Do you like travelling? How often do you go travelling? Where do you usually go travelling? What do you enjoy about travelling?
  • All over the place (idiom) - in a lot of different places or in all parts of a place.
  • To wander (verb) - to walk around slowly in a relaxed way or without any clear purpose or direction.
  • Homebody (noun) - a person who likes spending time at home rather than going out with friends or travelling to different places.
  • To poke around/about (phrasal verb) - to search through something, esp. without permission or without any particular idea of what you might find.
  • Spot (noun) - a particular place.
  • Novelty (noun) - the quality of being new and unusual.
  • Surrounding (noun[plural]) - the place where someone or something is and the things that are in it.
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Questions and Answers
M: Do you like travelling?

R: Well, you would think someone who has been all over the place as much as I have would enjoy it. But I think I'd prefer the idea of being in a place more than getting to it. Oh, unless you're including wandering around in the definition of travelling, which can be fun to do.

M: How often do you go travelling?

R: Not as often as I used to. I'm very much a homebody these days because I have a house to look after. I would like to go to a few more places, though. It's my dream to visit a place called Piran in Slovenia one day. It looks amazing, and Slovenes are great people, I'm told.

M: Where do you usually go travelling?

R: Good question. I think I spent a great deal of time poking about Europe like most Europeans do, but I wouldn't say I frequently go to any one spot in particular anymore.

M: What do you enjoy about travelling?

R: Well, when I was younger, I used to love the novelty of just being in a new place with new surroundings but now I'm older. I like the sense of freedom and adventure. I can go anywhere I like and do anything. And I love it.

M: Scotland freedom!

M: So dear listener, travelling. Okay? Do we like travelling? Maybe yes. Most people like travelling.

R: I think most people like being on holiday. I don't know if they like the idea of travelling so much.

M: But you know, like being on holiday isn't the same as travelling, because like travelling is kind of, I don't know like you move, you go from one place to another. You just go to South America and you travel there. You know? Alone or with friends.

R: But is that the travelling that you enjoy or is that being with your friends?

M: Well, I think both. You are with your friends and you travel.

R: No, you must choose one.

M: No, you are going to choose one at the end of this episode, but I can do whatever I want.

R: Oh, okay.

M: So dear listener, travelling and tourism are two different things. Okay? Are you a traveler or are you a tourist? Rory here gives us one huge sentence, which is, I wouldn't do that, but Rory is an educated super native speaker so he can do whatever he wants with his own language. English. That's why here we have a massive sentence from Rory. Yes, it is one sentence. But Rory made pauses. So for example, like before, somewhere in the middle of this massive sentence, he just made a pause and kind of started a new sentence.

R: This is a good example of something called chunking, which native speakers do all the time to break up long sentences into understandable pieces of information.

M: We use Present Perfect here. I've been all over the place, meaning I've visited many countries. I've travelled to many countries. I've been to many countries. And we can say also let them wander around. A phrasal verb. What does it mean?

R: It just means to go around places with no fixed plan, just wandering, seeing what you can see.

M: Yeah, I enjoy travelling. I enjoy wandering around. Like I go to Europe. I wander around different cities and different countries. Yeah? If you don't like travelling, you can say, oh, travelling, I can't be bothered. Like, no, I don't like it. Or you can say, I prefer a staycation, for example. What's a staycation, Rory?

R: Is that when you just stay at home?

M: Yeah, you stay at home but also kind of you explore the places in your country, I think. Yeah, it's kind of like you go somewhere near your home. So maybe if you go to the countryside, it's kind of like domestic tourism, okay? Or you visit places in your country. So kind of you stay in your country, but you can go to a different city or town. Also, if you don't like travelling, you can say, oh, I don't like travelling, or I hardly ever travel because I don't like splashing out on expensive hotels. Splash out on something. Rory, tell us what it means.
R: If you splash out on something, it means you spend a lot of money on it. So for example, well, if you're splashing out on a hotel then you spend a lot of money on it. It's like my friends are going to a music festival and they've splashed out a lot of money on their hotels. They've spent hundreds of pounds. I have not, though. I have only spent 200 pounds on my hotel. Yes.

M: Yeah. You see? So you can say, yeah, I do love travelling, but I dislike splashing out on expensive hotels. So I prefer kind of to travel on a tight budget. Travel on a tight budget. Like, don't spend much money while you're travelling. Here you can say "not as often as I used to"like I used to travel a lot, but now not as often as I used to. Rory is a homebody. Who is a homebody?

R: Someone who stays at home. I have to. This place will not look after itself. You know?

M: Yeah, you can say I'm a homebody. A person who likes spending time at home rather than going out with friends or travelling to different places. So even if you're not a homebody, you can say, well, sometimes I'm a homebody because I have the house to look after, I have my family to look after. Or maybe I have a crazy cat to look after.

R: A crazy cat?

M: Yes, a crazy cat. A needy cat. And then Rory mentioned a specific place in Slovenia. Rory, what's the place?

R: Piran. I feel like I'm a walking advert for the Slovenian tourist board at this point. But I really, I'm determined to go there and I have determined to go there this year for my birthday, even if it kills me.

M: Okay. Rory, and what can you say? Like this Piran is...list.

R: Oh, Piran is on my bucket list. Yes. Well, it is because it's a place I need to go before I die.

M: Exactly. Like do you have a list of places you should go to before you die, dear listener? Rory does. I do. What about you?

R: I have one.

M: You have one place?

R: I have one. I only have one more place I want to visit.

M: Really? In the whole world?

R: Yeah. I only wanted to go to Piran and then I'm done.

M: Are you joking?

R: No.
M: Wow. Okay. And then you can say like, well, I'll go anywhere. You can also say that I'm always dreaming of my next destination. So kind of all the time. I'm always dreaming of my next destination. Maybe something exotic. And I'll go anywhere if it's adventurous. So I enjoy adventurous travelling. I enjoy adventures and travelling. So yeah, it's an adventurous activity. Reacting to the question is a good strategy. Like where do you usually go? Where do you usually go travelling? A good question. Like ooh, a tricky question, a difficult question. So you react to the question naturally, and then you answer the question. With a phrasal verb, dear listener. Poke about.

R: Yes, but poking about is just having a look in places. Not really trying to find anything in particular. Just seeing what happens.

M: And here you can say I spent a lot of time poking about Europe. So kind of like travelling around Europe, looking around. Poke about means to search for something, but here it just means like to kind of visit a place, to look around. A place or a sport. So if I say I don't usually go to any particular sport. Sport like a place. Like a city or a country. Yeah?

R: But it could be talking about places in your hometown. Like, oh, go I prefer to go to spots around my hometown.

M: Yeah. To visit spots, to visit places in my own country. Rory, do you ever go to places off the beaten track?

R: I used to, but I don't now, because I'm old.

M: So kind of, we have touristy places, like very popular places, I don't know, like Rome, Paris. But there are some places off the beaten track. Places not as popular as the other places. For example, this Piron in Slovenia. Is it off the beaten track? Or is it a touristy place? Super popular place.

R: Well, it's funny, because it might be both. I think it's off the beaten track for British travellers because not everybody goes to Slovenia. But I think Slovenia is a very popular tourist destination for lots of people on the continent. So it's yes and no. If you are from Slovenia, and you have a lot of tourists in Piran, please feel free to correct me. But I think it's both I don't think many people from Britain go there. But I think Europeans got there all the time.

M: I used to love the novelty of travelling. So when I was younger, now I'm super old. I used to love the novelty, like new things about travelling. Usually, when you travel, you see lots of new things, people, and food. So the novelty of being in a new place with new surroundings. Surroundings? What surrounds you? But now I'm older. I like the sense of freedom. So Rory goes to Slovenia, and he feels freedom. Yeah?

R: But you could go to a different country. Or actually, you probably could go to Slovenia as well and feel a sense of security, also. Or safety. So you can feel a sense of lots of things.

M: I like the sense of adventure. I like the sense of freedom. Yeah? Nice. You can also say that I love backpacking. When you just grab your back, bag, no, you don't grab your back, you grab your bag. You can just say I love backpacking when you take your backpack and you go travelling around Europe only with one bag. Or I love camping in the woods. You know? With a tent. I enjoy sleeping in tents. I love trying out different foods. Rory, would you like to comment on anything else from the answers?

R: I have a couple of favourite phrases. This is not just about travelling, but this is in general. So things I say a lot are not as often as I used to. And I think at this point, everyone is used to me saying, oh, good question.

M: And do I need an article? Do you say, oh, good question. Or, ooh, a good question. A, a. Do I need a or just like, oh, good question, a good question.

R: You can have both. However, if you say it is a good question, it's like the other questions have been bad. So it could be quite rude. I would not use the article here with the examiner. Just a good question. And of course, I also frequently say, I wouldn't say. But that could be for this, where I said I wouldn't say I frequently go somewhere. But I could also say, oh, I wouldn't say I'm addicted to travelling, but I go travelling a lot. So nothing specific about travelling. Just lots of small phrases that can be transferred to different topics, which is useful for your exam, because you might not be asked about travelling, you might be asked about something else.

M: Excellent. Bye!

R: Bye!

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