As relaxing and easy as it can be to simply book a package holiday that covers flights and your stay at a resort, many people can find this experience lacking in authenticity. Holiday resorts are specifically built to give tourists what they expect to find at such a resort – as opposed to what the country has to offer, such as the culture and delicacies. Not only this, but holiday resorts tend to bundle together all of the aspects of a holiday that many people tend to dislike, such as droves of tourists all trying to do the same thing or just generally being irritating.

There are many other factors building for the argument against going on package holidays to resorts on top of these experience-based factors, such as the chaos sparked from Thomas Cook going under this autumn to leave customers stranded. People still want to go on holiday and, quite frankly, everyone needs and deserves a good holiday, which is why would-be holidaymakers are looking into alternate methods which put them in the driving seat of their stay.

Moving away from the tourist-focussed setups of resorts and major hotels, and enabling oneself to explore a new country is much more enriching and enjoyable, especially as doing so requires you to put some planning into what you want to achieve on your trip. So, let’s delve into why a holiday with more freedom is the better option, the best places to explore with some newfound freedom, and how you can make it happen.

The need for a holiday with freedom

First of all, you shouldn’t be discouraged from going on holiday due to the latest stories to strike the industry this year. A holiday is still a crucial part of your life. While going away shouldn’t be the sole aim of your existence, and solely working and living for breaks is unhealthy, getting the reboot that comes with a trip is undeniably good for you. While you don’t have to fly to the other side of the world or visit the most iconic natural sights from other continents, taking the time to get away from the stresses of work and rigours of being at home should be close to an annual venture for you even if you lead the most interesting and enriching work-life of anyone that you know.

Going away on a break brings many benefits, including the time to sit down, relax, and think without suffering from any guilt for your lack of physical productivity. This time to think, in turn, allows you to focus your mind on the important things in life and how you may want to adjust to make them more of a priority amidst the stresses of day-to-day living. Holidays have also proven to be good for your health.

As all jobs demand your attention and focus, and challenge you mentally in one way or another, stress is inevitable and will sometimes impact your health. With a holiday, you literally remove yourself from the stress that you experience on a regular basis, giving your body and mind time to reboot through doing other activities.

To take some time to be away from the iteration of everyday stress is always helpful, but travelling to somewhere that then creates more cumbersome stress won’t help you to get the break that you need. As mentioned, sometimes, a holiday resort can feel like a warmer, much more crowded version of your home country – with a busy pool.

The best way to go is your own way. Organising your holiday away from tourist accommodation hotspots enables you to dictate how you want to relax, lets you do whatever you want, and – if you prepare properly – avoid a great deal of stress.

Some of the best places to consider for your free-roam holiday

There’s no point in planning your big free-roaming holiday in a place that’s either filled with people or devoid of anything interesting, so you’ll want to give your target area plenty of thought. You’ll also want to think hard about how long you can allow for your trip and which locations and activities that you want to fit in along the way. Depending on your method of travelling, you may find that you just want to be based in a certain area and then go on to explore, so you’ll want to make sure that the place that you’re going to will be worth your time and effort.

Each summer, many, many people flock to the south coast of Spain. Not only do tourists fly in from all over the world, but a whole wave of Spaniards from the northern parts of the country make their way to southern beaches to relax on the sand. While this might be something you’d like to do for a bit of your holiday, some of the best traditional food and most welcoming people are found a little further inland. Travelling towards the likes of Ronda or more centrally to Lanjaron will give you a scenic and welcomed break from the tourists while giving you a taste – both visually and in the form of exquisite food – of the real Spain.

One of the biggest debates among holidaymakers in recent times has been if Australia or New Zealand is the better destination. Despite being situated relatively close together, the two nations offer very unique experiences for the intrepid explorer. If you’re looking to enjoy beaches and diverse cities, Australia is probably the better of the two countries, but if you want to experience the great outdoors and explore some incredible scenery, New Zealand would be the destination of choice.

There’s everything from volcanic geothermal pools to glaciers and alpine landscapes, but among the biggest draws for film fans are the beautiful filming locations used in the making of The Lord of the Rings, which include Matamata, Wellington, Nelson Tasman, the Southern Lakes, and many more. It’ll take a fair bit of travelling to see them all, which can be achieved if you set yourself up for a free-roaming trip.

The only issue with enjoying these experiences for many travellers is that there isn’t an airport nearby, or a holiday resort, or much by way of clear-cut public transport. So, people have been taking matters into their own hands.

The new way to holiday

To take back control of your holiday, dictating where you go, when you stop, and what you do, it’s best to avoid the places set up for tourists, like holiday resorts. You may want to visit some of the nearby attractions that these venues offer tours to and from, but you can arrange all of that in your own time if you go down the route of a campervan holiday.

This is the new way to holiday, with more and more people opting to hire a campervan and explore as much as they want in their own time rather than sit in a tourist-infested site. Due to increased popularity, campervan hires are available almost all over the world, including the UK, South Africa, Portugal, Spain, New Zealand, Australia, and many more. As a vehicle that serves as accommodation and travel, you get to control your trip by simply arriving at the destination, picking up the campervan, and then setting off to wherever may take your fancy that day. This way, you get to drive away from the overcrowded hotspots and explore the authentic side of a country at your leisure. If you find somewhere that you particularly love, stay there for a few days without the cost of a hotel room or the hustle and bustle of other holidaymakers.

Now, of course, if this is the kind of holiday that you wish to embark on, it is advised that you get a good grasp of the location’s customs, learn a bit of the language (as the locals won’t be inclined to learn a foreign tongue if they’re situated away from the tourist areas), and stock up on food and drink. You’ll also want to get a rough idea of where you want to go first as you don’t want to set off and end up in the middle of nowhere.

Planning your own holiday and exploring the real side of a new location is the way of vacationing that holidaymakers are trending towards; with the added freedom and enriching experiences benefitting many travellers a great deal.