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How to Plan a Route When Traveling in a New City

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Let’s say you’re going to London, Berlin, Paris, Barcelona, or a different city with a lot of sights. You already have the tickets and the hotel reservation. The only thing left to do is plan what to see.

5-Minute Crafts is sharing a simple way to make your own tourist route.

1. Make a list of interesting locations.

First, use the search bar and type: “sights of *name of the city*.” Check the results and read the list and find the locations you would love to see.

After that, use different sources, like travel guides, popular blogs, forums, and travel shows on YouTube. Finally, ask your friends who have been to this city if they can recommend something to do there.

Eventually, you should have a list of interesting sights, possibly including the following:

  • Architecture (buildings, monuments, art-objects, ruins)
  • Public spaces (parks, squares)
  • Museums and art galleries
  • Zoos and reserves
  • Theme parks
  • Theaters and cinemas

2. Mark the locations on online maps.

Download an online map on your phone and mark the spots from the list there. You can use different symbols for different types of places, like flags for museums and stars for parks.

3. Spread the sightseeing across several days.

Once you’ve added all the locations on the map, try to plan your route day by day. You don’t need a very strict schedule, just a plan for the places that are near each other so you can visit them on the same day.

If you’re going to Barcelona and the locations you want to see are in 3 places, like the Gothic Quarter, Montjuïc, and the seaside, your 3-day route might look something like this:

1. The seaside

  • Bogatell Beach
  • Nova Icària Beach
  • Anillo Olímpico

2. The Gothic Quarter

  • Museu Picasso

  • Santa Maria del Mar

  • Palau Güell

3. Montjuïc

  • Plaça d’Espanya
  • The Fountain of Montjuïc
  • Montjuïc Castle

4. Look for free tours.

In many cities, locals often give free tours. You can look for ones that interest you. It will help you learn more about interesting places.

5. Make additional plans for going out of town.

It’s hard to combine walking in a town and going to theme parks with national reserves or big festivals. Usually, such trips take the entire day or even more. If you can, don’t take such trips on arrival and departure days.

Before going to such a place, learn all the important info, like the schedule, the prices, the transportation options, parking, and beyond. If you’re going to a park, check if there’s camping allowed there; if it’s a theme park, ask if there are free hotel rooms nearby.

Before you go, download the program of the festival or the park map to your phone. Make a plan for interesting locations to visit in advance as not to waste time when you’re there.

Bonus: Add your own things to online maps.

Before your trip, make a list of cafes and restaurants you want to visit. You can use the same sources to find places to eat.

Mark the places you find on online maps.

In the end, you should have a map that’s easy to use no matter where you are. If you’re walking in Trafalgar Square in London and you feel hungry, you can look at the map and see that there’s a good place to eat nearby. This will save you lots of time.

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