If I were to say to you that I travelled from Los Angeles to Vegas on my lonesome by bus, would you believe me?
Being quite the traveller that I am, I’m used to taking flights cross country by myself with the small exception of someone always waiting for me on the other side. This year, I decided that I was going to attend Coachella with some friends who live America, who would then have to go back to their respective homes after the weekend festivities – unfortunately for my dear friends, Americans don’t get the best annual leave entitlements.
One thing I knew for sure though, after an 11-hour flight, a weekend just wouldn’t be enough for me and I wasn’t about to go home that quickly.
From then on, I knew I was going to have to do some travelling alone….
Now don’t get it twisted, I can admit that I may have been slightly dramatic about it at first, I had so many thoughts rushing through my head like, “isn’t it weird to travel by yourself?” or “what good is travelling if its not a shared experience?” let me not forget my personal fave, “who’s going to take my pictures?” – which actually didn’t turn out to be too bad, who would’ve known the world had so many budding photographers, believe me when I say they did better than some of my closest friends (I know my friends won’t take offence LOOL)
There is something truly special about traveling alone, I feel like I had enough me time to think through a lot of things, things that would be beneficial to myself, and others around me. It was a refreshing experience and I would like to share the seven things I learnt whilst travelling solo.
When you’re travelling with friends, you tend to spend too much time on entertaining each other rather than socialising and meeting new people.
Travelling solo brought new confidence within me as I had to encourage myself to speak with the locals, I found that people tend to be more open and friendly when you tell them you’re from abroad and travelling by yourself, they would suggest cool and funky places I should visit during my time there.
Disclaimer – I wouldn’t suggest telling everybody that you are travelling by yourself, remember stranger danger, and not everybody is your friend. Use your discretion wisely.
5 Reason to Travel Solo
Do what you want to do, when you want to do it
Sometimes with friends, you aren’t able to do everything you would like to, as you would also have to take into consideration their wants and needs, which could prove to be difficult to coordinate in a short space of time. There seems to be an endless amount of planning (boring!) then you have those with the ‘assigned/ unassigned’ roles, you have your leaders, your followers, and the unbothered’s who just go with the flow. Travelling alone made me be all of those at once. It was amazing, when I wanted to go home, I went home; I went wherever I wanted to, whenever I wanted to, it was just GREAT!!
When you travel alone, you can’t rely on someone else to read the map or carefully organise your day, you must do it all. And it’s easy. you will find out very quickly at every step, that you can rise to the occasion. You have no choice. By making your own plans and caring for yourself, you’ll find you come away stronger, more confident and self-reliant.
Alone time is good for your soul
Alone time is so therapeutic, naturally, I am an introvert and so is my boyfriend. We have always agreed that this sometimes can be a negative trait. At home, I’m a very distant person, that sometimes it can feel like it’s you against the world. However, when you are alone in another country, you can have time to really connect with yourself away from the bullshit reality that we live day in and day out. It forces you to search your soul. Then come back home with dreams you never knew you even had, its like a deeper spiritual feeling.
New friends are not that hard to come by
Being in America with a British accent really worked to my advantage. It can sometimes be intimidating speaking with new people but if you never try, how will you know where your conversation could lead you. On my way to the Grand Canyon from Las Vegas, I met a lovely lady and her mother who took me under their wing for the day. We had such a great time and I don’t regret plucking up the courage to speak with them. I have now met someone who I am very much likely to carry on speaking to for years to come.
Thank God for Social Media
My friends always knew where I was, we made sure to have quick check-ins. Despite being in different countries I knew that if my friends didn’t see an update on social media for more than 48 hours they would begin to worry; a definite plus was that I was in an English-speaking country so no language barriers, and being Daddy’s girl. My dad who also lives in the states was always checking up on me, making sure I wasn’t getting up to no good.
You were born in this world alone, you will die alone, so what’s stopping you from exploring the wonders of this world alone
It may sound a bit harsh but I mean this in the nicest way possible, I feel like people need to remember that you cannot rely on anybody but God and yourself. One of my realisations whilst travelling solo was that I was going to be fine by myself, and guess what I was, I met some beautiful people that I would now consider lifetime friends.
So GO ahead, take the leap, It’s time do real things by yourself, for yourself; If you have a place you’ve wanted to go. Don’t know anyone to go with, look no further, just do it, by yourself.
What about yourself, have you ever travelled anywhere solo, where?