Solo travelling | Tips & Reasons

Have you ever gone on a journey alone? The thought of solo-travelling might seem scary at first, at least if you haven’t tried it before. Most people will travel with their friends, partner or family, but packing a suitcase and going on an adventure alone would never cross their mind.
I have already travelled alone twice, although the first journey was fairly short. My second journey was along the West Coast of California and the three weeks I spent travelling were definitely the best of my life. When I’m looking back at these adventures I can assure you that I wouldn’t trade these experiences & memories for anything in this world. Solo-travelling might seem like a challenge, but it is a challenge that is fully worth it and let me explain you why. First of all, let’s state the obvious: When you’re travelling by yourself, you got the ultimate freedom and you can do exactly what you want. When travelling in a group you obviously have to adapt and you have to work out a plan together. But when it’s just you there really are no boundaries. 

 
Speaking of boundaries – solo-travelling allows you to get to know yourself and your limits like nothing else. Travelling is always a journey to self-discovery and when you’re travelling alone this journey is intensified and you will experience your strengths like never before. You will rediscover and reinvent yourself on the basis of all the new experiences and you will discover new passions and realise what makes you happy – and what doesn’t. Which is equally as important. Another thing that goes hand in hand with solo-travelling is stepping out of your comfort zone, you will suddenly find yourself doing things you have never done before and you have never thought you could do. It was in San Diego where I learnt to let go and stopped controlling every minute of the day. There I learnt to truly follow my gut, be spontaneous and just go with the flow. I normally love planning ahead and although it has its advantages it also creates unnecessary boundaries and often stops you from truly enjoying the day and living in the moment – at least that’s my experience. In San Diego I stopped planning and just cherished each day. On my first day I was asked if I wanted to come explore the Old Town and even though I had originally planned to spend the day at the beach I said yes and I had an amazing day that I’ll never forget. And the weird thing is that when I’m looking back it seems like I spent 2 weeks in San Diego, not just a couple of days. True appreciation makes a minute seem like an eternity. 
 

Travelling alone isn’t just a lesson of spontaneity though, it is also a lesson of independence. You learn to rely on nothing but yourself and your instincts. You learn to trust yourself with decisions and you experience that it’s best to follow that feeling in your gut. Oh and let me tell you another thing: if you’re hopping from hostel to hostel you aren’t really travelling alone. Although the choice is in your hands. When I stayed at a hostel in Los Angeles I mostly did things alone as I didn’t plan on spending much time in the city and as LA offers a lot so if you want to see ‘it all’ an itinerary is needed. When I arrived at the hostel at the beach of San Diego I spent way more time with the group and I did my best to get to know the other travellers. I still remember how I sat at the breakfast table, feeling slightly awkward and over the next 30 minutes I got to know every one else at the table and it clicked immediately between us all. From this point on we never did anything alone – we would go the harbour together, go for a hike at the coast (coming from a person who usually doesn’t do hikes), we had lunch at a Mexican restaurant, discovered ‘La Jolla’ and the highlight was definitely an evening at the beach that was organised by the hostel. We were sitting around the bonfire roasting Marshmallows and I don’t think I have ever laughed so much. So yes, I know it’s scary to put yourself out there and to enter a group of people you hardly know but let me tell you it’s worth it – you will make amazing friends and in my experience, travellers often have a lot in common. 

 

Getting to know people from all over the world is an amazing and really inspiring experiences. You will suddenly add 10 new places to your bucket list and will get to know many new cultures. This is probably my favourite thing about hostels, the cultural mix and the opportunity to make friends from all around the world. Ultimately your view of the world will change and I find that people who have travelled far are often very tolerant and open-minded. When I stayed in San Diego I got to know people from the UK, Sweden, Australia, the US etc and and it was really interesting to share our experiences and our cultures. But let’s talk about another lesson solo-travelling will teach you: you will learn how to be alone. Without being lonely. And this skill is precious, it will help you massively in your daily life. By travelling alone you will learn that it’s okay to have fun by yourself and that it’s indeed possible to have a great day alone. To put it into simple words: You learn how to be comfortable with yourself. And I believe that this is the key to happiness. So if this has convinced you to try solo-travelling let me give you a few tips that I learnt on my two trips:

  • Book hostels that offer comfort and activities. You don’t want to stay in a place that is freezing at night or where the showers are dirty so make sure to read reviews carefully. Finding hostels that offer activities is a great plus as this will allow you to explore the city and to bond with other travellers. 
  • Book tours and go to meet ups. Like I said the tours offered by hostels are amazing and they are often free as well. If there aren’t any tours available look for meet-ups in your city, you can use the coach surfing site for that. 
  • Have a loose itinerary & be spontaneous.
  • Spend time at the hostel. That is where you can socialise with other travellers and make new friends. 
  • Never go travelling without a credit card and a bit of cash. At least not in America where you have to pay all hostels by credit card. And cash is always useful, in the rare case your card isn’t accepted. (Which is very rare in a country where people pay their 2 Dollars Starbucks drink by credit card.)
  • Avoid dodgy areas and follow your gut. If you’re looking for a Greyhound Bus Station or a hostel make sure that the area is safe. I’d rather pay 10 bucks more and feel secure. There are many ways to save money but your safety shouldn’t have to suffer. 
Would you try solo-travelling? x 
 
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  • I've never gone anywhere alone as the thought terrifies me, especially if it's to a country which you don't know the language or the customs etc, it's very frightening to not have anyone with you, but at the same time, alone time is often what we all need to find our center again and get grounded.

    Raindrops of Sapphire

  • I love this post so much, Mira! I always wanted to try out solo travelling but I'm very scared that I'll be robbed or something serious might happen and I won't have anyone who could help me. And that's the only reason stopping me from going on an adventure by myself. I hope to get over this fear soon and explore more. Solo traveling surely offers a lot and I want to take it all 🙂

    -Leta | The Nerdy Me

  • Such a beautiful and detail post! Just love it! Seems great place.

    Rita | http://www.styleroundtheclock.com

  • I've always wanted to solo travel and reading your post made me want to do that so bad! It kind of scares me though, because I've never done anything like it. Great post!

    Amelie | A Wanderer's Adventures

  • I do think you are so brave travelling by yourself! I've never done it, you must learn so much though and I can just imagine that it would be an amazing experience!
    Amy xx
    Call Me Amy

  • Exactly, there are definitely two sides to solo-travelling but I believe it's always worth it. xx

  • Thank you so much, Leta! I am sure you would love solo travelling, it is definitely a challenge but it really enriches your life and your personality. You could try it in Europe for the first time, it might be easier and less scary. 😉 xx

  • Thank you! xx

  • I'm glad I could inspire you. 😉 And yes, it seems pretty scary at first xx

  • It definitely is! xx

  • The thought of traveling alone does scare me, to be totally honest. But after reading this I get your point though. It does give you absolute freedom, which is great!

    xoxo,
    Rowan
    Red Reiding Hood

  • It is! xx

  • Travelling alone has been on my mind for along time now, I have this feeling that independent travellers are so much more open, also because one cannpt expect what will happen over the next time. I feel the excitement about your experience, which makes me in return even more excited haha 😉 It's somehow ironic how people have to be accompanied for everything they do by the same persons. It's a bit out of the topic, but I had to think about the cliché of girls only going to the restrooms together haha 😉

    xx

    WONDERWALLFLOWER

  • It sounds like a fun and different experience. I like the fact that solo-traveling lets you be on your own schedule. You can get out and explore early without waiting for the group to get ready and just feel even more free!
    Omnivogues

  • I still don't have the guts to travel alone. But I know I will do it in the future, and I'll enjoy it. Thanks for sharing these tips and reasons, sounds very helpful.
    Love, Fads

  • I would love to go solo traveling one day, it is just the fear of being in a sticky situation and not having anyone to help me that puts me off. After reading this post it has helped make me feel a bit less worried, very inspiring post. 🙂 xx

  • Kay

    Loving this post, darling! I've never traveled alone before, but I'd love to one day – I think travelling solo is something that should be on everyone's bucket list. I like being alone so I wouldn't find it scary, anyway, and I'm sure it would be an amazing experience! The most travelling I've done on my own was flying to Poland by myself to see my Nan, obviously I had her company for most of it but I still did a few trips out by myself and it was fun. 🙂 Thanks for sharing these tips hun, I think they're great & useful not only for solo travelers! x Kisses. x

    Kay
    http://www.shoesandglitter.com/

  • Exactly, that is what I love about independent travelling! And I am glad I could spark some wanderlust. 😉 Your comparison with the restrooms is on point and it really made me laugh because I prefer going to the bathroom alone and I guess that says a lot about me haha. xx

  • I also love the independence that comes with solo-travelling! xx

  • You're welcome, I'm glad I could help! And just take the time you need. 😉 xx

  • Thank you very much & I get that, I had the same fear at first but once I started travelling alone I noticed that I could rely on myself. xx

  • Thank you very much, I'm glad you liked them! And you're right, solo-travelling is such a rewarding experience that it should be on everyone's bucket list! I am sure you love it, I also enjoy being myself and that's why I love exploring cities on my own. That already sounds amazing, I bet it you had an amazing time. 😉 xx

  • Great post! I really want to visit San Diego!
    Jabeen x
    http://www.spilling-the-beans.co.uk/

  • What a wonderful post and beautiful photos! It's so amazing that you have been travelling on your own! I would love to do it one day 🙂 your post has really inspired me 🙂

    I hope that you're having a great weekend lovely!

    El xxx

    http://www.elsfashionfix.co.uk

  • I have always wanted to solo travel, but have never done it. I think I would really like it, though. There is something so freeing about going places by yourself sometimes!

    xo, mikéla / simplydavelyn.com

  • Sounds like you had an amazing three weeks and I I remember rightly, one of your first posts I started reading was about LA and Venice Beach!
    I completely understand where the fear comes in at thinking about travelling alone, but I totally agree with you that it's so worth it! I went to Portugal alone for a week and one of the best things I ever decided to do. You may have inspired me to write a post of my own.

    Love Hannah xx

    http://www.HannahHawes.com

  • Thank you! xx

  • You should! 😉 xx

  • I am glad I could inspire you, I'm sure it would be an unforgettable experience! 😉 xx

  • I completely agree! xx

  • I did and yes, you're right, I also remember you saying how much you love LA haha. That sounds amazing and yes, it is so worth it! That makes me really happy, I can't wait to see your post! xx

  • I am actually planning to travel alone this summer for a few days and see how I do! So this was very useful!
    http://www.thestyletune.com

  • I've always liked the idea of travelling alone but sometimes thinking about it makes me reallyy anxious. Haha! I'm definitely gonna try it in the future when I already have the guts because as you've said it's also a travel to self-discovery and being independent, and I'm up for that!

    Love, Fads
    InstagramTwitter

  • I'm glad I could help! xx

  • Haha it's alright, just take the time that you need and I'm sure you will be able to do it someday – I also go through phases where travelling alone makes me feel anxious. xx

  • X

  • These were some really important tips I need to keep in mind when I travel next! I am very much interested in Solo travelling and have been ever since I was a teen. I just haven't been able to find chance to do so. I'd love to do a solo Eurotrip someday <3

    http://www.wildfirecharm.com

  • Thank you, I'm glad you find them useful! A solo Eurotrip sounds amazing, I'm doing something similar right now although it's only France and Italy haha. xx

  • amazing post!yes i would like to travel solo one day since i've never done it fora long distance x

    lifestyleandso.blogspot.com

  • Being an introvert, I know how to be alone without being lonely. Travelling solo will definitely push up my boundaries but it's something that's been on my goals for a long time. I'm mostly afraid of ending up on a ditch somewhere – which is why I'm thinking of travelling to a place I've at least been once to get rid of the bad vibes. Thank you for the tips though, Mira, and I have always looked up to people who have already traveled solo!

    Love, Richel. | Richel Goes Places

  • Thank you! xx

  • Thank you, Richel, I'm glad you liked them! Travelling solo is definitely scary and I can understand your fears – so maybe travelling to a place you already know might be a great idea for the beginning. I would also choose a place that you know is safe and I can recommend travelling solo off-season – that way you can still find a place to sleep if something goes wrong. xx