When it comes to holiday road trip destinations, the big cities are usually up there on the list: Los Angeles, New York City, Las Vegas, or San Francisco. These all offer unique experiences, but can cost quite a bit.
If you’ve been living in the city your entire life, it’s a good idea to take a breather from life in the fast lane every now and then. Instead of booking a flight to Hollywood, why don’t you try taking a trip to a small, charming destination? While they may not have as many fancy bars, celebrities, towers, or skyscrapers, small towns like Spring Hill, Kansas, have the unique restaurants, landmarks, attractions, and local personalities that would make for a great trip.
If you’re ready to backpack through Little Town, U.S.A., here are some things you can do to make your small-town trip a great one:
Talk to the locals
Sure, you may find articles about lists of things to do in a small town online, but the best way to know where to go, what to eat, or what to do is to ask a local. These people have interesting things to share about their town – local history, curious stories, and town legends. These stories may change how you perceive the place. By interacting with a townie, you don’t only make your trip more personal, but you also make new friends.
Eat at local restaurants
Even small towns have a McDonald’s or two, but if you’re a visitor, it’s best to go to local bars or cafes for a bite. Usually, these places feature local dishes you’d only get to try if you’re in the area. They can be exotic or new to you, but these local specialties can make your trip even more special. Besides, when you support these places, you also support the local business owners.
Get yourself a cabbie
Try to get a cab to get around, instead of renting a car. This way, you can really take in the scenery while you’re going around. Not only will riding a cab give you a chance to take in the sights, but your cab driver can even be your tour guide– just don’t forget to give them a tip!
Don’t miss a night out
Life is different when the sun is up and when the stars are out. The nightlife in small towns may be a lot quieter than in big cities, but that doesn’t mean these places don’t have anything to offer. If you’re with friends, go to the clubs to dance, have fun, and drink a beer with the locals. If you’re on the trip alone, you can go to 24-hour diners or a bar. Make friends with other patrons, owners, and staff.
Take pictures (and not just of places)
Eventually, all vacations end. This is why while you still have the chance, take pictures of the scenery, attractions, and food. And don’t forget to photograph the people you meet along the way (selfies count!).
You don’t have to go where everyone else does. Small towns are often overlooked, but if you give them a chance. these places always have something interesting to offer. These places off the beaten track can make up for their size with rich, memorable stories.