Your first solo holiday

Your first solo holiday

You’ve decided to travel solo, so where should you go on your first solo holiday? Before you start throwing ideas around, here are a few things to think about before you make up your mind.

Do what feels comfortable

If it’s your first time travelling alone, then don’t feel you have to go out of the country where you live.  Travelling solo can simply be visiting an area nearby that you’ve not been to or even somewhere where you’ve been in the past but not alone.  Do what feels comfortable for you and not what everybody else is doing. Tip If you don’t want to travel far from home on your first solo holiday, then start with a weekend break, spa trip or a tour to another part of the country.  Then pick two other places outside your comfort zone you’d want to visit and that way you’ve got a goal to work towards.

Do your research

Whether you’re visiting somewhere near your hometown or venturing beyond your “norm”, do enough research beforehand.  You may want to be spontaneous and see where things take you but being on your own means you’ll be relying on yourself all the time. Okay, so you’ll probably use your phone to find your way around and things to do as you go along, but you won’t have anyone to bounce ideas off.

You may find the evenings harder – don’t just get wrapped up in the daytime activities.  Consider things to do like going to a jazz bar, a night river cruise or maybe a night walking or photography tour.  A lot of these things don’t need to be booked in advance and can be done online.  Try to find one activity to do every other night (depending on the length of your trip), so you won’t get too bored.

Don’t be led by others

It’s great to hear other people’s experiences but you could end up with a list of all the things they’d want to do.  While it’s worth taking some suggestions into consideration, try to stick to what it is you want to do and where you want to go.  It’s your holiday and your first solo adventure, so remember to make it your own!

Pull together two lists; one with the activities and things you want to do, and the other with any ideas and suggestions from friends or family.  This way you can pick and mix and get the best bits covered.

What do you want from your trip?

Whether you suddenly decide to travel solo or it’s something you’ve always wanted to do, think about what you want to get out of your trip.  Perhaps you want time alone to think, take stock or revitalise your batteries.   Maybe you want to go somewhere and can’t find anyone to go with at that time.  Whatever it may be, don’t rush into it with all the excitement.

Think about any words you’d associate with the reasons for going on your trip, for example, what excites you or what you want to get out of it.  Take any activities and things to do and see and match as many as you can with those words.  Doing this will help tie what you’re excited about with activities that will give you that feeling.  That way you’ll get an even balance and what you want to achieve.

Think of your safety first

There are so many places you could visit but pick somewhere you’d feel safe on your own.  Now that’s hard to know if you’ve not travelled alone before but think about how you’d feel in different places or situations.  For example, despite the fact I had some long-haul trips on my bucket list, I didn’t feel comfortable going to any of them for my first solo trip away.  I wanted to be closer to home.

Look at your chosen destination not just for the accommodation and things to do, but also for how busy or quiet it may be at night. Is it near a main road or town?  Is it more secluded, near a park or can you easily hail a taxi if it’s late? Use reviews to help you as well.  You’ll find solo travellers are more likely to mention whether they felt safe in a particular hotel and its surroundings.

That’s about it!  When you decide to do something new, it’s always fresh and exciting.  It can be easy to lose focus of why you wanted to do it in the first place, so remember to make sure you’re getting the most out of it. Do you have any tips you’ve picked up along the way? Submit your suggestions.  

Check out where I decided to go on my first solo holiday.

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