Travel - movement through any territory or water area for the
purpose of studying them, as well as for general educational,
educational, sports and other purposes.
Until the 19th century, travel was one of the main sources of obtaining information about certain countries (their nature, population, history, economy), the general nature and shape of the Earth's surface.
From ancient times, descriptions of the travels of Herodotus, the scientists who accompanied Alexander the Great in his campaigns, have been preserved. A classic example of the journey of the Middle Ages is the wanderings of Marco Polo and Athanasius Nikitin. Travel for religious purposes (to worship shrines, visit holy places) in the Middle Ages was called "pilgrimage"; Russian pilgrims, including, for example, Abbot Daniel, left travel notes about their travels, which were called walks. The era of great geographical discoveries is characterized by many travels that radically changed the idea of the planet.
Later, the travels of D. Livingston and G. Stanley, N. M. Przhevalsky and others were of great importance for expanding knowledge about the Earth; however, Przhevalsky already called his travels scientific reconnaissance, since they could only satisfy the needs of a primary and general acquaintance with the characteristics of a particular territory. Therefore, already in the 18th-19th centuries, with the deepening of research, the concretization and specialization of scientific goals and tasks, travel began to acquire the character of scientific expeditions.
The trip and its material conditions
Traveling over long distances is consubstantial with homo sapiens, since the latter will gradually colonize the entire globe. On the other hand, these movements are accentuated in the Neolithic period, most often motivated by practical reasons (family and social life, trade, exploration, wars...). By way of example of conquests and/or exploration, we can mention the conquests of Alexander the Great, those of Darius, the colonization of the Mediterranean by the Greeks and the Phoenicians, the development of the Roman conquests, the expansion Egyptian, Chinese or Muslim empires or, closer to us, the Great Discoveries. So many expeditions that often took strong men far from home. Trade and pilgrimages are also important and frequent reasons for travel, of which there are many traces from Antiquity.
Travel is linked to material conditions that will develop over time. Transport, housing, orientation are all elements that had to be invented and then developed, so that people can move around easily. First of all, alongside walking, the first mode of locomotion, different means of transport will develop, which will make travel easier: the domestication of the horse, and the invention of the wheel, which will allow the creation of cars (in the sense of "platform, open or closed box mounted on wheels, pulled by animal power, which is used to transport people, objects."); the boat which allows river and maritime navigation, but also the construction and maintenance of roads (for example the important network of Roman roads), bridges making it possible to cross natural obstacles. But the traveler must also be able to eat and shelter during his journey, which is gradually being made possible by hotel and inn networks. In the Middle East, this need was partly satisfied by the networks of caravanserais which offered shelter and protection to the caravans. During Antiquity, the lack of inns was made up for by networks of acquaintances abroad who could accommodate travellers. This was often the case in the Roman Empire, for example, to the point of even curbing the expansion of inns. Finally, traveling supposes to represent the territory on which one moves; from this need (among other reasons) cartography was born. It will however be necessary to wait for the medieval portolans then the maritime maps of the Renaissance so that the map becomes a real and effective aid for the traveller.
These material conditions often made travel painful, difficult and dangerous. However, travel for pleasure is a very old activity that is not limited to Europe, even if its beginnings in Europe are commonly traced back to the 17th century.
Indeed, from the seventeenth century, a journey called "Grand Tour" develops in England as well as in other European countries. Practiced by young nobles, it is a form of travel less directly linked to necessity and more and more motivated by the pleasure of traveling and discovering other places. In the 19th century, the development of transport and communication routes had their roots in history and in the myths maintained by literature (Marco Polo, Jules Verne, Robinson Crusoe, Christopher Columbus, etc.) while including motivations stemming from social imitation or commercial promotion of travel and vacation. This literature of adventure developed strongly in the nineteenth century.
However, at the same time as the world "shrinks" under the effect of the speed of transport, its identification in different forms (cartography, images, information, etc.) increases, leaving less room for the traveler's surprise. . Marc Augé thus speaks of the impossible journey, “the one that we will never do again, the one that could have made us discover new landscapes and other men”.
Energy and environmental aspects
The extension of fast and motorized travel poses new problems of consumption of space and energy resources, as well as of "so-called responsible tourism" as well as that of climate change, transport being one of the main causes of gas emissions. greenhouse effects and moreover constantly increasing.
Travel sometimes comes up against the administration, some countries
such as the GDR or the Soviet Union prevented certain citizens from
leaving, other countries limiting the entry of foreign travelers, in
both cases, in order to avoid migratory phenomena .
In some cases, this results in the need for specific documents to be drawn up by the administrative services concerned, such as an updated identity card or a passport to cross the border.
In many countries, for "undocumented" and other travelers deemed illegal, escorts to the border or to the country of origin, and detention areas exist.
Insurance of persons traveling abroad is a type of insurance aimed at
providing insurance protection to persons who are outside their
It is a comprehensive type of insurance, including elements of personal, property and liability insurance. In addition to insurance for medical expenses abroad, this type of insurance may include accident insurance, luggage insurance, travel cancellation insurance (including insurance for non-issuance of a visa), civil liability insurance, insurance for loss of documents, legal services and roadside assistance (technical and legal assistance), in the country of temporary residence and some others.
In a number of countries, the presence of such an insurance policy is a prerequisite for the entry of foreign citizens into their territory. Some countries require mandatory coverage of certain risks, such as COVID-19 coronavirus (in 2020, Ukraine, Thailand, UAE, etc.), civil liability, etc., in the insurance contract.