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How do you find your way around with no sense of direction?

Travel Forums General Talk How do you find your way around with no sense of direction?

1. Posted by Arl (Budding Member 3 posts) 7y Star this if you like it!

Hi everyone,

I have a problem. I love travelling, but I am absolutely clueless when it comes to finding my way around in a foreign country. I once spent 2 hours endlessly wondering around trying to find my way back to my hotel room. Has anyone got any suggestions? Maps do not help me either as I am unable to figure out North from South. I do not want to waste my next holiday trying to find my way around.

Thanking you in advance,

2. Posted by madpoet (Respected Member 415 posts) 7y Star this if you like it!

The easiest solution would be to find a travelling companion who DOES have a good sense of direction. ;)

It's often difficult to know which way is north or south in a foreign city. But you can buy a small compass (keychain-size). Also, take a look at a map of the destination you are going to, before you go there, to become familiar with the street names and general layout of the city.

Most cities have a central axis- either a main street or a river. Or they have a focal point, like the Acropolis in Athens. If you can find your way there, you can usually get a sense of where you are, and find your way to where you want to be.

Whenever I check into a hotel, I get a business card from the front desk. That way, if I get truly and hopelessly lost, I can jump into a taxi, show the driver the card, and at least get back to my hotel.

I hope that's helpful.

3. Posted by Dodger (Inactive 873 posts) 7y Star this if you like it!

You can buy pretty cheap GPS's nowdays and load the maps of the area you are heading to then never be lost again. If you have a smart phone you can log into googlemaps and check out where you from there too.

4. Posted by staaleand (Full Member 30 posts) 7y Star this if you like it!

Perhaps I am old-fashioned, but I prefer maps to GPS, GPS screen doesnt match map-size.
Remember that maps generally (in Europe at least) have north UP, so south is DOWN, west is LEFT and east is RIGHT on the map.
A compass is an ok idea,but beware of deviation. Lot of not too advanced phones have an electronic compass (my five years old NOKIA have one in the sports-menu), it is perhaps more reliable than a cheap, small magnetic compass.
If you can see the sun and know local time, the sun is in the south at noon, east at 6 AM, west at 6 PM and north at 12 PM (you have to spend some time north of the arctic circle in summer to actually see that).

Hope this was a little help.