Researchers speculate that the surge in spiritual tourism involves several factors, ranging from our skewed work-life balance to the current global popularity of Pope Francis. Bestselling books like Eat, Pray, Love and Wild can make spiritual tourism seem like a relatively new phenomenon, but as author Lori Erickson points out, “People have been making treks to holy sites for millennia — in fact, these types of locations are probably the oldest form of tourism.”
We know that travel comes with a tons of great benefits: you get to spend time with people you love; you get to see and try new things; you get to relax away from the pressures of work and everyday life; you get the thrill of realizing dreams you may have had for years and years.
As it turns out, travel is the best way to spend your money. Of all the things you can buy, the experience of traveling gives you, by far, the most bang for your buck. All of these great elements of travel have been proven to make people happier.
You feel it. A flutter in your heart and soul when you catch yourself dreaming of the next place you want to go. You’ve always been a bit of an outsider that way. Some people get it. The heart of a traveler. And some say they get it but don’t. And some people think you’re just plain crazy. But that’s ok. You’re packing your bags anyway.
Recently, I tried that snazzy InstaStories feature where I asked people to ask me questions. One of the fantastic questions I received was, “What is your favorite vacation memory?” I immediately was flooded with so many vivid images, smells, sounds, and joys that came to mind when thinking of past travel experiences.
A few weeks before Christmas my colleagues were all sharing their holiday plans with one another. An office of mostly mid-westerners, folks were traveling back to Iowa or Indiana. A few people were staying in Phoenix. Then, I shared my plans…