There are many reasons to travel alone as a woman, and perhaps just as many not to, with all the things going on in the world today. The threats of terrorism and disease are real, as are human rights violations and violence against women, whether in conflict areas, developing countries or the so-called First World.
Not too long ago, women were prevented from doing certain things that were supposed to be for men only, among them voting and attending university. There are still inequalities in society: gender stereotypes, social expectations and the glass ceiling. On top of that, there are cultural barriers in many parts of the world that make being alone in a strange land even more daunting. But this is part of what makes travel an exciting learning experience that will push you out of your comfort zone.
Going on your first solo trip can be scary, but once you realize that it’s not all that difficult, it can be immensely rewarding. There are certain places that lend themselves to solo female travel. Good transportation links, the availability of information in different languages, and safety are a few things to consider.
I have been fortunate to have enjoyed all my trips alone. Of course, there were some unnerving experiences (someone opening my hotel room door with a working keycard, for example), but each one is a valuable lesson that prepared me for the next step.
Here are a few of my favorite places for solo female travel:
It’s nearly impossible to get lost or get culture shock here. This compact island republic rivals the West in its progress and lifestyle, with the costs to match. Government support of the arts is unparalleled in Asia, and it shows. I try to go on an art pilgrimage here every year if I can.
Storied Berlin is a creative hotbed and a delight for museum lovers like me. Rough at the edges, yet polished enough to be comfortable, the city welcomes artists and history buffs with cosmopolitan arms.
Effortlessly stylish, wonderful and liveable Copenhagen is a designer’s dream. There’s plenty of exploring to be done on foot in the city center.
LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM
Vibrant, historic and worldly, London remains my favorite city. Expensive food and accomodations are offset by free attractions. The theater scene is top-notch, with Broadway imports as well as homegrown West End productions.
If your goal is to escape the city, you can do it here in the towns of central Taiwan. Tourist trails abound, with a pull even for jaded non-Chinese-speaking travellers who are weary of East Asian crowds.
What are your favorite places for solo female travel? Sound off below. I’d love to hear from you!