Six different ways to explore a new city

Six different ways to explore a new city

From above
Think cool rooftop bars, observation decks, or even a helicopter ride over the city if you really wanna splurge. One of my favourite experiences was dinner and drinks at the top of the Space Needle in Seattle, which looked out over the entire city and Mount Rainier. More recently, my friends and I drank Singapore Slings from the bar at the top of the iconic Marina Bay Sands hotel in Singapore. We enjoyed sunset views over the beautiful city, all for the price of a drink (a rather expensive one I might add)! Many observation decks have a bar right next to them, so I would suggest having a look at the prices, as most of the bars have the same view for the price of a drink.
 

On the water
If you are visiting a beachside city, or even a city with a lake or river, I highly recommend getting out on the water for a different view. One of my favourite things to do in new places is go kayaking; I have kayaked in many different places such as Croatia, The United States, Thailand, Vietnam and New Zealand. Of course there are other ways to get out on the water too- think gondolas in Venice, canal bikes in Amsterdam, bamboo boats in Vietnam or even white water rafting.

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Through the food
Every country has it’s own specialty dishes and types of cuisines and I believe a big part of travelling is trying the delicious food a destination has to offer. Some of my favourite foods while travelling have been fragrant Pho and Bun Cha in Vietnam, deep dish pizza and greasy burgers in the USA, and smooth Massaman curry in Thailand. Some other interesting cultural things I have eaten were snails in France and crickets in Vietnam… definitely not tasty enough to do again, although the crickets had a nice crunch!
  

On a walking tour
Walking tours are an awesome and often free way to see a city and hear about the local history and sights, which you may not otherwise have known about. Many hostels offer daily walking tours, and even if it’s not amazing, it’s still a great chance to burn a few calories and meet some new people. I did a walking tour in Chicago, and while it was bloody freezing and not all that thrilling, we made a fellow Aussie friend from Sydney, who we ended up hanging out with for the rest of the day. You also don’t have to do a guided walking tour, you can always just wander around the city and see where you end up!

 

By Bike
Bicycle riding is a leisurely way to get some exercise and fresh air while covering a lot of ground in a new city. This is especially great if you are short on time, like I was in Munich. We did a bike tour of the city and got to see lots of awesome sights, even though we were only there for one night. One of my favourite bike rides however, was riding through the rural town of Mai Chau in Vietnam, which was filled with beautiful green fields and giant water buffalos. 

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By getting friendly with the locals
If you get a chance to interact with the locals, do it. They will often be excited at the chance to share their culture with you. When I was much younger I visited a local village in Fiji (as a result of Mum becoming friends with a local worker), and recently I also had the chance to visit not just a village but also a local home outside of Da Lat, Vietnam. The locals spoke a different language to that of a city Vietnamese person, and our local guide was the only guide in the area who could translate for us. The village women ended up performing a traditional dance for us, and even offered us colourful homemade woven tapestries. When we left, one kind lady even told us to come to her house for dinner! It was an incredible experience to see how kind and generous these locals were to us, even though they have much lower standards of living than we do.

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4 Comments

  1. April 19, 2017 / 11:13 pm

    Love these tips! I never thought of eating or rooftops as a different way to see the city, but there really are so many different ways to expose yourself!

    • Becca Dunne
      April 19, 2017 / 11:15 pm

      Thanks Rosie 🙂 eating is my fave! 😂🙃

  2. April 20, 2017 / 12:19 am

    On my first ever trip to Paris last year with my husband I picked up one of those over simplified landmark maps from the hotel. I have a freaky sense of direction so we just wandered around taking out-of-the-way roads that lead in the general direction of a place we wanted to go to. We found so many wonderful hidden gems, it was so much better than just getting a taxi.

  3. Becca Dunne
    April 20, 2017 / 12:40 am

    That’s awesome! Paris is such a beautiful city, and exploring on foot is always fun 🙂 I wish I had a sense of direction like that though!

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