The Best Travel Sites You Aren’t Using

Some of my favorite travel sites that help you get a taste of local living. Click to read the best travel sites you aren’t using from

Sometimes, you want to be a tourist. To just hop on the famous red double decker bus and have someone schlep you around the city. Other times, you crave an off-the-beaten-path adventure. An experience that you’ll tell your grandchildren about. Luckily, the world is offering more and more of these local and off-beat experiences. With new products and services popping up daily, it’s hard to keep track of them all. I’ve rounded up some of my favorite travel sites that help you get a taste of local living. Read on for the best travel sites you aren’t using!



Some of my favorite travel sites that help you get a taste of local living. Click to read the best travel sites you aren’t using from

I spend most of my time using buses, trains, and planes while I travel, and usually, those options are sufficient. But, I do want to share with you some alternate transportation websites: for the times when “the usual” just won’t cut it for the adventures you have in mind.


The “How”:

What is the best way to get from one city to another? That depends on how you define “best.” Luckily for you, this burning transportation question can be answered by Rome 2 Rio. The site shows you EVERY possibility on how to get from point A to point B – including the time, cost, and mode of transportation. It’s amazing.

By Car:

  • Paid hitchhiking with Blablacar. Don’t worry – it’s safe!
  • Rent someone else’s car instead of paying a rental company with Getaround, Hubber, or Drivy.

By Boat:

  • Book a private yacht and captain with Incrediblue. Prices are actually surprisingly reasonable when you book with a group of people.
  • Own your own boat for the day with Boatbound.

By Bike:

  • Rent someone’s bike wherever you go with Spinlister.

By RV:

  • A house on wheels means saving money on accommodation too! Rent one on RVShare.

By Bus…sort of:

  • Busabout is the best mix of traditional tour meets independent travel. Hop on and off where you’d like, and get picked up one day or one week later – it’s totally up to you. Not only is it reasonably priced, but it’s incredibly flexible and a great way for a solo traveler to meet people as well! Just book online and you’re ready to go. Did I mention they run services all over the world?


Experiences by Locals:

Some of my favorite travel sites that help you get a taste of local living. Click to read the best travel sites you aren’t using from

Anyone can grab a guidebook and traipse from monument to monument but not every gets to really experience a place like a local. But now you can! Not only are tours with locals personal, but they also offer you an insight into parts of the city you would have never thought to explore – whether it be street art, hidden hiking trails, or food market tours. You can always be independent and do your own local exploring with the help of resources like Spotted by Locals. But for those of you interested in curated tours, check out the below sites!



Whether you’re tired of eating at restaurants and eager for a home-cooked meal, or looking for a unique foodie experience; these are the sites for you.

  • Eatwith: Multi-course and high-quality dining in people’s homes or in unique venues. The menus are truly incredible!
  • Bookalokal: Another website for local dining experiences. Much more location options than Eatwith, and not always located in someone’s home either.
  • Traveling Spoon: Eat, cook, or tour with a local! This site offers these opportunities and more in Asia.
  • BonAppetour: Offers dinners with locals, but also includes interesting sensory and unique dining experience! Plus, they’re in a ton of cities worldwide.


Best of the rest:

For the adventurers, art enthusiasts, and family travelers – these sites have something for everyone!

  • Peek: A little on the pricier side, but provides an excellent list of adventure classes and tours in local cities.
  • Context: Small and curated tours led by professionals in the field. For example – a museum guided tour with an art historian.
  • Vayable: Everything from art to food to adventure tours can be found on Vayable. Both Vayable employees and travelers rate tours and the site has options that suit any time frame or price range. Get $10 off by using my referral code.


Of course, there’s nothing wrong with going the traditional route when it comes to tours, meals, or transportation. But sometimes you’ll find that going outside of the box makes a trip that much more memorable!


Have you ever tried any of these services? Which are your favorite websites for local experiences? Share in the comments below!

Some of my favorite travel sites that help you get a taste of local living. Click to read the best travel sites you aren’t using from

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  • I heard about most of them but daamn for sure writing down some of them, hope they spread out and have more people around the world 😀

    • Let me know if you ever use any of them! Would love to hear your experiences. I love that these sites help us connect with people around the world 🙂

  • Andra Tomescu

    Rome2Rio is the best thing ever! I use it quite often. Haven’t tried the others yet 🙂

    • Agreed Andra! I can’t believe I didn’t learn about it until last year. It’s a lifesaver when planning multi-city adventures! I actually tried Blablacar for the first time this past summer in Spain and it was a great way to meet locals and super safe :). I highly recommend it if you get a chance to use it!

  • Thank you, some really good tips 🙂

  • Sara Cormeny

    Your “best of the rest” section really spoke to me — I am always looking for excellent cultural experiences on the road! To that end, I think Time Out London and Time Out New York are websites with awesome up-to-date listings and reviews for theatre, comedy shows, music, and festivals.

    I usually search a destination name on my Kindle and then look at self-published guides by locals to get a sense of the place, and have read some enjoyable books as a result.

    To that end, I have self-published a guide to Washington DC evening entertainment (dinner, show, drinks all in one neighborhood), which is updated quarterly and showcases the best of food, theatre, drinks and a fun local experience for anyone visiting the city.

    I just love, love, love the do-it-yourself travel style, thanks for your tips!

    • Oh you’re totally right, how could I have forgotten Time Out? It isn’t big here in Los Angeles but I always look it at globally.
      That’s a REALLY smart tip!! I’d never even considered checking out self-published guides. How do you go about finding the self-published ones amongst the piles of big brands? Just curious 🙂
      I’ve only been to DC briefly but I’ll definitely check yours out for my next visit. Feel free to write the name!

      Really glad you liked the post and found it useful! Thanks for commenting and reading 🙂

      • Sara Cormeny

        So glad you’ll have a chance to check out my Kindle book, The Insider’s Guide to Great Evenings Out in Washington DC. You can always get a link to the latest Amazon copy at the website, , and also see the latest news and info.

        As to the question of how to find offbeat guides on Kindle — while I’m on my Kindle, I usually just type the name of a destination in Search (or if you want to do this on the Web, go to ). From there, sometimes the first page of results includes cool self-published or small-press nearly out-of-print guides, generally ranging from $0.99 (like ours) to $6.99. If not, I will click on one of the popular guides and then in the “other books like this one” the more offbeat and cheaper books show up. Then I can spend a good 20 minutes nosing around for good buys!

        And, just to give you some titles to start with, here are my favorite offbeat Kindle travel books so far, in the order I purchsed them:

        Jaywalking with the Irish, from Lonely Planet Travel Literature
        Perfect Phrases in French for Confident Travel by Eliane Kurbegov
        The Revealed Rome Handbook by Amanda Ruggeri
        Tips for the Table: All You Need to Know When Dining Out in Italy by Paolo Tosolini
        Rome the Second TIme: 15 Itineraries that Don’t Go to the Coliseum by Dianne Bennett
        Child Octopus: Edible Adventures in Hong Kong by Matthew Amster-Burton

        • AWESOME. Thanks so much for all the information! I’ll definitely check these out :). In the meantime, happy travels!

  • OMG, i think i know many sites, but have to be honest, havent heard of any of listed sites. Gotta check them out! Thanks!

  • I LOVE Rome2Rio too!

  • Mark Shirran

    Rome2Rio looks amazing!! Wish I’d heard of it a couple years ago!!

    Thanks for sharing!
    -Around The Orbis x