Sure, you can take a vacation to a foreign country and stay in luxury hotels and be part of a tour group, but then you only get the safe, touristy view of the country.  That’s fine if you want a one dimensional view, but to truly see what a country is like, you need to live like the locals and experience the local culture.

This might be difficult in countries where not many people speak English, but in many European countries, plenty of people speak English so it’s easy to get around, especially some place like England or Ireland.

If you want to take an off the grid vacation, consider utilizing these techniques:

1.  Plan your vacation with an off the beaten path guidebook.  There are some guidebooks that specifically seek to take tourists to destinations not visited by many.  This is the kind of book you want to use to plan your trip.  You’ll likely be taken to anything from offbeat to macabre to other types of destination.  You’re vacation won’t be boring, that’s for sure, and you likely won’t have to wait in line!

2.  Join an online group.  You can join an online group for people who have either been to the country or live in the country.  You may hear of adventures and trips that are far from mainstream such as those you’ll find on which offers online dating in the UK (and even sex dating, if that’s your interest).  Be prepared to hear of all sorts of alternative destinations, and only choose those you truly feel comfortable with.

3.  Find alternative housing arrangements.  Don’t bother with fancy hotels.  Instead, consider staying in a hostel or even trading homes with someone who wants to visit the United States when you’re visiting their country.  This is a great way to get free housing.

4.  Keep your plans loose.  The best way to travel is often to keep your plans loose.  Arrive in the country and then get busy asking the locals what there is to do and see.  Also, asking the locals is the best way to find excellent restaurants and pubs.  If you’re visiting a pub, you could likely ask the patrons for their recommendations for fun things to do.

Travel doesn’t have to be stifling and boring.  Take advantage of some of these tips and have a vacation like you’ve never had before.