A Journey to Empowerment: Uncovering the Best Female Solo Travel Destinations
Are you ready to embark on an extraordinary adventure? In this article, we're unveiling the best female solo travel destinations that will make your heart skip a beat. From the picturesque landscapes of New Zealand to the enchanting streets of Amsterdam, get ready to wander through captivating cities and untouched paradises. Whether you're a seasoned solo traveler or taking your first solo trip, these destinations will empower and inspire you. So grab your passport and join us as we uncover the most incredible places for women to travel alone. Prepare to be captivated by the allure of these enchanting destinations!
The best destinations for solo female travel
When it comes to choosing a destination for a solo adventure, some places are inherently better for women. These destinations, which I have personally visited alone, are my top picks for solo female travel. They are safe and easy to navigate.
Solo Female Travel: Top Tips
Pack Smart: When I travel solo, I like to keep things simple and only bring the essentials. Being self-sufficient and independent is important to me. I enjoy exploring unfamiliar places without drawing attention to myself.
Best Approach: I have learned to adapt as a traveler, especially when it comes to dealing with the challenges of air travel. Despite its drawbacks, I maintain a positive mindset and focus on the rewards of my journey.
How to Ask for Directions: Contrary to popular belief, I find that being alone actually makes me more aware and alert. When I'm lost, I feel confident asking for directions, particularly from other women.
Where to Stay: Personally, I prefer staying in hotels rather than private residences. I enjoy interacting with the hotel staff and appreciate their assistance during my stay.
Top Travel Tip: I always make sure to take notes while traveling. Whether it's jotting down observations or collecting small mementos, these details often become the inspiration for my stories and reflections on my travels.
Best places for solo female travel in Africa
Africa may not have the best reputation for travel safety, but I have spent months there as a solo female traveler and can attest to the fact that it's a misconception. Here are my top picks:
Cape Town, South Africa (and the Garden Route)
Solo travel rating: advanced
Let's break it down. Can you visit Cape Town and walk around alone at night flashing your valuables? No. But can you have a safe and trouble-free trip by following certain rules? Absolutely.
Cape Town is one of my favorite cities in the world. It offers a wide range of experiences, from incredible food and coffee to beautiful beaches and stunning hikes.
The Garden Route, which stretches from Cape Town along the south coast, is also a safe place for solo female travelers. Highlights include Mossel Bay, Knysna, Plettenberg Bay, and Coffee Bay. Here, you can enjoy hiking, visiting beautiful beaches, and even snorkeling with seals.
Safety: 6/10. By taking precautions such as using taxis at night, researching new areas before visiting, and keeping your valuables secure, you can ensure a safe trip.
Meeting others: It's easy to meet fellow travelers thanks to hostels and the Baz Bus, a service connecting destinations along the Garden Route.
Cost: Compared to Western countries, South Africa offers affordable prices. I found things to be about half as expensive as in the UK.
Zanzibar Island, Tanzania
Solo travel rating: medium
Zanzibar island is one of the safest places in Tanzania and in all of Africa. It boasts white sand beaches and plenty of opportunities for boat trips, snorkeling, and diving. Stone Town, the capital, is a charming place to explore with its cute alleyways, handicrafts, and delicious food.
While Zanzibar is known for its luxury, there are also affordable hostels for solo travelers to stay and meet others.
Safety: 8/10. It's best to avoid walking alone at night, particularly outside the tourist center of Stone Town.
Meeting others: While not a typical backpacker's destination like Southeast Asian islands, Zanzibar still offers opportunities to meet other travelers, especially in hostels and during excursions.
Cost: Prices cater to tourists, but you can find good value for your money, especially in Stone Town where there are plenty of cheap local restaurants and a night market with street food.
Best places for women to travel alone in Oceania
The continent of Oceania, including Australia, New Zealand, and the South Pacific islands, offers great destinations for solo women travelers, albeit at higher costs.
West Coast, Australia
Solo travel rating: easy
Australia is suitable for all types of travel, from backpacking to luxury. The weather is fantastic, and there are plenty of hostels and opportunities to meet other travelers. Some of the best solo trips for women include Fraser Island, the Gold Coast, the Whitsundays, Magnetic Island, and Cairns.
In terms of big cities, Sydney offers glamour and fantastic hikes, while Melbourne is known for its cool and quirky vibe and delicious brunch spots.
Meeting other people: It's easy to meet fellow travelers, though be aware that some hostel dorms may be filled with people on working holidays who may not have the same interest in socializing and exploring.
Cost: Australia can be quite expensive, with hostel prices starting from AUD$40. However, hostels generally have kitchen facilities, allowing you to save money by cooking your own meals.
Solo travel rating: easy
New Zealand is renowned for its breathtaking landscapes, making it a popular destination for travelers. Although incidents can happen anywhere, New Zealand has a very low crime rate.
Highlights in New Zealand include the cool city of Wellington, thrilling adventures in Queenstown, hiking in Abel Tasman National Park, exploring Waitomo caves and Rotorua's mud spas, trekking the Tongariro Alpine Crossing, and experiencing a helicopter landing on Fox Glacier.
Like Australia and Canada, New Zealand offers working holiday visas for many nationalities.
While traveling alone may come with some disadvantages, such as higher costs for private rooms or van rentals, staying in hostels is a great option for solo travelers in New Zealand.
Meeting others: It's best to meet other travelers in the bigger towns and cities with hostels.
Cost: It can be expensive, but the experiences and natural beauty make it worthwhile.
New York City, New York
New York City is one of the greatest cities in the world and a fantastic destination for solo female travelers. The city has a vibrant and energetic atmosphere that empowers you to explore and be yourself.
For such a large city, New York is relatively safe, especially in popular tourist areas like Manhattan. I have never felt uncomfortable while exploring Central Park or walking over the Brooklyn Bridge.
As a solo traveler in New York, you have endless possibilities. You can go shopping on Fifth Avenue, take food tours in different neighborhoods, watch a Broadway play, visit art museums, and much more.
Where To Stay in New York
Got 7 Days in Northern California? Snap some Selfies at the Golden Gate Bridge!
Savannah, Georgia has a similar vibe to Charleston, but with a more laid-back atmosphere. The Historic District is compact and walkable, making it perfectly safe to explore on your own.
Savannah is known as America's Most Haunted City, so it's a great destination for anyone fascinated by ghosts and history. Even if you're not a believer, you'll still enjoy learning about the city's rich history.
The people in Savannah are incredibly friendly, and solo travelers are warmly embraced. You'll feel right at home in this welcoming Southern city and may even leave with new friends and beautiful memories.
Where To Stay in Savannah
Philadelphia is a must-visit destination for history buffs traveling alone. Known as one of the birthplaces of the United States, the city offers insights into the country's founding. Don't miss visiting Independence Hall and the Constitution Center. You can even take a day trip to Valley Forge.
Beyond its historical significance, Philadelphia has vibrant neighborhoods to explore, a wide range of local food options at places like Reading Terminal Market, and various sporting events throughout the year.
Nearby Philadelphia! A perfect day trip for me.
Where To Stay in Philadelphia
If you dream of rainforests and beaches, ziplining and volcano-climbing, toucans and sloths, then Costa Rica is the perfect destination for you. Despite Central America's reputation, Costa Rica can be traveled safely with the right research and preparation.
Costa Rica is known for its natural beauty and offers a wide range of activities. You can learn to surf, go zip-lining through the Monteverde Cloud Forest, watch sea turtles on the beach at night, hike to hot springs on an active volcano, and explore Corcovado National Park.
To fully experience Costa Rica, I recommend staying in small guesthouses or hotels within walking distance of bustling areas, as this allows you to interact with the local community.
If you prefer traveling with a group, G Adventures offers guided tours to Costa Rica that visit popular spots like Monteverde.
Getting photobombed by a little girl at the Biltmore Estate in Asheville
Madison, Wisconsin is home to the state's gorgeous Capitol building and largest university. The friendly and welcoming atmosphere of Madison surprised and delighted me. It's a perfect destination for solo travelers, as the locals are kind and open to striking up conversations.
In addition to its beautiful lakes, Madison offers a variety of activities, such as watching the sunset from the shore, taking a lake cruise, or going kayaking. The city also has numerous museums where you can spend hours learning about its history and culture.
For new solo travelers, Madison is an ideal choice.
Asheville, North Carolina
For a small city that will put a smile on your face, I highly recommend Asheville, North Carolina. Nestled in the Blue Ridge Mountains, Asheville offers an art scene, a beer scene, and plenty of unique shops and restaurants.
Asheville stands out for its friendly and genuine people. It has a welcoming atmosphere that even newcomers will appreciate. The city is perfect for a long weekend getaway, and you might just find yourself wondering if you could live there.
My favorite infinity pool of all time at the Grand Park Hotel in Rovinj, Croatia
If you're dreaming of breathtaking islands in the Mediterranean, let me redirect your attention to the Adriatic instead. Croatia, a country I am well-acquainted with (I even won Croatia's top travel writing award in 2021!), never ceases to amaze me with its natural beauty.
Many people mistakenly believe that Croatia is part of Eastern Europe, and that it is therefore unsafe or difficult to travel to. None of that is true (and labeling Croatia as "Eastern Europe" is a surefire way to provoke a reaction). In my opinion, Croatia is an amazing destination for solo female travelers because English is widely spoken, there is a well-established travel infrastructure, and the roads are in excellent condition, making it perfect for a road trip.
But that's not all - island-hopping in Croatia is more affordable compared to popular Greek islands or the Amalfi Coast in Italy. Croatians also have a more Central European demeanor rather than a Mediterranean one, which means that things are well-organized and punctual.
Signature Experience: Explore the city walls of Dubrovnik, hike through the waterfalls of the Plitvice Lakes, take a boat trip around Vis to see the Blue Cave, go on a bike tour to wineries in Korčula, marvel at the breathtaking sunsets of Rovinj or Zadar.
Caveat: Once you venture to the smaller islands, you may find that the food options become repetitive. While the cuisine is good, primarily consisting of seafood, it can grow tiresome. To sample a variety of culinary delights, head to Zagreb, Split, and Dubrovnik!
Join a group tour: If you prefer to visit Croatia with a tour group, G Adventures offers an eight-day Croatia sailing trip that includes visits to several islands. You can find all their Croatia tours here.
Read More: Solo Female Travel in Croatia: The Guide
The view of Skellig Michael and Small Skellig, Ireland
If the people you meet are what make travel memorable, then Ireland is the ultimate destination. The Irish people are the shining stars of their country - incredibly friendly, welcoming, and always ready to share a story with you in their melodious accents. They also have a unique way of expressing affection by poking fun at you, which is a sure sign that they like you.
But Ireland offers more than just warm hospitality. It boasts stunning natural landscapes, charming small cities, and fascinating ruins. It's perfect for a road trip, even if it means adjusting to driving on the left side of the road. Some of the most unforgettable experiences can be found in the little towns you stumble upon by chance.
Many Americans travel to Ireland to explore their Irish roots, and even if you don't have a drop of Irish blood, you'll still feel right at home.
Signature Experiences: Visit the remote island of Skellig Michael, discover your favorite picturesque town along the Ring of Kerry, have an unforgettable night out in Galway's pubs, explore the geological wonder of Giant's Causeway, and listen to traditional Irish music in local pubs.
Caveat: In Ireland, it is customary to "shout" drinks - one person buys a round of beers for the entire group, and then the next person does the same. I suggest declining this tradition, as it can lead to getting drunk quickly, especially when your companions have a higher alcohol tolerance. Politely decline and nurse your one drink for the evening.
Join a group tour: If you prefer to visit Ireland with a tour group, G Adventures offers a nine-day Ireland trip that covers both the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland. You can explore all their Ireland tours here.
A canceled KLM flight meant I got a surprise 24 hours in Amsterdam!
Ah, Amsterdam - the city of enchanting canals, captivating bridges, world-class art museums, and delectable stroopwafels and smoked Gouda. This remarkable city stands out as one of Europe's most beautiful, with a unique charm that is unmatched.
Many people associate Amsterdam with the infamous Red Light District and sex tourism, assuming that it may be too wild or unsafe for solo female travelers. I strongly disagree with this misconception. The Red Light District represents only a small part of this vast, safe, and diverse city, and it's easy to avoid if you choose.
Amsterdam boasts one of the best public transportation systems in the world, making it a breeze to explore the city and beyond by train. Furthermore, nearly everyone in Amsterdam speaks fluent English, so there's no need to worry about language barriers. In fact, asking an Amsterdamer "Do you speak English?" is considered an insult.
Signature Experiences: Take a leisurely canal boat cruise to admire the city's beauty, savor a warm caramel-drenched stroopwafel fresh off the grill, spend your days hopping from one museum to another in the Museum Quarter, indulge in an elaborate Indonesian rijsttafel meal, and take a day trip to Rotterdam, Delft, or The Hague.
Caveat: Amsterdam does attract groups of intoxicated young men, often from the UK, who are primarily here for the city's nightlife and illicit activities. I recommend avoiding party hostels, which tend to be more rowdy compared to other European cities, and opting for accommodation away from the Red Light District.
Join a group tour: If you prefer to visit Amsterdam with a tour group, G Adventures offers a six-day Paris to Berlin trip that includes a stop in Amsterdam. You can explore all their Amsterdam tours here.
Read More: Sexy Dutch Design in Amsterdam and Rotterdam
Loving the views - and the elephant pants - in Pai, northern Thailand.
The four Atlantic provinces of Canada - Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island, and Newfoundland and Labrador - often go unnoticed, but they are some of the most captivating places to visit in the country, especially for solo female travelers.
I often joke that my blood pressure reaches its lowest point whenever I'm in Canada. The country is just so easy, clean, friendly, and beautiful. And Atlantic Canada is no exception, with its stunning landscapes, colorful cottages, and abundance of fresh seafood.
There is so much to explore in Atlantic Canada that it's best to choose one province and delve into it thoroughly. I've had the pleasure of doing this in Newfoundland and Nova Scotia, and I can't wait to return to both again!
Signature Experiences: Drive the Cabot Trail in Nova Scotia, go moose-spotting in Cabot Highlands National Park or Gros Morne National Park, hike or bike along the red sandy beaches of Prince Edward Island, participate in a Screech-In ceremony and become an honorary Newfoundlander, and indulge in as much lobster as your heart desires.
Caveat: The best time to visit Atlantic Canada is during the summer months when the weather is most favorable. However, the summer season is relatively short. (Although I personally enjoyed an early fall trip to Nova Scotia!)
Blonde straight hair was my signature look in New York.
Charleston, South Carolina
If you're a food lover embarking on your first solo trip in the USA, then a visit to Charleston, South Carolina is an absolute must. I'm completely smitten with Charleston, and its culinary scene is simply to die for.
As a solo traveler in Charleston, I recommend researching the incredible restaurants ahead of time and seeking out places with comfortable bar seating. Treat yourself to savory Lowcountry cuisine, such as shrimp and grits, and indulge in the local culinary delights throughout your stay. You won't be disappointed.
Charleston is also incredibly walkable, with numerous museums and historic homes to explore without the need for a rental car. It's a win-win!
Where To Stay in Charleston
Some states live up to the hype, and Colorado is undoubtedly one of them. With its majestic Rocky Mountains, Colorado is a haven for outdoor enthusiasts, offering some of the best hiking in the summer and skiing in the winter.
Colorado provides the perfect opportunity to try a new outdoor activity, whether it's whitewater rafting, mountain biking, or even sandboarding. If hiking solo makes you apprehensive, fear not - there are plenty of guided hikes and activities available to join. Not only will you be able to conquer your fears, but you'll also have the chance to make new friends along the way.
Cities like Denver and Vail in Colorado are also worth exploring, with their array of museums, breweries, and the spectacular Red Rocks Amphitheatre.
Signature Experiences: Go llama hiking in Vail, visit the Tajik teahouse in Boulder, attend a concert at Red Rocks Amphitheatre, indulge in brunch at Snooze or desserts at D Bar, and try sandboarding at Great Sand Dunes National Park.
Caveat: Be mindful of your alcohol consumption, especially upon arrival. Colorado's high altitude can make you feel more intoxicated than usual. I once had a glass of red wine on my first night in Vail and ended up feeling loopy for hours. Locals recommend staying well-hydrated with plenty of water.
I love Mexico, but might not recommend it to absolute newbies.
Another hidden gem of a city with a blossoming food scene is Portland, Maine. Solo travel in Portland, Maine will delight your taste buds, especially if you're a fan of fresh seafood from the North Atlantic Ocean. With an abundance of food trucks and bars, you won't feel awkward asking for a "table for one."
Portland's iconic lighthouses are just a short Uber ride away from downtown, allowing you to effortlessly escape to the picturesque coastline. As a solo traveler, you can immerse yourself in Maine's natural beauty without much planning.
Lastly, I felt incredibly safe exploring Portland, Maine. Feeling at ease is of utmost importance for first-time solo travelers, and I can assure you that you'll have little to worry about in terms of safety, aside from employing common sense.
Where To Stay in Portland
San Francisco, California
San Francisco is an iconic American city that offers incredible opportunities for solo travel, thanks to its well-developed tourism infrastructure.
For instance, you'll find several local tour companies in San Francisco that offer walking tours in various neighborhoods or day trips to destinations such as Muir Woods or the wine country. With these tours, you don't have to worry about planning; the guide takes care of all the details so you can relax and enjoy.
Similar to New York, navigation in San Francisco is hassle-free even without a rental car. Rideshare services are readily available, and you can also experience the famous cable cars as they transport you up and down the city's picturesque hills. What's not to love?
Where To Stay in San Francisco
I Would Spend a Weekend in Berkeley CA for this Pizza Alone.
Let's take a moment to talk about a few smaller cities.
For solo travelers already planning to visit San Francisco, I highly recommend setting aside a couple of days to explore the nearby city of Berkeley. While many are familiar with the University of California, Berkeley campus, the city itself has even more to offer for solo travelers.
As a solo traveler in Berkeley, I suggest trying out the local restaurants, exploring unique shops like Moe's Books, strolling through the botanical gardens, and spending time by the marina. You'll feel right at home, and the locals are as friendly as they are interesting, so don't hesitate to strike up a conversation with a gallery owner or a bartender.
Where To Stay in Berkeley
Austin, TX Should Be Among Your First Time Solo Female Travel Destinations in the USA.
Texas is one of the largest states in the US. However, Austin stands out from the rest of the state because it attracts a large number of transplants who now consider it their home.
Even though Austin may not epitomize the traditional Texan experience, it is still an amazing and unique city for solo travelers to explore. One of the highlights of visiting Austin is the abundance of social and fun hostels where you can meet new friends and never feel alone.
Austin has a wide range of activities that are perfect for solo travelers. For instance, you can indulge in shopping in South Congress without worrying about being judged for spending too much. You can also enjoy food truck hopping and relish your breakfast tacos or homemade donuts without having to share. Another option is to relax on the University of Texas campus and relive your college days or get lost in the endless museums that Austin has to offer. The possibilities are endless!
Where To Stay In Austin
When I traveled to Seattle alone, I embarked on a tour to Mount Rainier National Park.
Seattle, located in Washington State, is another major city that offers a perfect blend of nature and urban life. Solo travel in Seattle offers a wide range of unique experiences, including visits to remarkable museums like the Museum of Pop, which happens to be one of my personal favorites. You can also take day trips to scenic national parks, such as the awe-inspiring Mount Rainier.
I particularly enjoyed the organized day trips in Seattle because Mount Rainier has limited cell service, and having a knowledgeable guide with me made me feel safe and content.
Seattle is perfect for solo travelers due to its mild weather, making it ideal for walking around the city without breaking a sweat. Like Austin, Seattle also has friendly and entertaining hostels, making it easy to make friends with fellow travelers.
Where To Stay in Seattle
Few destinations can compare to the whimsical and ethereal beauty of New Zealand. With its stunning mountain ranges and breathtaking landscapes, New Zealand is the ultimate destination for adventure travel. It is especially ideal for solo female travelers as it offers a safe environment and a plethora of activities to keep you occupied. I highly recommend exploring the South Island and, if you're up for it, renting a van to embark on a solo adventure.
If you're in search of desert scenery, art galleries, and indulgent spa treatments, then a solo trip to Scottsdale in Arizona is a must. Located close to Phoenix's Sky Harbor International Airport, Scottsdale offers convenient access to Arizona's attractions. The Old Town area is pedestrian-friendly and filled with museums, spas, restaurants, galleries, and more.
Moreover, the natural beauty surrounding Scottsdale is simply breathtaking. As a solo traveler, you can book a guided hike to witness the sunrise or sunset in the desert, creating a beautiful and intimate experience that I highly recommend.
To enhance your trip, I suggest taking a day to visit Grand Canyon National Park - it will leave you in awe.
For fans of the book "Eat Pray Love," Thailand is a great alternative to Bali. It was one of the first countries I visited, and I instantly fell in love with its mesmerizing temples and bustling street markets. Thailand is perfect for solo travelers who enjoy immersing themselves in the vibrant chaos of a new culture.
Japan is a country that never fails to amaze me. It is hands down one of my favorite countries to explore, and it is especially ideal for solo female travelers. If you're short on time, you can see the highlights of Japan in just 7 days. Alternatively, you can immerse yourself in the Japanese culture by spending up to a month riding trains around the country. Some of my favorite cities in Japan include Kyoto, Tokyo, and Osaka. However, my most cherished experience was staying with Buddhist monks.
Canada is a country of open landscapes, long highways, and incredibly friendly locals. I have been fortunate enough to visit Canada multiple times, and each visit surpasses the previous one. Cities like Vancouver are a great starting point, but my all-time favorite experience was driving the Icefields Parkway. There is something magical and surreal about embarking on a solo road trip in Canada.
Germany holds a special place in my heart as it was the first country I lived in as an expat. Around six years ago, after a year of non-stop travel, I settled in Berlin for a few months. It was one of the best experiences of my life, primarily due to the incredible German culture. Quirky and unique experiences are always waiting to be discovered, especially in Berlin. Germany is a fantastic country to explore solo, whether it be by train or as an expat. Berlin is filled with fellow expats, making it easy to connect with like-minded individuals.
Exploring the countryside of France with a partner is often portrayed as the ultimate romantic experience. However, when I visited the French countryside solo, I had a blast. There is an endless charm and romance permeating the country that took me by surprise. It may have taken me a while to venture to France alone, but once I did, I wished I had done it sooner. Europe is filled with incredible destinations for solo travelers, so don't limit yourself to just one country. Be sure to read the rest of this article for more great recommendations!
Spain is a perfect addition to your European itinerary. If you have the time, I would recommend spending at least three months exploring all of Europe. However, even if you have limited time, you can still experience a lot of the continent in just one month. A fantastic itinerary would include visiting France, Spain, Italy, and Croatia. During your time in Spain, make sure not to miss Barcelona - a city that has captured my heart!
One of the most striking trips I've ever taken was to the Scottish Highlands. The scenery is so stunning that it feels like you've stepped into a fairytale, complete with tales of fairies and giants (no kidding!). If I could choose one place to return to solo and spend more time, it would be the serene Scottish Highlands. I did the trip in just one week, but I would recommend allocating two weeks to fully immerse yourself in the beauty of the region.
My visit to Sri Lanka is another trip that I wish I had extended. This tropical paradise has gained popularity as an alternative to Bali, and it is a perfect destination for your personal "Eat Pray Love" moment. With numerous yoga retreats and surf camps, you can easily meet fellow travelers and immerse yourself in the beauty of this island.
Australia is the epitome of a destination that should be on everyone's bucket list. From kangaroos and koalas to the iconic Sydney Opera House, Australia's allure has captivated our imaginations since childhood. While the cities are cool, it is the country's natural beauty that makes it truly exceptional. Whether you're snorkeling or diving in the Great Barrier Reef, exploring the national parks in the Outback, taking a boat to Rottnest Island to meet the quokkas, or beach-hopping along the coast, make sure to prioritize spending time in nature during your visit. Some travelers only visit Sydney and Melbourne, but they miss out on so much more that Australia has to offer!
Signature Experiences: Climb the Sydney Harbour Bridge, go snorkeling on the Great Barrier Reef, explore the hidden coffeeshops and arcades of Melbourne, see koalas and kangaroos in the wild, and watch the sunrise over Uluru in all its mesmerizing colors.
Caveat: I do not recommend driving in extremely rural parts of Australia as a first-time solo traveler due to the isolation factor and the risk of kangaroos jumping in front of cars. Stick to more populated areas or consider alternative modes of transportation.
Join a group tour: If you want to visit Australia with a tour group, G Adventures offers a 14-day Australia trip that takes you from Sydney to Cairns. You can find more Australia tours on their website.
Read More: Solo Female Travel in Australia: The Guide
Savannah is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful cities I've ever visited.
I can't decide if I love Italy as much as I love pizza or if I love pizza as much as I love Italy. Regardless, indulging in pizza while adventuring through the Italian countryside and iconic cities like Rome is one of my favorite pastimes. Italy is a country that is perfect for solo travelers as it offers a rich history, incredible food (hello carbs), and endless exploration. I will never tire of embarking on Italian adventures.
When I first arrived in Portugal six or seven years ago, I instantly thought, "How did it take me so long to get here?" The city of Lisbon has an inviting atmosphere with its colorful streets, charming bars waiting to be discovered, and incredible food. The locals are incredibly warm and welcoming, which is why I returned a few years later to explore the South of Portugal. I recommend spending at least four nights in Lisbon, and if you have the time, an additional week or two to venture through the beautiful Portuguese countryside.
Montenegro is one of the most surprising countries I have ever visited. Before being invited to speak at a media conference, I had never even heard of it. This country in the South of Europe is incredibly underrated and has become one of my favorite finds in the past two years. It is extremely safe to visit solo, and I personally rented a car for a two-week adventure.
Iceland is a fantastic destination for first-time solo female travelers. It's easily accessible with nonstop flights from several US cities, and it's incredibly safe. You can feel comfortable leaving your purse on a park bench without worrying. Plus, most people speak English, so communication won't be an issue. One of the best things about Iceland is the abundance of unique landscapes and organized day tours.
You can choose to stay in Reykjavik, a small but quirky city, and take day trips to different places. Another option is to go on a road trip around the country on the Ring Road. I highly recommend exploring Iceland's South Coast, which offers a variety of landscapes including magnificent waterfalls, black sand beaches, and the mesmerizing glacier lagoon of Jökulsárlón.
Don't miss these signature experiences: Snorkeling in the neon, ice-cold waters of Silfra, horseback riding with Iceland's shaggy horses, chasing the Northern Lights if you time your trip right, glacier walking and ice climbing, and taking a delightful soak in the Blue Lagoon before heading back home.
Keep in mind: Many people plan their Iceland trips around seeing the Northern Lights, but there's no guarantee of catching a glimpse, even during the ideal times of year. Be prepared for the possibility, but don't let it overshadow your overall experience.
If you prefer a guided tour: G Adventures offers a 7-day Iceland trip that takes you all around the country. Check out their other Iceland tours as well.
Ziplining in Monteverde, Costa Rica
When I visited Malta a few years ago, it surpassed my expectations. I only wish I had spent more time there. It's a great addition to an itinerary in Greece or Italy because it's just a short flight away and much more affordable than other popular tourist destinations.
If you're looking for a hidden gem in Europe, Slovenia is the place to go. I recently embarked on a two-week solo adventure in Slovenia, driving around the country in a rental car. It was an action-packed itinerary filled with incredible experiences. Despite its small size, Slovenia offers so much for visitors. Make sure not to miss the famous Lake Bled, which is considered one of the most beautiful lakes in the world.
Out of all the countries I visited solo in South America, Chile was not only the safest for a solo female traveler, but it was also my favorite. There is so much to see in Chile without needing to add other countries to your itinerary. Start your journey in Santiago and then head North to the Atacama Desert or South to Patagonia. If your budget allows, consider a visit to the mysterious Easter Island.
I took a solo trip to The Netherlands for ten days during my book tour in 2017. It still amazes me that my book was translated into another language, and I had the opportunity to meet my Dutch readers. Amsterdam is just the beginning of what this country has to offer. With an efficient train system, you can easily explore other cities like The Hague, Delft, Utrecht, and Maastricht.
Marco Island, Florida
If you're looking for a tropical getaway for your first solo trip in the US, Marco Island in Florida is a great choice. It may not have the same party scene as Miami, but Marco Island is perfect for travelers who simply want to relax and unwind.
However, Marco Island still offers plenty of things to see and do. Consider trying out jet skiing or exploring the nearby Everglades National Park to learn more about wildlife. You can also book tours to meet other travelers and make connections. Of course, if you prefer, you can simply soak up the sun and enjoy the Gulf of Mexico.
Cape May, New Jersey
Cape May may be a popular destination for girls' weekends, but it's also a delightful place to visit solo. Whether you're lounging on the beach with a captivating book in the summer or exploring the town's attractions throughout the year, Cape May offers something for everyone.
In Cape May, you can take brewery tours, visit independent museums, join trolley tours to learn about the town's history, and savor delicious meals at upscale hotel bars. It's the perfect spot for a solo traveler to escape reality and indulge in a weekend of pampering.
Is it budget-friendly? Perhaps not, but Cape May is definitely worth visiting. You won't be disappointed.
Hope to See You in Fremont Seattle!Essentials for First Time Solo Female Travel in USA
To wrap things up, here's a quick list of essentials for your first-time solo travels to the United States:
- Battery-Powered Charger: Don't risk losing phone access during your solo trip. Carry a reliable battery-powered charger to keep your phone charged all day long.
- Lightweight Day Pack: A lightweight day pack is a must-have for solo travel. Tumi offers a great option that allows you to carry everything without feeling weighed down.
- Lonely Planet USA: For guidance on the best places to visit in the USA, grab a travel guide from Lonely Planet. Their recommendations are always reliable.
- Microfiber Towel: If you plan to stay in hostels, bring along a microfiber towel. It's compact and versatile, and you can use it for picnics or trips to the beach as well.
- Mirrorless Camera: If you want to capture high-quality photos beyond what your phone can offer, invest in a mirrorless camera like those from Sony. They're portable and produce professional-grade images.
- Travel Insurance: It's always smart to have travel insurance when visiting another country. Make sure you're covered, especially considering that your home country's health insurance may not apply in the United States.
Solo travel is a rewarding and introspective experience that every woman should try at least once. I hope you enjoyed reading about my recommendations for first-time solo female travel destinations in the USA. Feel free to share your own experiences with me!
When it comes to the best places for solo female travel, Bali definitely tops the list. It offers a fulfilling and soul-enriching experience like nowhere else on earth. I highly recommend staying in Canggu, which has become increasingly popular in recent years. It's known for its fantastic cafes and co-working spaces, making it a perfect destination for female entrepreneurs.
In conclusion, these destinations offer the perfect combination of safety, adventure, and culture for women looking to embark on a solo journey. Whether you're seeking the tranquility of Bali's beaches or the vibrant energy of New York City, there is a destination on this list for every type of traveler. So pack your bags, embrace the freedom of solo travel, and get ready to create unforgettable memories in these best female solo travel destinations. Happy travels!
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