I believe that the most important part of traveling alone is not just the feeling of freedom it provides. This feeling is, yes, very strong, and it will probably be the first feeling with which you will make contact. But the great part of the process is the simple fact that on the road your only real friend will be yourself, and I believe that before you want to be with anyone else, whether on a trip, or in any part of your life, you need to learn to enjoy being with yourself.
Life is a routine. We can’t escape it. We wake up, work, lunch, work more, eat dinner and sleep. More or less like this every day. And so it is for almost everyone. And in this routine we end up always living with the same people.
The same little conversations on the bar table with co-workers, college, childhood friends. People who, for some reason, have a certain relationship with us and who most likely share many of our convictions and ideas.
Life is like this. We are growing and separating who we want as friends and who we don’t want. Who looks like you and who is totally the opposite. At work and in college groups, for example, we are still forced to share space with people who certainly would not be on our list of best people. But on days off and on leisure days we always end up with the same people.
And this is normal, of course. We want to be with people we like. But often, this ends up limiting us. Because almost always the subjects will be the same. The social circle as well. We will speak of the day-to-day life we share, of love, of our bosses and the good and evil of many people we have in common.
I really like to travel with my friends. I also love a romantic travel.
Go to the beach with your friends is wonderful, but traveling alone is as good as this, and more than that, it's often necessary.
All people, men or women, should have this experience at least once in their lives. Deep self-knowledge. You don’t know who you really are if you are always with other people. For me, it's really weird someone who can’t stand his/her own company and who feels quickly bored. When I travel alone, I create memories without being influenced by anyone, I record every moment in the most particular way possible. Only I know what I saw, and how I saw it. I wake up whenever I want, I experience what I want, I make my itineraries without commitment and without having to warn anyone. I pity those who travel and know more about a place than about themselves.
Let the girls travel alone!
Girls who travel alone are open to meeting new people, new cultures and are not limited to what they already know and are comfortable with. They are curious, and they want to be in peace. There's nothing wrong with that, but it seems to bother a lot of people.
It bothers people because they are afraid of loneliness and it’s better to attack than to have to deal with those who find pleasure where most people find insecurity.
It’s preferable to attack at all times than having to deal with girls who treat loneliness as an option, for they are confident enough not to be afraid of it.
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What are you afraid of?
From what I've noticed, the biggest fears are the insecurity of not knowing other languages. But traveling alone is this: facing your fears, overcoming challenges and feeling strong, happy and powerful, even if you are going to a neighboring state.
I'm not exaggerating. Although I travel more accompanied than solo, I don’t dispense my moments of traveling loneliness. And I always say that I have not yet known anything more empowering and liberating – especially for women – than to unravel this world only with your own company.
I believe that traveling alone is a kind of evolution in the way of thinking about a journey. After all, hardly anyone made their first trip on their own. You have evolved since you were a child and traveled with your parents. After that, you grew up and probably traveled with your friends from school and college. A few years later, you traveled with your boyfriend and ex-boyfriends, until one day you stopped and thought: it's time to do it alone.
But why do people resist to this evolution?
I believe it’s because they are conditioned from a very early age to live in a group, under the protection of people with whom they live nearby.
They create a huge dependency on anything that is around them, be it a car, an apartment or something used as an excuse to start a long solo trip: “I can’t travel and leave this here”.
They get used to having breakfast waiting for them every day at home or at the corner bakery.
They have someone to wash their clothes, or to take them to the hospital when needed, someone to talk to when they need help, and so on.
When traveling together or in a group, you end up taking a little bit of these dependencies together with your companions. To travel alone is to give it all away in one go. It's a great exercise in detachment.
What can happen if you travel the world alone?
Well, my answer to this question is: you'll like it, and a lot! The sense of freedom that accompanies a solitary journey is indescribable and is the first real sensation you’ll perceive. You are not connected to any pendency, of any kind, much less to anyone. You wake up and have breakfast any time you want, you go out for lunch whenever you want, explore the places you want to explore, for as long as you want. You get tired and rest without having to wait for anyone, you sleep whenever you want, and when you are tired of solitude, you just have to look around, because there will always be a group of people willing to welcome you with open arms.
The ease with which you develop being alone is fantastic. For some reason, several of the blockages you carry and keep you shy are naturally turned off in situations where there is no one accompanying you. After some time, chatting with a strange becomes the easiest thing in the world. Added to that, there is also a phenomenon that I find very interesting in environments such as hostels and other environments where several people are in the same vibe: for some reason, perhaps by your mind understanding that you don’t have much time with that person, the level of friendship that you develop evolves in a fast and very natural way. Two days with the person and it's like you guys have been friends (or lovers) for a long time. The impression I have is that traveling in groups you sort of limit the ability of this type of relationship to happen, because there is a comfort zone with regard to relating to those around you.
We don’t have to force a friendship on a trip. But we need to listen and start to know other people. Be open to new experiences. And this is very enriching. Things are going to be a lot more interesting than talking badly about your boss or someone you know. The exchange will be rich indeed. That way, you can discover new realities, new cultures, new ways of thinking.
There is no need to agree with everything the person is talking about. Nor disagree whenever you’re contradicted. Just hear and be heard. To be able to know other realities. In fact, many times you will meet people who will enter in your list of favorites.
Either way, it doesn’t matter if these people will be with you after you arrive in a city. What matters is the transformation, no matter how small, that they will do for you. A little bit of each of them will be forever in your routine.
Here are some tips that are important to be quoted and remembered for better. They are:
Know the local language (at least the basics)
If you go to a country that speaks a different language, it’s always good to have a sense of the language. You don’t have to learn complicated sentences, but basic words like "thank you”, "please”, "excuse me”, "yes”, "no” and even the name of your own country are very useful. This opens doors and will help you a lot when traveling alone.
Try to stay in hostels
They are the best places for you to meet people from all over the world. Not to mention that the chances of you finding people who are traveling alone and also looking for company are much higher.
Take it easy on alcoholic beverages
When you’re not with a friend or family member nearby to give you a hint of when you are overreacting, it’s very easy to lose track of yourself and get into trouble. So be careful!
Don’t miss contact with your family and close friends
Let your family and friends know the places you plan to visit each day. It’s important that they know where you are or should be, if something happen.
Use technology to your advantage
Before and while traveling, use and abuse of apps that recommend good places to visit, eat and stay. Also have translators, maps, GPS and currency converters in your cell phone.
Technology on the go: ally or enemy?
One thing I know. Before, the lack of technology forced you to interact with the local population. Get to a city and ask how to arrive at a particular hotel. Walk the streets and ask the best way to a cafe, restaurant, museum or monastery. How many times did this question become a joint walk, a coffee later with someone or the start of a conversation?
With the advent of technology we have the false impression that we are not alone, don’t you think? See how the cell phone is part of our routine. We are almost inseparable. Not that this is something bad, on the contrary, but we can’t deny that we are connected almost 24 hours a day. Surely this has made it easier for people who are looking to travel alone, after all, you can call people from the other side of the world, talk through messages, read books online, look for apps, among many other things.
In addition, travel became more accessible. The number of people traveling today is significantly higher than 10 years ago, for example. By joining these and other factors, traveling is a part of most people's lives, and traveling alone is already almost fashionable.
Of course, with technology and innovation people are already making money from this demand and inventing everything imaginable to serve this audience. I couldn’t help but address this subject and, who knows, inspire those who wish to make a beautiful trip alone.
You can use services already available to meet people online as allies on these trips if you need some company. Maybe you can find a person who is doing the same thing as you, enjoying unique adventures on their own, but without closing the question of meeting someone on the course of your trip. This someone can be a great friend or a great new love. It all depends on the affinities and willingness of both of you to make the adventure work.
Changing your life and the lives of others
It’s true that a quick adventure will renew your energies, make you more confident and having the sensation that you have the reins of your life. And of course, my advice is: always maintaining kindness, companionship and empathy. You will have contacts around the world, bonds that you have created and left their mark in your memory.
Traveling alone is yet another opportunity to practice and visualize the results of how you make a difference in the life of others. Being in a place you don’t know, away from the people you know, can give you a sense of more freedom. An escape from the moorings that leave you on day-to-day autopilot.
Whether on a trip in or out of your country, whether it's two days or a year, the important thing is to capture its essence. In the most unexpected moment, when you understand that you are alone, you begin to realize the load of good energies that this condition provides and then you will be sure that you have made the right decision.