How to be a Tourist in Your Own City

When you’re a student, taking a vacation can be a difficult thing to do. Between school work, tight budgets and all of the other commitments you have; going away can be a logistics nightmare. However, staying at home can be just as much of a great vacation as going away, so here are a few ideas of how to embrace your inner tourist in your own city:

Visit some of the local hostels or hotels and pick up a bunch of the tourist brochures 

If you go into the lobby of almost any hostel or hotel you can usually find a kiosk which has brochures things to do around the area, so this is a great place to a few ideas. There is usually a wide range of activities and things to do in these brochures and if you’re lucky there are even sometimes discount coupons in them.

Take your camera with you

You probably know all the cheesy tourist spots in town - the spots where people are always taking pictures and they are probably places you try to avoid but why not embrace your inner tourist and take that cheesy picture? Not only can it be fun to take some silly pictures with your friends and give you some new options for Instagram pictures but they will be great to look back on years down the road, especially if you are no longer living in that city.

Take a historical tour

You probably know most, if not all, of the historical places in your town but do you really know their history? Do you know all of the stories and the myths around it? Or why it became such an iconic sight? Historical tours are not only a great way to learn more about your town and its history, but they are also a great way to fill an afternoon.

Go to a local theatre show or sports game

These are usually activities that we save for when we go away but going to a local theatre show or sports game is a great way to get into the spirit of your city and give you an appreciation of the talent that can be found there. Plus when you are living in the city itself, you have a bit more flexibility on when you can go - so try going to a show or game during the day, as they tend to be a bit cheaper than evening ones.

Take a different form of travel

If you usually take the bus, then try taking the tram, or vice versa, to get to where you are going. The change of scenery can be great and it can show you parts of the city that you don’t usually see. When you’re a local, you tend to stick to the same area and go to places you know, but when we’re a tourist in a new city we tend to wander everywhere because we want to see as much as we can. So try adopting that adventurous tourist attitude next time you venture out! Just hopping on a random bus or tram can be the perfect way to start a mini adventure and it’s a way to keep these excursions to a relatively low cost. 

Grab a meal at the touristy restaurants in town

When you've lived in a town for a long time, most of us tend to shy away from going to the restaurants downtown. They're usually a bit out of the way, without much parking and crowded, but this can be a great way to change up the normal routine. Have a look online for the top restaurants in your town and see where that leads you. If you're more of a try-your-luck person, go for a stroll away from the main areas you usually go and see what restaurants you find. 

Edited by: Sarah Holmes