5 things that happen when you travel without a plan
Planning the perfect trip can be a source of endless fun, and having some structure in your trip can be important for ticking off all of the experiences you want to have. However, traveling is all about flexibility. More often than not, things don't go according to plan. It can be frustrating at first, but usually, your favorite travel memories come from those exact situations where you have to change things up. Here are some of the things we've found happen when you throw caution to the wind and try out traveling without a plan. Keep them in mind if you suspect you're overplanning your future trip.
1. You discover places you've never heard of
Sometimes choosing to forgo a plan lets you hop off the train whenever you see something that looks interesting. If you aren't in a hurry to get from one place to another, why not make some stops along the way and get to know unique places you've never even heard of?
Sometimes it comes in the form of a charming, little village with a quirky main square and sometimes it comes from wandering aimlessly and being surprised by hidden spots in places you thought you knew.
2. You can change your plans when you change your mind
Sometimes you crave the hustle and bustle of the city, and other times, you have a need for space to breathe that only crisp, mountain air can satisfy. When you don't decide your whole itinerary ahead of time, you can choose where you go based on what you're in the mood for.
Feeling fancy? You can head to a fashion capital and get ready for some retail therapy. Need some nature? Hiking trails are never too far away. Weather looking not so good where you thought you would go? You can try somewhere else.
3. You stop stressing about time
Missed your train? Didn't manage to see everything you wanted to see? If you're keeping things flexible, it's no big deal.
You can stop by that amazing ice cream shop one more time or make a detour to that last landmark on your list on the way to the train station. If you make the train you wanted to take, it works out great! If you don't, another one will pass by soon enough. Meanwhile, you can take in the station's architecture and observe all the colorful trains that pass by.
4. New friends will be your guides
When you travel without a plan, you set yourself up for spontaneity. It's almost as if new experiences come to you. Many times, this is in the form of new friends. When you hit it off with people you meet while traveling, you not only get to share your collective travel tips, but you also get to share memorable experiences together.
If you don't have a fixed itinerary, there's nothing to stop you from staying somewhere an extra day or two to join new friends on an excursion they were planning or to check out a lesser-known part of town that you might never have found on your own.
5. You'll constantly delight your curiosity
Think back to a time that you noticed an unusual-looking side street out of the corner of your eye, but you weren't able to check it out because you had somewhere you needed to be. Or maybe you had a strict itinerary and then never got to climb up a hill that overlooks the city for that incredible view.
When you travel without a plan, the only boundaries are the boundaries of your curiosity. You never have to worry about missing out on something that you were drawn to because there's nothing to stop you from chasing your interests.
Get ready for getting lost
Europe has endless possibilities for flexible travelers who like to go with the flow, and the Eurail Pass lets you explore them all. Did you know you can even leave your start date open and travel up to 11 months after purchase? It doesn't get much more flexible than that.