Back in 2013, a study was conducted to poll how many people tend to repeat a trip. Of the 1,053 Americans surveyed, 85% reported choosing to revisit a destination. At a time when people are being celebrated for crossing countries off their list at record speed, perhaps there is something to be said for taking time to truly discover a new culture.
“When on our first visit, we tend to see major points or hot-spots that other visitors see – not necessarily delving deep into the place to familiarize [ourselves] with the side locals might be seeing,” explains Anthony Berklich, Founder of the luxury travel platform, Inspired Citizen. “You can literally unwrap more layers of a particular place with a second or third visit – and feel like you really know it when you finally depart.”
The argument for revisiting a destination comes down to deepening your connection with the local culture. First visits will find you standing in line at main tourist attractions and knocking off any ‘must-see’ items in your guidebook. By the time you’ve eaten the quintessential meal, taken that iconic photo and sauntered down the main avenue, it is time to fly home. Not until a second or third visit does a destination begin to blossom for the visitor.
An added bonus of revisits also seems to be minimal stress in trip planning. Kari Cruz, a Communication and Travel Expert at Bespoke Travel, explains “the comfort of having conquered the destination can add ease and excitement to what may otherwise feel like an overwhelming time planning something new.”
Here at Culture Trip, we are always looking towards the next story, trend and destination. Here, instead of keeping our eyes fixed on the horizon, we take a moment to look back and share the places we would revisit.
“Every second of my visit in Alaska was marked by breathtaking moments of natural beauty, from circling the peak of Mt. McKinley, to grizzly bear sightings along hikes in Denali National Park and viewing chunks of glacier plummet into the Gulf of Alaska. It also didn’t hurt that when I visited four-time Iditarod winner Jeff King’s training facilities, I got his daughter’s email (I was 16 at the time, and didn’t have a cellphone yet) on top of playing with a plethora of husky pups. In the words of Homer Simpson, “clap for Alaska!” – Ryan Kristobak, Music Editor
“Within the United States, I would love to revisit San Francisco. I went once many years ago and still remember how playful, fun and vibrant the city was. From the trolley cars to the fresh fish market, that trip remains a wonderful blur. I’d love to fly back to San Francisco and take my time discovering the city.” – Nikki Vargas, Travel Editor
“I would revisit New Orleans, it is endlessly alive and changing, and probably my favorite food city in America.” – Chris Mohney, Editor-in-Chief
“I’m a Brit who studied abroad in Washington, DC for a year, and I have so many close friends there that I’ve gone back to visit every year since I left. I see it as a home away from home, as well as a great base from which to explore the rest of the country. Having loved ones in a different country is the main reason I’d revisit a place. The States has my heart!” – Grace Beard, Regional Hub Manager
“Cape Cod. I love the architectural style of the cottages, the laid-back beaches, and small town vibes. It all feels very quiet and cozy.” – Amber Snider, Home & Design Editor
“First thing that comes to mind is Memphis, Tennessee. The atmosphere is just amazing. No matter what restaurant or pub you enter on Beale Street, there is always live music somewhere, 24/7. Even on the streets! If you’re into American soul, rhythm & blues and rock & roll, then Memphis is the place to go.” – Luke Bradshaw, Sports Editor
“For me it would be Seattle. I loved the Engineering side of things (being a former aircraft designer myself) and spent hours at the Boeing factory. It’s just a short hop over to Vancouver as well; I would love to go back and visit both places.” – Cassam Looch, Film Editor
“I would revisit Sifnos in the Cyclades because of the guaranteed sunshine, food and the best rum bar on top of a cliff, surrounded by the sea. Sometimes when you know what you’re going to get, the adventures are more likely to take you by surprise.” – India Doyle, Fashion Editor
“I think maybe I was Thai in a previous life. I first went in 2004 and since then I’ve been back seven times, revisiting perfect coves and discovering new corners of Thailand. I have such a deep affinity with the local culture, it feels like a second home now.” – Esme Benjamin, Wellness Editor
“I would absolutely love to revisit Cusco, Peru. I first ventured down there for a month when I was 16 and completely fell in love with the city. It was the first time I felt traveling really influenced my perspective, as I was there just long enough to feel like I absorbed a culture wildly different from my own. The people I met were wonderful and the city is stunning! It’s perfect for someone who enjoys architecture and history. I would sincerely appreciate the opportunity to experience it again all these years later, and going back is on the top of my list.” – Rachel Gould, Art Editor
*This post is written in collaboration with Flights.com as a part of its “Don’t Skip the Trip” campaign and social integration feature that shows you personalized flights based on places you’ve been in the past.