Traveling when you're an introvert is of course an ~amazing~ experience — but it can also be pretty challenging sometimes.
So BuzzFeed Life spoke with Laurie Helgoe, Ph.D., author of Introvert Power: Why Your Inner Life Is Your Hidden Strength, about the best tips for introverted travelers.
1. Schedule downtime into your travel schedule.
2. Explore on your own terms instead of doing group tours.
3. And when you do, go local.
"Again, many introverts are really passionate about just observing — and it's easier to do that in a local place than at a big landmark," explains Helgoe. "Simply looking at the patterns of the way people walk in public spaces is an art in and of itself. You can really get a sense of what life is like in a different place," she continues.
If you're not sure where to find the local spots, find some local travel bloggers online and see what they have to say. Or check out these genius ways to find local food when you're traveling.
4. If you're traveling with an extrovert, make a point to do your own thing sometimes.
5. Bring a journal.
6. Stay in an Airbnb instead of a hostel.
7. If an Airbnb isn't an option, though, go for a bed & breakfast — but call ahead.
8. Either way, try to stay near a good coffee shop.
9. Bring a familiar item, like a pillow, with you on your journey.
10. Bring a book, headphones, and ear plugs on the plane.
11. Read literature about your destination before you go.
12. Take a nice camera.
13. If you're on a long road trip with others, listen to audio books.
14. Go somewhere where you literally don't know anyone.
Of course it's fun to visit cities where you have relatives or friends from college. But it's a true joy when you can walk into a shop or bar and legit not know anyone.
"There's something really indulgent about being around a lot people, and not having anyone talking to you. It's just a really cool feeling," Helgoe explains. In other words, being on your own without even the ~possibility~ of a random bump-in is pretty much the most liberating feeling you could ever have.