An adventurous lifestyle for the travel obsessed

27 realisations on what travel is really about

27 realisations on what travel is really about

It actually feels like I’ve been 27 for a while.

I can’t remember why I started thinking that I was already 27 but it’s been that way for at least 6 months.

Maybe it’s easier to overcome the hurdle if I’ve prepared myself for it emotionally (mental note: Do this when I’m about to turn 30 so the number isn’t so dramatic).

And tomorrow, as the annual celebration of my birth comes around, as does an array of thoughts and reflections on my past 27 years, including the influences that travel has had on my life so far.

When I asked myself the question of what travel has meant to me, the realisations I had were quite different to what I’d originally thought they might be.

So here’s what travel is really about – through the eyes of a twenty something.

27 realisations on what travel is really about

Hiking in Tasman National Park, Australia


The destination doesn’t really matter. It’s all about the stories we collect along the way.

2. Travel is complicated

Because there’s no easy way to go about it. It will always take both time and effort.

3. Travel is cheap

Because we can take off and not worry about paying for the exorbitant life set out for us.

4. Travel is expensive

Because we have no money to spend in the first place.

Phi Phi 5

Sailing to Koh Phi Phi, Thailand

5. Travel is confusing

Because we throw ourselves into a world previously unknown to us, and we have no idea what we’re doing.

6. Travel is dirty

As the luxuries of home are not always within reach.


Because we can’t always do it the way we want to. Things go wrong, and we have to deal with it.


Because we know our plans will often fall through.

Cape Hauy, Tasmania

Hiking in Tasman National Park, Australia

9. Travel is scary

As we’re unsure of what lies ahead.


We have no flippin’ idea where it will take us, and that’s pretty damn exciting.


Because once we discover we can make it in a country without speaking the language, we know we can achieve anything.

12. Travel is about the people we meet

And the friends we make, who are not just from any one country but are scattered all over the globe.

27 realisations on what travel is really about

The Milky Way, as seen from Tasmania, Australia


Because we get exposed to different perspectives of the world we grew up in.

14. Travel is about appreciation

When we notice all the little things this world has to offer.

15. Travel is the confidence we acquire

In the achievements we make, becoming the person we actually want to be.

16. Travel is about getting out of our comfort zone

By doing millions of things we’ve never done before.

Warsaw, Poland

Warsaw, Poland

17. Travel is a way to learn

What we may not have learned if we’d stayed at home.

18. Travel is a way to be more accepting

And realise that there is no place for narrow-mindedness in this world.

19. Travel is about pursing our dreams

And confidently ignoring what society is telling us we should do.

20. Travel is about exploring

By discovering the intricacies of other countries and appreciating places other than our hometown.

Hobart, Tasmania

Derwent River, Tasmania, Australia

21. Travel is about keeping us on our feet

By ensuring our lives don’t get too stagnant.

22. Travel is about making memories

And gifting ourselves with something to reminisce.

23. Travel is about discovering value in experiences

And realising that happiness doesn’t have to be created with material possessions.

Salzburg 4

Salzburg, Austria


And most of the time we wish that it could go on for longer.


And no matter how much we do it, we’ll always be left wanting more.

26. Travel is always in the back of our minds.

It’s the only thing that keeps us sane, on the days we wish we were somewhere else.

27. Travel is everything

And there’s no end in sight. A life without travel, would hardly seem like a life at all.

What does travel really mean to you? Share your thoughts with us in the comments!

20 Responses to “27 realisations on what travel is really about”

  1. Erika

    Great list! And happy birthday! I started unconsciously referring to myself as 30 about 6 months before I turned 30, too. I’m not sure whether it helped. It just made me feel weird for the 6 months leading up to it, when I would realize my mistake, but now that I’m actually 30, I’m fine with it. 🙂

  2. Sarah

    Great list, simple and true. Can’t wait to see what it looks like at 40! =)

    • Ashlea Wheeler

      I’m sure it would change significantly – no doubt I’ll have very different priorities then 😛 Thanks Sarah!

  3. Jen

    Good strategy on thinking yourself as the age in advance – I did that too and had to keep re-questioning if I really turned 27 this year too (I think I was expecting to be 28, yay!). Awesome list, will be neat for you to look back on in a few years for another birthday of travels! I know my list of things has changed drastically! 🙂 Happy birthday!!

    • Ashlea Wheeler

      It’s like getting a BONUS year of your life! I imagine the list would be very different in a few years. Thanks Jen 😀

    • Ashlea Wheeler

      So glad you can relate, Allison! The character-building is almost entirely what travel is about 😀 Thank you!

  4. Alex Conomos

    My big one is – travel is delicious! It’s the exciting and unusual tastes I encounter along the way that make travel so magical for me. Great list and happy birthday!

  5. Julia

    I would say that I have without a doubt learned the most through my travels. And you’re right, it is frustrating! It’s not fun feeling hot, tired, slightly sick and overwhelmed by the new culture around you when all you are thinking is how much you should be enjoying it, but it’s all a part of the journey. And those days end up being the ones that we learn from 🙂


    • Ashlea Wheeler

      Absolutely – the frustration is all part of the journey. Without it, we might not appreciate the things that go smoothly! Thanks Julia!


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