Urban Exploration: 5 Tips for Truly Getting to Know a New City

Getting into a brand-new city is always exhilarating, but it can come with a certain amount of stress. You have to get yourself acclimated with the new surroundings, social norms, and attitudes. And in some cases, you might be stepping into what feels like a whole other world. But, with the right tools and tips, you should be able to slowly but surely start to get familiar with the city and actually get to enjoy it. Here are some few urban exploration tips that will help you in a new city.

Be Practical

When you’re out in a new city, you ideally want to limit your movement. This means packing for the day and night and looking for solutions that will prevent you from having to go back to your room. This also means that you’ll have to find ways to put together outfits that you’ll be able to carry on to the evening.

It all starts with the footwear. Ballet flats, for instance, are perfect for travel since you can easily sneak them in any bag and transform your look in seconds. Make sure that you know the dress code for certain areas though. While some will have no issues with jeans at a restaurant, others might need something more formal, so be aware of that. Here are a few must have ballet flats. Some of them were made for performance, so could be used for trekking around town as well for at least part of the day.

Start with the Sights

All cities have their main sites and attractions, and no matter how much we say we want to avoid tourist traps, you know you still want to see that 13th-century water fountain that village, city or town is famous for. So, if we were to give you one piece of advice, it would be to scratch them off your list and check them all out in your first day. Then you can start planning on how to explore the real city.

Take the Bus

Taking the bus is one of the best ways to get a feeling for a city and its neighbourhoods. You’ll get to see which parts you like and which ones you want to avoid, and you can always find your way home as long as you don’t go too far into the outskirts. Regular buses will give you a sense of different parts of the city while touristy ones will usually go through the city’s centre.

Don’t Be Too Rigid

While having a certain level of planning is always good, you don’t want to overdo it. You might want to plan a visit to a certain landmark at the end of the day, for instance, but let the rest of the day be more free-flowing.

Or you could ask recommendations from your Uber driver and let them take you to great places you may have not considered. The same goes for restaurants. Go off the beaten paths and try to get out of the city centre. Forget Yelp and talk to the locals. Look for establishments with a lot of traffic and jump in. Leave room for adventure.

Use Rental Services

A lot of cities have some sort of transportation rental service that you can take advantage of, like bikes or scooters for instance. These are also great ways to get a feel for the city and will allow you to save on transportation. Make sure that you know the regulations in the city however, and don’t venture too far off point zero on your first days.

Exploring a new city can and should be fun. Make sure that you follow these few simple tips, and always make sure that you get significant intel on the area before you even leave.

Top Tips