Traveling alone as a woman can be an incredibly empowering experience. But it can also be worrisome for friends and family members who assume that traveling alone, and especially traveling alone as a woman, is basically asking for trouble.
If you're dreaming of solo female travel but are a bit wary about striking out on your own (or if you want to ease the fears of your loved ones), here are a handful of destinations from all around the world that are great (and safe) to travel to alone.
Canada is an interesting country you have culture that spans from the First Nations to the French, a variety of landscapes from mountains to prairies, and cool things to see from polar bears to the Northern Lights. Canada also has some great cities (I'm looking at you, Toronto, Montreal, and Vancouver), and some of the friendliest people in North America.
Traveling in Canada is very safe for solo travelers, no matter how you decide to explore. You can stay in cities, rent a car to visit more remote locations, or even take the train across the entire country.
For someone who wants to get a taste of Europe but a little worried about language barriers, I would suggest heading to the U.K. England and Scotland especially are filled with interesting cities and beautiful scenery and both are safe and easy to get around by train.
Spend some time exploring London, make a trip to the charming Cotswolds, and then head north to Edinburgh and the Scottish Highlands. You could build in some time in Wales, too, and could also easily hop over to Ireland (which is also a great place to travel solo).
If adventure travel and jaw-dropping landscapes are more your speed, consider a trip to Iceland. This island nation halfway between North America and Europe has a seemingly endless supply of activities to enjoy, no matter what time of year it is.
Solo travelers not comfortable renting a car in Iceland can stay in the friendly capital of Reykjavik and take all sorts of day trips easily to enjoy everything from horseback riding to waterfall spotting and even glacier trekking. And the best part about going on day trips? You usually end up meeting other travelers that you can hang out with later.
If Asia is on your radar, Thailand makes a great first choice for solo female travelers. The country has a good infrastructure to serve tourists (much better than you'll find in most other countries in Southeast Asia), and you won't find yourself ogled too much by local men. Yes, you probably WILL experience some culture shock in chaotic Bangkok if it's your first time in Asia, but the chaos is half the fun. Plus, you can always escape to the islands or to the jungle up north if you want to avoid the city.
Thailand is also firmly on the backpacker trail in Southeast Asia, meaning that if you want to be social and meet other travelers, all you need to do is stay in a hostel. It's very easy to travel solo and yet never be alone in Thailand.
Lastly, if you feel yourself drawn to the South Pacific, consider visiting New Zealand. The Land of the Long White Cloud is much smaller and more manageable than nearby Australia, and is still filled with plenty of things to do and beautiful landscapes to see.
New Zealand is very safe to travel solo, and the locals are friendly and always willing to help. The country caters to all sorts of interests, too, whether its a beach holiday or an adrenaline-filled vacation that you're after. Some of my favorite stops include: Rotorua for geothermal parks, the quirky capital of Wellington, Kaikoura for marine life encounters, and Queenstown for any sort of adventurous pursuit you can think of.
Where else would you suggest visiting for solo female travelers?
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Graduate student by day and avid traveler and blogger by night (and on weekends and during holidays), Amanda is just a small-town Ohio girl trying to balance a "normal" life with a desire to discover the world beyond her Midwest bubble. Amanda's adventurous nature and inability to say "no" have led her to some pretty amazing adventures all around the world. But she has no desire to stop exploring anytime soon. Read Amanda's blog, A Dangerous Business, or follow her on Facebook, Twitter or Google Plus.
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