Solo travel is an unforgettable experience everyone should try at least once. And you don’t need to go far or for a long time to get that much-needed break from your daily stressors. Learn why now is the perfect time to head out on your own and a few tips to get you started.
If you told me last year going to the grocery store would start to feel like a mini-vacation, I probably wouldn’t have believed you. While the grocery store has now transformed into a welcoming oasis away from my tiny apartment, it doesn’t quite have the same restorative power as a real vacation. I mean, exploring grocery aisles is only so stimulating.
Luckily, running errands isn’t the only way to escape the confines of your home. You can enjoy a proper getaway and keep your social distance on a solo trip. Now is the perfect time for solo excursions, especially if you haven’t traveled solo before.
Traveling alone can be intimidating at first. I remember on my first solo trip, after stepping out of the Barcelona airport terminal searching for which bus to take to my hostel, it struck me that it’s just me — I’m going to have to figure this all out on my own! That “oh sh*t” moment can be scary and overwhelming, but after a deep breath, you’ll realize you’re more capable and resourceful than you knew.
You’re more capable and resourceful than you know.
Photo by Maarten van den Heuvel on Unsplash
With the pandemic, you likely won’t be crossing oceans for your solo trip, which is helpful if this is your first solo adventure. (Navigating a new language, different currency, holding on to your passport, remembering new emergency numbers, and trying to decipher the metro can feel like a lot!) Even if you stay a little closer to home, a bit of breathing space from being cooped up at home all day with your family or roommates will feel incredibly rejuvenating.
So where will you go? That’s the best part — anywhere you want! You get to make all the decisions. During quarantine, you’ve had to accommodate roommates, negotiate projects and meetings with coworkers, and juggle family and kids. Heading out on your own for a solo trip means your time is your own. Go ahead and roam for hours in that fringe museum your friends would roll their eyes at.
Hungry? Grab some takeout without a 30-minute conversation of “I don’t know… what do you want?” You can choose to relax in your hotel instead of constantly sight-seeing, take that less-traveled hike, or peruse shops all day without worrying if everybody else is still enjoying themselves.
Taking a solo trip now will also do wonders to clear your head and release the stresses of the day-to-day during the lockdown. When you’re on your own, maneuvering new sights and situations, your mind needs to stay present. You’re forced to be fully in the moment. Your thoughts can’t wander to what you heard last night on the news or the next crisis happening at work. You’ll find yourself more tuned in to your surroundings, focusing on the architecture, people, food, nature, and culture of the city.
You’re forced to be fully in the moment.
Photo by Artem Beliaikin on Unsplash
Though the pandemic has disturbed our sense of normalcy, quarantine opened the door for many of us to work remotely. And without being chained to a physical office, you can take your work anywhere so long as there’s an internet connection. Imagine working against the backdrop of a beautiful ocean or a stunning skyline. Take advantage of traveling now while you have the flexibility to work from anywhere.
Without being chained to a physical office, you can take your work anywhere.
Solo trips are adventures you’ll always remember, giving you a new sense of confidence and self-reliance you can apply to all aspects of your life. Whether it’s your first solo trip or your hundredth, ease your nerves by preparing as much as possible. And be sure to let someone know you’re off on a solo trip, especially if you’re venturing into the wilderness. You don’t want to end up starring in the sequel to 127 Hours!