Whilst hugely rewarding, solo travel is not always an easy undertaking. Some places are better suited to the single, whilst others can be testing. If you’re considering appropriate locations, this blog provides information on Solo Friendly Destinations.
There’s no doubt, travelling solo can make you feel out of your comfort zone.
Yet it is for this reason, it’s so beneficial in developing self-confidence, independence and resilience.
Solo travel has taught me that I’m more resourceful than I ever gave myself credit for.
I encourage you to discover this sense of accomplishment for yourselves.
It is so liberating to leave the heavy baggage of fear and doubt at home and to check-in the one filled with your aspirations of adventure and self-discovery.
However, the destination you choose for your solo journey is crucial, especially if it is your first time travelling alone.
Its suitability will determine the experience you walk away with.
Some places are easier to manage, generally because they’re destinations popular with other solo travellers. This means, even if you go alone, you will have more chance to meet like minded others to spend time with, if you choose to.
Based on my personal experience, these are my suggestions for Solo Friendly Destinations.
Where there are parties, it is generally a good destination for a solo traveller as there’s usually crowds of people to meet! There are plenty of companies that offer single places on sailing boats in Croatia, so you will be accompanied by other travellers, some of whom may also be travelling alone. On land, there are a lot of hostels and bars. The island of Hvar, particularly, is heaving with international visitors. Croatian locals are also kind and welcoming, which makes it an easy place to make new friends.
Tip: In Hvar, head to the Hula Hula bar and the overnight parties on Carpe Diem to meet solos from around the world.
Everything is cheap in Thailand, which means it is a mecca for the backpacking crowd and suits those on a tight solo travel budget.
Khao San Road, Bangkok, is full of travellers, hostels and bars making it a hotspot for connections with others. You may find a new friend to travel with to Thailand’s islands. The infamous full moon parties in Koh Phangan draws in thousands of visitors each month so even if you technically go alone, you’ll also be in the masses.
Tip: Taking day boat trips to islands offers opportunities to meet other travellers.
For a country, which used to be considered extremely dangerous, it is somewhat surprising how many solo travellers are in Colombia, particularly females. In Cartagena, I met many women who were living there, studying Spanish. In a remote hostel, Casa de Nelly in San Agustin, it was astounding as to how many young solo women were travelling across the border between Colombia and Ecuador. In the party beach scenes of Santa Marta, Palomino and Taganga, you will encounter many others wanting to meet new people. In Colombia, you probably won’t be alone for long, unless that’s what you want.
Tip: Attend a Salsa class or a Spanish language school in any major city and you will connect with many solo travellers.
Whilst not cheap for singles, the density of Manhattan makes coming across interesting people very likely. New Yorkers are generally open, worldly and friendly so you’ll no doubt have at least some banter with locals. I spent an hour talking with staff at a bar and was approached in the street and asked out on a date by a foreigner. In the big apple, odds are high that people will be unabashed to speak with you.
Tip: New York is a sensory explosion and with a mountain of tourist hotspots to keep you occupied, you won’t even think about being alone. For more on New York, please see my article “Size Does Matter“
Canada is known to be a very friendly country but Montreal is particularly welcoming to tourists, expats and immigrants. There’s a large young student population, which lends itself to a range of events suited to solo adventurers. If you don’t speak French the locals are mostly bilingual so you’ll be able to get by with English. There are so many festivals over summer you’ll never be lost for things to do. In Montreal, visiting a bar alone is not a foreign concept so you won’t be left feeling like the odd one out. Chances are you’ll have a handful of new friends by the end of the night.
Tip: Go to festivals and hit the bars along Avenue Mont-Royal. Most locals and staff love to engage with foreigners.
I hope I’ve provided you with some helpful ideas for Solo Friendly Destinations.
What do you think are some other good places to visit on your own?
Just like there are so many Solo Friendly Destinations, there are also the Not So Friendly Solo Destinations…coming soon to WWA.