You’re going to Europe by yourself? Aren’t you worried what will happen to you? As a female, don’t you think that’s unsafe? These are all questions I received when I decided to quit my job and take off on a four month solo backpacking adventure across Europe. I could see my mother mauling over the possibilities of me becoming the girl from Taken or ending up like one of the people from the movie Hostel. We were a family of non-travellers so the very concept was strange. Needless to say, I had a heart full of wanderlust and have never regretted the decision to go.
Being a solo traveller is easier than you think and one of the most rewarding experiences. You never really know what you are capable of until you board a plane with nothing but a backpack and a return ticket. However, if you worried about that first solo trip, here’s a few destinations to get you started;
Ah London, you pretty little thing you. I will never forget the first time I stepped off the plane after 26 hours of travelling, tired but more awake then I have ever felt. London is the kind of place where you instantly feel at home and one that will leave you wanting more.
Being a major destination in Europe with cheap flights from Australia, London is an excellent starting point for any solo traveller.
Cesky Krumlov, Czech Republic
If you are a horror movie fan you will recognise this town as the filming location for the movie hostel, now bare with me, it seems a little controversial but nonetheless Cesky Krumlov is by far one of the most beautiful fairy tale towns I have ever seen. Everything about this town has you feeling like a Disney Princess, from the cobble stone streets, beautiful castle over looking the city and the friendly locals that you feel are about to break out into song.
Not typically somewhere many think of travelling to alone. Generally when you think of Paris the words romantic getaway or girls trip come to mind, however, Paris is by far one of my favourite places to travel to solo.
On my first trip I planned the entire trip around visiting Paris for my birthday and ended up staying a week. Paris is filled with endless possibilities and you can easily spend a week finding yourself here.
One of my favourite solo trips to date, Budapest is one of those places that has to be seen to be believed and a city you could never feel lonely in. Spend a day relaxing in one of the many thermal baths, meeting locals and tourists alike, or climb to the top of Buda Castle and marvel at the wonders of this city.
I will always remember the friends I made in this city, the sunset picnics and the endless glasses of wine. These friendships and memories I hope will last me a lifetime.
I am calling it, this is the most beautiful city in Europe and a perfect stop for all travellers. Everything about this city, from the beautiful tiles, gorgeous views and Portuguese Tarts it is hard not to get lost in its wonders.
Be sure to check out the many viewpoints around the city and try some of the Port Wine they are famous for.
I have a soft spot for Japan, apart from being known as one of the safest countries in the world to visit it is also the cleanest, friendliest and most efficient country I have been to.
Eating out as a solo traveller can be quite daunting in most countries, I could not tell you how many times I arrived at a restaurant, only to be seated at a table for two and have the additional place setting be taken away, it can feel quite lonely. However, in Japan, no matter where you go to dine they make you feel incredibly welcome and there is always seating for one.
Travelling solo to Japan? I recommended grabbing yourself a Japan Rail Pass. The public transport here runs frequently and is one of the easiest, fastest and safest ways to get around this beautiful country.
This is one for the explorers, the wanders and the adventurers. Although Iceland is extremely expensive it is a land of pure beauty and wonder.
Heading to Iceland? I would recommended hiring a car and spending a week exploring the wonder that is Iceland. Be sure to check out the Golden Circle and the Blue Lagoon, still some of the most beautiful place I have seen.
South Tyrol, Italy
Never have I found a place I simply did not want to leave (except maybe Porto). The region of South Tyrol is perfect for those looking for a charming getaway. With so many places to explore and excellent public transport it is safe for all travellers.
Join some explorers and hike to the top of Seceda or take one of the many cable cars up the mountain, pack a picnic and live in the moment, there aren’t many places in the world as beautiful as this.
Arriving in Lauterbrunnen felt like walking into a living postcard, though, most of Switzerland has this feel. It is a great place to immerse yourself in nature for a few days, drink hot chocolate and go hiking. Everything about this place is both charming and welcoming and by far one of my favourite destinations to date.
Arriving in Barcelona, hoping on a train and being greeted by a live band gives you a idea on what it is to be in Barcelona. A city so vibrant and full of life that it’s hard not to enjoy yourself.
Start your day off with sunrise at Park Guell, before grabbing a delicious coffee at one of the many cafes, then making your way down to Sagrada Familia before strolling down to the beach for an afternoon of cocktails and sun. It is a city that makes you want to stay for a while.
Rome is a perfect city for solo female travellers, it is hard not to feel welcome, safe and there are endless possibilities.
I will never forget the first time I stayed in Rome, it was about half way through my backpacking trip, with a temperature of 42 degrees. I was walking around looking for a place to eat (preferably with air conditioning), after a while I stumbled upon a cute little family owned restaurant where I was welcomed like a true princess. They were so worried about a girl travelling around the world by herself that they adopted me for a few short hours, fed me more than I ordered and tried to set me up with there son. I had never felt so welcomed by complete strangers in my whole life.