Travel in a different way: by kayak, bike or hitchhiking!

Are you done with the ‘normal’ ways of travelling, or you don’t want to wait for the public transport anymore? Read this article and get inspired! What is more fun than travelling in an adventurous and cheap way, which makes you super fit at the same time? And last but not least, it is environmental friendly as well. When you travel by your own physical abilities, it is not the goal that counts, but the way you get there and that gives an extra dimension to your trip.

Kayaking in Finland

Travel by Kayak
Did you ever thought about it, travelling by kayak? Well, this summer I did it for the first time in Finland and it was really nice! It is very special to pack everything you need in your boat and depart. The water is so clean in the lake district Saimaa we kayaked, that we could drink it. The water was not only our transport and source to drink, but also our douche and dishwasher water. The views at the forests, the amazing skies and the lake are even prettier and more overwhelming from the water! Besides this, you can camp almost wherever you want to, because in Finland it is “everyman’s right”. We could just pick an uninhabited island and camp there for the night. For kayaking you need a little bit of a sense of direction, especially in lakes like Saimaa it is easy to get lost because there are not so many orientation points. So, it is necessary to travel with a compass and a good map. Furthermore it is recommended to be in a good physical condition before departure, this makes your trip more fun. When you decide to do this kind of travelling be prepared for an adventure and go with the flow!


Biking in Latvia

Biking in Latvia

Travel by Bike
Last year there was an article published about a  world tour by bike. I don’t think that everyone read the article so it is worth it to remind the possibility of spending your holidays by bike again. Of course it is not necessary to start your biking experience with a round-the-world trip, but also for a week or a day trip it is very nice to travel by bike. Especially when the weather is nice and you are in a country which is not too hilly it is definitely worth it! It is usually cheap to rent one and when you are planning a holiday by bike you can use your own or borrow it from someone else. You can even put your bike on the train if you want to. It is worth to check if there are some good cycling lanes and which roads you should take, because in some countries it can be scary to cycle close to fast-driving cars. When you are travelling together and you have some bike experience, you can think about renting a tandem (a bike for two). I can guarantee you a lot of fun! When you do trip for several days by bike you can camp, stay in a ho(s)tel or at a friend’s place.


Always stay positive while hitchhiking

“Hitchhiking, isn’t it dangerous?” That is the reaction I often get when I tell people that I hitchhike. Nothing has ever happened to me, but of course there is always a bit of a danger when you step into a stranger’s car. I always make sure that I don’t hitchhike alone, with another girl or a boy is fine for me. It is useful to prepare yourself in advance; this avoids a lot of waiting. Especially when you want to have a ride from a city it can be hard to get your first ride. The webpage can help you with finding a good spot to start from. In the beginning I was always very surprised that people were willing to take you! This way of travelling is free at all and can lead to very interesting conversations with nice people. I usually try to hitchhike from gas station to gas station, because in this way you can choose the person you want to drive with. Be open, look neatly, make a friendly impression and speak at least a few words in the language from the country. It is useful to check the numberplates of the cars, in some countries (Germany for example) it gives you an idea from which city the cars are from. When you hitchhike alongside roads you can write the name of the city you want to go to with a black marker on a cardboard. To get cardboards you can look into supermarkets or other stores – you can use for example the empty wine cardboxes. By hitchhiking you can cover long distances in one day. You can also choose for the adventurous way of hitchhiking and see to which city will your last ride of the day bring you. Don’t forget: thumbs up!


Written by Iris Hordijk (AEGEE-Utrecht) and Speaker of the EnWG