Last summer four friends from trourist decided to embark on a 33 day journey with one mission in mind: ignite the ExperienceLess movement. What exactly is ‘experienceless’? The guys describe their newly coined term as one that embodies the person ‘who travel[s] to live destinations, not visit them.’ It’s a new spin on the old dialogue of authenticity and travel (eh hem, my own post on the difference of a traveler and tourist can be read here.)
The four friends covered Paris, Amsterdam, Berlin, Prague, Budapest, Istanbul and Barcelona in a motorhome. Along the way, they documented their adventures with a blog and videos. In each city, they would sit and hold a sign that reads: “Help! I’m ExperienceLess. I don’t want to visit your city, I want to live it. Thanks.” The goal was to capture a local’s attention and have that person show the ExperienceLess guys the “real” side to the city they were in.
On their blog, they looked back on the trip and shared,
Admittedly, there were people who when they saw us understood nothing. Others observed us with indifference. Generally speaking, though, we were quite pleased with the hospitality shown. People gave their time and interest so that we could walk away from their cities with more than just mute stares from historical buildings and museums.
While the trip ended last summer, the movement lives on with guest travel bloggers and those who seek more than the surface experience of the place they visit. I for one, think ExperienceLess embodies a wonderful idea and hope that it continues to live on for years to come. Remember next time you step foot in another city to seek out the ExperienceLess and ‘live those experiences hidden to anyone traveling as a tourist… get to know cities with the help of others and enlist the participation of its people.”
For the ExperienceLess Flickr photos, click here.
For the ExperienceLess Vimeo videos, click here.
The same guys are behind trourist, a travel network that embodies much of the same ideology of being more than just tourists at destinations. The interface is sleek and user-friendly…I really like it. It could be the Yelp of cities, just a little more Euro-centric. I often find myself using Couchsurfing as a source to find information about cities, namely because it’s locals and travelers alike that share information on the message boards, but I can definitely see how trourist can be helpful in evaluating a place from people who share the same spirit of travel. I looked up New York and found this Experience titled ‘Horns’: “The truth is that besides the smell, there’s also a peculiar sound to New York, the hornos of the cars, specially taxi’s. It’s almost like a backrground sound, even music. Take notice of it while in any street of New York. If a Taxi does not horn you, you are not a newyorker!!!” I’d say that’s pretty accurate :). For other experiences found on trourist, check them out for yourself here trourist.