I’m in Paris, at the subway. It’s 8 in the morning and I’m gazing lost at the metro map – which, by the way, is pretty clear. But I’m in a hurry and I wouldn’t want to get into another direction, especially since I’m not on vacation: I have a business appointment, and must arrive on time. I try to stop somebody to ask for some details – he passes me without giving me any chance to utter a word. Three other hastily Parisians do the same thing until someone finally stops, and gives me some directions. In French. I’m in London, morning again, and I push my luggage on Oxford street. I already had a very early meeting and now I’m heading unhurried towards the hotel. I pull out my map and someone stops immediately: You need any help?, he asks. I smile, I just say where I want to get and receive all the information, which I didn’t even get to ask properly. For me, the two above experiences say a lot about how people are in one town or another – more specifically, about how friendly they are with tourists. And that’s important: it can make you feel good, something essential in a vacation. So I thought it would be useful to do some research and find out which are the countries where you can find friendly people. Below are five of them.
It’s not for nothing that it’s called the land of smiles – when you get here, you’ll understand why this name is so very well deserved. The residents are extremely friendly and kind, and you’ll meet them especially in the less touristic areas. This doesn’t mean that people are not friendly in Bangkok or Phuket, but the people here may be more business oriented (they live out of tourism), while in the less known areas you’ll get to know the true, unaltered Thai hospitality.
With over 7000 islands with unique, breathtaking views, it’s understandable why The Philippines are a magnet for tourists. And those who have been in Thailand, Cambodia or Laos may say that they have already met and got accustomed with friendly residents. But in the Philippines you can meet people who literally invite you into their homes, prepare for you a traditional dinner just out of friendship, not expecting anything in return.
Those who have visited it recount not only the beauties of Portugal but also of the people they have met here. In villages, inhabitants welcome you in their homes for a glass of wine. In cities, if you ask how to get in a certain place, the Portuguese not only do answer your question, but sometimes accompany you to your destination just to make sure that you understood well and are not going in the wrong direction.
Probably the first thing that comes to mind when you say Brazil is the famous carnival that takes place annually. Then, the stunning beaches or the Amazonian jungle. Oh, and sometimes your safety – especially if you venture into areas that don’t have a good reputation. However, in the safe areas, it is said that if you make a friend from Brazil, it will be a friend for life. Here, people are very open, enjoying life all my time. They smile often, and their happiness is contagious.
Locals will welcome you as a friend that they haven’t seen for a very long time. Ah, and with a very acute and refined sense of humor. If you are ready to gag side by side with them, the Irish will like you on the spot. Not to mention their laughter, which is deliciously contagious! In addition, they have a superb country: it’s enough to think of the castles as if ripped from fairy tales to see for yourself that it’s worth a visit.