Why I Travel


I have been traveling for quite some time now. I have always loved being on the roads, at different places, around different people. Travel for me has been more than just traveling. I always see it as an extension to the journey of life. Not just that, with time I realized that it doesn’t always deliver what it promises – we either end up discovering ways to get through or end up accepting and go with the flow.

Photo of Why I Travel 1/1 by shilpi siwach

My thought process was limited but then something happened.

I came across this article from NY times. According to the author, Ilan Stavans, professor of Literature at Amherst College – “We have turned travel into something ordinary, deprived it of allegorical grandeur… whatever pushes us to travel, it is no longer the oracle, the pilgrimage or the gods. It is compulsive to be elsewhere, anywhere but here”

This got me thinking, I knew this wasn’t my intrinsic need for escape – so the question remained with me – why do I want to travel?

My head was bombarded with thoughts. Do I travel to lose myself; to open my heart and mind; to gain knowledge; to de-stress; to escape my mother’s “get married” conversations; to utilize my 45 yearly leaves; to shake up my complacencies; to be with myself for sometime; to surround myself with beauty; so re-configure my innocent self; to believe there is no foreign land; in search of answers; to find myself; in search of soul mate; in search of love; to experience adventure; to bypass the society norms; to dissipate problems; to make new friends; for an adrenaline rush; to run away from the life I sometimes don’t understand; to be happy; to inspire people; or for the love of travel?

I kept thinking and realized I travel to overcome the biggest fear of my life “I will never know everything“. I have this fear that I will die without knowing or seeing every inch of this world – therefore, I travel!

Like Camus says “what gives value to travel is fear”. Yes there is always a deeper meaning to what you do.