Best Solo Travel Destinations to Explore

Sep/16/2021 / by Team SEEMA
Solo Travel
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A lot of people want to explore the world, but they never buy the ticket that could take them to a picturesque location far away from their home. They do not take off even when they have the money to visit an exotic location. It is primarily because they do not have a travel companion. If you really want to travel, do not search for a companion or convince your friends first. Choose the option to take off alone. Solo travel is not scary, or lonely, as you may think. In fact, it can be an exciting, liberating, and transformative experience.

A woman, too, can take a trip to a remote place by herself. Solo travel is no longer considered the bravest or the riskiest thing that women can do. It is now simply a matter of personal preference. So, as a woman, you can travel solo not because you are single or have no choice, but because it allows you to feel independent, do a lot of fun things with greater abandon; it also gives you a sense of adventure and personal fulfillment. And now more women than men travel solo. 

Over the past three years, search engines’ searches for the term “female solo travel” have increased by 62 percent, as per a research report. And, according to Hostelworld, a website for booking hostels and budget accommodations, its data shows that there has been a whopping 88 percent increase in bookings made by female solo travelers over the past four years. 

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Your quotidian routine and busy schedules rarely give you a moment to spend I-me-myself time. Solo travel offers you the opportunity to spend time with yourself. You will get the time for self-reflection, and you get to know yourself better. You will learn how to be self-reliant and be more confident. And, on your solo vacations, you can do whatever you want to do and go anywhere you want to go. You are waiting for no one and taking directions from no one. And, you will return home from your solo trip with a bagful of magical experiences and memorable moments, and deep connections with strangers-who-are-now-best friends.    

Solo travel can, however, be intimidating if you have never done it before. Tons of questions are likely to pop up in your head. One of them is: “Will it be safe to travel alone?” Not every travel destination is safe, especially for women. And not every popular destination gives you the freedom to do anything you want to do. So, choosing the right destination is the key to avoiding nightmarish situations and unearthing unique experiences.

Here are the top ten best places to travel solo. In these countries, you willhave a safe, invigorating and enlightening time as a one-group traveler. 

Best Places to Visit As Solo Traveler

Singapore 

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Singapore is one of the safest destinations for solo travel. Peaceful and orderly, the island city-state is a melting-pot of cultures – Chinese, Indian and Malay – and offers plenty of opportunities for unique experiences. And, as a solo traveler, you can easily explore Singapore thanks to its efficient and widespread public transport network. 

The lush and futuristic Garden by the Bay, spread in an area of 250-acre, attracts both locals and visitors alike. It is home to the largest glass greenhouse in the world, and it also has themed conservatories, winding trails, and Supertrees. Each night, the Supertrees glow hypnotically during the light-sound display called Garden Rhapsody.

Singapore’s Chinatown area pulsates with energy, colors, and chatter of people, speaking different languages. And, if you are into retail therapy, Orchard Street is your place. It offers a wealth of options – from bespoke high-street to bargain shopping. After shopping, you do not have to worry about solo dining in Singapore, which has a cosmopolitan hawker culture. People from all walks of life eat at hawker stalls, where they serve food influenced by several cultures, including Malay, Chinese and Indian. You can bond with a group of locals over a plate of Nasik Lemak – fragrant rice cooked in coconut milk and pandan leaves – at one of the stalls. 

Your solo trip to Singapore will embolden you and make you shed all your inhibitions about traveling alone. 

Costa Rica  

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A solo traveler with an adventurous spirit will feel at home in Costa Rica. The Central American country, nestled between Nicaragua and Panama, is known for its tropical rainforests, ecotourism, diverse outdoor activities, and for being the happiest country in Latin America. It has 29 national parks and 6.5 percent of the world’s biodiversity. But, before you fly to Costa Rica, do familiarize yourself with the term “la pura vida.” It is the country’s slogan and means “pure life” in Spanish. Costa Ricans, or Ticos, use this expression of “eternal optimism” on a daily basis. They use it as a greeting, to answer questions, and to describe their way of life. 

In Costa Rica, you can go white-water rafting on the Reventazón River and the Pacuare River, rappelling down waterfalls and ziplining through the rainforest canopy. For hiking and stunning volcano views, you can visit the Arenal Volcano National Park, often called the “adventure capital” of Costa Rica. Arenal also has numerous hot springs, where you can relax and self-reflect. Lush green coffee plantations, white-sand beaches, exotic wildlife, and eco-lodges in remote rainforests are also a big draw in Costa Rica. The culture of the country is warm and vibrant, and Ticos are welcoming and friendly people.             

Your solo travel to Costa Rica will teach you how to live a tranquil and pure life.       

Iceland

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Iceland’s beauty is unmatched. No matter where you are in the island country, you will find a gorgeous, dramatic location nearby. Referred to as the land of “fire and ice,” Iceland is home to both glaciers and volcanoes. And it offers you the opportunity to traverse a magical and mysterious world. Solo travel is safe in this Nordic country because of its high safety and health standards, and it is also the friendliest nation in the world.

Visit Iceland from mid-May to late July if you have ever wished to explore a place where the sun never sets. The sun barely sets at midnight in the summer, and then it rises again after a couple of hours. The long, white nights allow you do an unlimited number of outdoor activities in a day. You can go on a road trip or go hiking, take a tour of the highlands, and be part of whale and puffin watching tours.

Iceland is breathtaking not only in the daylight but also at night. It is the best place to witness the natural-light display aurora borealis, or the northern light, in the sky. And if you want to discover Iceland’s most stunning locations, which are home to waterfalls, geysers, and volcanic landscapes, go on the 300-kilometer long Golden Circle tour. It takes you through Þingvellir National Park, the Great Geothermalar, and the rainbow-making Gullfoss Waterfall. 

Your solo travel to Iceland will heal and rejuvenate your skin – if you take a plunge in ageothermal lake. 

New Zealand

New Zealand is one of the best solo travel destinations. Its beauty casts a spell on you the moment you land in this Pacific country. Soaring mountains, rolling green hills, diverse landscapes, exquisite islands, unique wildlife encounters, and the dynamic Māori culture have made New Zealand an alluring destination for adventure, outdoor activities, and backpackers. And it is also one of the safest nations in the world.

Auckland, New Zealand’s largest city, is where you can start your trip. It has beautiful beaches and thriving drinking, dining, and live music scene. Auckland also hosts one of the country’s oldest wine regions. And, no trip to New Zealand can be complete without a visit to Milford Sound located in Fiordland National Park on the southwest of South Island. Called the “eighth wonder of the world” by Rudyard Kipling, it is the most famous fiord and home to dazzling waterfalls and majestic cliffs anchored in inky waters. 

Bay of Islands, Able Tasman National Park, and adventure-hub Queensland also offers plenty of unforgettable experiences. You cannot depart from New Zealand without discovering the indigenous Maori culture. The best place to experience it is in Rotorua, a geothermal wonderland. And if you are a fan of “The Hobbit” book or the movie trilogy based on it, a visit to the movie set Hobbiton in Matamata must be part of your itinerary. The place will make you feel like you have stepped into J.R.R Tolkien’s delightful world.  

Your solo travel to New Zealand will invigorate you and make you ready to take on any challenge.  

Vietnam

Solo travel
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The land of the “ascending dragon” Vietnam is a popular solo-travel destination in south-east Asia. The country is at once calm and chaotic, compelling and relaxing. Its people are resilient and generous, and you can feel an energetic vibe across the country. And endless adventures are waiting for those travelers who want to savor unique experiences on their own. Vietnam is one of the safest countries in south-east Asia.  

With its glittering skyscrapers, classic French architecture, sites of historical importance – such as Cu Chi tunnel – ornate pagodas and temples, Vietnam’s cultural capital, Ho Chi Minh City, commonly known as Saigon, is an ideal destination for solo backpackers.

Nature has blessed Quang Binh province in central Vietnam with a staggering coastline, forests, rivers, and a natural beauty that has no parallel. Located in this province is the famous Hang Son Doong cave, the world’s largest natural cave. In Vietnam’s capital city Hanoi, you can explore its fascinating museums, colonial buildings, ancient pagodas, and rich street food culture. The most popular spot of this sprawling city is the Hoàn Kiếm Lake.                         

Solo travel to Vietnam will teach you how to find your inner peace when there is chaos around. 

Japan

Solo travel

Frequently ranked as one of the safest countries in the world, Japan, the East Asian archipelago country, is among the best solo travel destinations, an absolute favorite of the veteran solo travelers. Here, you get to see a glimpse of the future, and you can also open a window to the past. Ancient traditions and modern life co-exist in perfect harmony in Japan. It is an ultimate destination where you can contemplate, soak in the serenity, explore the vibrant nightlife, eat the freshest fish, and gawp at ancient and modern architectures.

Japan’s capital Tokyo, one of the most innovative cities, offers you the opportunity to immerse yourself in an intriguing culture. You can explore its traditional side by visiting Meiji Shrine, Sensoji Temple Asakusa, and Tokyo Imperial Palace. And by taking a stroll in Harajuku, you can see the city’s youthful side. It is the center of Japanese pop culture. And you can get a taste of the local hospitality at an izakaya.

Kyoto, the cultural capital of Japan, is where you experience the Shinto shrines, Buddhist temples, peaceful Zen gardens, and geisha. Hiroshima, where the first atomic bomb was dropped in 1945, is home to two World Heritage Sites — Peace Memorial Park and Museum and A-Bomb Dome. From Hiroshima, you can take a ferry to Itsukushima Island to visit the sedate Itsukushima Shinto shrine, a UNESCO World Heritage site built over the water. Away from the traditional and urban worlds, Japan also has a rich natural diversity. And when in Japan, do not forget to eat Sushi, witness a Japanese tea ceremony, and take a dip in Onsen (hot spring). 

Solo travel to Japan will make you discover your inner zen.

East Africa

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East Africa is another great solo travel destination. Part of sub-Saharan Africa, it comprises of six countries, Tanzania, Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi, and South Sudan. Famous for game reserves, this area of Africa is the true home of the Big Five: African elephant, lion, leopard, Cape buffalo, and rhinoceros. And it hosts nature’s greatest annual event: the Great Migration, which is the largest movement of animals on the planet. Millions of wildebeests, zebras, gazelles and other herd animals migrate across the grassy plains of Tanzania’s Serengeti and Kenya’s Maasai Mara. You can see them stampede in millions across the two reserves.

Ranked among the best in Africa, East Africa’s national parks and reserves offer you the unforgettable experience of watching animals and birds in their natural habitat. Masai Mara in Kenya, Tanzania’s Serengeti National Park, and Kilimanjaro national park in Tanzania are the best-known ones. Several exotic and endangered animals and colorful birds dwell in these reserves and parks, and they freely roam these grounds. And, one of the major attractions of this region is the giant stratovolcano Mount Kilimanjaro, the highest mountain in Africa that towers over the Kilimanjaro national park.

The otherworldly Rift Valley is a major geological feature of East Africa. The two rift systems present in this region are Gregory Rift and the Western Rift, which are dotted with extinct and dormant volcanoes. And Lake Turkana is the most saline lake of East Africa’s Rift Valley, and the park surrounding this lake hosts the Nile crocodile Crocodylus niloticus, the hippopotamus amphibious, and several snake species.

And a visit to Lake Nakuru in Kenya is a must if you want to see millions of flamingos paint the area in an enthralling rose-colored haze. And if you want to see Jurassic Park-style mountain ranges, Uganda’s Lake Mburo should be on your list of places to visit in East Africa.    

East Africa is a fascinating blend of culture, traditions, histories, and languages. And the region is not just an ultimate, wildlife safari destination, but it also has stunning white beaches, bustling markets, a lively arts and culture scene, and quirky cafes and bars. 

Solo travel to East Africa will make you do your bit to protect endangered animals. 

East Coast, Australia

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A popular backpacking trail, Australia’s East Coast is among the best places for solo travel. Dotted with picturesque sights, picture-perfect beaches, idyllic island getaways, vibrant modern cities, quaint coastal towns, and lush rainforests, the Melbourne-to-Cairns trail allows you to witness nature in all its pristine glory. You also get to spend your time at some of the finest man-made creations.

Australia’s East Coast is a haven for adventure enthusiasts. There are plenty of spots where you can go hiking, surfing, scuba diving, skydiving, snorkeling, waterfall-hunting, and beach lounging on this long trail. You should first explore Melbourne’s street art, diverse suburbs, botanical garden, National Gallery of Victoria, restaurants, and bars before heading up to the next destination.

Coastal metropolis Sydney is vivacious and home to the iconic Opera House and Harbor Bridge. Spend some time here, surfing, strolling on a beach, visiting galleries, having lunch by the harbor, taking a leisure walk on the street, and watching the dazzling fireworks in the night. 

Located off the Queensland coast is the Great Barrier Reef. It teems with the world’s largest collection of coral reefs. Go snorkeling or diving to get a glimpse of its incredible underwater world. And the Daintree Rainforest is located on the northeast coast of Queensland. Believed to be the oldest rainforest, it hosts thousands of species of birds and other wildlife.   

Nature-lovers cannot skip Fraser Island, located just off the east coast. It is a World Heritage Site and the largest sand island in the world. Traces of rainforests, the second-largest collection of freshwater lakes, whales, 230 species of birds, and 25 species of mammals make Fraser Island a natural paradise. You can spend hours on the beach, sunbathing or you can choose from one of these options: snorkeling, sailing, kayaking, and fishing. The city of Brisbane, Gold Coast, Airlie Beach, and Magnetic Island are other places to explore on the East Coast trail.

Solo travel to East Coast will make you want to visit Australia again.  

Germany

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A country that has embraced the present without erasing its past, Germany offers an opportunity to experience myriad flavors. It is a prime travel destination, along with being the safest, for a solo trip because of its easy-to-navigate big cities, a thriving art and music culture, old and modern architectural beauties, fairytale castles, stunning landscapes, and natural wonders.  

Berlin, the capital of Germany, mesmerizes outsiders with its spirit-lifting, vibrant culture. A diverse array of people, following different cultures, religions, and traditions, call this city their home. The Reichstag building, Brandenburg Gate, Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe, Checkpoint Charlie, Museum Island, and the Berlin Wall are some of the places to visit in Berlin. The city, despite being pretty big, can be easily navigated using public transport and bike. And a few places can be visited on foot.

Hamburg, Munich, Frankfurt, and Cologne are other cities in Germany that you may like to visit when you are traveling solo. Nestled in the large mountain range in Southwest Germany is theBlack Forest. It is known for its deep, dark evergreen forests, cuckoo clocks, ruined castles, quaint towns, and half-timbered villages. Nature lovers can do a lot of things in this wild, idyllic paradise.  

Solo travel to Germany will make you reflect on your past and fine-tune your present.  

Mexico

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Endless adventures await those willing to travel solo in Mexico. One of the happiest countries in the world, Mexico, for the better part of the year, is drenched in colors and sunshine. It is warm, bright, and lively. As there are a lot of places to visit and things to do, travel enthusiasts are never going to feel lonely or bored on their solo vacations in Mexico. 

Mexico City, originally built by Aztecs in 1325, is home to a large number of impressive archaeological buildings. And it has more museums than any other city in the world – more than 150. One of the most visited ones is the National Museum of Anthropology, which is dedicated to the archeology and history of the country’s pre-Hispanic civilizations.

And Plaza de la Constitución, commonly called the Zocalo, is the cultural and historical heart of Mexico’s capital city. The Frieda Kahlo Museum, or the Blue House, is another place to visit, especially if you are an artist at heart. And the city is dotted with restaurants where you can taste the chilly-spiced Mexican cuisines.

A visit to Mexico is incomplete if you do not visit the magnificent ancient Mayan ruins. The country also offers plenty of opportunities for outdoor activities. You can do sport fishing in Zihuatanejo, climb a mountain in central Mexico, go surfing in Puerto Escondido, Kayaking in Baja, and go snorkeling and diving in Riviera Maya.        

Solo travel to Mexico will make you invite brighter, happy colors in your life. 

Travel guide for Solo Travelers   

Solo travel gives you the freedom to explore a new world without any restrictions. You control where you want to go and what you want to do. Once you take a plunge, your concerns about feeling lonely at a solo travel destination will vanish. Your family and friends, however, are likely to worry about your safety. That should not stop you from heading to your next best solo travel destinations, but you must make sure that it is safe. Here are some solo travel tips that can help you have a safe and memorable time in a place far away from home.

Do Your Research

You may already have a list of your dream travel destinations. And, now that you really want to explore them and not just daydream about them, buy travel books and guides and check travelogues online. Read comprehensively about the country and the places that you plan to visit. You should be aware of the currency used in a particular country, the language(s) spoken there, and its culture, traditions, religion, popular tourist attractions, outdoor activity options, food scene, and hidden gems. Also, read blogs written by veteran travelers to find out whether a place is safe for solo travel or not. And, before booking your ticket, make sure that your country’s government has not issued any advisories.   

Prepare in Advance

Solo travel means you are on your own in an unfamiliar place. So if you are in trouble or need something, you cannot expect someone to help you out. So, before stepping out of your house with your luggage, make sure that you are well-prepared and have packed everything you may need on your solo vacation. Instead of randomly dropping things in a bag, make a list of documents and items you may need during your travel. Here are some items that you must carry:

  • Passport/Visa
  • Local currency
  • Toiletries
  • Dictionary
  • Medications/ first-aid kit
  • Vitamins and supplements
  • Hand sanitizer and masks
  • Flashlight
  • Sanitary napkin
  • Reusable water bottle             
  • Portable charger and charging chord
  • Ready-to-eat food
  • Umbrella 
  • Entertainment

Book Rooms and Airbnbs in Advance  

Book a hostel/hotel room or book your accommodation with Airbnb in advance, especially if you plan to visit a destination during peak tourist season. When you do that, you get the best accommodation and save yourself from the possibility of spending a night in the street. And, when you know where you are staying, you are less likely to feel lost, lonely and unsafe.     

Learn the Language   

English is not the first language in many countries. And, people in several countries neither speak it nor understand it. And you may feel lonely and not enjoy an activity if you cannot strike up conversations with friendly locals. So do learn the language of the place where you are going. There is, however, no need to do a full-language course with the aim to speak like a native. You just need to learn a few basic phrases so that you can order your food, ask for directions, shop, enjoy the art, culture, and entertainment scene, and befriend a local. Before boarding your plane, do learn how to say hello, thank you, sorry, and please in the local language.         

Travel Light

For your solo travel, you need to pack light so that it is easy to move around. There is also less chance of your one-bag getting lost or someone stealing it. And pack clothes according to the weather and culture of a place. Also, choose comfortable clothes and shoes, appropriate for outdoor activities.         

Right Time to Land 

If you are traveling alone, do not book a flight that is scheduled to land at night. As the place is new and unknown, you might not know what unpleasant experience awaits in darkness. And it is also tough to navigate unfamiliar territory at night. Make sure to board a flight that will land during the daytime.   

Be Like a Local     

If you want to unearth magical experiences, you need to immerse yourself in the new place like a local. So make sure to participate in cultural activities dressed like a local. You should also eat more local cuisines, visit art and culture centers, and respect the local culture. 

Don’t Overshare on Social Media

Do not share every solo travel moment of yours on social media. It is best not to be specific about where you are staying and the area you are visiting. It is possible that someone might be stalking you on social media.   

Be Confident

Believe in yourself and always walk around with confidence. And carry a big smile on your face. That smile may help you make new friends.        

Take a lot of Selfies 

When you solo travel, carry your selfie stick wherever you go and click a lot of selfies.

Links to Photos

Solo traveler: https://unsplash.com/photos/i8b6phQUujs

Videos

Singapore hawker center

Germany’s Black Forest

Australia’s East Coast

Mexico’s the Blue House

East Africa’s Greatest Migration

FAQ

Is it weird to travel alone?

No, it is not weird to travel alone. And, your co-travelers will not find it weird as well. Today, a lot of people, especially women, now prefer to travel solo, as it offers them a liberating and life-changing experience. When you travel alone, it does not mean that you cannot make friends or not have a good time with locals. You can do whatever you want to do. And solo travel opens the door for pleasant surprises and unexpected adventures with strangers.      

Where is the best place to travel solo?

The best places to travel solo are safe, have fascinating culture, rich history, stunning landscapes, architectural delights, plenty of outdoor activities, and they are blessed by nature. Here are the top places for solo travel.

Singapore

Iceland

New Zealand

Mexico

East Coast, Australia,

Japan

East Africa

Vietnam

Germany

Costa Rica

Is solo travel boring?

A lot of people think that solo travel can be boring. It is not. You get to spend a lot of I-Me-Myself time and discover your fun side. And, when you do not have to follow other people’s schedules and choices, you can awaken your bohemian spirit and have the best time of your life.   

What is a solo traveler called?

Solo travelers are called “solivagant,” which means “to wander alone. This word comes from two Latin words, “solus,” which means “alone,” and “vagans,” which means “wander.” 

Why is solo travel important?

Solo travel allows you to understand yourself better and become a better version of yourself. You also form deep connections with new people and experience a plethora of emotions and unlimited magical and memorable moments.