The need to travel is perhaps the most primal instinct of the human race after food, water and sleep. We usually go on road trips with friends or/and family but they take a very integral experience away from traveling as what would’ve been about finding yourself and introspection, losing yourself in nature and the modern world alike, is now focused on creating a memorable shared group experience. While that’s an amazing way to bond with people, here’s a few reasons you should do it alone and not with a group:
1. Luggage levels → Infinity (Or at least till your car is overloaded)
There are no weight restrictions to the amount of baggage you can carry, except the amount your car can hold and still move forward without scraping the road. You don’t have to worry about the number of bags, the size of the bags or, restrict your shopping once you reach the destination. Pack heavy or light, it’s all your choice as you have the entire car and boot to yourself.
2. Be your OWN boss
Group road trips are amazing in their own sense, but they restrict your individual choices. You cannot stop whenever and wherever. You have to eat where the whole group wants to eat and sleep where everyone is comfortable. All these restrictions are however, imaginary once you take that road trip alone. You can stop after every 5 minutes or not at all. You can sleep in a 5 star hotel, or you could just pack your sleeping bag and stop at a random scenic place and bunk for the night. You could even sleep in the car if you are too tired from the drive.
3. Music. Glorious music
No more music switching. No more waiting for your turn to play that song you love with all your heart just to be disregarded in less than 5 seconds and judged for your taste in music. Put on your favorite tunes, blast the volume to a level your speakers are not sure they can handle and, drive while singing at the top of your voice.
4. Boost your self esteem
There’s no better way to increase your self esteem than driving off to a random place all by yourself and figuring out everything alone without the internet or friends who are well versed with the routes and places to visit at your destination. Your confidence will increase because you will be constantly faced with new challenges in an unknown place and will have to find your own path in the millions that have been traveled by people who took that solo road trip. You will find out things you didn’t know about yourself. You will experience new strength in yourself and in that strength, come alive.
The most important factor holding people back from exploring the world and experiencing wanderlust in all its glory, is money. Though sad, it’s true that money is needed to travel. However, it doesn’t need to be a hefty sum or 5 star hotels if you are going alone. Neither will you have a group of friends pitching together for a room and paying for expensive meals, nor will you have to give in to your better off friends who have expensive tastes.
6. Off the beaten path
Most interstate travelers forget how beautiful the country is and that ever famous quote – The beauty lies in the journey, not the destination- is all but forgotten. You cannot watch the scenery by flying and only some of it when traveling by train. But, when you drive to your destination, you see everything. From the broken road winding through villages stuck in 1930, or the road carved out on the hillside overlooking the sea, you have the freedom to stop and sit down for hours if you want and become one with nature.
7. Freedom to explore. Freedom to interact.
The most important and undervalued experience when traveling alone, is learning about new things. Talking to new people from the state or travelers like yourself. As humans, we need to interact and socialize and, you don’t have a group to do that with, so go out and talk to people. Explore a jungle, or a desert, or jump into an unknown pool. Everything is within your reach, all you need to do is reach out and grab it. Talk to people, learn a new language, sleep under the stars, trek in the mountains, run in a grassy field, jump in a lake, sit and do nothing, discover the world, discover yourself.
Wanderlust; A strong desire to wander or travel and explore the world is the definition of the word. It is one of the most basic instincts of the human race. Many of us cannot or rather do not act upon this instinct because it is not as easy to quench as food and water simply because it requires a lot more courage to undertake and an insane amount of perseverance to complete it. Some are held back by the cost, some by the time but, wanderlust remains a primal instinct to date and just like hunger and thirst, needs to be quenched.