I’m 27 and female. Since I was 21, I’ve been away at least once a year, for anything from 3 nights to 9 months, alone. I also go on trips with friends, but I make a point of regularly going solo.
When alone, I’ve been met with various reactions, but they tend to fall into two broad camps:
1. Awesome, that must be really fun! (Wide eyes, look of interest, wants to hear stories)
2. Really? You’re on your own?! Why?? (Raised eyebrows, expression of slight distrust, thinks I’m weird)
Both are totally valid. In fact, depending on what’s happened that day, either can feel completely (sometimes painfully) justified.
It’s rare that I forge a friendship with someone from the second camp. And, if they get me on a bad day, their reaction can feel like a gentle kick in the stomach.
As I look to the year ahead, and think about the trips I’ll inevitably make alone, I’m offering myself a small reminder of why it’s necessary and important to me. Just in case I need a little push.
But more than that: I’d like to share my reasons for travelling solo with those who might fall somewhere in the region of camp number 2?—?and hopefully do it a little more coherently than I would if I were standing in a hostel kitchen with my hand in a jar of shop-bought pasta sauce.
So, here they are: the seven reasons I travel solo.