How To Live Like A Local On Your Next Trip

Learn how to live like a local on your next trip (Photo: Dudarev Mikhail/Shutterstock)

Go beyond the hotel bar and create a richer travel experience by digging a little deeper into the local culture. How? We’re sharing five easy ways to travel like a local and make your trip even more interesting.

Ditch the guidebook

Guide books are a great research tool and can come in very handy no matter what type of trip you’re taking. But there’s also something to be said for taking a more exploratory approach to your trip, one that doesn’t rely on someone else’s idea of what to see and do. Feel more like a local by simply creating your own itinerary based on what looks interesting as you explore. You might just stumble upon a hidden gem café or neighbourhood you wouldn’t ever have known about had you stuck to your guide book.

Take public transit

Hopping in a taxi every time you need to get from point A to point B can be a tempting way to travel but it also isolates you from what it feels like to actually live in whatever town or city you’re visiting. Not to mention, taxis can get expensive and public transportation in even the more notoriously pricey cities like Hong Kong and Singapore is relatively affordable. Make use of buses, subways and trams to save money and do as the locals do.

Eat where the locals do

Skip the chain restaurants or the ones that look exactly like something you’d see at home and instead make a note of where the locals are eating. See a line-up? Jump into that queue. Usually locals know the best spots to get the area’s most popular delicacies, whether it’s authentic barbeque in Texas or pizza in Naples. These are also places that likely won’t be in your guidebook, and they’ll so often be fairly inexpensive, so dive in and see what all the fuss is about.

Get food and sightseeing recommendations from the people who live there

Just like the locals know where to eat, they can recommend unique spots to visit that might not be on all of the “top 10” lists you peruse before your trip. Talk to the people you meet, or at the front desk of your hotel, or servers in bars and restaurants to get the inside scoop on what you shouldn’t miss out on while you’re visiting.

Walk as much as you can

One of the best ways to get to know a new city on your own is to walk. It sounds simple, but exploring on foot allows you to see much more than you would if you were simply hopping from one attraction to the next. You’ll get a much broader peek into local life and experience the destination as a local would. Make a point to stop into markets, shops and parks to really get a feel for what it’s like to live there.

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