There are several types of travelers and each one likes to discover a city in its own way. The do-it-yourself traveler organizes the journey independently from tour operators, taking care of every details and pointing the most interesting stops on a detailed map; group travelers never give up the company of other people and they look for organized tours for a balanced mix of safety and adventure; those who need comforts usually are families with children and they are the opposite of the backpackers: they plan little and discover a lot!
This guide about the five alternative ways to discover a city is for the last ones. Enjoy!
From Game of Thrones to The Lord of The Rings, you could visit dozens of movie locations all around the world! So, this is the right alternative way to discover a city – or a whole country, why not? – for cinema addicted. You can follow the footsteps of your heroes and feel like them while having a coffee at the Cafe des Deux Moulins in Paris, like Amélie Poulain, or while walking through Tinsmith Circle in Lutz (Florida). This is the colourful town where it was set Tim Burton’s Edward Scissorhands. You will also find that fairy tale place such as Hogwarts or the entrance to the jazz club in La La Land really exist!
From the top
The images of extraordinary cityscapes taken from the highest skyscrapers in the world, go crazy on the social networks. If you are going to visit large cities, then you can’t miss exploring them from the top! So, you could admire the city in all its splendor enjoying a view as far as you can see and discovering details you will never see otherwise. For example, you can even see the Mount Fuji from the top of Tokyo Tower. What about a stunning sunset catched from the top of the Rockefeller Center in New York City? You cannot miss to see a show like this!
The table is the perfect place where to find new friends. Italians know it! So, if there is a good alternative way to discover a city while having fun, this is surely exploring restaurants, cocktail bars, street markets or also taking part in one of the several food tours that you can book online or asking to a local guide. A tour through flavours and smells far from yours will make you revalue your senses, to overcome your prejudices and to discover the existence of foods you have never seen before! Let’s taste to believe!
Churches, abbeys, squares and museums are the most popular places if you want to learn about the history and the culture of a place. However, have you ever thought about cemeteries as a tourist attraction? Many cities have one or more monumental cemeteries where not only great names of world history and culture are buried, but valuable architectural works are also kept in.
Here are some examples: you can take a flower on Jim Morrison’s grave at the Père Lachaise cemetery in Paris, or you can look up to the wonderful starry vault of the Monumental Cemetery of Milan.
Like a local
What about if a local would lead you to discover the city? You could organize a part of your journey asking for hospitality to a local family. So, you could stay with them for a few days giving back your help with the children or talking in both your language and the ones of your hosts. This is the easier way to deep know a culture observing home routine rituals, learning some words of the local dialect and most of all, making new friends.
So, let’s go backpacking, it’s time to leave for the next adventure!