Top Travel Tips When Visiting Buddhist Temples in 2019
No one is a born expert traveler. It all comes with experience. The more you travel the better you be on the roads. This article will help you with the top 15general travel tips that you should care about and the things that you should know before visiting a Buddhist temple.
Follow these travel tips & it will help you to save money, pack your travel bags in a more organized way, meet locals, be a better traveler & create better memories.
Let’s check out the top 15 tips to travel better & safer:
1. Eat local street food- Eating local food is one of the best things you can do while you are traveling to a new city or country. It has multiple benefits:
· It is far cheaper than restaurant food. If you are someone who always prefers dining at a restaurant then you know how expensive it is. Eating local street food will help you to save a lot of dollars. If you are a budget traveler you will simply love this tip
· You can customize the dish as per your choice. As the street vendors prepare the food in front of you, you can ask them to customize it as per your liking.
· You will love the huge variety of local dishes from the street vendors. You would have missed this had you continue to eat only in the restaurants.
2. Buy travel insurance
The first thing that you should do after you booked your tickets is to buy travel insurance. Travel insurance can save you thousands of dollars. I personally prefer world nomads (https://www.worldnomads.com/).
I would recommend the same to you. They are just too good when making claims.
3. Make a packing checklist
Make a checklist when you do your packing. It can save you time as well as lots of dollars. There is a certain kg of luggage that you can carry. If you cross the number you need to pay extra for baggage. So pack light &avoid paying extra bucks at the airport.
4. Learn a few words of the country
It is always better to learn a few words in the local language. It will become easier for you to communicate with the locals. A language barrier can lead to frustration and inconvenience, especially if you are traveling to a country where English is not commonly spoken.
Here are a few phrases which you can learn in a new language before your travel.
• Thank you
• Excuse me
• May I have
• How much does this cost
• Where is …
• Please help
• I don’t eat
• Sorry I don’t speak
Either learn the local language of these words or download a translation app to avoid any miscommunication.
5. Check out the free things to do in the city
Everyone loves anything that comes for free. But how many of you check out the free things to do in a city. I am sure very few people do that. There are absolutely wonderful things to do & see in every city for free.
Just Google “free things to in city X”& you will be getting a huge list, select the ones that catch your interest. Alternatively, you can also visit the local tourism office to know free activities or events in the city.
6. Let your bank know when you are traveling abroad
There are chances of your account getting locked if you use your card while shopping or withdrawing money on your vacation. It is better to give notice to your bank regarding your travel plans.
This is a financial precaution for your account. When you tell your bank about your travel they share it with the fraud detection system. So you can enjoy a tension-free holiday.
Check out this article to know how to notify your bank about your travel plans (https://www.westernunion.com/blog/notify-bank-international-travel/)
7. Buy souvenirs
Souvenirs are a major part of shopping for most of the travelers. According to me, it is one of the best & cheap things to buy when on a vacation. It can make all your holiday memories floating in front of your eyes.
Check out this article to know, how to find the best souvenir on vacation (https://www.roadunraveled.com/blog/best-vacation-souvenirs-guide/)
8. Solid toiletries are one of the best travel essentials
It is lightweight & will occupy less space in your bag. I use a solid shampoo bar instead of a shampoo bottle & a face wash bar instead of a lotion. It is convenient and easy to carry.
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Click on this link to buy a face wash bar(https://www.amazon.in/Neev-Kumkumadi-Face-Saffron-Jasmine/dp/B07H5DZLPF/ref=sr_1_3?keywords=face+wash+bar&qid=1572372074&sr=8-3)
9. Don’t exchange your currency at the airport
The exchange bureaus in airports never offer a good exchange rate. That’s the place where you get the worst exchange rate.. And you will end up paying a huge amount of money to them. The exchange rate at the airport is quite high compared to banks.
As the number of travelers who end up doing a last-minute transaction is pretty high, so they plan in advance to charge a high exchange rate.
I will advise you to exchange your money at any government institute like a bank or post office. They offer the best exchange rate.
10. Start saving money early
Once you have decided on the destination, start saving early. The more you save the better you can treat yourself during the holiday. You must first decide on the budget & then start saving according to it as soon as possible.
11. Buy a good quality camera
Your holiday photos will be some of the best memories of life. So consider investing in a good camera. It goes without saying; understand its features before you leave for your vacation.
Check out these top 10 tips to capture a good picture (http://apps.kodakmoments.com/top-10-tips-for-great-pictures/)
12. Carry medicines
Go for a health check before you leave for your vacation. I am sure you will never want to get sick while you travel. Get the doctor’s advice and carry a first aid kit for an emergency.
Consult your doctor for vaccinations & prescriptions before you start traveling.
13. Visit the local market
To know what’s famous in the city. You can get to meet & see many locals there. You can see how they shop & buy things that popular in the place.
14. Check your documents
It is very important to check your documents before you start your vacation. I will suggest you take a copy & pen and make a checklist of the important documents that you must carry like your passport, your flight tickets, your itinerary plan & more.
Arrange your documents as per the checklist & you will miss nothing.
15. Take some class
Enroll yourself in some class as per your interest. Traveling is a superb opportunity to learn something new. Local people arrange different classes for tourists.
You can find a cooking class, a dance class, an art class, a fishing lesson, a surf lesson & more.
After you have decided on the vacation location check out if you want to take a class that interests you. Check out the review of the class on Google map.
Buddhism is one of the most practiced religions. Buddhist temples are full of history & excellent architecture. On one of my visits to such temples, I got lost in a peaceful quiet environment.
As you wander on the temple ground you can get lost in your own thought irrespective of your religion.
Buddhist temples are a sacred place & one of the major tourist attractions. They are full of history & architecture. It is our duty as travelers to respect Buddhist culture & belief.
You can face offense if you happen to do anything against their beliefs. To make things simple I have put together a list of do's and don'ts of visiting a Buddhist temple.
Do’s(Travel Tips When Visiting Buddhist Temples)
• Remove your shoes when you enter the worship area of the temple. As you enter the temple premises you will see a board indicating you to leave your shoes there.
• Dress properly: This is something that most tourists ignore. During vacation, most tourists prefer to wear shorts & be in fashion.
It is advisable to cover your shoulder and wear long pants the day you plan to visit the Buddhist temples. That’s how you can show respect to the people there.
For men, you can wear long pants, shirt & shoes. For women, you must wear a skirt or pants that will cover your knee. Leggings, tight pants, tank tops, and spaghetti straps are a strict NO in temples.
By chance you happen to wear something that not suitable for the temple visit, then rent a unisex sarong from the temple to cover yourself.
If you are on a honeymoon please do not display your affection towards each other publically. As a tourist appreciate the divine works of the temple.
• Take off your hat & sunglass as a gesture of respect when entering the Buddhist temple.
• Show respect: Keep your cell phones on silent or vibration mode to avoid the noise of any incoming message or call. In fact, this is expected in all temples that you visit. Buddhist people prefer a silent area for their prayers.
Also refrain yourself from smoking, chewing gums inside the temple premises. You are expected to talk softly inside. You will be entering the area where locals go for praying. You are expected to main these etiquettes to avoid any offense.
• If a Buddhist monk passes greet them by a simple bow
· Consider donating any amount of money to the temple after your visit. Even a small donation is appreciated a lot. You can enter most of the temple for free or for a small amount.
Giving a small amount as a donation will help them to preserve it properly.
Things you should avoid doing when visiting a Buddhist temple
• If you are sitting in the worship are stand up when a monk or nun enters. This is to show your respect for them.
• Avoid using your index finger to point at any people or a thing.
While it is perfectly normal in the western countries but this gesture is quite rude in Buddhist temples. For pointing, you can use your right hand with palm facing upwards.
• Respect the Buddha Statues: It is a bad manner to touch, sit, or climb on a Buddha statue or even on the raised platform where the statue sits. You must get permission before taking photographs.
While exiting you are expected to walk backward and create some distance between you & Buddha before you turn your back.
• Take some extra measures when interacting with a Buddhist monk: Monks are very friendly people, but there are few things that you should take care of if you wish to speak to them.
· Avoid pointing your feet at any Buddhist.
· Buddhist monks usually do not eat in the afternoon. So do not eat around them at that time.
· If a monk is sitting, show respect by sitting before you start your conversation. Avoid sitting at a higher level than the monk.
· In Chiang Mai, you will see many monks coming out of the internet café or speaking over the cell phone. Remember serving as a monk is a part of a young man's development.
Only a handful of them choose to remain monks. They are very friendly & can become lifelong friends. Exchange your email ids and become friends on face book.
You can get to know more about their daily life in a temple from them.
· Do not use your left hand for giving or taking anything from a monk. Always use your right hand.
· Women should take extra care. They should not touch or even brush against a monk. This can make them feel uncomfortable.
I have put the do’s & don’ts in simple points for your easy understanding. They are super easy to follow & avoid any issue on your visit. These are some of the important things you need to know before visiting a Buddhist temple.
As a traveler, you might feel a little tensed when entering a Buddhist temple. But the above-mentioned etiquette for visiting Buddhist temples will help you to feel comfortable while you plan your visit.
You will love knowing the unique history of each temple. Either hire a guide to explain the details or search on Google about each temple before your visit. The best time to visit a Buddhist temple is early morning.
The temperature is relatively cool which will make you more comfortable to visit the temple & you can also see the monks returning from their alms procession.
For any religion, the place of worship is the most sacred place. So when you explore a place of worship, it is very important that you respect their beliefs and cultures.