Country collectors – why do you travel?

Why do you travel? Are you looking for the experience or are you trying to pad your stats? We’ve all heard of those who count a stopover as a visited country. Does that count? What constitutes a real experience? Is it a day? 1 week? Do you have to live and work there?

For me it’s not tied to the time I spend but the experiences I create. One trip back to my home country I spent 3 weeks but all I did was go from one house to the next visiting family. I didn’t really feel like I experienced anything different. On the contrary I’ve been places where I’ve spent much less time but experienced much more. I’m not motivated to grow my list. What I want to do is create more experiences. For me that happens when I’ve experienced a local restaurant, heard local music, met locals and learned about their way of life, learned the history and used public transit. I don’t really feel like I’ve been to Mexico because I only spent 1 week in a resort in Cancun. That’s not Mexico to me. That’s just a resort.

How about you? What do you think? What’s travel to you? Are you an experience collector or country collector?