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Do you like to return to the scenes of your crimes OR explore new worlds?

Do you like to return to the scenes of your crimes OR explore new worlds?

Dec 7th, 2000, 08:09 PM
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Do you like to return to the scenes of your crimes OR explore new worlds?

Been somewhere and fallen in love with the place? Do you then HAVE to return to revel in the glory again? Or do you go back to get it all right the second time? Do you like second or third time familiarity when travelling abroad?

Or once you've seen Paris, Amsterdam, Vienna or those special tiny German villages would you rather move on to see all the other wonderful places on the planet? So, my question is: do you go back to the same places or do you move on to cover more ground (including places beyond Europe)?
Dec 7th, 2000, 08:38 PM
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I love to go back to old places but stay in new areas there, and I love to go to new places. But as an entrenched francophile, it's Europe for me (except maybe Tahiti or Quebec).
Dec 8th, 2000, 04:40 AM
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I love to explore new places and see new things. After seeing many of these they become a "been there done that" item. Now, don't get me wrong. I love every minute of new places, but many of them are of a one shot nature. For example, we just returned from a multiple day wandering of Western France, including Normandy, Brittany, and the Loire valley. Loved every minute of it and saw some awe inspiring things, such as the D-Day beaches, the American cemetery, Mont St Michel, etc. However, I would not make a special effort to go back again, having seen it now, but it was worth every minute spent.

If you are talking about London or Paris or Brugges, though, that is another matter. I have (and will continue to do do) returned many, many times. They are wonderful places and I can never get enough of them. I also agree with Sue above regarding Quebec and for that matter Canada in general.

Dec 8th, 2000, 06:31 AM
Bob Brown
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When I find a place that fulfils my expectations, I like to return because I know I will not be disappointed. But, seeking new areas is also fun. Last year I combined some of both, and we had a very good trip as a result.

A city like Paris seems to reveal always new facets if you stay overnight in a slightly different location and find new streets and parks to explore. So it is old and new at the same time. Except for Musee d'Orsay, we visited places we did not have time for last year. By taking different streets to go to new places, we saw Paris from a different perspective.
The same was true of the Berner Oberland. We rented the same apartment because of our rapport with the owner, but most of our wanderings were over new paths. Then it was on to Salzburg and Vienna for a totally new experience.
Dec 8th, 2000, 07:16 AM
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Mixed feelings for me. I like to see new places, but I also like to return to favorite places with companions who have not been there. It's fun to share in their appreciation of a place I really like.

Sometimes this works, and sometimes it does not. On my second trip to Italy, I really enjoyed showing my husband around, and he fell in love with it. But on my third trip, my traveling companions DID NOT LIKE ROME AT ALL. They despised it to the point of just skipping major sights. They declined to visit St. Peters. The Forum. The Colisseum. So that was intensely frustrating for me because I felt like they never gave the city a chance.

I guess I had more emotionally invested in whether they enjoyed Rome as much as I do. Maybe future trips will be to new places so I won't have any more invested than they do.
Dec 8th, 2000, 07:34 AM
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Generally we favor returning to old favorites. In part because we've found them enjoyable, in part because one makes an 'investment' in one's early trips in learning the ins and outs of visting that country to city.

Depends on the place, of course. Our favorite city is Rome. It's obviously a city of great interest ... despite more than two dozen visits we still have experiences on our to-do list that we've not gotten too. (London and Paris would two of many other such examples for others, with a rich wealth of opportunities for visitors). And for the last 10 or 15 years, we feel we know Rome well enough to feel as, or more, comfortable there than at home.

The Swiss Berner Oberland has the same attraction for us on the 'wonders of nature' side. It's hauntingly beautiful and one hardly tires of looking at the mountains. But then the country is so ideal for the tourist that whether in the mountains or elsewhere in the country we still have lots of things yet to do after perhaps a dozen or more visits.

We have visited other spots ... German villages, London, Paris and more. But, again, we've spent a lot of time learning about the places we've visited. Our time on trips is so short. By going back to the same spots, which in any event we love, we don't waste time orienting ourselves.

Constantly visiting new places must be a fun way to travel too. Be we often wonder how much time is lost on the first ... and second and third and fourth ... visits just learning about the place's history, the people, the bus schedule, the customs ....

Either way it's done, travel is pretty wonderful and we feel fortunate to have been able to do so much of it.

Dec 8th, 2000, 09:11 AM
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There are several places I can go to again and again, Paris, London, Dublin, Venice.... then there are places that I've been there, don't need to do that again. After going to Paris quite a few times, now it is starting to feel like an exciting old friend, one who's life is changing all the time, and who is always fun to hang out with because it's always different. I usually like to take one trip to a place I have never been, then I start to crave my favorite places so I go back to my favorites on the next trip. After that I need something different so I break new ground, then I want to ride the London tube..... and so on.
Dec 8th, 2000, 09:22 AM
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50/50... I can't seem to get out of going to Paris every year at least once, and I love it more as it becomes more and more familiar. I'm planning a return to Venice for New Year's this year because I simply didn't get enough of it last year. But I still have an enormous list of places I want to visit for the first time. Best solution is get a job that requires you to travel and kill 2 birds with 1 stone!
Dec 8th, 2000, 11:25 AM
Neal Sanders
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Beenthere, you hit a dilemma that I suspect affects all travelers. In my own jaundiced view, everyone ought to take at least two vacations a year: one to a familiar place where they can savor the pleasures of knowing where to go when they get there, and one to a place that is utterly foreign.

There is so much of the world to see that the lure of the unknown - the land not yet stamped in your passport or imbedded in your mental map - is always strong. But I think that just checking off cities or countries is an exercise for those why are very new to travel. There is a thrill to stepping off the train platform at Victoria Station or the baggage claim at Narita and knowing through experience that there’s a no-fee ATM on the other side of that wall. You go through a lot of pain the first time you visit somewhere, whether it’s Chicago or Cairo. It’s good to be able to put that hard-earned knowledge to use.

I have had the pleasure of getting to know a number of places around the world well enough that I need no map or guidebook while there. I cherish my return to those places; they have become comfortable. And while I may try new hotels and restaurants, I am always returning as someone who has confidence that the river is just on the other side of those buildings, and you make a right turn to get to the museum. And so I believe that every year, every traveler ought to journey to a familiar destination.

But I also believe fervently that every traveler has to be challenged. That every year he or she has to be plunked down into the middle of a place where the signs make no sense, the cars are on the wrong side of the road, and your native tongue is not the one you hear around you in the hotel lobby (while New York fits this description, it is not what I had in mind). When I find myself sounding out street signs or stumbling through unfamiliar foods on menus, I know my mind is being stretched. It is a good feeling, and one I actually look forward to.

Unfortunately, we can’t all take two or three vacations each year. There are obligations that cannot be ignored: parents and relatives to visit, weddings to attend. These chew up the available days as much as do finances. But over time these obligations become fewer and the opportunity to tack a few days onto a business trip becomes a reality.

I have been a serious traveler for more than three decades and I still feel a thrill in planning that next trip, getting on a plane, or thumbing through my passport. And every year I look forward to both – as you put it so well, “returning to the scene of the crime,” and finding the pleasure of the unfamiliar.
Dec 8th, 2000, 11:45 AM
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Some of my friends find my habit of going to just one city for 10 days rather odd - I prefer it because it allows me to "plug in" - to catch up with myself from the stress of traveling. It also allows me to know when I find a place that I want to return to. This year I went to Budepest and Barcelona. Both are wonderful cities but I'm going back to Budapest again next spring because I feel drawn back to it (I've even started taking Hungarian lessons). I differ between trip and vacation. For me, a vacation is a time to rejuvinate, a trip is more active. Budapest was more a vacation than a trip for me. Next spring it's Rome (with a friend) and Budapest (by myself), maybe even back to back. I agree with Neal - travellers need to challenge themselves - to place themselves in a unfamilar environment.
Dec 8th, 2000, 12:28 PM
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Nicely put, Mr. Sanders. I, too, like the experience of arriving someplace that I know like the back of my proverbial hand; it gives me a chance to explore the unknown of the known (re my recent 5 weeks in Paris). At the same time, I like to put myself in (relatively safe) harm's way - like riding camels into the Sahara Desert.

We usually make a long-weekend trip in February to London or Paris - familiarity means efficiency for a short stay. Sometimes it's nice to incorporate a familiar with an unfamiliar, like 3 days in Paris and 10 days in the Pyrenees.
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