What I Want To Tell Every Girl about Solo-Travel

I had considered solo-travel a million times, always accompanied by the following thoughts:

  1. I don’t have enough money.
  2. “They” won’t approve.
  3. I should be putting my time into things that really matter.
  4. I don’t have anyone to go with, and travelling is too dangerous for a girl.
  5. I’m not worth it and I don’t have the guts, confidence or power anyway.

I would bet quite a lot on the fact that you have told yourself these things more than once. I’m also quite sure that you admire all those travel posts on Instagram, have maybe even swooned at my feed, and are yet still sitting at home, doing the same thing every day.

girl solo travel

Now let’s fast-forward. Imagine yourself old, wrinkled and grey, looking back at your youth. What are the things you want to tell your grandchildren about? The boring ongoing days at work – or all your adventures?

People often have very specific ideas about how a girl or a woman should lead her life. There are religious reasons. Evolutionary reasons. ‘What’s best for you’ reasons. Parents, teachers, partners and society are going to tell women that they should go in particular directions and that it’s the best path for them in order to ‘do the right thing’. Being a girl who ends up traveling alone, saying ‘no’ to what others expect of her, is rare – but it’s a strength.

girl travel alone

Search for fulfilment in yourself, not acceptance from others.

After finishing school I my goal was getting into university. I didn’t know what I wanted to do with my life or even what to study – but I definitely had to get into uni. That was my number 1 priority, because neither my teachers nor my mum ever talked about anything else. Next, I got into uni (where I tried lots of different subjects) and fell in love. During the following years I did my best to be the perfect housewife (yes, you got that right!). I had just turned 20, but my boyfriend was my priority. I made sure the house was nice and clean and he’d have a warm meal when coming home from work and when we invited his parents for dinner every few weeks, they asked us about engagement plans.

I had lived the perfect traditional-girl-life: school-uni-boyfriend and everyone knew what the next steps would be. What about me? Was I happy and content with my life situation? No.

Instead of getting engaged, married, and a family, I went travelling.

girls travel alone

  1. I didn’t have too much spare money (just some savings from when I was younger).
  2. “They” definitely didn’t approve.
  3. I didn’t have a job, and yet didn’t put my time into getting one.
  4. Everyone told me I couldn’t go anywhere without my boyfriend, because it would be too dangerous.

But suddenly it clicked, I knew I had to break out, do what I had always dreamt of doing and I scraped up all the confidence and strength and went travelling. Believe me, I was afraid. But I did it.

Let me just tell you one thing for now (there are a lot of posts on solo-travel coming up, with tips on where to stay, how to meet people, how to plan it, what to pack etc.): it changed me so much. I became so much more confident. I did things I had always dreamt about. I realised that I was strong and could manage on my own. I enjoyed being on my own. I learnt not to put off solo-travel by loneliness, because I made so many new friends, which is a thing I thought I couldn’t do.

Solo-travel is something you do with yourself, for yourself, and it is something you should never turn your back to. If you feel the urge to travel – travel! You will learn so much about yourself and your goals along the way, and never forget, that live is meant to be enjoyed.

That being said: I already can’t wait for my next solo-adventure!


Please leave all your solo-travel questions below,
I’m going to answer them all in the upcoming blogposts!

 

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12 Comments

  1. Ro
    23/06/2017 / 06:49

    Lottie i love this! :):):)

    I’ve been fortunate to travel a lot throughout my adolescence ‘cos my family and other awesome opportunities. But i’m so afraid to travel alone! Despite the fact that i’m great at languages and directions and really just want to see as many different sunsets in different places all over the world, i’m quite scared!
    I’m not good at meeting new people, i fear if i travelled i would end up doing almost everything alone even if i had the chance to meet others. And honestly i am quite afraid of being a young woman, very vulnerable to being ripped off or otherwise.

    I’d also love to know if you have advice for easy money access overseas, i always end up having trouble at ATMs. And tips for booking accomodation/trains, i’m not very organised :S

    I’m VERY excited to see everything you’ve got to say about your experience travelling!

    – Ro :)

  2. Bernarda
    21/06/2017 / 16:14

    🌊✈ OMG yeeees I love to travel and when you don’t have like minded people is the best to travel alone. I don’t want to go to all places and see everything they want to see so we usually spread all over the city 😂 Solo travels are from start meant to be I AM DOING WHAT I WANT WHEN I WANT. I DON’T HAVE TO BE AT LUNCH ON TIME. I CAN GO AND DRINK ALL DAY IF I WANT. OR I CAN GO TO ALL MUSEUMS AND BE BACK LATE AT NIGHT. Honestly I was on my first solo travel in Barca and yes I was scared. But I showed my parents that I can do everything by myself. And I won’t be lost/ scared / they won’t sell me or my organs. Yes you need to have that intuitive part somewhere and see if someone is following you but honestly you just need to let go and enjoy. I made friends for life there and I am so grateful!

  3. 21/06/2017 / 14:33

    Kann ich nur zustimmen. Bin gerade alleine für einen Monat auf Bali unterwegs 😊(@michaelablog)

    Mach weiter so meine liebe
    Lg Michaela

  4. Nina
    21/06/2017 / 08:55

    Ach Lottie, ich bin so unfassbar stolz auf dich das du diesen Schritt damals gewagt hast! :) ich bin so beeindruckt, dass du dich das getraut hast und so super gemeistert hast! Ich habe mir vorgenommen auch alleine zu verreisen. Leider kann ich das erst nach meinem Handelsfachwirtabschluss Anfang 2019 :/ Jedoch bin ich jetzt schon gespannt ob ich das so allein schaffe, weil ich einfach eine Person bin, die sehr gerne Gesellschaft hat und richtig schnell Heimweh bekommt :( und das mit 21^^
    Danke für die Inspiration und Motivation <3 mach weiter so!
    Liebe Grüße,
    Nina

  5. 21/06/2017 / 02:21

    If there is something I am grateful for is that my parents have invested a lot in traveling. I came to love it so much that I want to do it as much as I can. I wish I could though, I’m only 18 and unemployed. As you had to, I’ll have to go to university first because in my country, you’re nothing without a tittle. I was so frustrated because although I do travel every year with my dad, I still feel like I need to do it by myself, on my own. That’s why I planned a 4 month trip to London. I just graduated from hugh school and I’ll be going to London from september to december! I’m so proud of myself for accomplishing this and being brave enough to face my parents and go on my own.

  6. Marlene
    20/06/2017 / 22:24

    Sehr schöner Post :) genauso fühle ich mich auch gerade, habe für Ende Juli meinen ersten Solo-Trip gebucht und kann es nicht erwarten! Der Post spiegelt genau meine Gedanke wieder, habe das Gefühl dass ich erst in den letzten Monaten mehr Selbstvertrauen gewonnen habe und mich jetzt endlich traue.
    Mach weiter so :)

  7. 20/06/2017 / 21:33

    Ompa ollut kiva lukea sulta monta uutta postausta! Kirjoita ehdottomasti lisää näistä matkustelujutuista! :-) xx

  8. Sara R
    20/06/2017 / 21:27

    This post remembered me of Cheryl Strayed “Wild” book so much! I think I already said to you that you have to read it 😜 Cannot wait to finish my thesis start working and start traveling around the world 🚀 (haha my transportation #gobigorgohome) And regarding the sexist comments that we women have to hear the best answer is take action #thefutureisfemale 💪
    Kisses,
    Sara

  9. 20/06/2017 / 20:52

    It’s kind of depressing to read blog posts that say stuff like “just take off and go travelling, get those experiences while you’re still young”, when many people, me for example, just don’t have a chance to do that. Many people have responsibilities, and they may not have money or time to do that. I want to travel so much, I’ve got a long list of places I want to visit, things I want to do and see. Do I have money? Well, I got a summer job (thank god) so I’m working on that, but then obviously I have no time in summer, and then the school starts in fall. But anyway, maybe next summer, after I’m done with high school, it’ll finally be my time to see the world. After all, I’m only 18, so this moaning may sound stupid – obviously I have a lot of time to see the world, but I just can’t wait 😀

    Then about solo travelling – I think I’d rather travel with a friend, at least first, because I haven’t traveled much before, but I can definitely see myself solo travelling. I have always been kind of a loner and I don’t have many friends (not by my own choice, somehow I’m just invisible to most people and I’m not good at social skills) and since I spend most of my time alone, I don’t see why I couldn’t travel alone. And about people not approving girls traveling solo and saying it’s dangerous, I haven’t heard a lot of that. But then again, I haven’t traveled much (yet!!) and I live in Finland, so who knows, maybe I will hear those things too, once I go travelling.

    Just realized I could have written that in Finnish. Oh well. Toivottavasti tajuat, eikä jäänyt hirveesti virheitä, en jaksa enää kääntää suomeksi 😀

    🦄 btw, Instagram sent me!

  10. Heidi
    20/06/2017 / 19:56

    Who took all of those pictures? 😀

    • 20/06/2017 / 20:09

      I usually just ask some other tourists to take a lot of pictures of me 😀 But I also met some other people on the travels, like Nelli (you can see her in this vlog: http://bit.ly/2rNxfgV ), she and I made some proper photoshootings on the Gili islands!

  11. Sarah
    20/06/2017 / 18:17

    Hey Lottie, der Blogpost ist soo schön geworden ❤️ Ich freue mich schon auf den nächsten zu dem Thema. Ich hab gerade mein Abitur gemacht und hab jetzt bis September Zeit bis meine Ausbildung anfängt. Bis dahin würde ich am liebsten so viel reisen, aber ich weiß eben auch nicht mit wem und alleine traue ich mich noch nicht. Bisher sind aber zumindest 2 Familienurlaube geplant. Mit meinem Papa und seiner Freundin ein paar Tage nach Rom und mit meiner Mama eine Kreuzfahrt auf dem Mittelmeer 😊

    Liebe Grüße, Sarah (die vom Picknick in Berlin mit den blonden Haaren 😉)

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