Is there really a difference between traveling and vacationing?
A few nights ago, while sitting on the balcony of our luxurious suite in the Riviera Maya, we sipped on a couple of cold cervezas and soaked up our tropical surroundings.
This trip to Mexico is different from previous travel experiences, which sparked a conversation about the difference between traveling and vacationing.
There was a time, not so long ago, when our travel style was much more adventurous. A time when the excitement of getting lost was as much a part of the travel experience as visiting the top attractions. Our days were filled exploring the city or dusty town, scouting the streets for interesting restaurants and trying to understand its transportation systems.
The adventure was in the unknown; and we preferred it that way.
After spending the better part of the day bouncing from beach lounger to pool bar to all-you-can-eat buffet, I couldn’t help but feel like this trip was missing something. It lacked spontaneity and authenticity.
Now, let’s be perfectly clear. We love the Mayan Riviera and we thoroughly enjoy the all inclusive experience, especially now that we travel with an active one year old. We like turning off our brains and not having to think. We like it when our biggest decision for the day is beach or pool.
But our evening conversation continued with a few more thoughts…
If you board an airplane, exchange currency, get your passport stamped and enter a country that speaks a different language, surely that’s traveling… isn’t it?
But what if you are instantly whisked away in a private vehicle, with a driver that speaks English and accepts all major credit cards, and dropped at a luxurious resort (like this one) that is built specifically for you, the tourist. What if you never intend to leave the comfortable resort and simply enjoy the pampering and entertainment. Does that still count as traveling?
One of us feels that the all-inclusive experience is most definitely still traveling, while the other feels that it’s more like vacationing… not traveling.
What do you think?
Is staying at an all-inclusive resort still traveling?