Those inclined to hit the road alone know that solo travel is one of the best ways to experience almost any destination and to have an authentic affinity with it. There are endless options for the solo traveler to venture to so, we’ve done some research and found a few destinations to pair perfectly with travel interests, magnificent places to explore and of course, authentic food galore.
Here are five great destinations to ease you into the adventures that await you, no matter your age or stage in life.
With an airport that has been named the World’s Best Airport by travelers for a fifth consecutive year (2017 Skytrax World Airport Awards), Singapore is a great place to start solo travel in Asia. Getting around Singapore’s excellent public transport system is safe, comfortable, and inexpensive, and train links make all of the island’s main attractions easily accessible. Combined with a year-round tropical climate and multicultural population, Singapore is an ideal destination for anyone traveling on their own.
Highlights in Singapore are the Marina Bay area and Gardens by the Bay. For something a little more cultural head to Kampong Glam, a wonderfully restored neighborhood native to Singapore’s Malay community with the beautiful Sultan Mosque, shops, and art galleries. If you’re a nature lover, make time for Pulau Ubin, an island northeast of Singapore with an abundance of natural flora and fauna. Whatever you do, don’t leave Singapore without visiting Chinatown, which boasts the world’s cheapest Michelin-Star meal — Liao Fan Hong Kong Soya Sauce Chicken Rice & Noodle dish, which costs a grand S$2.
Tel Aviv offers solo travelers a generous mix of sea, delicious food, and easy-to-navigate public transport. A buzzing promenade runs along the Mediterranean seashore and is a place for walking and familiarizing yourself with the locals. Throughout the day, sporty types practice their chosen craft here; by night the beach is floodlit for volleyball games. Any time of the day, it’s a brilliant setting for socializing.
In the heart of Tel Aviv, about a 15-minute walk from the promenade, is Carmel Market, which is great for sampling street food. Here you can try a wide selection from falafel and hummus to freshly squeezed herbal juices all of which is kosher and is perfect for vegans. Running parallel is Nahalat Binyamin Craft Market, where independent artists showcase their work along a leafy street. The surrounding area is full of cafes, restaurants, and shops. Stop by for a sweet treat cake in one of the many fresh bakeries before setting out to explore the more historic places of Tel Aviv and the rest of Israel.
Nimes is a small city a few miles inland from France’s famous Cote d’Azure and is as fitting a place as any to begin exploring the South of France. This quiet town was an important city in the Roman Empire and is great for solo travelers with an interest in history and culture.
Pradier Fountain greets travelers arriving by train and has been the centerpiece of Nimes’ urban garden Esplanade since 1845. A magnificent amphitheater, Arena of Nimes, dating back to 70AD, dominates the city. Maison-Carrée, a 2,000-year-old temple, is one of the best-preserved Roman buildings in the world and sits beside modern museums, coffee shops, and galleries. Even with such important historic places, the city is yet to be declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site. This means it’s a great deal less crowded than cities such as Rome with just as many historic places to see. Nimes’ location makes a more tranquil place for familiarising yourself with the south coast of France before exploring busier cities such as Cannes, Grasse, or Marseille.
You can hardly open a newsfeed without seeing alluring pictures of Dubrovnik and all of the Game of Thrones references calling you to jump on a plane. Even with all the GoT hubbub, Dubrovnik’s still a fantastic place to explore alone. Avoid February to October as this time is the busiest period for the town when it’s overrun by cruise ships and music festivals. But any other time the weather will still be mild and you will be able to enjoy everything that makes Dubrovnik special without the crowds.
The must-see sight in Dubrovnik is the Old Town. It’s a UNESCO World Heritage site and perfect for exploring alone. The Serbian Orthodox Church and St. Ignatius Church are incredible experiences. Walk the city walls for spectacular views of Dubrovnik.
It’s impossible to ignore the Mediterranean vibe of Dubrovnik. Even in cooler times, people eat outside on narrow cobbled streets. The local wine “Grk” is a must if it’s your first time as are the utterly delicious pastries freshly baked by local artisans in the town. In the evening, enjoy a sundowner at the Buza Bar located on a cliff in the Old Town.
Switzerland’s second-largest city has extensive transport links to Germany, France, and other parts of Switzerland of course. The station BSS Basel is Europe’s busiest international border train station. Outside of it, you can find bus and tram terminals for your onward journeys.
Basel is rich in history. Switzerland’s oldest university, founded in 1460 as well as a medieval old town dating from the 1500s complete with moat, alleys, houses, fountain,s and courtyards have been perfectly preserved and are still in use by Basel’s inhabitants. Tram 8 to Kleinhuningen takes you to Marktplatz and the bright red Rathaus (Town Hall). The building is 500 years old and is still used for local government meetings in the Canton of Basel. Marktplatz is also home to a farmers’ market selling local produce on weekdays and is a great place for tasting local food. Spend a few hours or days here before exploring the breathtaking scenery of the Swiss countryside.
Do you have a favorite solo travel destination? Tell us in the comments!