To be a tourist in your own city can be a fun way to experience the place you usually call home. It could be an excuse to do things you wouldn’t normally do or a chance to discover new and interesting things about your city. If you’ve ever had those moments where you think your city is boring, maybe you just need to look at it from an outsider’s perspective. Check out these tips for how to be a tourist in your own city. You never know, you might just be surprised to discover what it has to offer.
One of the best reasons to be a tourist in your own city is the chance to do all the touristy things that ‘locals’ wouldn’t usually do. Visit the main monuments and attractions, head to any local theme parks, or attend any markets or festivals that your city might host. Even the super cheesy attractions can be fun if you approach them with the right attitude.
Unless you have kids or work with kids then you probably haven’t been to the zoo in ages. Most major cities have some form of zoo, animal sanctuary, or aquarium and they can make for a fun day out. If the thought of animals in cages puts you off a visit, research different places before you go and choose one that focuses on environmental issues, animal welfare, and conservation.
Splash out and have a ‘staycation’ in your city. Spend a night or a weekend at a hotel and pretend you’re visiting from out of town. Staying in a central location can also be a great way to experience what your city has to offer. Try mystery or last-minute deals, or booking during quiet seasons for bargains.
Booking a tour can be a great way to learn more about your city. Tours can take place in all sorts of different settings and forms. If you find historical tours a bore then try foodie tours, coffee tours, or even shopping tours!
Another way to experience your city as a tourist is to take in a big sporting match. Big sporting matches often attract people from out of town, and it’s also a chance to support your home team.
Museums and art galleries aren’t just for out-of-towners to visit. Many museums and art galleries have visiting or changing exhibits, so there’s always something new for locals to check out. Keep an eye out for small and independent art galleries in your area too.
Get active and head outdoors to experience what your city has to offer. If your city has or is near a beach, spend a day there soaking up the sunshine. You could also explore any lakes and watering holes to cool off during the summer months. If your city is near a mountain, try going for a hike to see your city from up above. Activities will vary depending on your location so check out your city guide for what’s on offer in your area.
View your city through a new lens, literally! Just head out there with a camera or camera phone and snap away at interesting and unusual things you come across in your city. For something different you could take part in a photography course or maybe even participate in an Instawalk if you’re an Instagram user.
Showing visiting friends and family around your city is a great way to view it through their eyes. You might be in more of a tour guide role than a tourist one, but it’s a great way to show off and share your favourite city sights and hang outs.
Looking at your city through a new lens can give you a different perspective on things. You might even discover that it’s more exciting than you previously thought! Do you have any tips for being a tourist in your own city?