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By Rebecca Siggers
Victor Hugo, the famous French poet, said it so right: “Forty is the old age of youth; fifty the youth of old age.” 50 can be a glamorous age in one’s life. This is a stage where children settle, little or no responsibilities of family, ample amount of time and a state of relief that life and the experiences imparted so far have been checked off the list.
50 can be a charming age to make time for oneself, explore passions and hobbies, including wanderlust. By this age, most of us would have traveled along with families or on professional trips to various places across the globe. However, what makes travel after 50 so enjoyable is a sense of freedom that comes with age and experience.
From fun and adventurous travels to relive your youthful days to finding meaning through experiential traveling, here are five wonderful travel experiences ideas to have in the 50s.
Go on a classic road trip
A road trip is the ideal way to satisfy wanderlust cravings either solo or with a partner. Driving on most wide roads with trees all around, feeling the hairpin bends and turns, stopping at milestones and viewpoints to capture those best road trip memories – a road trip would certainly satisfy wanderlust cravings. Bonus? It can be one of the best economical options, too.
Go on a road trip from deep within the Alborz Mountains to the fabled Alamut Valley. Refresh yourself on with a drive on the historic Route 66 or escape into Pacific Coast Highway. Despite the choice, a road trip can be the best way, to begin with, travel after 50.
Don’t forget to wear goggles and let your hair down to feel the wind. Be sure to choose a convertible car for the best driving experience.
Life up until 50 might have been hectic with family, professional and financial responsibilities. A mountain trek is the best way to bring back those aha! moments in life. A bottle of Andre champagne in one hand and star gazing from a camping tent on a mountain can be so refreshing.
Point to the world map and choose from the beautiful Matterhorn in Switzerland, Denali in the USA, or Table Mountain in South Africa. No one is stopping you from exploring Mount Everest or Fuji to make you are fitter, healthier and smarter version of yourself than you were before retirement.
A cycle ride, or a bike drive, group trek, or an adventurous solo walk – a mountain trip would promise a refreshing experience in the 50s.
Discover yourself with experiential traveling
With age comes experience. As Francis Bacon aptly said, “Travel, in the younger sort, is a part of education; in the elder, a part of the experience.” And we couldn’t agree more.
Experiential traveling involves living the local life actively and understanding various aspects of the culture and traditions of the place of visit. Choose a location or country and go slow; experience life from a different angle and cultural perspective.
Soak in Iceland’s Blue Lagoon. Spend time amidst wildlife in Tanzania and explore the coconut flavors of Kerala. Volunteer services in teaching kids or social services in underprivileged places. Detox through meditation in Buddhist monasteries, or spend time amidst lush green fields within America. Experiential traveling is all about rediscovering one’s way of life and its true meaning.
Explore the Mother Nature
This theme suits a person well if one has been spending life amidst concrete jungles and digital devices. Kick back and push away all the accumulated stress by easing into Mother Nature. Choose places with lush green forests, oceans, lakes and rivers and spend time with Nature in all forms. Many of Florida’s state parks are excellent places to visit in order to connect with the need for outdoor space deep within each of us.
Deep breathe in the freshest air in Amazon forests. Lose yourself amidst Arashiyama Bamboo Grove, Japan. Spend solo time in Banff National Park, Canada. Fall in love with the cutest penguin community at Boulders Beach, South Africa. Enjoy the chill of Greenland and Antarctica – the choice is yours.
Bring out your adventurous self
Fun and adventure should know no age. Never stop adding a dose of experience to your “travel after 50” plans. Deep dive into corals at The Great Barrier Reef and Whitehaven Beach, Australia. Go on a hot balloon ride at Cappadocia, Turkey. Skate till you drop at the famous skating rink at Lake Baikal, Russia.
Taste the best wine at the liveliest bars. Relish the signature dishes at famous restaurants and listen to the best orchestra and shake your leg to that refreshing beat. Check the options that give you all these experiences before you pack your bag to hit on a fun travel experience.
“Live your life and forget your age.” Live by this mantra of Norman Vincent Peale and unleash your youthful version by getting started on the best travel in your 50s because your life has just begun.