Travel: the Most Experiential Form of Learning
“The World is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page.” — St. Augustine
“Perhaps travel cannot prevent bigotry, but by demonstrating that all peoples cry, laugh, eat, worry, and die, it can introduce the idea that if we try and understand each other, we may even become friends.” — Maya Angelou
“Travelling through the world produces a marvelous clarity in the judgement of men. We are all of us confined and enclosed within ourselves, and see no farther than the end of our nose. This great world is a mirror where we must see ourselves in order to know ourselves. There are so many different tempers, so many different points of view, judgments, opinions, laws and customs to teach us to judge wisely on our own, and to teach our judgement to recognize its imperfection and natural weakness.” — Michel Eyquem de Montaigne
Why those in in the travel and tourism industry are also public educators
I spent 32 years as a high school teacher in the public education system. During that time, I learned to learn. That may sound like a contradiction, but as I used to tell my students, “I am the orchestra leader; you are the orchestra. Without you I am just some fool up here flailing about.”
In a later incarnation as a travel journalist, I discovered many individuals in the global travel and tourism industry who — without their realizing it — are also public educators with similar transferrable skills.
At its very best, the travel and tourism industry educates the general public to the universal concepts, issues, and experiences of human society.
As de Montaigne suggests above, in-depth travel experiences take us outside our ethnocentric selves — and beyond.
Travel is an exploration of humanity.