The Art of Slow Travel #KLM

KLMThe Art of Slow Travel #KLM

Lola A. Åkerström explores the concept of slow travel in a sponsored partnership with KLM Royal Dutch Airlines and #KLMDreamDeals

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All photos by Lola Akinmade Åkerström

Traveling slowly means reconsidering our motives for traveling. For me, traveling means listening to and experiencing the cultural stories of a place through its local food, traditions, and the everyday lifestyles of its people.

As you can tell from our name, we’re big advocates of slow travel here. One of the misconceptions a lot of people have around this concept is that you need to spend weeks or months in a place to really feel like you’re traveling slowly and deeply through a place.

But that’s not necessarily the case.

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Slow travel to me has never been about duration. It is about your pace and how quickly you move through a place. It encourages us to relax our pace and reconsider why we’re traveling. To embrace the fact that seeing less but going deeper into a culture enriches and transforms us much more than skimming its surface.

It means reassessing the reasons why we travel and slowing down our pace to enrich our experiences by adopting a “less is more” ethos.

So instead of hitting every major site and checking them off, I actually spend that time deep-diving into a specific aspect of a culture.

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Do you like trying local foods? How about planning a dream trip solely around discovering and sampling local foods?

Slow traveling through a city may mean spending a lot of time in a particular district with a particular group of people. Most of the time for me, that means spending a lot of time in local markets with butchers, fruit and vegetable vendors, and fishmongers at various fish markets.

Do you love to dance?

Maybe explore your dream city slowly through its music scene, nightlife, and festivals. Maybe go deeper into its culture by learning its traditional dance.

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For me, waking up at dawn to watch local fishermen pull in and auction off their morning catch before opening up the fish market for tourists is what traveling slowly feels like. Connecting with a place through its local lifestyles regardless of whether I’m in town for a short weekend trip or spending several weeks.


Author: Lola A. Åkerström

Lola Akinmade Åkerström is an award-winning writer, photographer, and travel blogger, and is also the Founder/Editor-in-chief of Slow Travel Stockholm. Her photography is represented by National Geographic Creative. She tweets at @LolaAkinmade.

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