Research your intended destination prior to travelling. A better understanding of the country you are visiting will hold in far better stead for all aspects of your trip.
Not only will it give a broader understanding of the culture and history of your chosen destination, but it will also help you to appreciate the ‘world view’ of the nation you choose to visit.
Through a little reading, you will learn a number of the ‘ do’s and don’ts’ of the region you have chosen to visit.
Every country has different social taboos. Through researching the area you are visiting, you will be less likely to accidentally offend those in your host country.
With conscientious travel comes the responsibility to try and assimilate into the culture you are visiting. Through learning even a few words of the local language you will be making a huge step towards showing that you have an interest in the area you are visiting, by showing that you have made an effort to be a part of their culture.
There are endless resources available in all mediums to research your chosen destination.
Guide books are always a good starting point, the following are a good starting point:
Rough Guides Comprehensive travel advice for the more discerning adventurer.
Lonely Planet Highly impressive resource for all travellers, slightly backpacker orientated. Worth checking out for the ‘thorn tree’ online message board alone.
Time Out Online companion to the successful magazine and city guide book series. Excellent for entertainment and dining-out suggestions.
Footprint The forefather of modern day guide books. Ethical, well informed information.
Lets Go Student orientated travel tips, this ever-popular guide book is excellent for those travelling on a tight budget.