Are you planning a solo trip soon? There are plenty of fun things to do by yourself on vacation. Here are some of the best solo travel activities to try out!
Traveling alone is a lot of fun, but if you’re new to solo travel, you might feel a bit lonely or uncomfortable going on vacation by yourself. Part of the fear might be that you simply don’t know what you would do to entertain yourself the whole time without a travel companion. But there are lots of fun things to do by yourself on vacation!
If you’re traveling solo, you might feel the need to fill up every waking second with activities in order to fight boredom. While I think everyone should learn to be alone with themselves and learn how to entertain themselves, I know it’s not that easy for everyone. Not everyone is an introvert like myself.
The second part of that issue is that a lot of people are afraid of doing things by themselves while traveling. The idea of visiting attractions and going on tours might make you a bit anxious, because unfortunately doing things alone has been given a bad reputation. But there’s no reason for that. It mostly has to do with people being afraid of being on their own, and projecting that fear onto others.
The reality is that people wish they were confident enough to do things alone, so don’t feel awkward about it!
There are a lot of fun activities and things you can do on your own while on vacation. Things that won’t make you feel lonely or out of place. Below is a list of the best ways to spend your time while traveling solo. You can do these things in almost any place around the world, so get some inspiration for your next solo trip!
Solo Travel: What to Do By Yourself on Vacation
1. Visit a Museum
Going to a museum or gallery is the perfect solo travel activity since they are often quiet and have relaxed atmospheres. You can wander at your own pace, skip the things you don’t want to see, and linger a bit longer near your favorite exhibits. Even when you visit museums with travel companions, it often turns into a solo activity anyways!
2. Go on a Walking Tour
Walking tours are a great way to get to know a city, a neighborhood, or focus on a specific type of thing within your destination. It might be a tour of the city, or it might be about the architecture, food, or points of interest. It’s easy to join a walking tour on your own and become part of a group.
3. Take a Class
Taking a class on vacation might seem strange to some people, but it’s a great opportunity to learn something new or dive into a subject that really interests you. Take language classes, take a cooking class to learn the local cuisines, or even learn how to do a cultural dance. There are so many options that you might not even know about yet. Taking a class alone gives you something to do, something to learn, and possibly a new skill to bring home.
4. Attend a Show
Immerse yourself in arts and culture by attending a play, a concert, a musical, or any kind of performance. In major cities around the world, you can find shows at venues both big and small. Since you’re sitting and watching a performance the entire time, being on your own won’t feel awkward or lonely. Just enjoy the show!
5. Read a Book
Reading is my favorite solo travel activity. I love reading, and I always find more time to do it while on vacation than I do at home. Bring that book you’ve been dying to read, and pop it open any time you have some free time (you’ll have plenty of it). Sometimes just wandering around a new place and finding a nice spot to read can while away an entire afternoon.
6. Do Something You love
A solo trip is the perfect time to do something different. When you’re traveling with others, you might have to skip over that super niche attraction or activity, because no one else is remotely interested. Now you can go geek out over something you love, or visit that cool attraction that your friends would hate.
7. Go on a Hike
Going on a hike is a great way to get fresh air, exercise, and spend some time outdoors while traveling. This is something you can do on your own too! Hiking alone isn’t as scary as it might seem to some people, although I do recommend taking a few precautions. Pick a popular trail where there will be plenty of other people around, and pick a trail that is suited to your abilities. If you don’t want to go totally alone, you can often find guided treks and group hikes to join in on as a solo traveler.
8. Make Your Own Food Tour
If you don’t want to join an organized food tour, you can make up your own! Do a bit of research into the kind of food you want to try, and make a list of the best restaurants in the area. This requires some planning (ideally before you go on vacation), but creating your own tour is exciting and fun. Make conversation with the owners and makers as you go along! (You can do this with anything really, not just food.)
9. Treat Yourself at the Spa
I’m not a spa person, but if you like to indulge a bit and relax, then a solo spa day on vacation is the way to go. Get a massage, get a facial, get your nails done, relax in the sauna. There are some really nice spas around the world, and some places have really unique offerings. You can also find super cheap massages in some countries, and it’s kind of a solo activity regardless.
If you want to spend some time giving back to the community you’re visiting, spend a day volunteering. You can find local organization geared towards solving specific issues, or doing certain tasks. This is another solo activity that will take some planning and research, but it’s a nice way to meet locals and get an insight into what’s going on within the community. Your travel companions might not want to spend time “working”, but if you’re alone, it’s the perfect time to try it out. Be aware of the organizations you choose to work with—that’s why this requires research!
11. Go See a Movie
A lot of people are firmly against the idea of going to the movies while traveling, but I disagree. Going to the local cinema can be a lot of fun, especially if you need a break from rushing around to attractions. Long-term travelers will understand the appeal of popping into a movie for a couple of hours. A lot of cities also have small indie cinemas that show films you might not see elsewhere.
12. Relax by the Pool
If there’s a pool or a beach nearby, you can easily enjoy a little relaxation on your own. Lay out in the sun (with sunscreen!), go for a swim, and enjoy the weather. You won’t be the only one on your own, because who needs a companion to lay on the beach? No one.
These are just a handful of ideas of what you can do by yourself on a solo trip. I want to encourage people to try solo travel, even if it is a bit scary at first. Hopefully this list will help inspire you to take that vacation by yourself! And don’t forget, you can do absolutely anything you want on a solo trip, not just the ideas on this list.
Read More About Solo Travel:
- Solo Dining Tips for Solo Travelers
- 6 Life Skills You Learn as a Solo Traveler
- How to Make Friends in Hostels
- How to Deal with Travel Anxiety
- The Real Reason I Travel Solo
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All photos in this post were sourced under a creative commons license via Unsplash.