Slow Travel: Taking Your Time on Holiday
When taking a trip abroad, it can be tempting to fill your itinerary with must-see sights and experiences from day to night. While stepping away to visit every possible recommended destination you discover online can be enriching, it can take away from the core purpose of your holiday: to rest.
Slow travel is a method by which you can discover a destination and immerse yourself in its culture without having to rush. If you’re new to this sustainable travel technique, here’s everything you’ll want to know about it.
The Origins of Slow Travel
Inspired by the slow food movement in Italy in the 1980s, slow travel picked up in the early 2000s. As the slow food movement stands for an international right to pleasure, slow travel involves discovering the world more leisurely.
Unlike organized group travel, slow travel encourages taking a step back and focusing on the quality of a trip instead of quantifying activities.
How to Slow Travel
Slow travel isn’t just a method of maximizing your journey—it’s also a philosophy of its own. It doesn’t require planning, though it relies on the amount of time you choose to spend in a specific place.
The idea behind slow travel is to remain in one place for as long as possible, taking the time to soak in every inch of your environment and even get bored. Limit your visit to a single region and make traveling around it part of the pleasure.
Travel by bus or train to better appreciate the sights and scenery. Moving is an integral part of your trip; not just a means to get from one point to another. At your destination, try cycling, walking, or even horseback riding—it’ll give you room to stop at your convenience and explore wonders off beaten tracks.
What Type of Accommodation Best Supports Slow Travel?
Hotels don’t provide the flexibility that most slow travelers are after. As such, consider the following types of accommodation.
Cottage or rental: A functional space allows you to cook for yourself and explore local markets.
Home exchange: For long-haul travelers, home exchanges are budget-friendly and make extending your trip easier.
Homestay: An authentic homestay or guest house will allow you to familiarize yourself with local etiquette and culture.
Unlike in a hotel, the accommodation types above enable you to contribute to the local economy by making purchases from shops and markets. Take an interest in native gastronomy but leave room to discover recipes you can try on your own. You’ll take part in local life as if you’re a native yourself!
Practice Responsible Slow Travel
Slow tourism is sustainable as it fosters respect and care for nature, culture, and people. Prioritizing clean travel also lessens your environmental impact. By immersing yourself in local traditions, you learn new ways of living that you can take on other trips.
No matter how many times you’ve returned to your all-time favorite travel destination, exploring it differently can alter your perspective in ways you wouldn’t anticipate. With enough quiet and space, plunging deep into local culture becomes more approachable.
At the Riverhouse Phuket, your slow travel goals are well within reach. Our villas provide the highest quality home away from home, where you can freely explore Thai delights and always have a place to come back to.