What do you think of when you hear the word ‘hobby’?
An activity to enjoy in your spare time? A go-to social activity? A distraction from dull moments of the day? Those are some of the things that come to my mind, anyway.
Here’s the official Google definition:
An activity done regularly in one's leisure time for pleasure.
It got me thinking, with that description in mind, is travelling a hobby as well?
After all, it does seem to fit the definition. For many people (myself included), travel is indeed a go-to activity of choice and a pleasurable thing to do in leisure time.
And yet ‘hobby’ makes me think of things like sport, reading, drawing, gardening…or bingo.
Can we really put travel in the same category as something like bingo? Isn’t it far more than that? I decided to take a deeper look at the matter to find the answer.
Keep reading for a few thoughts on travelling as a hobby.
But Wait, My Hobby is Travelling…
I want to start by emphasising that there’s nothing wrong with considering travel to be a hobby.
I mean, travel, in every respect, is an individual endeavour. People travel in different ways, go away for different reasons, and spend their time on the road doing different things. It would make sense that they conceptualize it differently too.
If you’re sat there thinking ‘wait, but my hobby is travelling’, then that’s great! I’m definitely not going to tell you that you’re wrong!
Indeed, there’s a large part of me that would define it in this way too.
My only hesitation relates to my personal experience of travel. For me, I just don’t relate to it in the same way I do with my other ‘hobbies’. Here’s why…
Travelling Hobby or Travelling Lifestyle?
For me, hobbies are generally activities that I fit around my other, primary pursuits.
I make time for them, sure, but generally they’re the saving grace that rewards the work I’ve put in elsewhere.
For instance, I might go to the gym in the afternoon for a break from work, or play some sport in the evenings after a busy day. I might take a lunch break to read my book and get away from the computer…And so on.
But the hobby is always a secondary activity. It’s fitted in around the other parts of my schedule. Simply, they get side-lined to my free-time.
Travel, by comparison, is almost the opposite. The way I see it, travel is always the primary thing. I wish to mould my schedule around travel- not the other way around.
It becomes the ultimate focus. Travel is the priority.
More Thoughts on Whether Travelling is My Hobby…Or Not
In this way, travelling is a fundamental component of my life.
It isn’t just a fun thing I restrict to leisure time. I literally see it as actual time-time (if that makes sense?).
How do I explain that? I guess it relates to how I describe what I’m currently doing to people.
Sure, I’m on the road right now. But I don’t necessarily see it as travelling. I’m just living. I have the freedom to move around, explore, and do all the things you do when you travel, but there’s no end date to it. I don’t see this as a break from my ‘norm’. It just is my norm.
Equally, I can continue with my other actual hobbies while I travel.
I’ll read, exercise, write, draw…all while on the road. If travel really is a hobby, then that means I’m doing a hobby within a hobby. Is that even possible?!
If it is, then I’m confused!
Even More Travelling as Hobby Thoughts…
Ok, final points, I promise.
At the end of the day, I get so much more from travel than I do almost anything else in my life.
I mean, who I am has literally changed and adapted in line with the experiences I’ve had on the road. As most people discover when they do it, travel is a powerful tool, a momentous life choice, and a way to live life to its absolute fullest.
In my eyes, the Google definition I started with just doesn’t do it justice!
Dive headfirst into travel and, as clichéd as it sounds, it sort of becomes…just ordinary life.
And it is this that gets to the crux of why I don’t see travel as a hobby. Simply, it becomes more than just a thing to do: no longer just some thing, or activity.
It becomes a way of interacting with the world: a lifestyle that impacts all areas of who you are and how you operate.
So, Is Travelling a Hobby? Final Thoughts on Travelling as a Hobby
At the risk of belabouring the point, for me, the answer to this question is a resounding no!
Is travelling a hobby more generally?
Well, maybe it started off as one. Maybe, at one point in time, as I began to delve into the wonderful world of travelling, it was nothing more than that. And maybe for some people it remains that way.
As, like I said, I definitely see nothing wrong with that perspective!
Ultimately, I guess it’s just a personal thing. In some ways, it probably doesn’t matter! Travelling as a hobby, or travelling as a lifestyle choice, it’s still travel. We’re still stepping out into the unknown, exploring foreign shores and trying to have an adventure.
The only difference is the way we think about it.
What do you reckon? Am I talking rubbish? Do you see travel as a hobby or something more? Let me know in the comments!
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