This is Google’s top result for, “Top 10 Places to Go After Graduation:”
10. Baja Surf Trip
8. Dublin, Ireland
7. Egypt’s Mighty Pyramids
5. Greek Isles
4. Cinque Terre
3. Auckland, New Zealand
2. Machhu Pichu, Peru
1. Cancun, Mexico
Originally published at travelblog.viator.com, I saw this list and thought, frankly, “PffffffffoKAY?!” Obviously we’d all love to tour the pyramids after years of exhausting ourselves mentally, physically and financially. But not having to wake up for an 8am biochemistry lab is a vacation to me! Don’t misunderstand me, I support the notion of exploration, growth and independence in the last unfettered stage of neo-adulthood. Sallie Mae won’t come a-knockin’ for 6 more months, and you are still wide eyed and spongey brained. Go somewhere! Do something! Meet people! Here are my top post-graduation explorations that do not involve $3,000 plane tickets or guided sherpa tours.
4. Grandma’s House
She loves you the most and spoils you the best. Spend some time getting your body reacquainted with real food, sleep until WHENEVER and maybe even come away with some pocket money. All it costs is an offer to wash some dishes and a couple rides to the grocery store.
3. Going Solo
College entails years of hanging out with your closest friends that you already know. Take a day or several, and go…anywhere without people you already know! It’s the ultimate leap of independence, and when you’re eating food you’ve never tried (no fair scarfing down McDonald’s) in a restaurant you’ve never heard of in a town that is not home, you will mature and find a sense of independence. Sample lessons in newness include: eating an unheard of food, reading a book by an unheard of author, and initiating a conversation with an unknown human being. Side effects include falling in love and living a life eerily mirroring a Kate Hudson movie, and enjoying your freedom, because this way of life is so freeing and spectacular.
2. Get a Job
Just hear me out. You graduated from college, which in this day and age means close to nothing. You still have to attend graduate school, or spend 2 years working as a slave to make anything of yourself unless you had the good sense to major in something useful like civil engineering. So before you enter the next leg of drudgery, get a job you don’t care about, and use all that money for fun times! Folding shirts at Urban Outfitters isn’t going to help with student loans or a down payment on a house, but every hour you spend saying, “Can I help you find something?” is another Maker’s Mark Manhattan! It’s the last time in your life you won’t be ear marking money for something boring in the future, so learn how to pull a shot of espresso and spend some of your money on the NOW.
1. Road Trip
This is trip is a cliche for a reason. Road trips with your buddies are the most awesome. It doesn’t matter where you’re going or why, you will never spend less money having more of a good time than when driving down PCH, touring the American South or crossing into Vancouver. I won’t even give you tips for this because if you can’t figure out how to let go and get going, then I don’t know WHAT you learned in college. Alright, I have one tip. Volunteer to move a friend’s sister into her new place if possible. This guarantees gas and food money from the parents, which is the only way this trip could get any better than it was already going to be.
God speed, new graduates. Go get out and about an all around.