I recently came across a wonderful piece, The Most Powerful Reasons to Travel by Rob Sangster. Here is a sampling of his insights, "In the big picture, the planet on which we circle our sun is infinitesimally tiny. From the human perspective, however, it is also incredibly rich in landscape and life forms, wonderfully diverse in philosophy and potential. We owe it to ourselves to explore our home planet at close range."
Sangster distinguishes between vacation and travel in that, "to travel means interacting personally with the people and culture of another place. It does not require great amounts of time and money. It does require an effort greater than lying on a beach or attending the theater."
Of course, lying on a beach can produce brief pleasure and relieve tension. However, Sangster points out there is so much more, and "true travel, like reading a book by an insightful author, can be a life-changing experience. Travel is an opportunity to think of beginnings and endings, to challenge inhibitions, to experience pure joy."
"One of travel's greatest rewards is that of giving us new perspective. Freed from the cocoon of home, a traveler learns how people live in the rest of the world, what they care about. As a traveler, you develop a deeper understanding of the strivings of billions of humans, of lives filled with achievement, as well as lives filled from dawn to dusk with hard work and hopelessness. And you realize how much of what you'd accepted as universal truth is based on only the values of the country, even the neighborhood, in which you grew up."
"Another reward of travel is exposure to the greatest beauty of man and nature: the architectural brilliance of cathedrals and castles, the breathtaking majesty of the Himalayas. Overflowing with artistic expressions from a dozen cultures, you begin to appreciate the endless facets of beauty."
Finally, "While on the road, you are summoned neither by a ringing phone nor by a yard waiting to be mowed. Instead, there's time for contemplation, even solitude. Travel provides time for setting new priorities, deciding how to allocate your time when you return."
I hope these words help compel you to get out there and explore the world!