Life is not about sailing along without a stumble or fall. It’s about experiencing those mishaps with a smile, maybe even a laugh, before picking yourself up from the dirt, dusting off your pants and moving on to your next adventure.

The worst travel experiences make the best stories. So here are ten travel mistakes that you might want to try.

1. Knock on the door of a strange cabin in the woods

Cabin in the Woods


While movies that start this way usually end up with a body count, in reality most of those cabins in the forest are populated with jovial fisherman and round-bellied hunters that will feed you a hot breakfast then provide a lift back to town when your canoeing expedition gets a little lost.
Photo by Odd Smedsrud

2. Step in dog crap in France

Dogs in Paris - Travel Mistakes


Tradition holds that it’s good luck! Really.
Photo by Istvan

3. Bust your ass learning to snowboard or surf

These two sports are particularly exhausting to learn. The day after your first lesson will be one of the sorest of your life, and you will probably have bruises from your eyebrows to your ass- but being able to ride the mountain or the wave will be SO worth it. Trust.

4. Run out of road trip music

This will force you into long, philosophical discussions about live, love and death with your traveling partners.

5. Spend WAY too much money on a helicopter tour

Fox Glacier New Zealand

Somebody blowing a bunch of dough getting a bird’s eye view of New Zealand’s Fox Glacier.

Try the Na’Pali Coast of the Hawaiian Island of Kauai or Fox Glacier on the south island of New Zealand. Both are magnificent.
Photo Zak Henry

6. Be nice to people who won’t expect it

Say “Hi” to strangers in the New York subway; wave at drivers who let you onto freeways in Los Angeles.

7. Party all night long in Jackson Hole

Hit the road with your crew on no sleep before the crack of dawn. You might just stumble upon a mother bear having breakfast with her three cubs.

8. Get stuck with a tent partner who snores like a chainsaw killer

Camping in a tent under the stars

Try meadow-crashing under an indigo carpet of stars.
Photo by Alexander Kolomietz

9. Catch crabs

You know, fresh out of the ocean with your bare – surprisingly tender -hands in the San Juan Islands.

10. Lose your map

Getting directions from a local


Find your way by the kindness of locals. You’ll probably get there faster, and you will make some new friends along the way.

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