Do you love solo travel or do you prefer travelling with a buddy?
I’ve always travelled with my husband or friends and family and can’t really imagine what it’s like to travel alone. I’ve always wondered if it was boring or lonely….
I wanted to see just what was so great about solo travel so, I called on some travel blogger friends and asked them to share the reason they love it so much.
The Joy of Solo Travel
Noel Morata — Taking the Time to get that Perfect Shot
Solo travel is how I prefer to travel most of the time, and it’s not because I don’t like to travel with friends or family – I get to travel on my own terms and time frame which is very important, especially when I’m in my travel writing mode. Also as a photographer, it is so much easier walking at my own pace and even walking around a site several times before I find the perfect spot, which is a pain when I’m travelling with someone else. Without distractions, I know I can see and enjoy a place better when I get to choose how I would like to schedule a day’s excursion.
You can read more from Noel on his site Travel Photo Discovery
Will Tang — In Control of his own Travel Destiny
There’s something incredibly liberating about solo travel. Not to say I don’t love traveling with friends and family but there’s something to be said for being a master of your own time – exploring what interests me and skipping what doesn’t, taking time with my photography (and not slowing everybody down), being swift as I please and last but not least, not having to wait for others to get ready (I’m looking at you slowpokes!).
On your own timetable, there’s really nothing holding you back from doing whatever the heck you want. If you’re the kind of person that loves to move quickly and see everything in a short amount of time, you can do that. If you’re more of a fan of slow-paced travel, you can go as slow as you wish. Ultimately, you’re in control of your own travel destiny…
You can check out more about Will on his site Going Awesome Places
Hannah Logan — Making Friends Along the Way…
For me, the best thing about solo travel is the people I meet along the way. Travelling with a friend is restricting; constantly being with someone you are comfortable with is an easy excuse to keep to yourself. Travelling solo forces you to be friendly and sociable; which can be rewarding in so many ways. I have changed my plans (for the better) thanks to advice from others I’ve met along the way. And, I can honestly say I have created some great friendships on the road with incredible people; many of whom I still stay in touch with today.
For more reasons why you should travel solo check out Hannah on her site Eat Sleep Breathe Travel
Cacinda Maloney — Total ME Time!
One thing I love about travelling solo is that I get to decide my schedule, so everything is based on how I feel. If I have the energy, I do it, and if I don’t, then I don’t have to. If I just want to get to my hotel room and rest, then I do and if I want to sleep late, the same (i.e., dealing with jet lag). So basically it is a very easy schedule being solo because everything is based on me! I also have commitments when travelling solo, and typically keep them, but there are those times when I am just not feeling it!
Check out Cacinda at Points and Travel
Sharon Mendelaoui — It’s Totally Liberating!
I used to think travelling alone was a sad thing, but now that I do it regularly I realise how much I love it compared to the trips I take with family or friends! I don’t have to worry about what my friends want to do, where they want to eat when they want to do things, what time we all have to wake up – I just worry about me! I have the hotel room to myself, I get up and go when I want and see the things I want to see! It is very relaxing and totally liberating. I just came back from a solo weekend in Buffalo, and it was really amazing. I joined in on a food tour and met lots of people, went on a road trip in search of the best doughnut in the world and went to the theatre all by myself! A great weekend and I can’t wait to pick up and take off on my next solo adventure!
Check out Sharon’s Solo in Buffalo article at Daily Dream 360
Helen Suk — Forging New Friendships
While I love hitting the road with a travel companion, we all know the challenges that come with spending 24/7 with someone for extended periods of time, especially in high-stress situations. Travelling solo, on the other hand, can lead to loneliness (I’m not going to lie) — but it forces me to hone my social skills by putting myself out there and forging friendships with those I meet during my journey. And, if it turns out I don’t like them all that much, I can always bid them farewell and return to my hotel room alone!
Check out Helen’s site at Not Without My Passport
Stephanie Mayo — More Confident and Centred Sense of Self
For me, solo travel has evolved into creating a stronger, more confident and centred sense of self. I never thought I’d travel solo, but with my ever-present wanderlust, I could wait no more! By travelling solo, I can go at my own pace, see the sights I want to and travel when I’m available. There are plenty of reasons why I love solo travel, from stepping outside my comfort zone and growing to the absolute freedom it affords me. Freedom to experience life, to see the sights uninterrupted and to breathe in the sights, smells, sounds and tastes a city has to offer without the distractions, prejudice or influence of another’s thoughts, interpretations or perspectives. When I travel solo, it is all me, and everything I take away from my travels, experiences and journey is my truth. But my most favourite part of solo travel is how my senses seem to come alive; colours are more vibrant, food tastes sweeter, the sounds of the city are electric, and life seems richer!
Stephanie shares more about her solo travels at Ladys Travel Blog
Parm Parmar — Exhilarating and Rewarding Experiences
There’s nothing more exhilarating than boarding a bus or plane heading to a destination you’ve only seen in a photo. I have some fond memories of my solo trips to Belize and Barcelona. Meeting new people and spending time with them in a new destination is rewarding and opens up a whole new world.
I find it amusing that other travellers seem so surprised to find out I’m travelling alone. On a recent Cuba Cruise, I was asked by my dining companions if my husband would be joining us. When I said no! They were stunned into silence.
Read more about Parm and her travels at Planet Blue Adventure
Kristina DoRosario — Interacting with Locals
I’m an avid traveller in constant pursuit of a good solo adventure, and the many benefits that come along with it. What I love most about solo travel is the enriching experience of being absorbed into a foreign culture – so immersed in the local life that I begin to feel like a local myself! The absence of a familiar face and/or travel companion can be daunting, but is a welcome challenge for me, as I revel in the experience of interacting with locals and gaining a true understanding a different way of life. The practice of travelling alone has equipped me with the skill of being able to befriend complete strangers, leaving me with friends and fond memories from all of my destinations.
Kristina writes about her travels at Travel with Kaydo and shared her experience in Cambodia on Calculated Traveller in her article Ditch the Bus and Embark on an Authentic Cambodian Adventure.
Mike Hinshaw — Freedom to Travel at My Own Pace
I am an avid fan of solo travel, as a result of my OCD traits. When I travel solo, I dictate the time I get up, the time I eat, the time I turn in and exactly what I do each day. I know this appears selfish in nature and might just be in some people’s eyes. My brain works differently than most, and if someone holds me up from a planned event and is tardy, I start physically getting sick. I have to be on time, or I am in trouble.
Solo travelling also allows me to stay and ponder a museum longer than say most people, or examine an Incan ruin in-depth and not have to jump on the tour bus back to the hotel. Overall I think travelling solo allows me the freedom I want to travel and really explore other countries and what they have to offer. Additionally, as I am an avid foodie, this type of travel liberates me and gives me time to treasure a good meal at my own pace. I can’t tell you how many times I have stayed in a restaurant, just to savour a well-prepared dish! I recommend everyone give solo travelling a shot!
Check out Mike on his site Nomadic Texan
Lea Kuliczkowski — Having an Open Schedule for Serendipitous Experiences
I’m a huge believer in slow travel and an open schedule for serendipitous experiences. All my friends know I love storytelling my favourite moments from the road. Without stopping and enjoying my experiences, I wouldn’t have such rich memories to share. I remember seeing the snow-capped Swiss Alps for the first time, and all I wanted to do was sit on the rocks along the lake and take in the postcard landscape, which is exactly what I did! And whether participating in my own gelato taste test or being invited to a local hangout, there is nothing stopping me from relishing in these moments.
Lea is our very own travel girl here at Calculated Traveller
If you’ve ever wondered “hmmm, should I go on that trip alone?” These happy travellers say GO FOR IT!