When you live and work in your home city, the shine can easily wear off. It’s not as exciting and you’re always thinking about the next trip away and forget what’s on your doorstep! I’ve lived in Leeds for almost 5 years and, even now, I still like to get a bit touristy and see the city with fresh eyes. It’s cheap, it’s fun, and it really makes you appreciate where you live. Here’s some ideas about how to be a tourist in your very own city.
Learn The History
Every city has its own history. Some places may be more interesting than others, but there’ll always be something to discover. I think it’s important to know about the place where you live and be at least vaguely familiar with the history of it. You don’t need to make it a boring task – if anything it should be really fascinating for you! Literally, just go on Google and have a bit of a dig around. For example, until recently I didn’t know that owls were the animal of Leeds and that there’s an owl hunt you can do around the city. Learning more about a place is the first step towards being a tourist!
Research What Else Is There
There’ll 100% be somewhere in your city that you’ve never visited. Whether it be a quirky bar, a lesser-known tourist attraction or a random place that’s just opened. If places like this aren’t famous, or on your beaten track, you probably won’t even know they’re there! Do some research and find out exactly what there is to do in your city and spend a weekend doing a few different things. There’s so many lists and guides that you can find about pretty much any place you can think of, so you won’t be short on options!
Step Out Of Your Comfort Zone
If you really want to know how to be a tourist in your own city, you need to step out of your comfort zone. It’s so easy to get into a routine, visit the same places, do the same things – but that won’t broaden your horizons. Once you’ve found out what there is to do in a city, try all the things that you wouldn’t usually consider. Push yourself to do new stuff and you’ll get a whole different perspective on your city. It’ll be like you’re visiting for the first time!
You can be a tourist by simply noticing more. Think about it. When you go on a city break abroad, your eyes are wide open. You’re taking in the streets, the buildings, the views – everything. So, if you do that when you’re away, why not do it in your own city? Rather than walking with your head down, trying to get from A to B as quick as you can, take your time and really soak in your surroundings. I guarantee you’ll notice things you never have before, no matter how small they are.
Get A Room
To get yourself in the tourist mindset, treat yourself and book a room in the city for a night. Most of us live on the outskirts, or a short drive from a city, so put yourself right in the heart of the action for a weekend. When you’re in a hotel, you’ll automatically feel more touristy and it’ll be a nice break for you. You can get great last-minute deals on hotels online, so take a look and see what your options are. When you’re closer to all the main attractions, you’ll be able to squeeze more in and explore the city more.
Hopefully you’ve now got a pretty good idea about how to be a tourist in your home city. It’s super easy, and you’ll definitely enjoy yourself. It’ll make you realise that don’t have to spend loads of money on a full-on city break when there’s a whole bunch on things to explore right under your nose! If you’re looking for other places to try, check out my budget destination recommendations!