weather, however, had different ideas. As I am shamefully a fair weather walker; we only made it out to the pub for dinner.

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Even though my grand ideas to walk the entire terrain of Malvern never came to fruition, what I found so wonderful about this weekend away was how immensely refreshing it was and how it made everything feel all shiny and new. Even though we were only a few hours away from home and greeted by the wet and windy side of mother nature, it was an adventure – together.

An adventure together

This, as usual, inspired my writing and made me think about the importance of travelling as a couple. So many people save all year for that one holiday, and just plod through their days waiting for those two perfect weeks abroad. Others get stuck on ideas of how to best utilise their weekends and before they know it, those two short days are gone and they’re back sat behind their desk waiting for Friday.

So, if this is you – I ask you to remember that you are already surrounded by so much beauty in your own country. If you’re from the U.K.: granted it might not be sunny all the time, but we are really blessed with a vast amount of countryside, churches, castles, mountains, and valleys, all over the country. We have so much natural beauty, and it is sitting there, waiting for you to explore. Depending on where you go, you can find a really nice place on Airbnb for a very affordable price.

Why don’t you take a night away from your usual surroundings and stay in a little place somewhere random? You could explore the area during the day and then have a few drinks in a local pub – or even a quiet night in with a DVD. In the morning you can cook a nice Sunday breakfast in bed and chat over coffee with no urgency to move.

You might already do that every weekend, but whether you do or don’t; I have found that gallivanting away together to a different location makes all the difference – even if it’s only an hour drive from home.

What are you waiting for?
Explore. Laugh. Live.

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