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What kind of traveller are you (and where should you go)?

15 November 2018

We all know there are multiple different personality types, and can be acutely aware of 'what kind of person we are' when it comes to everyday life. For me this is knowing that I am a complete time optimist and will try to wring more hours out of the day than is possible, but what about when I'm on holiday? Ah, that's entirely different. Suddenly my spontaneity kicks in, and my more adventurous side starts to show itself; I become the kind of woman who will happily haggle at a Cambodian night market or wade into the water with sharks (little ones perhaps, but still sharks none the less).

Once I realised that I had an inner risk-taking explorer inside of me, the multi-annual question of where next became a lot easier to answer! So in order to pass on the wisdom that has so helped me when considering which destinations to choose, here are some of the most common traveller categories, as well as some suggestions about places to visit to truly indulge your traits.

The Pioneer - You're always searching for the next undiscovered destination, making inroads into new tourist tracks before any of your peers. The tricky thing for pioneers is that the more we travel, the fewer new places there are to discover, especially ones that are accessible to normal people with normal budgets. All is not lost however, (though maybe as a pioneer that's what you'd prefer) and the destination we'd suggest for you is Bhutan. A predominantly Buddhist country wedged between India and China, Bhutan measures Gross National Happiness ahead of Gross National Product, and is still awash with unexplored jungle and precipitous mountain passes. In fact, 70% of Bhutan's terrain is coated with forests, while 7% is pressed beneath glaciers. Its highest Himalayan peak-Gangkhar Puensum-soars to almost 25,000 feet above sea level. All of this nature leaves you with an overwhelming sense of being truly intrepid, and the country's tourist controls (requiring visitors to spend a minimum amount per day) means that holidaymakers here remain low, around 54,600 annually - that's less than the seating capacity of Wembley Stadium.

The Pilgrim - you've been working through your list of places you absolutely have to see for a number of years now; UNESCO World Heritage sites give you a real kick and you never find yourself disappointedly comparing the reality of famous monuments with the hype. You are a connoisseur of culture. While most pilgrims find they are constantly getting recommendations to experience celebrated landmarks such as the Taj Mahal, Chichen Itza and the Colosseum, that's old news for you - so we propose Oberammergau. This unassuming village in the heart of the Bavarian Alps plays host to a special event which only takes place once every ten years - the Oberammergau Passion Play. Its rarity and fascinating origin story are two qualities that make it irresistible to any pilgrim travellers, and with a performance scheduled for 2020, you'd be just in time to grab a front row seat!

The Thrill-Seeker - you can't get enough of that adrenaline rush. Whether you get your kicks from jumping out of planes or just from correctly ordering your meal at a restaurant in the local language, travel gives you a natural high like no other. What you need is the unexpected, so we recommend organising your holiday with the bare minimum of research so as not to spoil all the surprises that await your arrival. (Though of course, being completely unprepared maybe a 'thrill' too far - the basics like visas and vaccinations are an absolute must!)  As for the where however, we can't praise Canada highly enough. Come rain or shine, you'll be spoiled for choice when it comes to wild adventures; from traversing the formidable Rocky Mountains to personal encounters with polar bears, this is a country where sprawling National Parks allow for mind-blowing interactions with nature on a scale that is difficult for us Brits to fully comprehend.

The creature of habit - you remind yourself a little of a homing pigeon sometimes, and more often than not return to the same nest, sorry, holiday spot, year after year. Now the thing about a true creature of habit is, they're absolutely contented with repetitive routines, and we say - if it ain't broke, don't fix it!

The long weekender - instead of going away for one or two lengthier holidays a year, the long weekender likes to take as many travel opportunities that come their way as possible. Staycations in nearby towns, three-day jaunts to mainland Europe, or even a night or two camping in the countryside; once Friday rolls around, don't expect a long weekender to be available for Saturday brunch or Sunday dinner! Geography limits the long weekender somewhat, as a jaunt to southeast Asia is hardly feasible within 72 hours, but there are still discoveries to be made, so why not try out the rugged Faroe Islands? Tipped to be a 'hot' destination for 2019, the Faroe Islands are just an hour's plane journey from Edinburgh and offer unique landscapes that seem to have remained largely unspoiled by human hands, as well as long summer nights, perfect for squeezing the most out of your itinerary, and even a Michelin-starred restaurant!