New Year Travel Resolutions for 2013

Happy New Year. Happy 2013!  So it’s another year and you’re back in the office.
What are your 2013 New Year Resolutions?
• Loose a little weight
• Spend less money
• Give up smoking
• De-clutter and clear the closet
• Get fit

Sound familiar? If you have already broken any or all of the same resolutions you make every year why not think about your travel resolutions for 2013 and plan your out-of-the-ordinary trip instead of settling for routine. What’s on your travel bucket list for 2013? How do you plan to travel differently this year?
Here are some of our new year travel resolutions and suggestions for 2013.

Plan ahead:
Procrastination does not help travellers in the slightest. If you have ANY desire to take a trip over a long weekend, during school holidays or major holiday period (Christmas, year end and summer 2013 holidays) then book and plan it now to get the best deals. Get the calendar out and get your best dates and book it. The best value options get taken in JANUARY every year. Book now… PLEASE!

No crowds, Cape of Good Hope (Scott McMillan)

No crowds, Cape of Good Hope (Scott McMillan)

Take your holidays:
I am always amazed how many people don’t use their holiday or vacation days. You’ve worked hard enough, you might as well use your holiday days and your annual leave! Buy the ticket now, book your accommodation NOW, book a car NOW … make it a reality! Book it now, you’ll find a way to make it happen instead of finding an excuse why you didn’t get away! Don’t wait!

Hout Bay (Google Images)

Hout Bay (Google Images)

Travel out of season:
Travelling out of peak season is a fantastic time for travel and each season has special features and magic. Try to travel mid-week instead of weekends. You also usually get better deals, fewer crowds and unusual weather conditions.  I also have to share a valid Note from a dear friend: “It’s not cold – you are just dressed wrong!”

Winter Walk on Fish Hoek Beach (Google Images)

Winter Walk on Fish Hoek Beach (Google Images)

Travel to lesser known destinations:
Getting off the beaten track is often cheaper, friendlier and you often have a better experience. Get away from the main attractions and this often includes staying in the suburbs or on the outskirts of a city. The Cape Point Route is a great example of being out of the city with access to the main attractions. Stay in Noordhoek or Kommetjie and you will feel far away from Cape Town City!

Go with a local:
Travelling alone can be explorative and fun, hiring a guide for day tours not only helps the local economy – it also gives you insider information you would have missed on your own. A private day tourwith a knowledgeable guide will often get you to places and spots you would never have found alone.

Photographic Day Tour (Lizl Bode)

Photographic Day Tour (Lizl Bode)

Resolve to do less staying in big soulless hotels…. try more B&B’s or guesthouses or small boutique hotels – you’ll meet the locals, get suggestions for activities and it feels homely.

Staycations:
A “buzz” word for exploring your own city. Long travel trips are sometimes out of the budget but holidays at home can open new doors, friendships and ideas and are inspiring for day to day living. Stay close to home and discover your city. Book a weekend close to home, talk to locals, eat what they eat, stop when something catches your eye – it’s affordable and fun. {Cape Town….you can call us on 021 782 9356!}

Use Public Transport:

Cape Town - Simon's Town Train. Photo: Craig Faanes

Cape Town – Simon’s Town Train. Photo: Craig Faanes

It may take longer but it’s usually cheaper and most of the time you get to meet the locals!
One of the most beautiful train journeys in the world is also a commuter route! Take the train from Cape Town to Simon’s Town!

Budget extra time:
The unexpected does happen so give yourself longer than you think you need. It has happened far too often that our visitors love the Cape Point Route so much they extend their stay or come back for more. Give yourself extra time where possible so you can stay and watch the sunset.

Cape Peninsula Sunset - Brett Cole

Cape Peninsula Sunset – Brett Cole

Pause and Observe:
Sit still for more than 5 minutes – be mindful, take in the sights and sounds and smells – ground yourself and be present in your destination. If you pause and observe – you could watch that fisherman pulling in a catch, you could catch the glow that happens AFTER the sunset, and you could catch that wave!

Kalk Bay Fishermen (Christelle Erasmus)

Kalk Bay Fishermen (Christelle Erasmus)

Soak up the experience:
It’s great to document your travels and get that “Kodak Moment” captured on your camera…. but don’t miss the experience. Put your phone away – you can tweet later. Facebook can wait. Watch the sunset and smell the roses. Then tell everyone including your hosts how great it was! (PS: You can find us on Facebook or Twitter:  @CapePoint_Route)

Get outside & active:
Natural environments are stimulating, feel good, soothing, stress relieving and make you feel good. Get outside and appreciate the fresh air even if it’s only a 20 minute walk on the beach. Resolve to include a physical activity when you travel – hike, bike, paddle, diveor walk.

Hiking (Andy Higgenbotham)

Hiking (Andy Higgenbotham)

Try something new:
Learning a new skill can be a stimulating and inspiring life lesson for 2013! Try something new – take up surfing or kayaking or yoga. Take cooking classes or go crayfishing with the locals. Try new foods and local foods . Try talking to people you wouldn’t normally hang out with. Try camping if you are a city slicker or upgrade to styleif you usually rough it! And need I say it go somewhere new.

Learn to Surf (Photo: Learn2Surf)

Learn to Surf (Photo: Learn2Surf)

Keep a Travel Journal:
Record your memories and moments in a travel journal. It doesn’t need to be long and complicated but note what you feel about where you are and what you have experienced. Written words are an excellent memory (better than our own heads or our photos!) We love hearing your thoughts, views and reviews so if you feel comfortable to share with us, we’d be grateful.

Cape Town Travel Journal (Google Images)

Cape Town Travel Journal (Google Images)

Pack less:
Less is more… don’t overpack when you travel. You seldom need everything that you put in your suitcase and most of the time you can buy something if you really need it – but you will be surprised how little you need when you are not at home!

Too much luggage (Google Images)

Too much luggage (Google Images)

Know what kind of traveller you are:
Make sure that you meet your expectations of your holiday (& your budget) by knowing what type of traveller you are. A main-stream, 5 star restaurant and concierge traveller would be very disillusioned with a thrill-seeking, camping trip in the bush carrying their own backpack!

  • What type of travel do you enjoy? Mainstream, off-the-beaten path, volunteer, active
  • What type of traveller are you? Party-animal, family-based, thrill-seeker, culture-vulture?
  • Do you like to travel alone or in a group? Are you prepared to go your own way or do you want help! Everyone travels differently and combinations can work… if you’re in a group you can take an afternoon to yourself for that bizarre museum you want to visit but no-one else does!

    Group at Cape Point (Google Images)

    Group at Cape Point (Google Images)

Regardless of your travel type, know that things will not be the same as they are at home. Be prepared to leave your comfort zone and be someone else as you explore.
Travel can be restorative. As you experience new people, places and cultures and try new things – you often realise that there is no right or wrong way of doing things, you become more accepting of people and more tolerant of different points of view.

What is on your travel bucket list for 2013? If you would like to visit Cape Town and explore another side of the city, with a local or out of season…contact Cape Point Route for ideas, suggestions and booking assistance. We are in the industry and we are local and if you want to visit – PLEASE take note of our first resolution… plan ahead. You don’t want to be disappointed and things really really do get booked out.

Cape Point Route offers day tourspackagesaccommodationactivities and car hire in Cape Town’s south peninsula in addition to teambuilding events in Cape Town.  Call               021 782 9356       or visit www.capepointroute.co.za 

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