Top destinations for solo female travelers

Embarking on a solo journey as a woman can initially appear intimidating, with concerns about transportation, potential awkward encounters, a lack of self-assuredness, and the responsibility of handling everything alone. However, it’s undeniably one of the most empowering experiences. You gain full autonomy over your choices without the need to consider anyone else’s preferences. Traveling solo opens doors to meeting new people and forging new friendships. Let’s be honest; it can be daunting, but that’s also part of the excitement. It’s an opportunity to stretch your limits, step out of your comfort zone, and revel in your self-reliance. If you’ve never ventured out on a solo journey before, I highly recommend it. Start with something manageable, such as exploring a nearby city or embarking on a short road trip. Once you’ve gained confidence in your ability to be truly independent, you can then venture into global solo backpacking. For female solo travelers, there might be an additional layer of apprehension, but by staying prudent and ensuring your safety, you can still have a fantastic and memorable experience.

If you’re considering an extended stay of a couple of weeks or even months in any of the following destinations, explore the various work exchange opportunities available through Hostelworks. In addition to receiving free lodging, and in some cases, even meals, as a token of your assistance, the most significant benefits of volunteering include the diverse individuals you’ll encounter, the acquisition of new skills, and the opportunity for a profound cultural immersion.

With that said, here are the 8 top places to travel as a solo female

1. Iceland

Securing the top spot worldwide for safety, Iceland emerges as an idyllic haven for solo female travelers. If you seek a blend of serenity and excitement, this is your ultimate destination. With its natural hot springs inviting you for a soothing soak, breathtaking landscapes awaiting your exploration, and some of the most amiable locals you’ll ever meet, passing up on this opportunity would be a regrettable choice. If your journey aligns with the winter months, don’t miss the chance to witness the enchanting spectacle of the Northern Lights, an awe-inspiring display of vivid blue and green hues illuminating the night sky—a moment that will etch itself into your memory. Iceland is tailor-made for female solo travelers in search of a stress-free expedition, where they can revel in the knowledge of a secure and hospitable environment.

2. French Polynesia

With such amiable locals, your solo travels in this destination are unlikely to be a solitary experience for long. For the adventurous souls, there’s the opportunity to ascend the verdant peaks of Tahiti, commanding breathtaking vistas of the azure waters, and then reward yourself with a refreshing swim. Water enthusiasts shouldn’t miss the chance to explore the mesmerizing Fautaua waterfall, recognized as one of the world’s tallest. Surprisingly, despite its opulent appearance, French Polynesia can be explored on a budget if you make judicious choices. To save some money, consider bypassing the well-known islands and instead venture to the lesser-visited ones, such as Maupiti (often referred to as Bora Bora’s lesser-known sibling). You’ll still savor the same splendid landscapes and luxurious ambiance without depleting your savings.

3. New Zealand

Renowned as one of the world’s most exquisite travel destinations, New Zealand beckons those seeking respite from bustling urban life in favor of embracing the wonders of its natural landscapes. It’s a paradise for enthusiasts of the outdoors, offering extensive hiking opportunities and the chance to take a refreshing plunge in open waters. Furthermore, New Zealand is globally recognized for its bungee jumping, presenting an irresistible allure for those unafraid of heights or eager to conquer their fear. The local populace is exceptionally down-to-earth and welcoming, rendering it a perfect choice for novice solo travelers. New Zealand provides an excellent starting point for solo adventurers to forge new friendships along the journey, embarking on backpacking expeditions across the nation and creating enduring memories.

4. Japan

If your heart sings to the tune of art, culture, and cutting-edge technology, Japan is an absolute must-visit destination. Japanese culture is not only distinct and enthralling but also deeply rooted in humility and respect, creating a profound sense of safety. A visit to Tokyo promises to enchant you with its towering billboards, dazzling lights, and a riot of vibrant colors as you meander through its streets. Venture off the well-worn tourist path to explore the often-overlooked countryside, revealing Japan’s hidden treasures. Not to forget, Japan boasts some of the finest culinary experiences worldwide, from delectable sushi to adorable cakes, dishes delivered via conveyor belts, and even meals dispensed by vending machines – they are all infused with cutting-edge technology. It’s worth noting that Japan may not be the most budget-friendly destination, so if you intend to visit and do it right, it’s advisable to save up beforehand. A practical way to save money is by engaging in work-exchange arrangements for accommodation.

5. The Netherlands

In the Netherlands, you’ll encounter exceptionally friendly locals, a cyclist’s paradise, stunning architecture, and an atmosphere of openness that will undoubtedly lift your spirits. While it may not be the most budget-friendly destination, the experience is well worth it. Dutch people are known for their extraordinary kindness, making it an ideal haven for solo travelers, ensuring you feel genuinely welcome. The Netherlands, as a whole, is marked by its inclusivity, with people unreservedly expressing themselves, eliminating the need to fit in because individuality is celebrated. This is one of the reasons it’s recognized as one of the top five lesbian-friendly travel destinations. With its vibrant buildings, cyclist-friendly lanes, and an overall joyful ambiance, the Netherlands stands out as an excellent choice for first-time solo female travelers. For those who appreciate charming coffee shops, quaint narrow streets, and the company of fun-loving, friendly individuals, the Netherlands is the destination you’ve been searching for!

6. Southwest USA

For all those who share a passion for the great outdoors and a deep love for nature, the Southwest USA beckons as an exceptional destination. Places like Utah and Arizona offer an ideal haven for those who favor hiking boots over high heels and seek tranquility in lieu of bustling urban environments. Venture into the mountains for awe-inspiring vistas, and conclude each day beneath the star-studded night sky, gathered around a campfire, relishing the warmth of toasted marshmallows. This journey is perfect for individuals who crave genuine serenity and solitude, with minimal encounters with fellow travelers along the way. A top tip: consider renting a van and embarking on a road trip across the Southwest to fully immerse yourself in the experience.

7. The Scottish Highlands & Coastal Towns

An ultimate haven for hikers, wild swimmers, and live music enthusiasts, the Scottish Highlands offer a refreshing escape from the daily grind, featuring a diverse landscape of rugged mountains, expansive cold-water lochs, and some of the finest local pubs with live bands. If you’re unfazed by occasional rain and thrive in the great outdoors, you’ll be hard-pressed to find a better destination. A prevalent pastime for avid hillwalkers is ‘munro bagging,’ which involves the pursuit of ascending as many munros as possible (there are 282 in total!). An ideal day might involve a hill climb, a refreshing swim in the loch, followed by a cozy evening by an open fire in a local pub, savoring delectable pub fare. It’s a perfect combination. Please note: if you plan to engage in hill climbing or open water swimming alone, always inform someone of your whereabouts and ensure you have adequate clothing layers to keep warm, as well as sufficient food to sustain your energy. Scotland’s beauty is undeniable, but its cold waters can pose risks.

8. Budapest, Hungary

If you’re someone who craves the vibrant party scene while also desiring a harmonious blend of nature, Budapest emerges as the perfect destination. Embark on a night out at the incredibly trendy ruin bars, where you can witness the city spring to life. For an even more unforgettable experience, consider a cruise on the River Danube and revel in the festivities aboard one of Budapest’s renowned party boats. During the daytime, explore the picturesque streets adorned with splendid architecture, delightful cafes, restaurants, and lush green parks. Don’t miss the opportunity to unwind and rejuvenate at one of the city’s thermal baths after partaking in the myriad activities on offer. What adds to the appeal is that Budapest is quite budget-friendly, allowing you to savor life to the fullest without financial concerns.

Ready to embark on a solo female traveler’s adventure to the finest destinations?

Here are some additional pointers: Wherever your wanderlust takes you, seize the full advantages of solo travel. Craft your own itinerary, savor the cuisine of your choice, and step out of your comfort zone to forge new connections. Additionally, prioritize your safety with the following guidelines:

Keep someone informed about your whereabouts:

Share a rough travel itinerary with a friend or family member to ensure both your peace of mind and theirs. Stay vigilant about your belongings:

While traveling can be incredibly enjoyable, it’s important to remain mindful of the presence of pickpockets. Exercise caution when meeting new people:

Building friendships is a delightful aspect of the journey, but it’s crucial to prioritize your safety and well-being