Traveling allows us to escape the mundane and offers us a chance to follow our curiosities down unknown roads to hopefully arrive at places of awe. It is for that reason that traveling evokes images of far and exotic locales that challenge our paradigms in landscapes, or cultures.
But traveling is more about opening our eyes than simply being a tourist in another place. A traveler is a curious explorer. And that doesn't mean that you have to go somewhere far - you can explore your own hometown. While it is not as romantic of an idea, it is still worth it!
Unless you are a self-employed traveler or have a job that allows you to travel regularly, the opportunity to travel isn't always there. But that doesn't mean that you have to stop being a traveler.
Chances are that you don't even know your area that well. Sure, you live, study, and/or work there, but have you explored it? Pretend you have moved into your area in a study abroad experience and reclaim the charm of novelty of your hometown. Your own hometown is probably a travel destination for other people who come to appreciate the sites and views that you now take for granted.
Look up the top ten things to do in your area or look it up on tripadvisor. Book a tour or visit some of your hometown's biggest attractions. Or you could spend time in some of the smaller attractions like local museums, small downtown areas and smaller parks. Get to know the locals and you will have a place that you can visit often.
Personally, I enjoy going to local sites to practice my photography. Not only can you easily go back to the site to get a shot, but you can also come back to the same spot over time and notice the differences. Plus, since I know my area, I have a greater understanding of it and I can practice taking photographs that capture the essence of my hometown.
Another thing you can do is take a day trip or a weekend trip to someplace nearby. That way you can still experience the feeling of being anonymous in another place only a few hours away from home.
Exploring your own hometown let's stay curious, stave off the mundane and train your eyes to see the novelty and awe in everything. And the best part is, that it's not hard to go back for a visit.