Travelling always comes spiced up with some linguistics and creative use of words.
Now, we all enjoy a dose of travelling and pleasant trips, but which one is the right way to say it:
- I like to travel
- I like travelling
Let’s try and find the right answer by observing it from different perspectives. The easy part is that the correct answer is both. Both options are grammatically correct, but the slight difference in meaning could only be felt when you put the phrases in specific contexts. Both depend on and reflect differing emotional states to the act of changing position.
Let’s put them in a real sentence and provide an example:
like + verb ‘ing’ = This is a gerund form and it has characteristics of both noun and verb. These verbs are used at the place of noun/pronoun to describe something you enjoy
- I like having long walks in the afternoon.
- I like eating noodles with soup.
- I like travelling. It’s my favorite thing to do.
like + to ‘infinitive’ = this is better for me
- I like to pack my clothes a few days before a trip. (This isn’t something I necessarily enjoy.)
- I like to defrost meat in the morning so it’s ready to be cooked and served in the evening. (This isn’t something I necessarily enjoy.)
- I like to wake up early so I have plenty of time to get myself up and running. (This isn’t something I necessarily enjoy.)
- I like to travel without any luggage. (This is more practical and not necessarily related to enjoyment.)
To sum it up, travelling refers to the experience of going somewhere or visiting a place, the sheer enjoyment of the actual movement, almost independent of the destination.
To travel refers to getting to a specified destination and so the intervening process is not important.
Finally, in ordinary everyday communication one may sound more natural than the other one but in fact both are often used interchangeably with no real difference in meaning.