14 travel quotes that inspire Greedy travelers
1. “A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step” – Lao Tzu (ancient Chinese philosopher, the founder of Taoism)
People who do not travel abroad can give you a long list of reasons: crime, terrorism, fear of flying, lack of money, lack of time, lack of interest in other countries.
Probably, behind all these reasons is the fear of the unknown. Well, if you do not take that first step, how will you learn anything, how will you expand your horizons, how will you enrich your life?
Try to visit the nearest country. For the citizens of the United States, it could be a trip to Canada or Mexico. Very likely, after this first trip (“single step“), you will want to visit more countries.
You can find thousands of exciting quotes about traveling.
Here is our personal interpretation of 14 quotes that inspire the Greedy Travelers.
2. “Because in the end, you won’t remember the time you spent working in the office or mowing your lawn.
Climb that goddamn mountain.”
– Jack Kerouac (American novelist and poet)
My husband remembers mowing the lawn in our backyard in Los Angeles. But this is not the memory he treasures. What we both treasure is the memory of our many trips far and wide. We did climb lots of mountains. We did see many wonders the world offers. These are the memories we want to keep and cherish.
3. “Better to see something once
than hear about it a thousand times.”
We have read about the mysterious Machu Picchu and the beauty of the ancient buildings there. Now, seeing the pictures of Machu Picchu, we recall our astonishment at the moment of seeing that world-famous monument for the first time.
We remember the smell of wet green grass around the centuries-old temples. And it is impossible to forget the sight of white and brown llamas grazing around the remains of the temples.
4. “Collect Moments, Not Things.”
The numerous moments from our travels overfill our memories. Sometimes we can not even remember where did we see that cobblestone street, that old square with a clock tower, those exotic flowers next to the river.
What we do remember is that we walked on that bumpy cobblestone street, checked the time on that clock tower, smelled the fragrance of those flowers.
5. “Don’t listen to what they say. Go see.”
Great advice! Maybe you have heard that bears are roaming the streets of Moscow. Go, and see that it is not so. Moscow has amazing architecture, rich culture, many beautiful parks, nicely dressed, and friendly people.
To see bears, you should go to the cities and towns in Alaska, where the wildlife sightings are almost a daily occurrence.
If someone said that India is a poverty-stricken country, go and see. Yes, you will observe lots of poor people living on the streets. However, you also will see incredible ancient temples, colorful women’s clothing, will learn about their religion and culture, taste their exotic food.
6. “I haven’t been everywhere, but it’s on my list.”
– Susan Sontag (American writer)
The world map. Countries we visited are in red.
We do not know how many countries Susan Sontag has been to, but this quote is about us. We’ve been to 74 countries. It is a lot, but we feel that we, greedy travelers, want to visit many more. Besides, there are countries that we can not wait to visit again.
7. “I travel not to go anywhere but to go.
I travel for travel’s sake. The great affair is to move.”
– Robert Louis Stevenson (Scottish novelist and travel writer)
When we hear the word travel, we get the urge to go. Where? Anywhere. Almost any place in the world will be exciting for us to visit. Just the process of deciding where to go, planning the trip, packing, energizes us and makes us happy. We do travel for travel’s sake.
Of course, we travel in a much easier way than Robert Louis Stevenson did so many years ago. We don’t have to cross the ocean on a small ship; we don’t have to ride a horse. Cruiseships, planes, trains, busses, taxis take us wherever we want to go.
8. “If you reject the food, ignore the customs,
fear the religion, and avoid the people,
you might better stay at home.”
– James Michener (American writer)
Don’t even start us on rejecting the food. We love to try the dishes with unusual flavors and ingredients. In Ecuador, we enjoyed grilled palm beetle larvae. In Japan, we ate seaweed, fermented beans, and noodle soup for breakfast. In Thailand, we tried a salad made with tiny, live, jumping shrimp (still can not believe we did it). In Vietnam, we took a sip of spirit from the bottle with a snake inside.
We do our best to learn about the culture and customs of the country we plan to visit. For example, getting ready for a trip to Dubai, we made sure to bring the clothing that is appropriate to wear in the Muslim country.
9. “Once a year, go someplace you’ve never been before.”
– Dalai Lama
This is our motto as well. Now, since we’ve been to 74 countries, you can easily figure out that we went to more than one new country per year.
We will never forget our first trip to three Asian countries – Singapore, Thailand, and Hong Kong. This trip helped us to appreciate the difference in culture, architecture, and food as we moved from Singapore to Thailand to Hong Kong. This adventure also made us want to see more of other Asian countries.
10. “The gladdest moment in human life, me thinks, is a departure into unknown lands.”
– Sir Richard Burton
Oh, the departure! Just preparing for it is a joy, not a hassle for us. Many thoughts are swirling in our heads – what are we going to see, will we like the sights, the smells, the tastes of everything that is so foreign to us?
Will we have time to see everything? We get excited when we go to the country which we already visited before. But we get ecstatic getting ready to go to a completely unknown part of the world.
For us, the unknown lands to see would be such countries as Laos, South Korea, Iceland, Greenland.
11. “The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes”
– Marcel Proust.
Living in Florida for over twenty years, we don’t get tired of discovering new beaches and shorelines. The sand dunes in South Florida are different from the sand dunes in the Panhandle. The color of water in the Atlantic is different from color in the Gulf of Mexico.
Sometimes, instead of using the interstates to cross Florida from East to West we use small country roads. We never notice anything new on the interstates but we always see something new on these country roads. When we travel abroad our “new eyes” are always ready to feast on the people’s faces, ancient sites, temples, churches, trees, and wildlife.
12. “Travel is the only thing you buy that makes you richer”
We are definitely not rich people, but we feel that we have a rich life because of our experiences. When we think of the past trips we even wonder: how did we do it, how did we find the time and money, how did we dare to go?
The more we travel, the more we want to travel. The more we saw, the more we want to see. We have the roof over our heads, two cars to take us around, what other material things do we need? With travel it is different – we want to continue enriching our lives through adventures abroad.
13. “Travel isn’t always pretty. It isn’t always comfortable.
But that’s okay. The journey changes you…
It leaves marks on your memory, on your consciousness,
on your heart, and on your body. ”
– Anthony Bourdain
We agree that travel isn’t always pretty. While traveling so extensively, we had our share of uncomfortable experiences on the road.
Traveling through rural areas in France, we couldn’t find a hotel for the night. It was the middle of July, the height of tourist season, and all small country inns were full. We ended up sleeping in our small economy car in the middle of nowhere.
Our young daughter had a good night sleep in the back seat – she was still small enough to stretch out in the back. Her poor parents had to sleep in the front seats.
Before dawn, we were awakened by a loud mooing. We looked out the fogged up windows – our car was in the middle of the cow pasture!
After an hour of driving through the sleeping villages, we stopped for breakfast. The tiny café had hot croissants and strong coffee. Revived, our small family was on the way to the next adventure!
14. “Traveling – it leaves you speechless,
then turns you into a storyteller.” – Ibn Battuta
While traveling, we were left speechless more than once.
Looking at Taj Mahal from the distance and then from a few yards away is very different than seeing it in the tourist brochures.
While staring at the terracotta warriors in Xi’an, China, we tried to understand why it was so quiet in this enormous building filled with crowds of tourists. The lower level of that incredible exhibition contained numerous rows of terracotta soldiers and horses.
Machu Picchu was as beautiful and impressive as on pictures we admired before the trip to Peru. However, the fresh mountain air, the sheer size of the whole complex, and the whole atmosphere of this mystical place was something that needed to be seen and felt in person.
The Great Wall of China is another example. We climbed it twice – first in 2003 and again in 2013. The wall goes over the mountains and disappears in the foggy distance. The steps which looked even and low in the books were uneven and rough in reality. It was easy to imagine how formidable this wall might have seemed to the enemies from the north.