There’s something incredibly special about traveling solo. For many, the idea of visiting a new country all alone is terrifying, but solo travel can be a priceless period of self-reflection, education, and growth. Facing your fears and putting yourself out there is so worth it, and it’s the best way to truly immerse yourself in a new culture. There’s nothing quite as rewarding as traveling solo—it’s an unforgettable adventure that everyone should experience at least once. Keep reading to learn the best countries for solo travel!
Spain is a perfect choice for those looking to ease into solo travel. This lively country is notoriously friendly, and you’ll never feel alone. Locals love to strike up conversation—so practice those vocab words! The country is social by nature, with bustling bars, streets, and plazas. Grab some tapas and get to know the locals and fellow tourists. Solo travelers have a special appreciation for Southern Spain, where hospitality reigns supreme. The people are unguarded and playful, always looking for a bit of fun. The region is known for its rich history and culture, as well as its absolutely stunning scenery.
New Zealand isn’t always the first country that comes to mind for solo travel, making it a bit of a hidden gem. This is the ultimate destination for thrill-seekers and outdoor lovers, and the juxtaposition of extreme activities with the laid-back pulse of life is truly unique. There are endless adventures to be had, all with the bonus of a breathtaking backdrop. Queenstown, a lakeside town on the South Island, is a popular vacation spot. Adrenaline junkies can go skiing, whitewater rafting, parasailing, or even bungee jumping. For those looking for more relaxing options, hike along the ethereal Lake Wakatipu, keep an eye out for penguins, seals, and dolphins as you tour Milford Sound, and ride horseback through a town literally named “Paradise.”
Visiting Japan alone can be a little more intimidating due to the language barrier, but Japanese people are among some of the kindest, most respectful people in the world. The country is diverse in terrain and setting, but it’s very safe regardless of where you go. If you thrive on the exciting chaos of large cities, spend some time in Tokyo, where every moment is an adventure. From there, head to Kyoto—the antithesis of modern, city life. Kyoto is known for its beauty and wealth of history and culture. Explore the many shrines, temples, imperial palaces, and exquisite gardens. A trip to Japan is ideal for the traveler who’s truly looking to spend some time alone to learn and reflect.
Thailand is a no-brainer for traveling solo. It’s an extremely popular backpacking spot, making it an easy destination for first-time travelers. With so many visitors from all over the world and locals who are used to tourists, it’s very easy to make friends. Thailand is known for its vibrant party scene, and frequent expat mixers are a great way to connect with others. Whether you’re getting lost in the craziness of Bangkok or lounging on the southern coast, you’re sure to have an unforgettable experience full of good food, lots of sunshine, and plenty of smiles.
As with Thailand, Vietnam is no stranger to those traveling solo, and exploring here is made easy. You’ll be enthralled by all the country has to offer, from fast-paced cities to dreamy beaches to the relaxing countryside. Vietnam is best known for its mouthwatering, yet affordable, cuisine—specifically its street food culture—and is a must-visit location for all foodies. Wander through the massive markets, letting your senses overtake you, or head up to the lush mountains of the Central Highlands. You can also visit the countless religious sites or laze on the beach, getting a taste of mellow island living. There’s something for everyone!
Iceland has the coveted spot of safest travel location for solo adventurers, meaning tourists can travel with peace of mind. This captivating country has some of the most magnificent landscapes in the world. Consider a stay in the charming capital city of Reykjavik, which is the best home base for all popular excursions. Swim in the iconic Blue Lagoon, hike into the wilderness in hopes of seeing the otherworldly northern lights, and explore the numerous roaring waterfalls and peaceful fjords. The beauty here is unparalleled, and the locals will make you feel completely welcome. The weather may be frigid, but your heart will be very warm.
The Netherlands is a beloved destination for those traveling on their own, with Amsterdam in particular becoming a popular spot. Picturesque canals intersect city streets filled with bicycles in a scene unique to this inspiring city. Amsterdam was designed to be a social city, and it’s effortless to meet people and make friends. The Netherlands is vibrant and safe, and the locals are sociable, easygoing, and extremely accepting. Walk through the city streets gazing upon the enchanting architecture, visit the country’s renowned museums, or simply sit back with a coffee, taking it all in.
Guatemala might be a surprising addition to some, but those who’ve traveled here can easily tell you why it deserves a spot on the list. Guatemala is by far one of the best solo travel destinations in Central America. This beautiful country is extremely welcoming to tourists, and it’s a popular destination for young backpackers. It’s home to top Maya ruins, some of the most active volcanoes in Central America, and plenty of outdoor activities, such as hiking, whitewater rafting, and kayaking. Tour the numerous historical attractions before taking part in a jungle walk to fully appreciate the country’s splendor. Since so many fellow travelers are also exploring on their own, it’s easy to meet others with shared experiences. Guatemala is known for its affordability, making it the perfect place for those who desire extended travels. It’s common for travelers to take Spanish classes and volunteer, especially in the former capital of Antigua.