[dropcap]T[/dropcap]ravel is the outcome of insatiable curiosity of man for knowing and exploring his environment. It virtually lifts the veils from the outside world and exposes the new horizons with all their wonders, excitement and novelties. It is this curiosity which urged Columbus to discover America, Vasco-de-Gama to find sea-route from Europe to India and Marco Polo to explore the splendor of China. Thus, travel has not only liberated people from narrow-mindedness, prejudice, and superstition, but it has also increased the appetite of scholars to understand the famous civilizations of the world.
“Travelling is almost like talking with men of other centuries.” Rene, Descartes on Method
In olden days, only a few people could afford to travel abroad. The travelers had to face great difficulties of conveyance and communication. There were no proper safety measures for the travelers. Travelling used to be very costly and risky. But people had to travel for various purposes, namely to earn their livelihood, to see their relatives, to promote trade, to seek knowledge and to learn some new skill, etc. But, in modern times, traveling has also become a pleasure-seeking activity. Besides, there are a lot of people who travel for the sake of adventure to satisfy their sense of curiosity. In certain countries, travelling is regarded as an essential part of education. Today, highspeed sources of transportation have made travelling very easy. Aeroplanes, buses, cars, coaches, trains ships, etc. are there to realize the dreams of the travellers.
“One of the pleasant things in the world is going on a journey.” William Hazlitt, On Going a Journey
Travel surely educates people by broadening their outlook. The English men were so convinced of the importance of travelling that the visit of the European continent became a compulsory part of their education. Even now, most English men flock in every summer to European countries to feast their eyes on the beauties of art galleries and Eiffel Tower at Paris, the gladiatorial at Rome, Gothic Temples of Italy and boating in Venice. Travels and tours by young people and students have brilliantly played the very important role in cross-fertilizing the cultures of different nations across the globe.
“He that travels much knows much.” Thomas
Fuller Life is an extremely tough venture, but most of what we learn from books is theoretical. So we need to have practical knowledge to solve the problem of this physical world. The struggle of life demands practical approach. And practical knowledge can only be obtained from direct contact with the outside world. Different situations call for different actions and different methods. So man keeps on learning new things which are not described in books. One may doubt bookish knowledge, but travel confirms and supplements each and everything which we read in books. One may have passed a lot of exams, but one can hardly be called a learned man without the wide experience of traveling.
“To travel hopefully is better than to arrive.” Robert Stevenson
A well-traveled person does not need to cram geographical and historical facts. His visits to historical places like Panipat and Waterloo will surely give a welcome boost to his knowledge of history. The ancient monuments and buildings bring back the living memories of the people and civilizations which have disappeared from the face of the earth long ago. But for all this, a person should have very keen and witty observation. Only a strong and acute observation power can help the person extend his knowledge and improve his mental outlook. On the contrary, a person who lacks observation power will not be benefited from any travel however long and interesting it may be.
“He who never leaves his country is full of prejudices.” Carlo
“The woods are lovely, dark and deep,
But I have promises to keep,
And miles to go before Isleep,” Robert Frost, “Stopping by Woods On a Snowy Evening
Advantages of Travelling
If somebody wants to profit most from the travels, he is well advised to get a map or a tour-guide of the place he is going to visit. This will help the tourist a lot make the best of his time by visiting all the important places. A traveler should taste the local food of the place he is visiting. He should try to know the customs and orientations of the people. He should make brief notes while visiting monuments and historical places. It is advisable for every traveler to keep a diary during the travel.
Briefly, the advantages of travel are indeed numerous. It invariably strengthens trade relations. It actively promotes peace and brotherhood among the peoples of different nations. It surely provides man with health, happiness, and information. Travelling greatly enlarges the cultural and intellectual horizons provided it is planned intelligently and conducted properly.
“I never travel without my diary. One should always have something sensational to read in the train.” Oscar Wilde, The Importance of Being Earnest.