Have you ever seen a herd of wild horses running from one field to another? Well, it is nothing compared to a group of wild tourists with photo cameras in Louvre.
I have traveled both ways. Believe me, both of them have some benefits. You just need to find it for yourself.
I started my own book of travels with the simple group tour, with a good-looking young guide, and the bus full of tourists. The very next year, I took my bag and opened the foreign country alone.
Of course, that would be a one big lie if I will tell you that I was completely alone. God no, the company of chatty people always knew how to find me. So even in the plane, the perfect place without entrance and no way for escape — old ladies, young ladies, and well, ladies usually shared their deep secrets with me.
Ok, let’s skip the long introduction.
The group-tour advantages:
- You don’t have to worry about a thing. Sit down in your spot, enjoy the view from the window – if you are lucky enough to catch the best seat, and wait until the driver will do his job.
- You will receive tons of information about the destination place from the guide. If the tourist agency is generous enough you can also receive some cute postcard and time-table, and also a paper with few phrases in foreign language that you can use while you run away from your group, searching for something deep and authentic.
- You don’t have to have a deal with foreign languages. Once in Prague I asked a guy from McDonald’s to tell me the current time. You can imagine my surprise when he gave me his wallet. I was, and hope still, is a good girl, so I didn’t use the situation. However, the situation was against me in France; in a small and very lovely town called Trouville that I love with all my heart (and secretly want to go back there some day, to finish one of my books). I just wanted to try the first macaroon in my life. However, the old pretty lady in the small café with plenty of macaroons there, knew only French. I had to point with my finger to show her what I want and I definitely will not tell you how I ordered espresso too.
- Time saver. Yep, such trips are the best option for busy people with limited time and a great wish to see everything! During the ride you can do whatever you want. You can watch an interesting movie that guides chose for you or listen to the music in your head phones. As for me, I finished a book, passed a few exams in my online courses and even wrote several essays for it. Oh, and you can have all the time of the world for thinking about your bad behavior in the past and maybe in the future, make some important decisions or just stare out the window.
- You will never feel alone. If you are afraid to go to the trip alone, take a bus tour. You will receive 30-40 noisy, sometimes funny friends that will be following by your side. Oh, and you will have a partner to share the room. In the case you afraid to sleep alone in the dark, like I am. What? Who said that? I am not crazy… I just have very rich imagination.
Flaws of the group tour:
- The time that you will spend in the bus can become a real pain in the ass… literally. If you are not a young, well-trained and active person, you can feel pains in your back after a few days of the ride. It will be hard to change the position in the bus.
- You will never be alone. You will be in a group even in the toilet. People will follow you wherever you want to go. If you think that I am that person who doesn’t like Paris, just because I was alone in the city of love…. Boo-hoo, I don’t care about this romantic nonsense till I have my baguette and chocolate cake.
- Prepare to run everywhere. Your time will be under your guide’s control. I was in a Louvre just during two hours, running after the very active French woman who wanted to show us as many paintings as it was possible during two hours. Her choice of paintings was pretty strange, and I even have not seen the basement with mummies that I wanted to for so long. In Vienna I had to choose between seeing a Holy Lance with the group or take my time to see Hieronymus Bosch’s amazing paintings. As every historian I wanted to feel myself in Indiana Jones even for a few hours, but as a reasonable person I knew that the Holy Lance can be in almost every capital in the world, so I’ve chosen Bosch.
- Your group can be full of intelligent smart people with sweet candies and souvenirs for you… but, in reality you can smell stinky sausages or nail polish during the whole trip. Yep, some people just don’t know that the smell from nail polish can cost you a headache.
You must choose your own way of traveling. In both variants you will receive plenty of cool memories. Choose the best one, and go, open yourself to the whole world.
Philosopher, writer, hitchhicker