Traveling is something everyone enjoys. Who doesn’t love seeing and feeling history and nature with his own senses? However, amongst the enjoyment we all feel whilst traveling, there’s a deeper lesson to be learned. Aside from positive emotions, we have to face some difficulties to get out of our comfort zone.
A big part of traveling is debunking stereotypes. Going to a foreign country and seeing that a certain stereotype is wrong is the best form of learning through experience. In this article, we will give you the 9 most mind-boggling stereotypes about countries and why they’re not true.
Germany – A Different Kind of Fun
Throughout the years, Germany began being seen as a country made of workaholics. Due to the economic stability and constant development, a stereotype was born. More and more people started to believe that Germans are rigid and uptight people. Fortunately for us travelers, this can’t be more different to the truth.
While it is true that Germans have an impeccable work ethic, they balance it with other parts of their lives. Thus, a major reason why you should visit Germany is their unique entertainment. Even though they work harder than everyone else, they also have fun more than anyone else.
If you want to experience culture in a never-before-seen form, visit Germany. From the bustling electronic music scene of Berlin to the iconic Oktoberfest, a trip to Germany is something you have to experience. The moment you immerse yourself in the rich German cultural life, you will come out a new person.
Philippines – Many Cultures in One Country
The Philippines have always been one of the more interesting countries in the world. Comprised of 7107 islands, there is a lot to see an experience.
However, a stereotype was born that the Philippines is not so developed and that they have a typical “island culture”. Perhaps, this stems from the classic Western outlook towards East Asian countries.
You should definitely travel to this interesting region if you have a chance. We’ve asked Jill Thompson from AssignmentMasters, who has traveled to the Philippines every year for more than a decade.
She says, “A couple of my colleagues and I decided to head there for New Year’s in 2005 and we’ve been going yearly ever since. When a country has so many islands, there’s bound to be different cultures and things to do. The Philippines are far from a single-minded, islander nation.” And when we asked her favorite spot there, the answer was an obvious one – Palawan beaches.
England – It’s Much More Than the Weather
In many movies, books and other works, England is depicted as a cold country, with rain year-long. Due to changes in the streams, England is a bit chillier these last few years.
However, these rumors are just a stereotype. Real climate conditions make this region colder and prone to rain, more than some Mediterranean countries. However, the statement that England is always rainy is a vast exaggeration.
Visit England because the whole country doesn’t have the same climate. Different regions have different weather around the year, so there is no reason not to get informed before traveling there. Bristol, for instance, is a popular summer vacation spot that has weather more similar than that of Spain or Italy.
It’s false to categorize England as a cold country. Sure, the overall climate might not be tropical, but that doesn’t mean you can’t relax on a beach during the summer.
Russia – Experience the World’s Largest Country
Oftentimes, we see pictures of old communist buildings and think that Russia is concrete urban hell. This can’t be further from the truth! Cities like Moscow and St. Petersburg are not so different than other big cities.
You can find much more than just urban surroundings in Russia. It’s the biggest country in the world and as such, it has a plethora of natural wonders for every traveler.
Travel to Murmansk to see the beauties of the Northern Sea and even witness the Northern Lights if you’re lucky. There are many tours in Siberia, where you can see the amazing wildlife of the tundra.
For those of you who are adventurous, take the iconic train ride from Moscow to Vladivostok. There, you will witness the entirety of Russia’s beauty, as you spend days crossing its entire territory.
France – People May be Different, But They’re Wonderfully Different
Some of our colleagues told us that France wasn’t as pleasant as they hoped. When we asked them about the reason, the answered – “the people are much ruder than in the States”. This seemed odd, but eventually, it turned out to be just a stereotype created from a few isolated incidents.
If you’re an avid traveler, you begin to notice differences between the mentalities in different countries. France is a big country and different people will leave different impressions on you. What you might notice is that the waiters are not that much talkative like they are in other parts of the world.
That doesn’t mean they are rude! In their culture, talking too much is seen as bothering people too much. What might seem strange to you is just their way of being polite.
Australia – They Don’t Drink Too Much
While Australia is known for its nightlife and parties, there is so much to it than just that. Oftentimes, people see young Australians abroad and conclude that everyone from there drinks in excessive amounts.
This is nothing more than a stereotype. Think about it – young people in general love to relax and party when abroad, making this “claim” about Australians nothing more than non-based slander.
The Land Down under is full of amazing sights and cultural festivities for everyone. You can go on a safari in the desert, visit a kangaroo resort or enjoy a night at the opera.
Additionally, Australia is so much more than the East and Southern Coasts. Cities such as Perth and Darwin are unique in their own right, albeit being underrated by tourists.
Visit Australia for an amazing mix of nature and culture, which spans across many decades. You will definitely want to come back again.
Italy – There’s More to it Than Arguing
A few of our friends expressed skepticism when traveling to Italy. They’ve heard all the stories about people having unpleasant encounters and experiences on the street.
In fact, these stories have gotten to them so much that they’ve started thinking all Italians are rude and unpleasant. This is how stereotypes are born and we simply have to debunk them.
Italians are known for being passionate about everything. They take their soccer seriously. Also, they go crazy for food, fashion and everything else that’s about their culture. While they have a fiery temperament, it’s never malicious. Instead, it stems from their passion.
This temperament doesn’t lead just to arguments. If your car breaks down in the middle of the road, people will want to help you and will even invite you to spend time at their home. If you love hospitality and you have that fire within you, Italy is a perfect place. Even if you don’t, Italy still remains majestic.
Greece – Not Everyone is Loud
Yet again, we have one of the most common stereotypes about Mediterranean people. Greeks are known for being fiery, just like Italians. When people encounter Greek tourists, they immediately think everyone is loud and that they have no manners.
Come on! Everyone has seen tourists misbehaving or getting carried away. The claim that all Greeks are loud is nothing but a stereotype. Greece is well out of the financial crisis it was in, and things are quite buzzing there.
Visiting Greece is not a vacation, it’s a never-ending experience. If you’re a history junkie, you will love the amount of ancient archaeological sites and the way this nation preserves them. They take a lot of pride in their hospitality, which you will experience the best on the islands in the Aegean and Ionian Seas.
India – The Spice Affair!
Forget about the cows on the streets, the smog in some cities, and a lot of people everywhere. It’s a new India. Numerous international corporations have their offices in many Indian cities.
Software development and entertainment in India are an impeccable state. These facts alone make the whole “India is poor” claim one big stereotype. If you still don’t believe us, go through the Credit Suisse report.
Many different religions and culture co-exist in India, as well as a large number of expats. If you want to experience something totally different and eye-opening, don’t hesitate to visit India. So, pack your bags to experience life the Maharaja style and dance to Bollywood tunes.
Every country is surrounded by stereotypes. It is your duty as a traveler to both enhance your knowledge and debunk them. Being proved wrong is the most invigorating feeling in the world. Visiting these countries will be an experience to remember, especially knowing that things aren’t always what they seem.