Not all of us ladies are partnered up, or, even if you are, sometimes it’s nice to get away and do your own thing.
But you don’t want to feel uncomfortable about it, why not join a tour tailored specifically for the solo female traveller? That way you eliminate the majority of your worries about safety, the often daunting task of how to get from A to B, and, as a bonus, you might even meet some kindred spirits.
Here are a few suggestions for women travelling on their own around the world or domestically.
Women’s Adventures New Zealand
Maybe you’ve already been to Europe, the UK, or the US and haven’t explored your own backyard.
Women’s Adventures New Zealand offers a variety of homegrown experiences, such as learning to surf at Omaha Beach north of Auckland (a two-hour lesson by a female instructor, followed by home baking and a drink, then a trip into Matakana for $105) or a trip to the New York Marathon ($3,300 plus flights plus a fundraised amount of US$3,000 for the Achilles Foundation for disabled runners).
Insight Vacations and Trafalgar
These two guided tour companies, which operate all over the world, are owned by the same parent company, with Insight Vacations offering a more premium experience.
It’s a great option for women on their own because you almost certainly won’t be the only solo operator on the trip – so you can make a buddy – and there are options for sharing rooms if you are travelling with a friend (it can cost more if you require your own room).
On the coach you can either sit by yourself or with a new (or existing) friend, and at shared mealtimes the table sittings are usually in groups, so you have the opportunity to meet lots of people.
Abercrombie & Kent
Luxury small-group tour provider Abercrombie & Kent often offers generous discounts on solo supplements for single travellers, and you’re guaranteed your own room, no matter what.
The A&K tours are very high-end; think Antarctica, South Georgia, the Falkland Islands, Ecuador, and the Galapagos Islands.
If you’re really feeling like pushing the boat out, they even offer tours by private jet.
Providing “unique and inspired” travel experiences immersed in local cultures is what drives Mai Journeys, who offer tour itineraries crafted by women, for women.
They cover off destinations from Sydney to Iran, and also offer a bespoke tour experience where you tell them what you want, and they’ll organise every detail.
Pitched at an older demographic than, say, Contiki, these small tours are ideal for solo travellers – in fact, more than half of its passengers travel by themselves.
Intrepid offers tours specifically for solos (including Rajasthan, Morocco, and Colombia) and among its suggestions of those most popular for those travelling alone are its tours of Mexico, Vietnam and South Africa.
This company also says about 40% of its small group tour participants are solo travellers, 60% of these are women.
Travelling alone, they say, is one of the best ways to learn and challenge oneself – though travelling by yourself doesn’t mean you have to be alone, unless you want to be.
The company, which offers tours worldwide, doesn’t charge single supplements, instead pairing you with a same-sex room-mate. If you don’t want to share a room you can do that too, at a good price.
Most evenings a group meal is organised, but you are free to do what you like if you feel like exploring on your own or with a new friend.
Your travel companions are likely to be from North America, the UK, Australia, New Zealand, and Europe, and may range in age from early 20s to over 60s.