Traveling solo pushes one to go beyond their comfort zone and to do thing they never thought they’d be capable of: read a map, meet new people, get to know another culture, and try new cuisine. If you’re embark on a solo journey or have been, then make sure to accomplish these travel goals and make this year one you won’t forget!
1. Don’t be afraid to be alone
Rishikesh, India, the Yoga capital of the world, is where you forget about work, problems and more. It’s where you learn to focus on your inner being, blocking out the world’s distractions so that you feel nothing but calm and at peace. If you can’t make it to Rishikesh, then no sweat! There are several yoga retreats that you can both locally and internationally – take your pick and find your inner peace.
2. Let go
Traveling solo is the time to let go of your inhibitions and to do something that you’ve always wanted to do! It could be as simple as taking up a cooking class, joining a bar crawl to something crazy like sky diving or bungee jumping. With no one to hold you back or to make you feel shy about going after doing what you want to do – now is the perfect time to check items off of your bucket list.
3. Trust other people
While it’s still advisable to be wary of strangers, some of the best trips happen when you open up and start talking to the people around you. Traveling solo? Talk to the people at your hotel, your taxi driver, the waiter, everyone! Locals always know of the best places to go to and may let you in a city secret or two. Don’t forget to be cautious, though! Always let someone back home know who you’re with and where you guys are headed off to.
4. Accept change
If you travel to another country looking for the comforts then home, then it defeats the whole purpose of you traveling. You don’t go to another destination to look for the familiarity of home, you go to immerse yourself in another culture. With that being said, learn to accept and to respect practices that aren’t your own. Doing so makes you more worldly and helps you better understand the country’s people.
5. Dare to make mistakes
Feeling adventurous? Get lost. Toss the map aside and go with your gut. Exploring a new location is sometimes best done when you don’t have particular destinations to get to. Doing this pushes you to be more aware of surroundings – to take in the buildings, shops and restaurants. Who knows? You may discover a little restaurant that serves great food or a shop that sells trinkets you can bring home.
6. Know your limits
It’s always fun to try new things – but do so with caution. If you’re in another country, keep in mind that the local water or that certain cuisines may not sit well with you. For example, if you’re headed over to China and want to try their street food, then know they sell extreme bites like fried tarantula, wasp crackers, shipworms (tamilok) and snakes. They also sell scorpions and rat legs. If you don’t feel comfortable eating any of that – then no one is going to hold it against you.
7. Go back to your childhood
Going to places that evoke your childhood are certainly fun. Whether it be a certain place you used to go to with family or even a theme park, go somewhere that reminds you of your kiddie days. The Philippines has Enchanted Kingdom, Splash Island and more. Though if you have the budget for it, you could head over to the Wizarding World in Universal Studios Osaka or even Legoland in Malaysia. Better yet, start saving and wait for the 2022 opening of Super Nintendo World in Osaka.
8. Party all night
You don’t need to get drunk to have fun. Dancing, meeting new people and basically having fun all night long is possible when traveling solo. Put on your smile, turn up your confidence and approach groups of people who look fun to hang out with. Break free from being shy and just put yourself out there.
9. Help somebody
At the end of the day, happiness is only real when shared (Christopher McCandless). Nowadays, more and more solo travelers are looking for hostels, charities or foundations that they can volunteer for at their destination. Whether it’s helping serve or clean dishes, playing with children or working with animals – there are so many ways one can volunteer. So before heading off on your trip, you may want to look into this and squeeze some time for it into your itinerary.
10. Reconnect with an old friend
If you have an old friend at the destination you’re visiting, don’t hesitate to reconnect! On one hand, it’d be great to catch up and to talk about how the other is doing. On the other hand, it’d be great to be with someone who has more local knowledge than you do – ask them about places to go, where to eat, where to shop and more.