College is one of the most important times of our lives. There's studying, gaining experience in your field, the pressure of finding the right person, balancing a social life, and trying to stand out amongst your competition. Between juggling all of those different roles, you're probably asking you're supposed to find time for a vacation. But everyone needs a break sometimes, so here are a few reasons why every college student should go on a vacation to keep their sanity.
Adventure is out there
Get out of your comfort zone and experience what the world has to offer. Go zip lining in Alaska, party the night away in Mykonos, eat your way through pizza in all of Italy (calories don't count on vacation), rent a hotel on the beach with friends, or visit every Disney park in the country. There are so many things to experience, so go on and explore the world around you. It's time to reward yourself for all your hard work.
Follow your arrow
Yes, vacations are supposed to be fun and a chance to make memories. However, sometimes you need a vacation to clear your mind. Maybe you're experiencing a breakup, drama back home, or you're unsure of who you are. Sometimes we need to take a step back, get rid of any distractions, and just breathe. Focus on what's really important and enjoy yourself as you wind down.
Learn something new
Traveling can be the perfect time to initiate some great new habits. Want to know how people around the world can indulge in such plentiful meals, but still be healthy? In a few words, they walk instead of using a car to get from point A to B. People around the world simply walk more than Americans.
Did you know that in Spain all businesses close for at least an hour midday? This is called a Siesta. So if that rose gold bracelet is eyeing you from the store window, you better snatch that little beauty before the clock strikes. Sometimes you just need a little bit of a break to reset yourself to finish the day. Besides, who actually has time to eat a decent meal in the measly 30 minutes or an hour allotted by most American jobs?
In short, the world is a culturally diverse place. From differing ideas about how important it is to take the time to relax and enjoy your midday meal to everyday healthy habits that we just don't see in America, you'll be suprised to see what habits you can pick up from travelling to new places. Don't just read about culture differences, go experience them!
Enhance your tastebuds
After seeing all the breathtaking sights in Paris (the Eiffel tower is a beauty to behold in real life, especially lit up at night) why not try French macarons? After all, food is the great unifier for people around the world, and every culture has its own distinct ways of chowing down. So next time you're strolling the streets of a new city and haven't had lunch yet, don't go for the familiar golden arches or another highly recognized chain. For a truly authentic experience, hit up a street vendor or duck into a mom and pop style local restaurant. You'll be glad you did!
If you really want to be adventurous, try something you've never even heard of, like Dadar Gulung, a popular dessert in Indonesia that is often described as a coconut pancake, but that also has a mysterious (not to mention gorgeous) green hue. Or take a weekend trip to the Florida Keys and try Chocolate Covered Key Lime Pie on a stick as you walk along the beach.
A different outlook on life
When you finally reach your destination, take a deep breath and look at the local people around you. How are people around you acting? Are they laughing with a group of friends, are they having dessert after every meal, are people sipping Limoncello as opposed to gulping shots of Tequila? Maybe they're eating a burger with a knife and fork or a salad with chopsticks.
Go out and see how other parts of the world live (and eat) and bring some of that culture back with you. It can expand your horizons and help you see your own world in a new light. After all, sometimes you just need a reminder that the world is much, much bigger than that organic chemistry exam you failed last week.
Enhance your cooking skills
Sometimes minestrone soup can taste better in Italy than it does in America, or you can find a better Boston cream pie in California than you can in Boston. Everything (even universal ingredients or recipes) will inevitably be prepared differently around the world. For instance, Italian pasta recipes often use olive oil (and lot's of it), whereas a Chinese noodle recipe would call for Sesame oil. Same basic structure, same type of ingredient, but a totally different flavor profile.
Add your own zing
Use exotic ingredients and incorporate them into your own go-to recipes. Tweak grandma's casserole with some skills you picked up while taking a cooking class in Paris. Find an authentic market and slice up some fresh parmesan into your dish and ditch the powdered version you got on sale Target. It's way more authentic to use real ingredients, and you'll be surprised at how much your dishes can improve if you use ingredients and skills you picked up from travelling to new places.
We all need a vacation to remind ourselves to breath and to be inspired. Studies suggest that many people are even more productive after taking a few days to a week to reset. Now, go book that flight or start your road trip playlist and see what you find!