Solo travel is a goal many of us have on our bucket lists, but unfortunately, the world isnt always safe and accommodating for women.
Thanks to Holidayguru, we now have a concise list of the best places for solo female travellers, compiled by their travel experts.
'Travelling solo as a woman can seem daunting. While loneliness, organisation and crucially, safety, are valid concerns, we see it as a rite of passage and experience you can be proud of.'
Cosmopolitan cities, sandy beaches, rugged wilderness and the Great Barrier Reef. Is there any reason why you wouldn’t want to see Australia? Of course, it’s expensive to get to but this shouldn’t put you off taking the plunge down under for your big solo adventure along its famed coasts. “There are so many backpackers there that the tourism industry is really tailored to solo travel,” according to Online editor for Holidayguru Netherlands Willeke van Doorn, who’s been twice. Willeke says: “If you are open to meeting new people, you'll never really be alone. It's safe too – I always felt comfortable going out and about on my own. Plus, koalas are adorable!”
The South of France
For first-time solo travellers, European cities are probably a good way to test the waters. But who says you have to see just one? Head to the South of France to enjoy some beachside glamour in and delicious food – both Italian and French! Inland, there are beautiful wildlife parks and mountain-top medieval towns. Astrid Klaver is an SEO manager at Holidayguru. She recalls: “I booked a one-way ticket to the South of France. "I went to a different town every day. Monaco, Nice, Cannes and the artist village of Saint-Paul de Vence. I didn't get bored for a second and at the end, I just booked a flight back.”
While Thailand is a well-worn backpacking trail, its undeniable beauty, friendliness, affordability and ease make it perfect for the solo adventurer. Rosella di Gioia from Holidayguru Italy says: “Whether you want to explore the North with its amazing temples and wild nature or the paradise beaches in the South, you will never feel lonely.” "Travelling in the country by bus or plane is super easy and if you enough have time, you could also easily reach Vietnam, Cambodia, Myanmar or Laos with low-cost flights.”
Sweden’s modern cities, coupled with its reputed safety and laid back atmosphere, make it a great place for a solo city break. You’ll be enchanted by Stockholm’s waterside buildings and modern touches! Ella Carroll from Holidayguru.ie recommends adding in a trip to the North as well. She says: “It is an incredibly remote and wild region, but in the end, it was my favourite part of the trip. “People were so welcoming – people were happy to tell you about life there and will be more than happy to help you if you're a bit stuck.”
As the meeting point between Europe and Asia, Turkey offers plenty of architectural treasures from empires past. The Turkish Riviera offers the perfect sun holiday, while Pamukkale offers the chance to see Roman ruins amongst white travertine terraces. Istanbul’s international vibe makes it a great place to party after a day of sightseeing. Nerea Gutiérrez Ruiz is an online editor for Holidayguru Spain. She says: “If you prepare your trip a bit in advance the language doesn't need to be a problem. I've been in four different cities in Turkey and the people will try to help you all the time. She has some advice for counteracting unwanted attention too: “You just need to know how to be polite, and tell them you would like to be alone.”
From the eco-friendly elegance of Ljubljana to the Venetian beauty of seaside Piran, Slovenia’s cities are perfect for the any budding photographer on the go. Omega Love, founder of lifestyle blog Love Scribe, says: “The streets of Ljubljana are buzzing because of the university but the city isn't boisterous – it’s subtly elegant and charming. “In Piran, there's a gorgeous castle and centuries-old cathedrals dotted around the city. The main square is an Instagrammer's dream. “I went over the border to Trieste in Italy too. The highlight of Slovenia is that you can travel around so easily and that made me feel really empowered.”
Canada’s mix of bustling urbanscapes and woodland charms give it constant variety. You can go hiking in the mountains of Alberta or be astonished at the picture-perfect lakes in Banff National Park. Want to practice your French? Go to the East Coast and visit Quebéc and Montreal. Marit Houben from Holidayguru NL says the “mind-blowing” North American country lives up to its reputation of friendliness. “Canadians won’t hesitate for a second to help you out or have a chat with you,” she said.
With a population of less than five million, Costa Rica is small, but it certainly packs a punch. This critter-filled Central American country is home to a variety of ecosystems and exotic landscapes. Chill on tropical beaches, hang out with a sloth or zip line through clouded forests. Marit says: “Costa Rica has it all. People are friendly and helpful and will do anything to make you feel welcome. “Travelling around the country is super easy and safe because you can usually book a direct shuttle to your next destination from your hostel.”
Tanzania must have been the inspiration behind Toto’s “Africa”. From lounging on the tropical islands of Zanzibar and Mafia to marvelling at the Big 5 in the Serengeti, Tanzania will have you singing at the top of your lungs. English teacher Daire Louise Ni Dhubhda has taught in Abu Dhabi, Australia and Vietnam and has mastered the art of solo travel. She says: “Tanzanians are so welcoming and hospitable. 'Karibu Sana' is their local phrase in Swahili, meaning you are most welcome. “My only advice is to make friends with a local and get a driver – they will haggle on your behalf!”
This is a destination for the more advanced solo traveller. You won't get very far with English in Japan, but the good transport in and between the cities and the famously low crime rate make this Asian country a must for a solo holiday. Enjoy a meal for one at a city ramen counter. Challenge yourself as you navigate signage and maps. Grab the bullet train to travel cross-country. Stay overnight in hostels to save some costs and meet other travellers. Be warned, it is a bit isolating but ultimately rewarding.