Deciding to travel alone can feel little frightening, but here’s what you can learn if you take the chance.
As a 24-year-old, I decided to visit Pondicherry, India during my Christmas holidays. I did not have any train or bus reservation, nor did I have any hotel booking. I didn’t want to go alone, but none of my friends had the time to go with me. I had made a rough itinerary with no clue of how to visit each place; with just INR 2000 in my pocket, I left for the journey.
I didn’t panic; somehow I had built the confidence to face each and every surprise that comes on my way. This was the first time in my life I asked for a lift, strolled almost whole town on-foot.
I realized solo travel is a good learning experience and an introspective journey. There is a freedom to traveling alone: I am in charge of my own decisions and my own rhythm. I’ve learned independence, and I’ve even learned to love solitude.
And, now, Solo travel is gaining popularity day by day, particularly among women travelers!
So if you haven’t tried traveling by yourself yet, you should.
Here are few things traveling solo has taught me.
- Self – Confidence
Fear of what other people think is one of the biggest barriers for potential solo travelers, but here’s the truth: The more time I spent on the road alone, the stronger my self-confidence grew. You take your own decisions, right or wrong, and rely on your best judgments. There is really no one to blame or crib to. In this situation one learns something special – one learns to trust one’s instincts or intuition. This is the magic that traveling casts upon us. Going solo inculcates more confidence in ourselves and urges us to be strong.
- Self – Realization
Self-Confidence leads to self-Realization. While travelling alone you realize many things about yourself that you were not aware of. When on your own, you might find that you are able to pick up new languages quicker as needs arise. Travelling alone definitely gives you a chance to know yourself better.
- Connect with self
It is the best time you can clear your mind, revive your thoughts and ideas. When you are traveling on your own, you are free from all chats with your friends, partner or anyone. It gives enough time to introspect and ponder on answers you’ve been seeking and helps discover the meaning of all you un-clarified thoughts. It helps to uncover the real you and helps in understanding and loving yourself better.
- Make new friends
Traveling alone makes us more open to new people and experiences. Every new place you go, you meet people in hostels, cafés. You may find some people with whom you could talk about travel for hours! At the end of conversations you may find new casual connections, or you’ll never hear from someone again, and some people might evolve into real friends that persist over thousands of kilometers even after your trip is over!
- The World Is (Mostly) Good
The kindness of strangers will open up a part of your heart that you had no idea existed. As a solo traveller you’ll realize the world has so many marvels to offer, which you might ignore when busy with your family, friends or with anyone.
Solo Travel is an adventure with no limitations, no excuses and no compromises.
“I think you’re incredibly brave, I wish I had the courage to travel on my own like you.” I heard this same sentiment again and again whenever I travelled alone.
Don’t wait for people or hold back from living your dreams. You could be waiting a long time until someone finally says yes. There’s only now — and if you don’t go, you’ll regret it.