by Regin Reyno
We travel to be happy. In whatever we do in our travels, at the end of the day, the reason we do those things, is to achieve happiness and/or meaningfulness. Whether that be hiking on the Great Wall of China, witnessing Rembrandt’s The Return of the Prodigal Son at The Hermitage Museum, scaling Mt. Kilimanjaro, swimming with whalesharks in the Philippines, riding Tatsu at Six Flags Magic Mountain, or simply enjoying an over water villa in Bora Bora, French Polynesia. We go to great lengths to achieve happiness and meaningfulness.
But in traveling, I also find happiness in simple things. They’re simple. In fact, some people take them for granted. But these simple things or activities make me happy. It allows me to have positive emotions. To have feelings of joy, contentment, and comfort.
Every time I travel, every time I book that ticket, I feel excited not just for the major sites and activities that I’m going to do in a particular destination, but also for these simple things and activities when traveling. I’m a person who finds happiness in simple pleasures.
1. Meal time on planes
I love eating on planes. I love airline food; those hot meals that come with starters, desserts, and of course, drinks.
Just by thinking that I’m going to have hot meals on my flights make me excited for my trips. I’m aware that many people hate airline food, but so what? I enjoy them and it keeps me sane on an otherwise boring flight.
2. Hotel breakfast
One of my favorite travel activities is having breakfast at hotels. I always look forward to breakfast time when on the road, especially hotel breakfasts. It is my favorite meal of the day. And when traveling, you don’t have to make it. You wake up. Have shower. And then, enjoy that bowl of muesli with fruits, whole wheat bread, fruit juices or tapsilog and tsokolate. Perfect way to start the day.
3. In-flight entertainment
Movies and music at the touch of your fingers during flight? Bliss. Before the planes takeoff, I immediately scan the inflight magazine to check what movies they have and it makes me so excited. Watching movies while sipping drinks. 15-hour flight? Bring it on.
4. Dining/restaurant car
There’s something about trains’ charm that capture my emotion. It is my favorite way to travel. There’s no turbulence, they have toilets, you can walk, opportunity to interact with locals and travelers, and the best part; the dining car. Having a meal in the dining car makes a comfortable and memorable travel experience. Those large windows, allows you to enjoy the scenery while feasting on your fave European food. Or just having drinks will do.
5. Private room with AC and clean bathroom
The best thing about staying in hotel rooms is the absence of unnecessary things. No clutter, no distractions. A freshly-made bed, clean bathroom, few clothes, air-conditioner (or heater), that’s it. It’s so nice to go back to a clutter-free abode after a day’s walking or sight-seeing. It doesn’t have to be fancy.
6. Hotel swimming pool
Swimming and reading a book by the pool, enjoying some snacks and drinks, or just simply relaxing on lounge chair; sometimes a day of just relaxing at the hotel is fulfilling enough for me.
7. Airport departure/boarding area cafes
I usually check-in very early whenever I’m flying. It allows me to relax at cafes (or airport lounge, sometimes) at the boarding area. Reading a book and sipping hot chocolate or tea, or people watching while waiting for my flight is an activity I enjoy.
“Sometimes, the simple things are more fun and meaningful than all the banquets in the world ...”
The joy of traveling is indeed found in traveling itself; the journey, not just the destination.
How about you? What are simple things or activities you enjoy when traveling?