Solo travel and me

Taking the plunge and holidaying alone seems scary but can be very rewarding…

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Hong Kong. Image credit: Anna Fearon

For the first time in my life I am going on a solo holiday. A couple of months ago I would never have dreamt of going on holiday on my own. It sounds way too scary and also has the potential to be very lonely. But, just recently I have pushed myself outside my comfort zone and taken a few risks and this is one of them.

It’s probably one of the most fearless decisions I’ve ever made. But it’s not a decision I arrived at easily; I certainly never intended to go on holiday on my own.

I desperately wanted to go on a summer holiday and after asking around a few friends I found that they already had holidays booked and other commitments. The thought of not getting some sun, sand and sea was quite depressing as I’m definitely due a summer holiday.

So I toyed with the idea of solo travel. I was THAT desperate to go on holiday that I would go on my own. But it seemed way too scary and would take a lot of planning, so I was naturally hesitant. I also felt quite sad about the fact that a solo holiday was something I had to resort to and not a choice. In an ideal world, I would be holidaying with friends.

You don’t really hear of many people going on holiday on their own, especially women. When I think of holidays images of big groups of friends spring to mind, so naturally the idea of a solo holiday seemed bleak.

I stalled the decision for weeks. I then chatted to a girl at work that had been on a holiday with a tour operator which organises group holidays for solo travellers. That chat set the wheels in motion; if someone my age had holidayed alone then so could I. Yet there was still doubt in my mind. I then read a travel feature in Stylist written by journalist Anna Hart about her solo travelling experience. The whole article was so positive about it, that it made me seriously think about it as a possibility. I began to see solo travel as a good choice and not just something you resort to.

Around the same time I read another feature in Grazia about how one female writer actually chose to go on holiday alone and really enjoyed it. Seeing that other women had taken the leap and loved it was enough persuasion for me. If the only way that I was going to get to go on holiday was on my own, then so be it. I started to see it as an empowering and brave decision to make in a world where most people holiday with someone else.

I’m not afraid to be on my own and experience things on my own. I’ve explored Miami and Macau on my own, so I know I can do it.

And so after doing my research I booked a holiday with a tour operator that runs an organised group trip to Croatia. I don’t know anyone booked on this holiday at all, so in that sense I’m going as a solo traveller.

My solo holiday with a bunch of strangers is a scary prospect, but it could be the best experience of my life. Who knows? It’s a real chance to make friends and one I probably wouldn’t have if I’d holidayed with a friend.

If there’s one thing that I would like you to take away from this post is that there’s no shame in holidaying alone. It’s a bold and scary thing to do, but it’s also very exciting and full of possibilities.

Would you consider solo travel? Have you been away on your own? Let me know in the comments box below.

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