Let’s talk about walking. A few days ago, I read an interesting article about 12 unexpected health benefits of walking and the thoughts that it gave me inspired this post. You may read the article, in Swedish, here >>
Countless are the benefits of walking, and they are probably known to most of us. Having some fresh air during lunch clears our minds and makes us more efficient. When our thoughts feel stuck, a walk works wonders. It’s a healthy form of exercise and who does not enjoy a stroll in the park? However, the usual health issues aside, I’d like to share a couple of reasons why it’s a good idea to go for a walk when travelling.
Walking is the perfect way to work out when not at home. It requires no special equipment and it can be done anywhere. Walk for a day and see what it feels like afterwards! There have been times when I have woken up with sore muscles after a long day on my feet. If walking doesn’t feel challenging enough for you, go to a place with a lot of hills, cobblestones or stairs. Do some jumping and squatting, if you feel like it. Walking is a joyful activity, in my opinion. Like all good things in life, it can be shared with others. Loners can enjoy their walks, but it’s also the perfect opportunity to catch up with friends, family, and travel companions. And if you walk a lot, you can eat a lot of tasty local foods. Once we walked approximately 30 kilometers in one day (that was in Istanbul) and that’s probably our record. Let me tell you, I had no guilty conscience for eating cake afterwards!
You see so much more when you walk! You might also encounter interesting people and the chances are that you get lost. In Istanbul we bumped into a very sweet old man, who was worried that we had gotten lost in his neighbourhood located somewhere in the huge metropolis. I would not be able to find the place on a map, but I remember to this day how kind and thoughtful he was.
It is the unexpected places that are the most fascinating ones. A little statue hidden in a small park, posters, shop windows, cute cafés, bars – this is where you will hear the stories, meet the locals and get a feeling of the place where you are. Be brave, explore all the alleys and narrow streets. A lot of interesting sights and places are located slightly off the beaten track. You are more likely to find the gems if you don’t have a fixed plan how to get from a to b. One of the more random sights we found completely by mistake was an old bunker in Bratislava. Yes, a bunker. In the middle of nowhere, on a field. It’s actually a museum nowadays and there were some other visitors there. We learn a lot more about Slovak history on that snowy Sunday. In case you know Slovak and want to know more about the bunker, click here >>