I’ve pretty much done all my backpacker travel solo, or at least started out travelling solo – it’s not something that phases me and I’m totally stoked to spend time on that road that way.

But it’s something that has a bit of a stigma attached to it though, something that people use to label themselves as (especially when it comes to female travel bloggers – something which personally really annoys me!) and it still surprises me when people say “so you’re travelling alone”? 

I’ve travelled alone, as a couple and with friends – but solo is by far my preferred option.

So I thought I’d share my thoughts on travelling alone (if you can really call it that) and make a big fuss about it for once, simply to assure you that it’s nothing to be afraid of and that it’s something every backpacker should experience.

 

solo backpacker travel

Enough Said…!

Hardly Ever Alone

The first thing I need to tell you about so called solo travel is that you’re hardly ever alone!

That’s the great thing about backpacking – it’s a social thing to do.

No matter where in the world I’ve been it’s never been an issue to meet new people – hell I even met a guy on my first flight to Australia and ended up travelling with him for 2 months!

I took a 3 week trip to Thailand before I started my current adventure and literally spent no more than 45mins without someone to talk too during the who thing.

Unless you really can’t talk to strangers or you put yourself across as cold, boring or super weird making new friends on the road is no worries at all, and more often than not you’ll join these new faces to explore with – whether that’s on a day trip or making your way around an entire country or continent you’ll never be short of friendly faces.

And the people you spend time travelling with will more often than not become some of your greatest and closest friends – travelling is a very intense and unique thing to share.

Check out this post if you’re worried about meeting people when travelling solo for some tips!

 

Homesickness

…even with that said though its only natural to feel homesick or alone at some points. You’ll even get that if you travel with a group of people you know really well.

It’s happened to me on the odd occasion (admittedly not often in recent times) but it does happen.

The trick is to pick yourself off and not wallow in self pity – go out, sit in the beach, soak up the amazing sights and smells that surround you and appreciated the amazing journey you’re on. It’ll pass eventually and you’ll wonder why you ever managed to feel that way!

rtw-banner

 

Total Spontaneity and Personal Indulgence

solo backpacking adventure

Self Indulgence – The Perfect Reason To Travel Solo!

One of the great things about travelling alone is that fact you don’t have to answer to anyone.

Randomly find a flight that leaves the next day?! Book it! 

Bored of your current hostel or location? Leave!

I think that’s been one of the greatest aspects for me – I’m sure you’re all aware of how much my travel plans change but it’s been great to be able to take opportunities and not worry about anyone else.

If I’d been travelling with a girlfriend or friend I’m sure I’d never have been able to do half the things I’ve done over the last year becuase of clashes of budget, jobs or interests.

I’ve spent the last few years lazing on beaches, surfing as much as I can and bouncing all over the globe and I’ve enjoyed every moment of it!

I wake up everyday and the only thing I have to ask myself is what do I want to do today? I then simply go and do it!

It probably sounds pretty selfish but hey – I’ve worked and saved hard to get where I am….It’s my holiday at the end of it!

And if you’re looking for the best places to travel for the first time check out this post!

 

Personal Growth

solo backpacker asia travel

Contemplating Life On The Road…

Being ‘on your own’ whilst backpacking is also a great test of yourself. I don’t have people I can rely on to make my trip amazing, I have to motivate myself and make sure I make the most of everywhere I go.

I’ve grown heaps as a person and it’s helped me gain so many life skills – from budgeting to people skills, simply because if I don’t take control of a situation or adapt I wouldn’t be able to keep living the dream.

No one is there holding my hand and doing everything for me, I’ve got myself here and that give me such a great sense of achievement. I’ve earnt the money, I’ve planned the trip, I’m living the dream…what more could you ask for?!

That’s something you might not get as much travelling as a couple or with friends but it’s one of the best things you could gain as a backpacker so it’s important to throw yourself into the deep end sometimes – sink or swim as they say!

 

And there you have it, a bit of an opener on how I view life as a solo traveller and why I personal prefer to travel this way. Sure I have friends or the girl join me from time to time – but I’m just as happy to make my own way in the world.

 

Have you ever travelled solo? How do you find it, or is something holding you back? 

 

Related Posts

172 Responses

  1. Liz Nichols

    Hi yes if your younger than me and a male and know languages in different countries I guess. I felt really uncomfortable in Turkey wandering by myself..felt very vulnerable all these men looking at me as if I should not be alone..So have you met any nearly 60 year olds back packing?? I so would like to travel solo like you said make your own decisions up and go when you want..but its the safety aspect that bothers me. Hell I was reading how to become a temporary resident in Canada last night if i wanted to work to survive and you nearly need to be a scholar to understand all the blah b;ah… Its a huge world out there and I want to see it all before my legs giveway lol!! Look fwd to more banter cheers from down under Liz

    Reply
    • Chris

      hey Liz,
      I agree there are definately some places lone female travellers would certainly feel a bit intimidated – but on the whole alot of the more backpacked countries (such as south east asia and Australia) are totally fine. One of my good friends was worried about hitting up Thailand alone and I convinced her to go – she’s there now and totally thankful she did.
      On the age front I’ve met a good range – including a guy who was 67 and living the dream! He was a total legend with heaps of amazing stories!

      Reply
  2. georgia verrells

    It’s all about how you travel.. I travel solo and have the same views as you, you really can do what you want. As bad as it sounds when I was with my ex boyfriend my travelling came to a huge halt. I think travelling solo has it’s pros and minuses. Being a young female travelling alone is different to a male travelling alone.. There is no doubt you will get unwanted attention but it’s just how you deal with it, not making stupid decisions and travelling safe.
    georgia verrells recently posted..A day on the HeathMy Profile

    Reply
    • Chris

      All down to personal choice and preference I guess her Georgia. Travelling with a girl or boyfriend is a real test hey – total stress fest last time I did it long term!hahaha!
      I totally admit being a 6 foot white guy would produce a whole different mindset on solo travel than that of a solo female, but again it’s about being sensible and choosing your destination carefully!

      Reply
  3. Jack Oldham

    Agree wholeheartedly with every point you make. When travelling Australia solo I found that I could probably never plan to travel with friends again, mostly due to the spontaneity aspect (but also because I’d have to look after their passports!)

    There were so many things I wouldn’t be able to do if I had to accommodate other people, such as randomly borrowing a car and driving from Brisbane to Airlie Beach with two hostel roomies.

    I also loved the fact that I was practically forced to make friends or be very lonely. I’d obviously had experience of this from going to live at uni and starting new jobs etc, but it’s more important than ever whilst travelling. With friends it would have been far too easy to be complacent and not make the effort.
    Jack Oldham recently posted..Travel Flashback: Benicassim 2012My Profile

    Reply
    • Chris

      I LOVE the spontaneity of solo travel – by far my favourite aspect!
      And being forced to chat to people definitely helps you become a far more confident and open person.

      Reply
  4. Jason Wilfy Fletcher

    Brilliant post m8!
    you really do have to dive in at the deep end sometimes to truly experience what the world has to offer!
    you grow as a person, it brings you out of your shell!

    people always think I’m crazy that I’ve explored half the globe and I have no issue booking a one way ticket somewhere totally alone. But what they don’t realise that its the only true way to travel!

    keep on rockin bro!

    Reply
    • Chris

      Living the dream hey Jason!
      When I started in 2009 everyone assumed I was just bluffing about going alone, best decision I ever made and it’s lead to some amazing experiences!

      Reply
    • Chris

      that’s because no one wants to travel with you Toni :P hahahaha! only joking!

      Reply
  5. Londoner Kate

    This makes me feel so good about my upcoming trip. I recently took my first solo trip and it made me realise that this is the way I need to travel, not having anybody to answer to. I can’t wait to get out there!
    Londoner Kate recently posted..Why Travel?My Profile

    Reply
  6. Anneliese

    Yes solo travel is the best! I’ve never felt vulnerable (with only a few exceptions) or had trouble meeting other people. In fact I’ve often found myself wishing I could have some time to myself, as lovely as it is to have the company of other backpackers!

    For longer trips, I think it probably would be best to do a combination of solo travel and travel with friends. I was in South America for 5 months and while I met plenty of people, it would have been nice to have met up with a friend from home halfway through the trip.
    Anneliese recently posted..Brits (Australians?) Behaving BadlyMy Profile

    Reply
    • Chris

      glad you enjoy solo travel as much as me!
      it’s heaps fun catching up with old buddies along the way though hey? I’ve had a few people come visit me over the years and it’s always a good giggle!

      Reply
  7. Mark

    I always travel solo, I’d never change that. I really enjoyed your story, very indpirational.

    Reply
    • Chris

      I think a lot of people do – although we’re a rather odd breed of traveller I think!

      Reply
  8. Jane Has A Backpack

    It is true being solo doesn’t mean your alone. It only means that you can travel and live life without DEPENDING on others. Instead ENJOYING life with others.

    Reply
  9. Emily

    Dang! My heart beats fast as I am reading this haha..I’ve long time considered travelling alone and do some soul searching and maybe experience and discover the world and myself…I’ve been to most places west coast, east coast, southeast asia..but always with friends or a partner. Now that I have no strings attached to care for…I think I am ready :) Looking at going back to Bali/Indo to surf or maybe even OZ, trek or do major climbs …alone! Never been this excited :)

    Thanks for the inspiration and courage man. Aloha!

    Reply
    • Chris

      DO IT EMILY! It’ll be one of the most rewarding experiences of your travels and you’re bound to learn a lot, as much about yourself as travel too.
      Just be safe and sensible and I’m sure you’ll enjoy it heaps!

      Reply
  10. fernando Paraguay

    Hi, im 19 years old and my world is traveling since i was 14, the things that i asked for my bithdays was just to travel.. i went to north america, south america, europe but never vent all alone by myself. well now i’m planning to go to Thailand ” firt time to Asia” it always was my dream to go in that wonderful country but now i have nobody that will join me.. so i dont know if i should go or stay.. i thing its sounds stupid just to cancel your dream trip ’cause you have nobody.. and now im just looking on tips of a ” solo packpacking” need some help

    Reply
  11. fernando Paraguay

    But all the things that im reading are all possitive things and people just love this way of backpacking, i’m a person very opened, love to know every single coulture around the world, they way of living and meeting people from all over the world.. but it just make me think a lot.. but it makes me just wanna go and try it.. as you guys said you no depend on someone. You just do what you really wanna do and when to do it..

    Reply
    • Chris

      Hey Fernando – sounds like you’ve had a whole heap of adventures already! Good times!
      From what you’ve said you’ll be fine as a solo backpacker – I guess it’s just a case of pre travel nerves making you double think your decision? Travelling solo is a hard thing to get going, but once you’re out exploring the world you’ll be fine!
      Enjoy it dude!

      Reply
  12. Rachel

    Great post, im 18 and travelling solo to oz in a couple of months. Can’t wait and this has made me feel a lot more confident about the whole thing! Thanks!

    Reply
  13. Carl

    Hello Chris, I am an Asian guy from Hong Kong in my early 20s. I am thinking about solo-backpacking travel to Europe in the coming April and May. Here are some background info about me. Would you mind to look at it and give me some advice? Thank you very much.
    I have only traveled a few times with my family and friends. All of the countries I visited are in Asia. I find my self to be too dependent on my companions. I am afraid to say that I have little surviving skills. I am no Jacky Chan or Bruce Lee. My physical fitness is below average and I have only 5ft 7in height. There were couple times I would drop to river or get hit by a bus without my friend’s help. I always find myself to have difficulty to discover people with no good intention. I might be vulnerable to thief and fraudster.
    I can’t speak English like native but it is enough for me to make friends with native speaker when I was in Hong Kong and Vietnam. I am worrying when I am in Europe, everyone would just talk too fast and I couldn’t understand what they are talking about.
    I have an accounting internship starting from tomorrow to March. I will have to work overtime everyday. I don’t expect I have the time to carefully plan the whole trip.
    I can’t drive so I will be using the public transit for whole 2 months.
    I would like to ask should I wait until another chance because of little preparation time? Would “don’t know how to drive” be a big problem as solo backpacker?
    If I don’t travel for this 2 months, I will find another internship instead. What’s your opinion? I am sorry for typing too much as I am really a bit confuse right now. I am not sure what to do next in my life. Please shred me some light. Thank you!

    Reply
    • Chris

      Hey Carl – nice to e-meet you!
      Personally I think if you don’t feel super confident and you don’t have heaps of time to plan your trip maybe you should think about delaying it a bit. If you rush into it you’ll only become stressed and you won’t have such an amazing time. If I were you I’d spend a bit more time planning and making sure you’re confident with what you want to see and do. Maybe a short tour would be a good idea to settle you in and meet some new people?
      I wouldn’t say driving was a necessity in Europe as public transport is abundant – and you’re english seems fluent enough to get by too.
      It might be worth taking a short trip closer to home – but solo this time – simply to test yourself and realise that you can do it. I’m pretty sure you’ll surprise yourself with how many people you can meet and how much fun you’ll have!

      In short there’s no pressure to travel immediately. Take your time saving and putting ideas together and you’ll have a much better experience as a result.

      Reply
  14. Jamie

    Hi chris,
    I wanted to travel Australia when I was 18, but I couldn’t leave my girlfriend at the time who I married and have been with 10year since! Recently we finished and I have decided to give it a try! I’m booking flights for march 30th to Sydney. I plan to do Sydney to Adelaide, I could use some advise on how much this will cost roughly and where’s best to go? Thank you

    Reply
    • Chris

      Hey Jamie, stoked to hear you’re getting around to living your dream (sorry that it’s come about due to some not ideal situations though!)
      Sydney to Adelaide is a good trip (especially the great ocean road section) but it depends on how you want to travel around – campervan? bus? flights? there’s a few different options depending on your budget and what you’d like to see along the way.
      I’d definitely spend a few days doing the great ocean road, melbourne is good for a solid amount of time and so is Sydney. Unfortunately I never made it to Adelaide so I can’t really advise you on that part!

      Reply
  15. Erik

    I literally just left my friends here on Phi Phi (thailand) to go on a solo trip instead! Have to say I was i little freaked out by the thought of traveling alone so I just started googling shit instead. Soooo.. I eventualy found my way to your website and I guess I Just wanna thank you for the pep talk and for giving us The truth about being a solo backpacker! I will beat the shit of that self pity if it arrives!

    Ps. just decided that i’ll go to Perhentian Islands after your recommendations! Cheeers from Sweden!

    Reply
    • Chris

      hey Erik – glad to hear it helped you out and convinced you that you were doing the right thing! Let me know how you get on…and enjoy the Perhentian Islands too!

      Reply
  16. Giz

    Hi Chris. I’m going solo for the first time. Any advice? I have zero experience. I’m planning on catching rides to my destination and checking in at a hostel but I plan on doing this for a while so do you think I’ll be able to support myself? Is it hard to find work?

    Reply
    • Chris

      The best advice I can give you Giz is to be open to new experience and keep flexible. Sounds like you have the right attitude already. As for work – it depends where you’re heading really but I’d budget around £1k per month to be safe.

      Reply
  17. Paula

    Hey there, so I’m really needing to do some soul searching. I’m buying a ticket to Nepal for a month in march. Very last minute trip I’ve never traveled or traveled alone. Any suggestions on Nepal what to do as a women any suggestions where to stay what to do once I step off the plane I’m a very lost and scared puppy but its something that need to be done

    Reply
    • Chris

      Hey Paula, good on you for facing your fears and booking a ticket! Personally I’ve not been to Nepal yet but my blogging buddy Backpacker Becki did a trek there last year – drop her an email and I’m sure she’ll help you out!
      Have an epic time!

      Reply
  18. Chloe

    SO glad I’ve found your website! I’m 18 and off on my first solo backpacking trip this summer (first of many I’ve no doubt) around South East Asia. You’ve given me loads of ideas of things to do and places to check out that I hadn’t even thought about/heard of. Thanks very much :)

    Reply
    • Chris

      Hey Chloe, stoked you like the site and I’ve been able to help you out! Let me know if you need any other help and how you get on!

      Reply
  19. ali

    well ive nofriend in eurpe i just wanna see every thin but there no one to go with but its no stopin me to go i can go alone.as far you ve done prrty much.would suggest some thin like any thin you can say would help me thnx

    Reply
  20. Ririn

    Love this writing. I will have my first solo traveling project on this may to aussie..hope I will get the experience as amazing as yours :)

    Reply
    • Chris

      I’m sure you will Ririn – enjoy your time in Australia, I love it there and can’t wait to go back!

      Reply
  21. Iza

    Hi. I´m a 27 year old girl traveling alone. I´m currently on the Work & Travel Visa in Australia. I`ve been here for about two weeks, and at the moment I feel so lonely I`ve even contemplated going home. Even if I saved for a long time, got a “leave of absence” from my job and everything should be set it`s a lot to take in. I met some people at the hostel and at the company I booked my trip with, but no one seems to be interested in talking to me or hanging out at all. I´ve sent texts and Facebook messages inviting people to join me on walks, dinner etc without a single response. After several days with no other convos than the ones I´ve had with bus drivers and baristas it`s really starting to take a toll. How do people do this. Is it the fact that I´m so much older than the average backpacker/Work&Travel-participant that I simply seem like a grandma? What is wrong with me since I obviously don`t get the secret code of traveling alone?

    Reply
    • Chris

      awwww Iza I’m sorry to hear that. That’s never a fun place to be.
      Honestly everyone has those moments and everyone is in a different stage of their travels. My advice to you – don’t give up. Explore, enjoy your own company and figure out where you want to be.
      If you REALLY can’t deal with it don’t bail home completely, maybe Australia isn’t your ideal place – maybe try Asia instead?
      Everyones experiences on the road are different and I hope you manage to turn it into something fun. Shared dorms, hostel bars and maybe even booking a couple tours are great way to help meet people.
      *massive hugs*

      Reply
  22. xylem

    OH my! This is so inspiring for people just like me who’s been so afraid to travel solo. =D

    Reply
  23. Andrea

    “If you’ve never travelled alone, you’re always traveling with a stranger.” That’s something I took home from my first solo trip. There’s a great freedom in traveling on your own and you definitely grow as a person. A few months ago, while I was traveling, I stumbled on the saying “Happiness is only real when shared”. There are moments you would like to share with someone you’re deeply connected. And yet I had to say, you are never really alone. Just sharing a smile with a total stranger on the street is a happy moment. So I’m totally pro solo-traveling! Although there are a few places I wouldn’t feel comfortable being a single female traveler…

    Reply
    • Chris

      I LOVE that first quote Andrea – such a good way to look at solo travel!

      Reply
  24. sjanna

    This was very inspiring to read! I feel like I could just drop everything I am doing and get the next plane out of here! I have never travelled alone, it is something I would like to do when I am older and more experienced – but I agree with what you said about throwing yourself in the deep end! I am going to South and Central America at the end of the year with my boyfriend and another friend, we will be backpacking for two months! This is a big thing for me and is probably the most spontaneous and nerve racking trip I’ll ever experience – should be life changing! Hopefully I will be able to experience all the things you did with the people I am travelling with.

    Reply
    • Chris

      hahaha glad it made you feel that way! Indeed any kind of travel for the first time is exciting and scary in equal measure – just keep your mind open and enjoy the ride!
      I hope you’ll have an amazing adventure through central and south america – make sure you pencil in Montanita, Ecuador as part of your trip and say hi to the guys at Montanita Spanish School from me!

      Reply
  25. Hazel

    Hey Chris :)
    Your blog is helping me so much is unreal exactly what I needed to stumble across whilst I’m starting to plan my trip :)
    I’m a 19 (will be 20 when I leave) year old blonde girl and I’m planning to travel alone because frankly I know that none of my friends will want to do the same exciting things that I want to do unfortunately but that’s how it is. I would love to hear your opinion on someone my age traveling alone?!:) also I was thinking of starting with Asia by the way:)

    Reply
    • Chris

      Hey Hazel – glad to hear you’re finding it all heaps useful!
      To be honest I’ve met solo female travellers across the globe in their early twenties (no not like that!hahaha!) and they’ve all had great experiences. Anyone travelling solo needs to be a bit more on their guard but if you’re sensible you should be fine. Get into the habit of keeping people in the know about your movements (I still text my mum and dad anytime I do a long haul bus or flight!) just to be on the safe side.
      Don’t slip too much into ‘holiday mode’ and make sure you do a bit of research and I’m sure you’ll have heaps of fun!

      Reply
  26. Matilda

    Sounds amazing and inspiring to travel solo! I’m planning to do so this fall, a bit nervous though.. But you writing that you’re never really alone makes it feel a little less so. Do you know any good places in Hawaii where backpackers travel to? Have you been there? What’s your best advice when traveling solo? Appreciate all the advice I can get :) thanks!

    Reply
    • Chris

      Hey Matilda – I love solo travel! It’s heaps of fun! Haven’t visited Hawaii yet (high up on my list being a surfer though!) so I can’t help on that front unfortunately.
      Best advice? Dorm rooms and being open to new experiences – means you’ll meet heaps of people and embrace any opportunities that spring up!
      Safe travels!

      Reply
  27. Juliana

    Chris, I’ve done traveling alone and to be honest it was not as great as I traveled with my friends. Maybe because I’ve never been brave enough to greet strangers randomly. I’d like to travel alone again and hoping that I can make friends during the travel. Could you give any advices? Thank you :)

    Reply
    • Chris

      Hey Juliana,
      Indeed travelling with buddies is pretty good fun too – I do enjoy it almost as much! My advice for travelling solo – juts be friendly, stay in dorms and be open to new experiences. And don’t be afraid to be the first person to say hello either – everyone’s in the same boat after all!

      Reply
  28. mai

    Hi Chris. I’m thinking about going on a solo adventure for the first time next year after i’ve graduated. I’m planning to travel alone because none of my friends will want to do the same exciting things that I want to do but that’s how it is. Any advice for first time travellers? Any place’s you would recommend to hit?

    Reply
    • Chris

      Stoked to here is Mai – good on you for going anyway! If you’re new to backpacking places like Australia are good as there’s less culture shock but most of Asia is super easy to travel though and is heaps of fun! Thailands a good way to ease into that part of the world but it really depends what you want from your travels

      Reply
  29. jade

    Hi, i’m saving now to go travelling, none of my friends have ever really been fussed about wanting to travel so i’m definitely going alone. i know ill meet people and i wont feel like i have to cant do whatever i want to do so i don’t really care tbh. my issue is that i’m sort of completely lost with how to start, i want to travel through Asia first then Australia, should i just book a ticket and wing it or do a group trip to start. ahhh such hard life choices lol

    ps. your blog really is amazing. my dad is not a fan of my solo backpacking dreams, i got him to read it and it actually put his mind at ease slightly! he looks less stroppy when i talk about it now! Bravo!

    Reply
    • Chris

      Hey Jade – glad you’ve decided to go solo, it’s a great way to travel!
      Hmmm the group trip v winging it is always a tough choice and it really comes down to what you personally want to do. My buddy Cat did the short group trip before going solo and she totally rated it and said it gave her a lot of confidence, so it might be a good shout if you’re worried about that side of things – might also put your dads kind at rest too!

      Glad I could help put him at ease – get him to check out this interview with my Mum too;

      http://www.backpackerbanter.com/blog/backpacking-from-a-parental-perspective

      Reply
  30. Renee

    This is a great post!!

    I am living in UK but come from NZ and am having the urge to just send things I don’t need home next year and backpack my way home to NZ – I would be a solo female.

    What are some places in Europe you would recommend travelling/avoiding I have my own idea too. Also I live in NZ and have holidayed in Aus so backpacking around there would seem a little silly for me?

    Thanks!!! Renee

    Reply
    • Chris

      Hey Renee – sounds like a greta plan, have you thought about including Asia as a stop off on the way home too?
      Personally I haven’t explored Europe heaps but I have a lot of Kiwi and Aussie friends who have visited and really enjoyed backpacking around it so I’d say if you’re keen then go for it!

      Reply
  31. Toby

    Damn, pleased to read this!

    I’m 18 years old and will travel around Asia and Australia next spring. Originally planned traveling with a friend,but I kinda just realised i have to do this alone. I want to be free to do exactly what I want and I like the thought of being independent. This post setlled things, thanks!
    Can’t wait to go!

    Reply
    • Chris

      Glad I could hep you make a decision Toby! Traveling with buddies is heaps of fun too, but sometimes solo is the best option!

      Reply
  32. alisha

    I’ve been in a lot of pressure lately.. i think the best thing for me to do right now is travelling alone. BUT the thing is, im scared of meeting new people!!. Traveling has always been my dream! I cant depend on my family & my friends to fullfil my dream, so the only way is to travel alone.. the only thing that holding me back is people!! I feel so nervous and scared when i have to talk to people i’ve never met before. Plz help! Traveling is my only passion!

    Reply
    • Chris

      I’m sure if you throw yourself into Alisha you’ll soon find your nerves disappear and you’ll find a new found confidence. Travel has certainly helped me communicate and meet people from all backgrounds and definitely boosted my confidence! Maybe do a short trip to help ease you into it?

      Reply
  33. Simon Gonzaga

    Just real thoughts right there. Great post dude!
    But this one pretty much sums it up for me.
    “No one is there holding my hand and doing everything for me, I’ve got myself here and that give me such a great sense of achievement”

    Reply
  34. Amanda

    Love it. And even as a female solo traveler I agree with it all. I love the freedom, going wherever I want, meeting new people. Of course solo female travelers may get some unwanted attention but the important thing to remember is not over think or worry, because sometimes we create our own inhibitions. I’ve traveled parts of the Middle East, Africa, Asia and Europe by myself and still there’s no where I’d say not to go. Yes use your street smarts, don’t go wandering around drunk at 3 am, but don’t do that anywhere! Top job on promoting the awesome life of the solo backpacker ;-)
    Amanda recently posted..Your Impact as a TravelerMy Profile

    Reply
    • Chris

      Stoked to hear the female perspective and glad that you’re keen to promote it! I think common sense is always the key – I wouldn’t go drunkenly stumbling around London at 3am so why would you did it in a foreign country?!
      Love the creating our own inhibitions quote too!

      Reply
  35. Scotty

    Chris, what an article you have here. Can’t begin to say how true it is.. Without sounding too cliche…solo traveling has changed my life. The experiences, the amazing people you meet and the unbelievable and intimate times you share with them are very hard to describe with due justice. Love the website you have here and keep the travel vibes going!

    Cheers brother

    Reply
    • Chris

      Cheers Scotty – seem solo travel is a hot topic and many people feel the same as us. I really enjoy travelling that way, heaps of fun! Stoked you’re loving the site!

      Reply
  36. k

    hey Chris, I really enjoyed reading through. Its great that so many people can share their inhibitions/ experiences. I’m on a total emotional rollercoaster of my own. I have traveled by myself and this year i head to Australia and for being prob the safest place i’ve been and they speak my language its the one that terrifies me most. but as a friend told me they would rather be on a roller coaster than a merry-go-round. so heres to travel and the experiences it brings. :)

    Reply
    • Chris

      Looks like we’re building a good support network up here hey?!
      Australia is incredible to backpack, you’ll love it (except the prices maybe!) and I’m a massive fan of your friends quote…might have to steal that one!

      Reply
      • karen

        looks like it, your blogs is def interesting and informative with a bucket list worth stealing off hahaha

  37. Emma

    Hey Chris, my son is 18 and has deferred his Uni entry so he can travel before starting his degree. Great idea in principle and I really want to support him living his travel dream. He is working full time to fund the trip which he hopes to start in January. I am really proud of his determination to travel and the way hes been researching on the net and in books. However, as a worried mum I am anxious that my son, who has never even spent a weekend alone, could end up in difficties as a solo traveller. I would prefer him to go on an organised tour for his first trip but he is adament that he wants to go solo to fully experience what each country has to offer. He is planning on taking 4-6 months travelling India, then south East Asia. There has been a lot of negative press about Thailand since the tragic event on Ko Tao and this has just made me worry more

    Reply
    • Chris

      Hey Emma,

      Stoked to hear you’re supporting your sons travel plans and it seems like he’s working hard to get it all financed.

      To be honest he’s going to to find himself in a sink or swim situation which will probably force him to adapt pretty quickly, however from what you’ve said about his determination and his research I’m sure he’ll grow quickly and make the most of the places he’s visiting.
      I actually interviewed my mum about my travels which might be a good read for you.

      http://www.backpackerbanter.com/blog/backpacking-from-a-parental-perspective

      When it comes to putting your mind at rest I’d make sure you’re all connected and ready to go on Skype, email, have a copy of his rough plans, photocopy of his passport, copy if his insurance etc so you’re covered for all eventualities. I personally haven’t travelled India but I’ve covered a lot of South East Asia and can vouch for it being a pretty easy and fun place to travel, he won’t be alone for too long!

      Koh Tao wise I understand your concern, but it’s one of those unfortunate, isolated incidents that gets pretty blown up in the media, he’s probably just as at risk in the UK. I’m heading there myself next month so I’ll let you know how I get on!

      If you want to chat more drop me an email and I’ll be happy to answer your questions :)

      Reply
  38. allen

    I plan to try travelling solo real soon. Never done it before. But I am very eager to try it asap. But I am not sure whether I should do it first local or go abroad. Any advice?

    Reply
    • Chris

      In my opinion Allen there’s no better way to learn than jumping in with 2 feet – I headed to OZ solo for the first time…was the best thing I ever did!

      Reply
  39. Matthew

    Hi Chris, what an inspiring read.

    I am planning on leaving my 10 year long career and traveling solo through Thailand, Vietnam, Oz and New Zealand.

    I would like to be spontaneous and not stay in one area too long but I worry about finding the day after accommodation and transport on the day.
    Am I being ridiculous?

    Reply
    • Chris

      Hey Matthew, stoked you liked the post and it inspired you :)
      In Asia you’ll have no worries with transport and accommodation on the day/day before unless it’s around key events like Full Moon or Loi Krathong so make sure you keep an ear out for stuff like that when making plans!

      Reply
  40. Lee

    Hi chris great article, I am planning on going solo travelling to oz first week in april but dont know where to start my journey was thinking maybe start in cairns and work my way down the east coast do u think that sounds like a good idea? Also what us cairns like as a place thanks

    Reply
  41. andrea

    Hey Chris,

    I love your blog! Im about to embark on a solo trip to SE Asia. Its my first time travelling alone and my first time so far from home( Canada) ive been quite a few places and im for sure nervous, but im so grateful for this page and everyones replies. I love reading what other women have had to say. I really look forward to being on my own and challening myself.

    The hard part now is… where to get started, what to do and how long to stay in each place. My goal is to do Thailand, Laos, Vietnam and Cambodia in 90 days.

    Reply
    • Chris

      Hey Andrea,

      Stoked you’re enjoying the blog and finding everyones suggestions and comment helpful too!

      Hmmm 90 days is a good amount of time – personally I’d probably go with a month in Thailand, Cambodia and Vietnam, I was’ a huge fan of Laos to be honest. Some people love it though so 20-25 days in each will leave you with plenty of time to explore!

      Reply
    • Abby

      I’m also planning for 90-day backpack trip through SE Asia. Starting January! Let me know your trip went.

      Reply
      • Chris

        Hey Abby,
        Awesome times – that post was actually from a while back and I’ve spent heaps of time in SEAsia since then, absolutely love it! what are your plans?

  42. Fadila

    Hey Chris,

    I’m a female Malaysian currently a student in the UK. Solo backpacking is one the many things I’ve always wanted to do. Been backpacking to some places in SE Asia before, but always with a partner.

    I’m currently planning my first solo backpacking trip to Austria. I had so many doubts before but after reading your post, I know I will enjoy myself out there so much more that I could’ve imagined! Thanks so much!

    Reply
    • Chris

      No worries Fadila, glad I helped put your mind at rest!Hope you enjoy Austria – let me know how you get on!

      Reply
  43. Shaurya Malhotra

    Hey Chris
    I am just a keen student and I totally fantasize travelling and bagpacking sort of stuff
    But i dont’t know how to start
    And what do you do for living and how do you afford your trips ?
    I would really appreciate your reply

    Reply
  44. Casey

    I couldn’t agree with you more. I did a 6 month backpacking trip with my boyfriend, + friend. it was awful and held me back from so much exploring, friend got heavy into Columbian cocaine, boyfriend was lazy as hell. Went to Thailand alone, had a nice solid breakup and holy smokes. Solo travels forever. Question though – Im heading to OZ next year and I wanted to buy a vehicle to get around for the year, and possibly switch between camping and hostels. Did you camp much?
    Casey recently posted..A Classy day in TijuanaMy Profile

    Reply
    • Chris

      Wow what an epic comment Casey – sounds like you had a rather hectic travel experience there! Stoked you’ve embraced the solo travel life though and enjoying it!
      I actually bought a van with a bed in the back in Oz so I did camp/park on residential streets/anything I could to keep the price down! Major cities are a bit of a pain though so it depends how flexible you want to be as bus passes are still a solid option, especially cost wise as a solo traveller

      Reply
  45. Philip

    Hey Chris.

    Ok I haven’t had any back packing experience. Ever since I left high school the whole back packing idea came to me and I wanted to do it, my friends and I agreed to back pack, America/Canada.

    I’m 23 now and I haven’t even left the country. Reading peoples blog and your experience is building my confidence that I should do it solo, I have people telling me that I have to apply for a work visa or some green card because I’m planning on working over there while I’m back packing, is that true? Because I’m ready to leave asap!

    Reply
    • Chris

      Hey Philip,
      Glad to hear you’re facing your fears and getting the plans underway! Visa wise if you’re looking at working yeah you need to make sure you have the right visa, however this differs from country to country and depends on your nationality too so you’ll have to check out a visa site to make sure you’re doing everything legally!

      Reply
  46. sean

    This sounds good going solo how do u plan flites and stuff do u by a open ticket and do u fly back from same airport u left i was thinking aisia

    Reply
    • Chris

      Hey Sean, it really depends on the trip, time length and what my plans are. Some destinations I work on a return ticket, where as some are a mixture of single flights that I piece together as I go.

      Reply
  47. John

    Hi chris backpacked across the USA in 2001 5 weeks by greyhound west to east,on my own loved the pease and quiet. The mrs has given me the thumbs up again to go on the road again I want to do Australia Perth to Brisbane .in the next 12 months however I will be 58.all web sites on backpacking seem to be 18 to 30 on your travels have you come across oldies like me in the dorms as I’m feeling a little reluctant now and like all the youngsters I will be on a budget as well.any ideas what travel cost by bus will be.4 to 5weeks cheers ,

    Reply
    • Chris

      Hey John, sounds like you’ve got a pretty epic adventure in the works and high five to the mrs for giving you the green light!
      To be honest I’ve met and travelled with people of all ages, especially in Australia. Sounds like you have more than a few stories to share and you’re in the right mind set so I wouldn’t worry too much. There are a few chains of hostels like YHA which have a bit more relaxed atmosphere, cater for families and people who don’t want all out backpacker dorms so if you’re worried that might be a good option to look into.
      Bus wise what route are you looking at?
      The best whichever way you’re looking at will be the Greyhound and they have a few pass options (set route or KM passes) so once you have routing it’ll be easy to find one that fits.
      If you need any help let me know, just drop me an email through the contact form :)

      Reply
  48. Laura

    Such an encouraging post thankyou, I’m thinking after I finish my first module of uni, I might take off for a short while alone probably just three weeks exploring vietnam, cambodia and bali. Are these areas similar to thailand, I traveeled there with a friend and would have felt comfortable as a female alone, but I don’t know much about vietnam, cambodia or bali, are they similar in terms of feeling safe?

    Thanks,
    Laura

    Reply
    • Chris

      Hey Laura,
      I haven’t done Vietnam myself but Cambodia and Bali were fairly safe and I know a lot of female solo travellers who have headed there. It’s more about being sensible than anything else and not putting yourself in stupid situations!

      Reply
  49. Athan

    I’m literally about to start the solo leg of my journey tomorrow leavibg my friend in KL and heading to Krabi. Any tips for the first night or two? Anything I can’t anticipate but need to know will be okay?
    Thanks so much :D

    Reply
    • Nigel

      This post really resonated with me. I’ve been traveling ‘alone’ for about a year now. And yes you’re never actually on your own! Sometimes you’ll want a private room for a bit of privacy. But I see it as a great advantage that you are comfortable being alone and are able to engage with people at the same time.
      Nigel recently posted..Why I changed my mind about Chiang MaiMy Profile

      Reply
      • Chris

        Indeed – alone is never really alone hey Nigel! I actually hit up Koh Lanta on my second time to Thailand, really chilled out place hey?!

  50. Luke

    Hi Chris,

    Just want to say thanks for this post, I am very nervous about backpacking solo but this has put my mind at rest (for the time being!) After recently being made redundant after working for the same company for 13 years I have decided to put the redundancy money to good use and go exploring the world! I’m thinking of doing a month or so in Thailand towards the end of June and then heading over to Oz before my 31st birthday at the end of July on a working holiday visa. One of the main things I want to experience is scuba diving and from what I have seen it is a lot cheaper in Thailand than Oz. Do you have any recommendations for companies that provide PADI training in Thaland?

    Cheers

    Reply
    • Chris

      Hey Luke,
      Stoked the post helped you out and that you’re seeing the positive of your redundancy – I’m sure you’ll find a new direction over in Oz!
      You’re right in saying that it’s heaps cheaper out in Thailand for diving, although I actually did my qualification on the Barrier Reef which was amazing!
      You can actually book heaps of dive experience on my other site – Epic Gap Year – check out the following page for more info;

      http://www.epicgapyear.com/dive

      Let me know if you have any other questions!

      Reply
  51. Elissa

    Hey Chris,
    backpacking is something I’ve always wanted to do, but I felt my life obligations were pulling me back from my dream… Until I read your post! I thought it was best to wait for a friend to travel with me, I thought I couldn’t travel because I have a dog… Which brings me to ask you if, throughout your traveling experiences, you ever came across backpackers with their dog. I’m wondering if traveling with my dog would complicate my trip and stress me out, or if it would be the greatest experience ever; an opportunity to build a strong bond with him! Thanks again for your post, it really enlightened me.

    Reply
    • Chris

      Hey Elissa, stoked you’re heading out to follow your travel dreams!
      Ummmmmm dog wise I’m afraid I have no clue! I would’ve thought quarantine would be a massive headache though, unless you’re travelling within your country of nationality or continent?
      Sorry I cant help any more!

      Reply
  52. Samaksh

    Hey Chris

    I am in my early 20’s from Mumbai.
    Your posts and opinions are really awesome and some relatable. I am backpacking solo (first time) to Paris, Bareclona, Rome and Italy in July 2015. Would be staying in some great hostels (3 ducks Paris). Little nervous about it, but seems manageable :)
    I wanna sky dive – any ideas which location would be the most suitable. Anything you recommend ?
    Thanks !

    Reply
    • Chris

      Hey Samaksh – stoked to hear you’re hitting the road!
      Personally I haven’t travelled much of Europe so I’m not too sure where is the best place to skydive, might be worth checking out TripAdvisor?

      Reply
  53. Kara

    Hey Chris!
    Ive been reading up a lot online about female solo travel, I live in Canada (Niagara Falls, Ontario) and the furthest I’ve ever traveled is probably Cuba , but I was also with a group of friends. I’ve never traveled solo before but I have been researching and am saving to solo trip to Europe, Thailand, Australia, and hopefully many other places within 6 months span, by myself. I am a very outgoing and social person but for some reason it’s still making me really nervous. I want to defiantly push myself out of my comfort zone but I feel like I have no idea where to start planning for this trip, i want to make sure I’ve taken every per-caution and I have everything planned out enough that the trip does not go completely off the tracks. Do you have any suggestions?

    Reply
    • Chris

      Hey Kara,
      Nice to e-meet you and greta to hear about your trip! That’s fair play on feeling nervous, totally normal and I still geta bit nervous when I’m heading off to a new place on my own!
      Personally if you’re looking to ease yourself into it I’d start by travelling in Oz – no language barrier, well travelled, heaps of other backpackers and easy to get around. I’m sure tackling that will make you feel loads better and prepare you well for Thailand before finishing off in Europe.
      My other advice is always have a backup plan, let people know where you’ll be heading (especially before a long bus journey of flight) and don’t let your guard down – most people get in trouble when they fall into holiday mode and made stupid decisions!
      Hope that helps, let me know if you have any other questions!

      Reply
  54. Becky

    Hi Chris!

    Loved your post. I’m 22 and attempting to plan my first backpacking trip. With no friends willing to join me, it looks like it will have to be alone. I’m still too daunted to book it I think, but could you recommend any good places to start for a female travelling alone? I need some wise words to make me book the tickets! Haha

    Reply
    • Chris

      Hey Becky,
      Sounds like you’re in the same boat I was! If you’re a bit worried and want to ease into things places like OZ and NZ are great as they’re easy to travel, heaps of other backpackers and of course no language barrier! Then you can build up your confidence and head to Asia and what not after.
      In saying that though SEAsia is heaps of fun and cheap too – as well as being surprisingly easy to explore, just depends how far out your comfort zone you initially want to be!

      Reply
  55. Braden

    Being male and 6′ 5″, the safety I’m worried about when hiking solo is safety based on my lack of experience but with regard to your blog, I agree that going solo is the best course of action due to the spontaneity of situations. Just gotta start earning that experience!

    Reply
  56. Kate

    I’m 18 and I’ve got 10 days off work this summer to travel. I know it’s not long, but I really want to go somewhere exotic, inexpensive and spontaneous- any recommendations on how to get started?

    Reply
    • Chris

      Hey Kate, it really comes down to what you fancy doing….but Thailand and Morocco are two awesome spots that immediately spring to mind!

      Reply
  57. Abby

    So glad i came across your blog. Im 29, Filipino. I am thinking of backpacking through SE Asia from Jan-March after I visit the Philippines and start from there. Its something I have always wanted to do and I need to do some soul searching and just really want to spend time getting to know myself. The most traveling I’ve done was Mexico for a yoga retreat alone. SO I am freaking out a little bit but reading your blog and other peoples comments here kinda settled my heart. Thanks!

    Reply
    • Chris

      Hey Abby,
      Stoked the post helped settle your nerves! Check out PS I’m On My Way and I Am Aileen – they’re both solo female travellers who are also Filipino, I’m sure they’ll help inspire you even more and make you even more excited to go and explore the rest of Asia!
      Let me know if you need any help!

      Reply
  58. Emily

    Hi, I’m travelling to Thailand for 3 weeks by myself in November and although I totally agree with all the comments you make about travelling solo I am worried that for 3 weeks travelling alone isn’t long enough! Did you meet people in Bangkok and travel with them or did you travel to each part of Thailand by yourself?

    Reply
    • Chris

      Hey Emily,
      Stoked to hear you’re heading to Thailand, I love it there! To be honest everytime I’ve been has been slightly different, but most of the overland journeys I’ve done have been with people I’ve met out there. My first trip was 3 weeks and all my overnight trains and buses and ferries were alongside some new travel buddies – I even met people en route who became close friends!

      Reply
  59. Elizabeth

    Just discovered your blog!
    & I am so glad I did, I made the decision 4 weeks ago to book a one way ticket to NZ in January & travel by myself. After quite a crazy year, the past 7 years in London, university, I feel it is about time I set out to explore and adventure what the world has to offer!
    This is the first post of yours I’ve read, so I’m going to have a little look around and see what other articles you have, but thanks for the straight forward post and any awesome NZ tips would be great – looking to hit up some festivals / kiwi burn whilst I’m there too, and then see where it leads me to next!

    Reply
    • Chris

      Hey Elizabeth, nice to e-meet you and welcome to the blog! Sounds like you deserve a break and NZ is an epic place to start! Hope you found some more inspiration for your trip, let me know if I can help out at all!

      Reply
  60. Muhd

    Hi! I am so glad i found ur blog! Ive never thought of doing backpacking alone. After talking to afew friends about solo backpacking, i have this feeling that i should try and go for it. Since its my first time traveling alone, I was thinking of going somewhere near home maybe to ho chi minh from singapore for 10 days. Do you think 10 days is enough for a short backpacking trip? Do you think i can survive there with no travel experience?

    Reply
    • Chris

      Hey Muhd, stoked to hear you’re giving solo backpacking a go, I love it!
      Time wise it really depends on your budget and time frame, I haven’t been to Vietnam yet but I hear there’s loads to do! IF you plan ahead and have a backup it should be no worries, let me know how you get on!

      Reply
  61. melo

    Hi! I travel and climb mountains almost every weekend with a group following their itinerary and I’ve been dreaming about travelling solo for several days now. I am afraid but at the same time thrilled with the thought of doing this and having hesitations to pursue it or not. Glad to have found your blog which inspired me a lot and I won’t have any reason not to go alone this time. Wish me luck!

    Reply
  62. Daniel

    Chris,

    I am super stoked I came across your blog. I think it’s pushing me to go on a 3/4 day solo backpacking trip to the Eastern Sierras (I am from SoCal). I’m 21, a transfer student that will be moving in to UCLA on the 17th of this month and this solo trip I’m planning would be on the week of the 13th. I have a tough time trying to get some of my friends or my girlfriend to go with me on these things because of the same old story: budgets, conflict of work/school times, weather and etc. So reading your post really makes me wanna hit the road and backpack alone before my summer is over. The weather should be nice up there as summer is still in full swing, so I’m thinking about renting all the gear and getting my wilderness permit by the end of this week. I’ll be a little tight on money but hey, spontaneity makes the trip even better (with careful planning prior of course). I just wanna thank you for sharing your blog post, I can see it has inspired many others to explore alone. Thanks again!

    -Daniel

    Reply
    • Chris

      Hey Daniel, stoked to hear you’re going to hit the road solo! My first big trip to Australia was solo for the same reasons…no one else could get their act together and I got fed up of waiting! Let me know how it goes…safe travels!

      Reply
  63. Jillian

    I leave for my upcoming solo RTW trip in two weeks and this post was very reassuring to read as I prepare to embark on my adventure. I appreciate your outlook and advice!
    Jillian recently posted..India 2014My Profile

    Reply
  64. valerie

    Hi Chris! Next year i want to take a gap year and go to australia. Are there a lot of 18 and 19 year olds doing the same thing. I have read most people are around 23..

    Reply
    • Chris

      Hey Valerie,
      I’ve met people of all ages and nationalities in Australia – age is just a number at the end of the day! If you’re there for adventure and fun you’ll have no worries!

      Reply
  65. Lucy

    Hi Chris! I stumbled across your blog whilst searching for solo travel advice. I’ve read a few of your posts and I’m loving them so far! :) I’m currently in SE Asia and my travel buddy is leaving soon to meet his gf in Bangkok. So I’m left to travel solo for a while… I agree with this post 100% but for some reason I’m still pretty nervous about taking my first steps solo. Do you have any extra words of wisdom?

    Reply
    • Chris

      Hey Lucy,
      Stoked you’re loving the blog! I’m out in SEAsia at the moment too with some buddies, what are your plans?
      Solo wise hostel dorms are the way to go, easiest place to meet heaps of fellow travellers and you won’t find yourself alone for long!

      Reply
      • Lucy

        I’m in Vietnam at the minute, heading up to Hanoi tomorrow night. Then after here I’m thinking of heading to Cambodia or Laos for a few weeks. Then Burma, Indonesia and Philippines before going to Oz. What are your plans?
        Yeah I’ll just stick to the big popular hostels and see who I meet :)

      • Chris

        Heading over to Vietnam tomorrow, starting at Ho Chi Min and working my way up. Thailand for a week in Dec then off to The Philippines for xmas and new year :)

  66. Lucy

    Sounds good, Vietnam is pretty cool, I’m sure you’ll love it :) I’ll be in the Philippines just after new year so might see you there!

    Reply
  67. Thom

    Awesome post. I’ve sold everything I own, quit my job and plan to travel the world for a couple years starting January 4th. My parents say it’s in the blood…They did the intrepid trail in the 60s and 70s. I’m heading to Sri Lanka for 3 weeks then India after for 3 months then who knows. My travel buddy has changed his plans last minute though due to visa problems for india so I’m now going solo. I’m apprehensive as it’ll be my first solo experience and I seem to be going a little bit away from where most backpackers are…don’t see many backpacking guides for sri lanka!!

    Reply
    • Chris

      Hey Thom,
      Awesome plans…I like your style! Seems it does run in the blood hey!? Hmmm yeah I’m trying to think of some Sri Lanka content from my blogger buddies, not sure I know many good backpacker guides for there…

      Reply
  68. Darby

    Hey Chris,
    Fantastic post (and blog in general) – I’m finding all this info super handy.
    I’m 22 and female and looking to embark on my travels fairly shortly. To start I want to go to Bali for a few weeks and then onto Oz with a working holiday visa..
    My current issue is whether or not to book onto one of those group tours or just completely wing it. Any advice on that?
    Also, when I’m in Oz, do you know how difficult/easy it currently is to actually find work? I’m getting the vibe that you can’t really plan much and just have to go with it.
    Excited and nervous all at the same time!

    Reply
    • Chris

      Hey Darby,
      Nice to e-meet you and stoked to hear you’re heading to Bali and Oz! In regards to the tours are you thinking about Indo? there are plenty of options and if you’re feeling a bit nervous and want an easy way to meet people then something like Bali Intro might be a good shout to get you settled into your trip.
      For Australia things are a bit easier with hostels and what not. My other site – EpicGapYear.com – actually offer some Australia Arrival Packs which are always a solid shout to kickstarting an Oz adventure, check them out on the following link;

      http://www.epicgapyear.com/portfolio_page/arrival-packages-australia/

      Let me know if I can help out at all!

      Reply
      • Darby

        Thanks for the reply Chris!
        For now, I think I’m just going to head straight to Oz and save Bali for later. Unfortunately I’ve already booked onto an intro tour in Oz, but thank you for bringing your other site to my attention. No doubt I’ll be using that as a reference point alongside this blog.

        Anything in Oz I 100% have to do? Any top tips? :)

        Hope you’re enjoying your travels!

  69. paula

    Any tips on travelling with teenagers, im a single mum about to plan a backpacking trip through asia my daugther 15 and son is 12, anything i should know before i go iv never been away from uk so kinda big thing for all of us xxx thank you

    Reply
    • Chris

      Hmmmm….cant say I have any experience in that Paula! Sorry I can’t help out more!

      Reply
  70. Ishan

    Hey Chris,
    What great read!! I am 25 years old male planning my first solo trip and also my first back packing trip coming this summer, I did ask some my friends to join me but they are not interested to travel for a month. Looks like I will be a solo traveller, I am planning to backpack across Thailand. I have travelled within my nation to Goa and stayed for 3 weeks with a friend, going back to your article, I do have problems breaking the ice with people but I tend to have decent conversation thereafter. In short I have problem approaching new people and disturbing there space. What do you reckon ? Any advice and tips will be greatly appreciated.

    Reply
    • Chris

      Hey Ishan,
      Stoked to hear you’ve gone all in and embraced solo travel! A lot of people are travelling solo so they’re in the same situation! Getting involved in hostel events/tours/activities are easy ways to break the ice and get chatting – you’ll be fine!

      Reply
  71. Ash

    Hi Chris,

    I’m sitting here reading blogs on the internet and I stumbled across your page. Thank you for sharing your thoughts and experiences x. I am at the airport at the moment by myself waiting for my flight. I flew into Japan with a friend but it’s saddening to say that we have split up and we are doing our own things now. This is my first time traveling with someone and I can say I prefer doing alone. Or maybe do you think it just wasn’t the right friend? I kept questioning myself whether it was my fault that this has happened. I’m glad I’m not experiencing this alone and reading your blog has made me feel better.

    Anyways, I’m currently living in Cairns and it’s been amazing. Is there another country or place that is very similar to Australia I can backpack to. Somewhere that is safe with a lot of backpackers, same vibe like cairns, with a lot of hostels. Cheers :)

    Reply
    • Chris

      Hey Ash,
      Awww that sucks about you and your buddy, travelling with someone (friend or partner) can be pretty stressful if you have different goals, budgets or lifestyles so don’t worry about it too much!
      I personally love Byron Bay in Australia if you’re staying in Oz, but places like Queenstown in New Zealand are also very similar.
      If you want a solid backpacking country that’s a bit more exotic then Thailand is an amazing place to explore too and you wont be travelling solo for long!

      Reply
  72. Becky

    Hi Chris,

    I’m 23 and planning on travelling around the East Coast in November for two months… alone. Can you give me any tips and advice? A few people have told me to do group tours, i’ve looked online and a i think a lot of them are quite expensive especially as they only seem to be for about 10 days, so i’ve decided to just travel by using the greyhound buses. I want to start in cairns and end in melbourne.. would you say the greyhound buses are the best way to travel? and do they go through the whole of the east coast or only certain places? also do the buses stop of near any hostels? would you recommend i pre book hostels before hand as im going over the christmas period and i imagine if will be really busy. Sorry for the questions but I am quite nervous about doing this on my own as never done anything like this before.. my biggest fear is not making any friends and being a loner the whole time lol!

    Reply
    • Chris

      Hey Becky,
      Stoked to hear about your Oz plans – I’m out there now actually!
      Personally I’d say the Greyhound or Premier Buses are the best way to go, super flexible and much more budget friendly. They cover all the main spots on the East Coast too and you’ll find a lot of travellers use this option so you’ll meet heaps of people along the way!
      I actually launched a new site called OzBackpacker.com which specialises in Australia travel, so check that out and let me know if I can help with planning your trip.
      You’re spot on with xmas too – figure out where you want to be and get that locked in before everything books out, always better to be safe than sorry!

      Reply
  73. Renan

    I love your tips. I´ve been using your blog as a guide for my trip.
    Hope to see you around somewhere in the world!

    Reply
  74. Sarah

    Only just discovered your blog (where have I been?) and loved this post! Im a 26y/o female currently travelling around Australia alone as my boyfriend missed the uk and headed home. So glad I didn’t end my adventure as I’m loving seeing new places and haven’t yet felt lonely. Thanks for a great read!

    Reply
    • Chris

      Hey Sarah,
      Stoked you like the post and the blog!
      Good move on sticking it out in Australia, no regrets hey?
      Hit me up if you want any discounts for you Oz adventures!

      Reply
  75. Jenny

    You have a great blog. This piece in particular really helped me when I have started doubting my plans to solo backpack to Australia for the first time. Being 40 it seems a bit crazy, but reading your blog I am really excited about it again! Thank you!

    Reply
    • Chris

      Stoked it helped you out Jenny – you’ll love Australia! Have you downloaded my free Oz guide? Heaps of tips in there for planning which should help you out!
      Also if you need any help putting together your East Coast trip check out my other site RTWBackpackers.com

      Reply
  76. Evan Kristine

    Great post! Thanks for sharing! For me I really love travelling alone because this is the only time I pamper myself! For me it is okay to be alone sometimes so that you can meditate and enjoy more about life like I do. I eat alone trying different types of delicious cuisines, Capturing breath taking sceneries,and discover new places like doing a lot of nature tripping! (Try Island Trekking! Badian Canyoneering + Kawasan Falls Adventure + Swim with the whalesharks in the Philippines!) One more thing is that you will discover a new you.

    Reply

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