Whether you're just in Toronto for a day on business or taking a month long vacation in the tropics, it's up to you to make the most of your vacation. No one wants to spend all that money on travel tickets and hotels only to have no photos and stories to show off afterward. If you're a shy person by nature you might need some help putting yourself out there. Here are some ideas.

Buy a Guidebook

If you know you're going to be spending a few weeks consulting at a downtown clinic, go to your local library or bookstore and get a guidebook for the city. The guide will have all sorts of information on tours, attractions, and local events and will give you a good jumping off point for planning your outings. Different brands of guide books cater to different types of travelers, so look over a few before you decide.

Get Out and About

After all day sitting in a conference room discussing politics or business with other professionals, you may be tempted to go back to your hotel and flake out all evening. Don't! You're in a new city. You should use every spare minute to explore it and make memories. Even if you don't have a plan in mind, simply explore the neighborhood around your hotel. You never know what museums and shops you'll stumble onto.

Talk to Locals

Unless you want your vacation to be exactly like your life at home, you should make an effort to learn about the culture and practices in the city you're visiting. What do locals eat? What are their hobbies? What fun phrases can you pick up? You can only do this by talking to locals. Start with hotel staff, shop keepers, and museum attendants and move on to people you meet in restaurants or on the street. You might even get invited to a party or to try some yoga classes for free.

Try Something New

Going on vacation is your chance to throw off the restrictions of the ruts you've gotten into at home. What have you always wanted to do? Get rhinoplasty surgery in Toronto? Go skydiving? Swim with sea turtles? Then make it happen! Taking chances and trying new things are the basis of all the best stories you'll have to tell about your vacation and they're also a chance to get some great photos that will help you remember your vacation with pride.

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