With the summer holiday season fully underway, everyone is about to go on holiday, on holiday or coming back from holiday. But is travel really good for you? If you read travel bloggers such as Mirka, who left the comfort of London life and her career, to travel the world. She and her boyfriend caught the travel bug and their life is split between India, Indonesia, Thailand, other South East Asian countries and occasionally Europe.
Justin Francis, the CEO of Responsible Travel, asked the question “Does travel really broaden the mind?” in an article published in the Independent and concluded that it is the open-minded traveller who truly benefits from exposure to different cultures.
From our research it seems that most commentators agree that travel improves your overall wellbeing and can have a positive impact on your physical and mental health in a number of ways:
As travel exposes you to different environments, your body in turn creates stronger antibodies and boosts your immune system significantly. This adaption will make you stronger and more resistance to harmful bacteria. People are also much likely to be active on holiday – tending to walk more at the very least.
Travel can lower your stress levels as new experiences increase your mental flexibility and help you adapt your thinking. A study found that three days into a holiday, travellers felt well-rested, less anxious, and in a better mood. And these improvements didn’t disappear when they returned home, they lasted for weeks afterward. This can also help with heart disease, as travel can remove a person from a stressful situation.
Travel expands your mind as you meet new people and immerse yourself in new environments. It increases creativity, decreases depression and helps you be more open and emotionally stable according to the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology.
Finally, you can travel to a place which can heal you - whether that be bathing in hot springs, visiting sacred places or simply mediating in an idyllic location.