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How to find unique adventures while traveling | Travel Smart

Author Karen Gershowitz gives advice on how to find authentic, local experiences on your next vacation in this week's Travel Smart.

PENNSYLVANIA, USA — While traveling, most people want to see the “must see” attractions but there are often hidden gems that can bring your vacation to the next level.

“My favorite piece of advice to everyone is, first of all, once you’ve seen the major sites, ditch the guidebook," Gershowitz said. 

Author Karen Gershowitz is an experienced traveler who has seen all 50 states and visited over 90 countries. She gives advice on how to find out-of-the-ordinary experiences places offer that the family will enjoy.

“If you plan a trip around something that you really love, you know that you are going to do something that you want to do, that you’re going to have fun doing," she said. "Once you’re there you are going to meet other people who also like doing the same thing." 

Gershowitz believes the best way to find hidden gems where you're vacationing is to chat with the locals. 

“Start talking to them," she said. "The locals are the people that are going to tell you about the really odd, unusual things that you would never find on your own." 

The other way is picking up the local weekend newspaper.

“They list all kinds of things that are local. and you’ll find parades and fairs and you name it, they have it," Gershowitz said.  

And if you’re trying to stay within budget on your vacation, locals know where the inexpensive but delicious restaurants are located, according to her. Plus, many of these local events are inexpensive to go to, or free. 

“These are not expensive things to do, going to a county fair, an outdoor concert, particularly in the summer; there are so many outdoor concerts that are free or very inexpensive," Gershowitz said. 

She hopes people transition from being just another tourist to an adventurous traveler.

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