Seven Unusual Ways to Discover New Places to Travel

You don’t need inspiration to travel, but it sure can help. Especially if you’re looking to travel somewhere different.

Sure, Cabo is great and the cabana bartender calls you by name, but you can shake things up a little bit with these fun and fresh ideas to help you find your next travel destination.

Astrological Travel

Whether you’re an always-on-the-go Aries or a Cancer ready for days of relaxation, another option for finding new destinations is to follow your astrological sign to your next trip. This quick guide includes some great travel ideas based on astrology signs that can be used to give your planning a jump start.

Another way to use astrology to help find new places to visit is AstroClick Travel. This site allows you to enter your birth information and uses locational astrology to show lines of influence projected onto a world map. You can click on intersection points on the map and see what astrological influences might impact you at that destination. Born in July? Brazil might be a great destination to consider: “The people you meet here will make a significant contribution to your future endeavors.”

Also read: Inspirational Ideas for New Travel Destinations

Follow the Migration

If you could talk to the animals, they’d tell you where they go on vacation.

Monarch butterflies winter in Mexico. Arctic terns winter in North Africa. European robins migrate to Turkey. Caribou move down to winter ranges in the sub-arctic and northern Canada. Hey, if it’s good enough for them, it ought to be good enough for you too.

Pick your favorite migratory creature and follow their travel. It might take you down the Mississippi or across the Pacific, but in the process, your admiration for nature might grow tenfold. And that’s an amazing thing.

Names Out of a Hat

Want your family to see every corner of the United States, but not sure where to start?  Try putting the names of the states in a hat, draw one a year, and start planning summer vacations.

This can be used for all sorts of trip planning. Not sure where to start with your bucket list? Now you do. The point is, you can start with a goal (like having your kids see the states) and come up with a fun way to accomplish the goal.

Also read: Why Travel is so Important for Families, Especially Kids

Darts on a map

This tried-and-true method of discovering new places to travel can work wonders. When you really commit to this, of course you run the risk of spending a week on Yap, but hey, there’s supposedly a great sushi place only a couple of coral atolls away.

Of course, in order for you to do darts on a map you need …

Maps

Forget about social media accounts and travel brochures; maps are your gateway to new adventures. Never take a road trip without an atlas. Whenever you arrive in a new state or a new country, get a paper map stat.

What’s the thing about maps? Look at it from the other perspective: What’s the thing about GPS? It’s focused on getting you from Point A to Point B as efficiently as possible. Do not pass GO, do not stop at that really cool Amish bakery 15 miles off the Interstate and up a county road.

GPS is the traveler’s equivalent of every algorithm on every social network ever: It focuses on narrowing your interests and choices, not so much finding new and different things.

Maps offer so many ways to spice up the marriage between you and travel. With maps, you can:

  • Put them on a wall and throw darts at them (see above.)
  • Document all the places you’ve been and more importantly, see where you haven’t been.
  • Suggest alternate routes and backroads to explore.
  • Find towns with insane names that you absolutely must visit. Ever been to Fishhook, Alaska, Hällbergsbodarna, Sweden, Wallaroo, Australia, or Capitán Mauricio José Troche, Paraguay? Probably not – but your desire to visit them just went up 1000%. Google Maps, wonderful as it is, isn’t going to suggest these off-the-beaten-path locations to you; only paper maps are going to consistently deliver the goods.

Also read: Family Vacation Ideas for Summer and Beyond

Or, maybe you don’t need a map to find your next trip…

Earth Roulette

It’s like throwing darts at a map, but less dangerous. Just click the button on this random travel generator and away you go! With a database of thousands of interesting cities around the world you can click for days and find new places to visit. Find a quick rundown on each destination, what to do and see, where to eat, travel restrictions, help finding flights and more.

Give it a spin

Reverse-Engineer Your Travels

Use flights to determine your next travel destination. Where are the cheap flights today? Taiwan? Madras? Ecuador? If you’re flexible and not too tied-down, discover a great place for a flight to anywhere on an airline you really like, call up the cat-sitter and jump on it.

(Note: This also works on cruises.)

Spontaneity is a great thing in travel. So is not taking travel quite so seriously. If you’ve decided to make this your year to get back on the travel bandwagon, do yourself a favor: Take along Generali Travel Insurance. We’ll focus on travel protection while you think about taking the road less traveled.

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