April 08, 2016 - 7:14 AM
My friends and I often grumble about not being able to travel more. It’s too expensive, we sigh. Too hard to get the time off work.
But lately, I’ve been rethinking my definition of travel and finding ways to satisfy the craving on nothing more than a long weekend and a shoestring budget. Think of it like a 100 mile diet for the hungry traveller.
This Easter long weekend, for instance, I finally biked the old Kettle Valley Railroad. A mere few hours from home, the trip brought me through towns like Grand Forks, Christina Lake and Rock Creek that I had never been to before. Through historic towns and tunnels, past waterfalls and over rivers, it was just the dose of nature and adventure my inner traveller needed.
Why is that we so often neglect our own backyards until friends or family visit? There’s this notion that because you live somewhere, you can put off hiking that trail or trying out that restaurant, because there’s always next weekend or next summer. Unlike a foreign land, there isn’t that same drive to see and do as much as possible before your plane leaves.
But what if we brought that mentality home? What if we started seeing the potential in our own 100 mile radius?
What I’ve realized is you don’t have to be sitting on a beach in Mexico or walking along the Great Wall of China to ‘get away.’ Because, that’s really what travel is all about — getting away from your everyday routine. It doesn’t matter if you’re a million miles away, or 100, going somewhere different is what it’s all about.
For those of us lucky enough to call the Southern Interior home, why not pick up a roadmap instead of your passport? There are so many neat places to explore, whether on a day trip or a long weekend. Aside from being more affordable and accessible to those of us who have burned through our vacation days, local travel is a way to get to know your neighbours and support local economies. As a bonus, weekend getaways don’t require hours of packing — the most you’ll need is an overnight bag or maybe just a picnic lunch.
If you’ve got a bad case of wanderlust, you really don’t need to travel to the other side of the world for the antidote. You just have to bring that wanderer’s outlook to your own backyard.
— Charlotte Helston is the Vernon reporter for iNFOnews.ca.
News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2016