Shopping On Vacation

Learn About The Culture - Have Fun Too!

We love to travel, and 2020 was supposed to be a big travel year for us. Like the rest of you, that hasn't happened. 

We're still dreaming about travel, reading about new destinations, and making (tenative) plans for the future. We hope all of you are well and staying safe... and that you find some inspiration here for YOUR future travels.

Some people love shopping.

I'm not one of them, but I do like shopping on vacation.

I like going into stores to see what they're selling. Grocery stores are different in different parts of the world. And I love bazaars.

While I LIKE shopping on vacation...

I think some people vacation to shop!

Travel for what ever reasons you want...

And if shopping is one of your loves....

Why not shop while you're traveling?

Seriously... It's a great way to get into some cultures!  

Seeing more about the culture we're visiting... That's why I like it.

Bazaars And Flea Markets Are Fun

Shopping on vacation!  Jerusalem Bazaar

The antiquities, real and fake, were amazing in Jerusalem..

And they had some great shawls.

I like wandering in bazaars and flea markets...

But I like looking at big department stores in cities like London and Paris or almost anywhere else too.

Exploring big stores lets you see what the fashions are like in the country you're visiting, and it gives you a different perspective on the country and it's people.

If you're a real shopper... you probably just love shopping someplace new!

Just Go Prowling Around

Shopping in Bhutan... We had to climb into the shop.

I love prowling museums and historical sites, but grocery stores, department stores, and bazaars give you a glimpse of everyday life.

I like going to small boutique stores almost anywhere.

You find more local flavor...

Less "mass marketed" items.

If I can find a jacket that Bhutanese women wear over their "kira"....

I'll have a jacket at home that no one else will have... unless they, too, have been to Bhutan.

(Yes... I have the jacket.  And I wear it all the time!)

Grocery, MegaStores And Small Markets 

Shopping for a picnic at LeClerc in France

I like going into grocery stores.

There are supermarkets now all over the world in addition to small local markets.

It's fun to look at local grocery items and see what else is for sale. There are places like Carrefour and LeClerc in France and Lidl all over Europe... not to mention IKEA!

We went to a Safeway in Amman, Jordan. It was fun to try to buy lowfat milk in Arabic and see the kinds of goods they had for sale.

Small markets are fun to see too... You see exotic fruits and vegetables.

And if you're lucky enough to be in a town for the weekly market, you'll probably be doing some cheese or sweets shopping on vacation!

Shopping For Arts And Crafts

Shopping for amber in Gdansk

It's fun shopping for arts and crafts made by local artisans. It was great fun shopping for amber in Gdansk, Poland.

Sometimes we shop for something for ourselves to bring home.

We have gone looking for carpets in India, Nepal, Pakistan and Turkey... and we came home with a few.

We have bought "made for tourist" items like Tibetan horns, and African wood carvings, and sometimes jewelry.

We try to find things that are small and pack easily... except for the carpets anyway.

We also shop for interesting items that will make fun gifts for friends and relatives at home.

The amber earrings that we bought in Gdansk will make great gifts for my nieces come Christmas.

Even If You're NOT A Shopper...

Shopping On Vacation Is Fun

It's interesting...

There are thousands of sites trying to entice readers to go THERE and shop.... and THERE was any place in the world!

There are whole tours set up for shopping on vacations... either near home or far away!

We prefer to think that we go to those department stores and boutiques and bazaars for the cultural experience.

If I come away with an interesting new "ethnic" outfit that I could never get at home... that's a souvenir.

If we come home with a new carpet... that's a wise purchase.

If we come home with a "tacky tourist curio" to hang on the Christmas tree... that's just plain fun.

Psychologists say that the act of shopping someplace new can dose the brain with dopamine, a natural chemical that provides deep satisfaction and that often starts to flow when we confront something novel and exciting....

I love science...

Maybe that's why I like shopping on vacations better than shopping at home!

Happy travels... even if you don't travel the world... just remember that life is a journey... embrace and enjoy it! Judy and Mark

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Thanks, Judy and Mark

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Timely Tips

Covid-19 Summer

2020 presents a travel summer like no other.  Mostly we have veen sheltering in place.

Domestic driving trips, visits to state or national parks are all most of us can accomplish... but we'll give our summer tips so you can be dreaming of future summer vacations!

Summer Vacation
Travel is fun in the Northern summer... but don't neglect the Southern Hemisphere at this time of year.
Yes, it's winter in South Africa, but that's their dry season. It's a good time to travel there.

Lions stop traffic in Kruger NP South Africa

Sometimes you need to watch rain patterns instead of just seasons to figure the best time to travel...

Whether you're taking a road trip close to home or traveling abroad...

Whether it's summer or winter in your part of the world...
the way you pack can make it all more pleasurable.

Check out all our Packing Lists and Tips.

Need travel ideas?
Things to See in Europe
Africa Calls!
Travel In America

Don't just dream about it...
Start making plans!

Custom Tour Planning List
International Travel Planning Tips
Foreign Is Fun - Not Scary!
Get Your Passports and Visas

And Expect Good Things
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