Not only is it a chance to explore a new corner of the world, but it’s also an opportunity to change how you think about the world and your place in it. 

Jet-setting to a new destination and immersing yourself in a new culture is also really exciting, especially true for those who want to backpack or volunteer abroad.

But travelling can also be challenging, so, what can you do to keep their brains sharp, healthy and active? 

Here are a few tips on keeping your mind active while abroad.


1. Brain Games

Downloading a few mobile titles is a great way to keep brain-stimulating games at your fingertips. First, they can be accessed easily, even with weaker internet signals. Second, there’s tons of variation, which means you can find a title that suits your needs. Let’s cover two of the best travel games

The first is poker. This card game challenges the mind to memorize, analyze, and strategize at each turn. Popular variations like Texas Hold’em and Omaha can be played from remote devices where players can join games of all types. If you’re a little rusty, you can brush up with guides, which most virtual platforms offer.

If you’d rather dive into a mobile game that’s a bit more creative, consider Luminosity. This app includes over fifty different ‘brain games’ that are designed to foster memory, flexibility, and the speed of decision-making. With so many minigames to choose from, you’ll never get bored.


2. Learn a Language

What better time to study a language than actually whilst travelling. It will help you with integration, speaking with locals and also boost your knowledge and boost your brain. You could download an app, take classed online, or search courses with language schools abroad.


3. Cultural Immersion

Mobile games are a great choice for keeping the mind active because they also make us feel a bit more at home while using a smartphone. However, for those truly dropping off the map, keep in mind that cultural immersion in and of itself helps foster a better brain. The more you put into your experience, the more you’ll get out of it.

First, you’ll likely be picking up tons of new words and phrases. If you’re able to, join a language class—even if it’s at the beginner level. Language acquisition is one of the best exercises for the mind. But there are other immersive options at your fingertips.

You can dive into an activity like learning a new instrument. Creative challenges like music are incredibly beneficial for the mind—and the soul, some would add. Another great option is to explore an area’s culinary history and try your hand at a local specialty.

Lastly, some travelers might prefer to explore a region’s ecology, diving into local flora and fauna or volunteering. No matter your interests or where you go, there’s a way for you to explore and expand your knowledge base.


4. Exercise

There are so many benefits of travelling for mental heatlh, but did you know that being active, walking and doing daily exercise is also very beneficial to a healthy brain.


5. Eat Healthily


Let’s touch on one last point about keeping your mind sharp while abroad. Though not many people make this connection, the body is the foundation of the mind.

Our brains are our body’s most powerful organ—and they need care, nutrition, and rest to function at their maximum capacity. So, if you want to train your brain while traveling, don’t forget about your physical health.

It's easy to get sick when abroad—and it’s even easier to stop looking after yourself, what with being on the move and possibly drinking and partying. However, don’t neglect hydration, sleep patterns, and basic nutrition while you’re away.

Keep in mind that your brain needs extra care during this time to soak up every new experience. Be sure to eat healthy food and don’t be afraid to pack extra goodies, from Vitamin C tablets to motion sickness medicine.


Do you have any recommendations? Let us know in the comments section.