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Traveling can be an eye-opening experience. New countries, different cultures and memorable adventures await the traveler willing to dive into the unknown. However, the thought of traveling solo can be daunting and downright scary! There is no buffer or shoulder to cry on should things go wrong. Solo traveling provides a unique path to self-discovery and character building that is priceless.

There is no sugarcoating it, taking that trip without friends or family is guaranteed to take you out of your comfort zone! Navigating strange cities and trying to communicate in unfamiliar languages without a companion can be intimidating. However, adapting and overcoming challenges can be very empowering. Ultimately, a new sense of independence and confidence will start to emerge. Self-awareness is a major takeaway from a solo trip. It will provide insight into likes, dislikes, strengths, and weaknesses. You might even discover the skills and talents that you were not aware of before!

There are many different traditions and customs throughout the world. Traveling offers rare learning and teaching opportunity. Learning about a country’s history and culture helps in developing a deeper understanding of its people. It also dispels misconceptions, erases initial biases and creates tolerance and open-mindedness. Immersing yourself in the local culture is a perfect way to see how the natives live. Consequently, you will discover the similarities and differences in cultures and share how it’s done in your part of the world! Home visits and couch surfing are great ways to get a more immersive experience.

Being alone makes travelers more approachable since people are more open to talking to an individual than a group. Traveling will create many opportunities to interact with local people and fellow travelers which can sometimes lead to lasting relationships. Unless you are naturally outgoing, solo travel is sure to ease you out of your shell!

Experiencing how other cultures live has a way of putting things into perspective. There is a gradual appreciation for the things that are quickly taken for granted. It could be as simple as having running water or as serious as having the freedom to practice whichever religion you choose. Traveling alone is not easy, but it is worth it! It can be exhilarating, intense but very fulfilling. Go forth with an open mind and an open heart, safe travels!