If you are going to travel the world, there is little point in only going to the parts that all the tourists go to. You see it in every city in the world that has any sort of tourist trade: it is clean, reasonably safe and in many countries, disappointingly homogeneous. If you live in the UK you will be quite familiar with all sorts of brands, such as Starbucks. Incidentally, the American chain is planning to open a store in Milan, the home of espresso. One can only wonder how the Italians will feel about it and whether they will get their coffee there or just leave it for the tourists who don’t know any better. In any case, if you travel from London to New York, you will see the same coffee shops all over the place. If you travel to Moscow, Tokyo, or Pretoria, you will find Starbucks in all of them. Starbucks is just one example. You can find McDonald's in St. Petersburg now (besides the one in Florida). Either way, the point is that travelling is all about learning how the locals live and seeing the place for what it is. Every city around the world is unique in its own way but if you only explore its tourist traps, you’ll come home not really having experienced it at all.
However, forging your own path and finding the little-known parts of town can be dangerous. One of the (only) virtues of the tourist areas is that they are usually well policed and the only crimes that you need to worry about are pickpocketing (and there ways of protecting yourself from that too). If you want to strike out and find the best parts of town, there are a few precautions that you may want to take. Here are a few ideas for things you should consider investing in before your next trip:
While travel insurance may sound quite boring, it is actually important. If you do lose any of your belongings on your travels, it can represent a massive amount of money that you would not be able to get back otherwise. It would be a shame if any of your future trips were postponed because you had to replace all of the things you need for your next adventure. Besides, travel insurance is also really useful if your flights are cancelled for instance. It is a particularly good idea if you travel often because the more chances there are for something to go wrong, the more times that they actually will.