As a city dweller, you’ve probably picked up some tips and tricks for living in the city. Whether that means knowing which restaurants are open late or how to hail a cab, there’s always something new to learn about your hometown. But what happens when you’re visiting another city? How can you make the most of your time there when everything is unfamiliar? Well, we’ve compiled five simple steps for how to live in the city like a local.
1. Avoid tourist traps
In most places, avoiding tourist traps is the best way to experience a local culture. This may seem obvious, but it can be challenging to do in certain cities. For example, if you’re visiting New York City and want to see Central Park and Times Square, then by all means, go ahead! But there are plenty of other things to do in this city that don’t involve tourist spots.
If you want to see what it’s like to live in New York City, try visiting the outer boroughs. These are less populated and more affordable areas of the city that tourists often overlook. You’ll find plenty of local businesses and residents in these areas, so you can get a real feel for how people live here.
2. Determine the best way to get around
Depending on the city you’re visiting, there are various ways to get around. For example, in New York City, it’s common for people to use public transportation like subways and buses. In other cities like Washington DC or San Francisco, people usually drive or use car-sharing services to get around. You can also walk or ride a bike if you prefer to be more active while exploring your surroundings. If you’re looking for something even more adventurous, consider renting a scooter or motorcycle!
3. Find some local friends
Once you’ve found a place to stay and figured out how to get around, it’s time to start exploring! If you’re in a new city with lots of things to see and do, finding some local friends who can show you around can be helpful. If you don’t know anyone already living there, consider reaching out on social media or through other online forums. You may even find someone making plans for an event that sounds fun on the same day as yours—and if not, they might know someone else who could join your excursion!
Finding local friends is essential, as they can help you navigate the city and show you around and provide some local insights and recommendations. They might even have a car or scooter to lend if you’re lucky!
4. Find a regular hangout spot that’s not a bar or a coffee shop
After you’ve been in a city for a while, it will start to feel like home. But getting there can be tricky if your only options for socializing are bars or coffee shops. Having a regular hangout spot means that you’ll see the same people over and over again, but also that these people will see you.
This will make them more likely to approach you and give you a chance to get to know them better. If your regular hangout spot is a bar or coffee shop, try finding somewhere else in town where people congregate! The best thing about this is that it doesn’t have to be anything specific — as long as something is going on that draws people together.
5. Get to know your neighbors
If you’re new in town, one of the best ways to get started with this is by getting to know your neighbors. Tell them that you’re looking for some good local recommendations, and ask them where they go out for dinner or grab a drink after work. You’ll be surprised how much information they can give you!
You should also take some time on weekends and weekdays to talk with your neighbors—they will likely be happy to have someone listen in return for their own stories. And if nothing else, knowing who lives next door is always nice.
6. Know your way around local cuisines
You might have heard of the saying, “when in Rome, do as the Romans do.” You can apply this to many other cities worldwide, including yours. If you want to feel like a local in any city, whether it’s Paris, Prague, or even New York City, one of the best ways is to eat their food.
If you’re looking for something tasty and authentic that locals usually eat, ask around! Locals will be more than happy to point out some great restaurants where they go for lunch on their breaks from work.
You can also peruse online reviews for local restaurants and check out blogs and websites that focus on finding hidden gems in different cities worldwide. These are usually written by people who live there, so they know exactly what kind of cuisine is popular in each area. For instance, try asking locals about the best pastry shop in town with goods that are easy to bake. If you’re looking for something healthier, try asking locals where they go for green juice. They’ll likely give you the best recommendations you may not have considered before.
There are many ways to get to know a new city and learn about its culture. The most important thing is not to try too hard or feel pressured by the expectation that you should be able to do it all right away. Instead, take your time and enjoy the process of discovering things on your own terms. By following these tips, you’ll soon find yourself living in harmony with your surroundings without even trying!