Look, we love our extended families, but it's no secret that the holidays can get hectic — and there are only so many glasses of holiday cheer we can consume to tolerate crazy Aunt Beulah and creepy Uncle Ron year after year. Dealing with the relatives is not always the most ideal way to spend our precious days of winter vacation, and when you add some wanderlust into the mix, well, a solo holiday trip just starts to sound better and better.
And though traveling alone seems a little intimidating, we promise the experience will totally enrich your relationship with yourself in ways you never imagined. Here are some of our favorite destinations perfect for a quick trip on your own.
The air is perfumed with flowers, the beaches are among the most beautiful in the world and packing only means stuffing your most comfy beach essentials into a backpack. All that and an average winter temperature in the 80s makes Hawaii the perfect getaway in the middle of winter's chill. Hawaii is great for ladies traveling alone, since it's remote and exotic but still in the good old U. S. of A. You'll feel like you've crossed the globe, but you're still kind of in our back yard.
If you're looking for an exotic locale with amazing architecture, spotlessly clean and safe streets and some of the most amazing food in the world, Singapore is for you. Top-notch luxe shopping and hotels with super high-end gambling and dining make Singapore the perfect jump-off point for all sorts of other far-off destinations, including Bangkok and Phuket, Thailand. Singapore is notoriously tough on crime so women on their own can feel free to explore without having to worry about becoming a crime victim statistic.
Sip your way through some of the most beautiful bucolic scenery in the world on a holiday trip to California wine country. Ride a train or a bike, take a tour or visit one of the area's world-famous spas and keep yourself in the lap of wine-soaked luxury for days on end. There's no need for a travel companion when you're on a boozy, friendly wine tour with a group. Even the staunchest of loners are sure to make a friend or two along the way.
Take in a Broadway play, shop 'til you drop and channel your inner New York "it" girl in one of the Big Apple's world-famous shops, museums, parties, restaurants and who-knows-what-else you might be able to find and get yourself all mixed up in in NYC. All the kinetic frenzy of the city will let the solo traveler lose themselves in the romance of the city that never sleeps. And there's so much going on, you'll never really feel alone.
Take an expedition to the Arctic Circle for an experience of a lifetime, and stay for a few days at Kakslauttanen Arctic Resort, which offers up "Santa's home" to travelers and otherworldly experiences like staying overnight in a glass igloo, perfect for gazing up at the northern lights. Once you've made it that far north, take the opportunity to visit nearby Helsinki, Finland and Murmansk, Russia. Finland is safe, clean and has plenty of pro-woman policies that make it a friendly destination for women traveling alone. The peace and quiet of this vacation are perfect for a little me-time and relaxation.
Hit the slopes in Whistler, British Columbia in Canada, which is among some of the most pristine mountain country in the world. Besides skiing, you can take sleigh rides and dog-sled rides, go ice-skating and, if you're not too afraid of heights, ride a gondola from one mountain peak to another. It's a winter sports paradise any girl could love, and going solo means you skip out on all the drama of competition and just get to have fun. Besides it's international acclaim as a snow sports mecca, Whistler is rugged terrain that's set up to accommodate tourists, so getting around is fairly easy. And besides the occasional French, English is widely spoken.
Truly one of the most remarkable cities in the world, San Francisco has everything a lady traveling on her own could possibly want: food, shopping, sights and some of the biggest arts and culture draws on the West Coast. Whether you want to sit in a café with your own thoughts, stroll through parks or wind your way down Lombard Street on a bike, you'll never run out of fun stuff to do in the City by the Bay. The city itself is easy to navigate with plenty of public transportation, wide Uber access and every world-class creature comfort imaginable from coffee to clothes.
Paris is not just for lovers. The City of Lights is always a good idea for a lady looking for adventure. Gaze at art, graze on the finest foods known to mankind and stroll the streets like a true Parisian. And if you've got the cash, the shopping in Paris, from Dior to Hermès, is second to none. Every woman should experience Paris at least once in her life for a glimpse at the kind of beauty poems and songs are written about. And every woman must, at least once in her life, just sit in a Parisian cafe and watch the chic French ladies walk by and show the rest of the world what true style is all about. There's nothing like it in the world.
Board the Queen Mary 2 or one of the other Canyon Ranch luxe cruise ships for a luxurious spa vacation on the high seas. The cruise has every imaginable spa treatment and wellness amenity to help you relax and unwind on board one of the fanciest cruise ships today. In addition to spa treatments, the staff can set you up with personalized fitness training, and the food is all prepared by the Canyon Ranch staff, who specialize in healthy options. Get in shape for the new year and see the world from a floating spa dedicated to your health and beauty. It's an entire vacation centered around me-time, and you totally deserve it. Not too shabby.
Originally published November 2015. Updated October 2017.
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