Listen to your heart When deciding on your vacation destination (country, cities, etc.) see what really attracts and appeals you, instead of just going by the most talked about place or going by some magazine or newspaper ranking and recommendation. Vacations are never about visiting the most popular places. They are about visiting the place you will enjoy exploring.
Do your research One of the most important thing to remember while planning for your vacation is to do your research. Get on your computer and spend some time with your dear friend Google. Do some research about the country, the cities, the people, the culture, the weather, popular places, the food and other such details before setting off for your vacation. This will really give you a feel of the place and the people and make you a bit comfortable with the place.
Plan While it is not required to have a minute by minute itinerary for your travel, it is advised to have a broad plan. You do not want to land in a new country or city being completely clueless what you want to do or see. The learnings from the research phase will come in handy here. Most people book their tickets and hotel in advance but apart from that in some destinations you can also book your transportation within the city or country too in advance. It is advisable to do that because then you can find out about cheaper alternatives for travel in the country you are planning to visit and save you all the last minute hassle and even money.
Mingle with locals to experience the place Vacations are not just about going the castles and caves of the place you are visiting. Sometimes, it is just good to sit in a bar or on a sidewalk restaurant and watch the locals, strike small conversations with them to know them and the place in its real essence. This will create unforgettable memories for you for a lifetime.
Travel like a local, eat like a local When you are in a country or in a new city travel like a local and eat like a local. While expensive cabs and posh restaurants may sound safe and good, experimenting with a meal at a local restaurant or traveling in the public transport with the locals of the place will really give you the experience of the place you are visiting. So instead of hunting for a place that will sell some crappy version of your home country food, be open and devour yourself in the local cuisine at the local places. This is what will create unforgettable memories for you that you will cherish even decades later.
Experience it, live it Remember vacations are not about striking out names from your long list of things to see. Neither it is about having yourself clicked in front of the monuments and places. Memorable vacations are about being present to the place to the experience and live it fully than just clicking a few pictures. So, don't be shy live it and experience it to create real memories for yourself.
Walk, explore unknown places To make memorable memories take a walk of the city and explore the not so touristy places and markets. Do not just focus on the top 5 tourist attractions of the place. Rather check for unexplored and not so common places. You will find often these unexplored and not so popular places are much more beautiful and enriching to your total experience.
Write it Always carry a small diary and pen with you and whenever you find some time on the train, bus, taxi, etc. write about your experiences on the vacation. Because no matter how vivid the experience feels right now, it will fade away with time. But if write what you feel while on the vacation, you can always refresh those memories easily.
Avoid going in peak time If you really want to have an amazing holiday experience, it is best advised that you do not go to places in their peak season. In peak season the places are swarming with people and everything is more expensive and often low quality, negatively affecting your quality of vacation.
In contrast, if you go in shoulder season or off season the locals are more welcoming and so is the staff of the hotels, restaurants, etc. You have the city/country at a more leisurely pace to be enjoyed.
Learn the local language a bit If you have planned your holiday well in advance and if you are going to a destination which has a different local language, it is good learn a little bit of the language. You don't need to get a certificate in the language but learning the basic words can really come in handy at times. It will also add on to your experience and interaction with the people.
Moreover, the locals will appreciate your effort to speak in their language and they will be more welcoming and helping.
So apply these simple life hacks and see how you create unforgettable and exciting memories for yourself on your vacation.