The expanding concept of “wellness travel” has come to include not only incorporating (or just keeping up with) fitness goals in your travel, but also things like healthy eating habits, learning wholesome cooking methods, slowing down, and participating in other potentially enriching activities such as the art classes or meditation.
If you don’t want to book a spa, it isn’t that hard to put together a DIY wellness trip, or simply to incorporate some elements of wellness into your own independent style of travel. Here are some ideas to get you started.
1. Get a mileage tracker.
Travel often involves a lot of footsteps that you might never count as a “workout” per se — but if you were to measure them, you might think differently. Even a morning sprint through an airport could add up to a half mile or more, most of it with bags. Add to that another half-mile upon arrival, and you already have a mile notched just by booking your flight.
2. Rent a bike.
Especially in Europe, renting a bike puts you among the locals in a way almost nothing else can. In a city like Amsterdam, for example, almost everyone is on a bike, and it is an easy and accepted way of getting around.
3. Attend local yoga/tai chi/other classes.
While many gyms require long-term memberships for you to be able to use facilities, most yoga, tai chi and other similar studios allow drop-in attendance as a routine practice. It’s easy to find a yoga studio almost anywhere, as most have websites with calendars, class descriptions, directions and more.
4. Get a discounted massage.
If you don’t want to visit a spa but could still use a good massage that doesn’t break the bank, you do have some options. Some massage schools offer free or discounted massages if you are interested in working with a local student.
5. Turn your hotel room into a gym.
Try this tactic; first request a room on a high floor or with a decent view of some kind. Next, clear out a spot where you can see out the window but have a little room to move, and then put on some decent music. Finally, devise a short but intense workout that you can do right in your room without any weights or machines, using only your body weight.
6. Find local running trails.
Investigating the local running trails can be a spectacular way to learn about a new location; you can usually find information online at a local running club or store.
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