one thing I liked in TOS was that we were way, way out on the edge of explored space, at least most of the time
This is one of the things that really separates TOS from the rest. The feeling that they're out there in the unknown darkness.
VOY only captured this a few times. Much of the time in TNG/DS9 it felt like they were driving through Europe, wall to wall governments, they knew where they were and who they were going to encounter.