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Back when I was in my 20s solo travel wasn’t a thing. Especially for women. In fact exactly the opposite was true, we planned HUGE group trips. The theory was the more the merrier. We usually had 10 plus people on international, multi-city, multi-country itineraries.
But as we all aged, started getting married, and having kids, it was simply too hard to organize trips of that scale and size.
Or if you are single most of your friends have gotten married and have kids, so there’s no one left to take trips with. And thus you are looking into traveling solo.
Solo travel has exploded in the past few years. According to Google searches on solo travel has increased by about 40% from 2015 to 2017. Just a scan over my Facebook Groups, there’s tons dedicated solely to female travel with many women opting to exclusively travel solo.
Female solo travel may seem daunting at first. And you may wonder is solo female travel in my late 30s and 40s even possible? Will people laugh at me or judge me for traveling solo in my 30s and 40s? Will my friends call me selfish for wanting to travel solo? And is solo female travel only meant for 20 year olds?
The answer is NO! Solo female travel isn’t the exclusive right of 20 something millenials that have sold everything to wander the world endlessly. Social media today has somehow given everyone the impression to travel solo you have to be a YOUNG and sell all your stuff, which is not the case. And don’t let anyone judge you for going somewhere on your own or call you selfish. You have every right to see the world!
How to Take Your First Solo Trip in Your 30s and 40s
There is no set of “rules” for how to travel alone for the first time, you can travel solo at any age and go anywhere, for any length of time. So no you don’t have to sell your house and put your things in storage to become a solo female traveler.
Traveling solo for the first time in your 30s and 40s as a female can be such a liberating and exciting experience. And the most important part is to take that first step. Personally I find the best places to travel alone as a female in the US are National and State Parks. The United States has 61 National Parks to visit. I love that peaceful feeling from hiking alone! These are a few solo trip ideas that will help you take your first step in solo travel in your 30s and 40s.
Of course even better is a bustling city next to a beautiful National or State Park! This was exactly the scenario when I went to Las Vegas, the best of both worlds.
Take a Short Trip Solo
If you want to try out solo travel in your 30s and 40s the best way is to take baby steps and just take a short trip by yourself. Go somewhere overnight or book a hotel in a neighboring State you’ve always wanted to stay at. This will let you get a taste of solo travel without having to dive head in.
Visit a Friend Solo
There’s no definition to solo travel – so who says visiting a long time friend by yourself is not solo travel? Last summer I visited my best friend in Las Vegas for an event she was throwing. I stayed with her overnight, but she was busy most of the time, so I did everything on my own. Of course I saw her and we had dinner and drinks by her pool.
But she happened to live next to Red Rock Canyon, which is the real reason I wanted to stay at her house. I hiked the Red Rock Canyon at sunrise on my own and also drove the scenic loop. So I consider it a solo trip. Staying with her gave me some company but my itinerary was up to me!
And that one of the best trips I had ever taken! I absolutely love hiking on my own and figuring my own way! Not to mention take as many pictures as I want. Yes I took on the pictures on this page by myself with a tripod. I’ve kind of mastered the advanced travel selfie!
Las Vegas has definitely become one of my favorite solo woman traveler destinations!
Do a Staycation or Go Somewhere Local Solo
A great way to dip your toe into solo female travel is to spend a day touring your own city by yourself. Or book a hotel you’ve always wanted to stay at locally and treat yourself to a staycation. Some of the best solo female travel destinations could be right at your doorstep!
I love visiting gardens and sometimes my husband doesn’t want to come. Enjoying the blooming cherry blossoms, peonies, and sunflowers by myself is relaxing and amazing!
Share a Room with a Friend on a Work Trip
Many of my friends travel for work and sometimes they will go to cool places. Why not tag along on their trip and explore a new city while bunking in their free hotel room?
You will get the days to explore a new place while they work. And after you can meet for dinner in drinks! It’s the best of both worlds.
On that same trip to Las Vegas I had a hotel room with another friend that was working the event. We shared a room but I had a set itinerary of what I wanted to do and see so most of the time I barely saw her. I think we had lunch once.
I ended up seeing the 7 Magic Mountains and hiking Valley of Fire State Park on my own. And both were incredible experiences. Because I went solo I got to see sunrise! I didn’t have to wait for anyone and everything was on my own time table.
Chatting with early hikers like myself, we had some laughs as they saw what I was doing with my DSLR and tripod.
Why You Should Take a Solo Trip in Your 30s and 40s
Traveling with a partner or a group can be fun, but so can traveling solo. Don’t let your age stop you from going to new destinations you have been dreaming of!
Go at Your Own Pace
Traveling solo in your 30s and 40s can be so relaxing because everything is at YOUR pace. You can be as fast or as slow as you want. This is probably the best part of traveling solo. As you know I love taking lots of pictures, and sometimes my husband gets tired, or my toddler gets cranky. Traveling solo gave me the opportunity to be camera happy!
There was no irritable husband or toddler to rush me! I could explore every corner I wanted to and take my time.
Meet New People
You can meet tons of new people while traveling solo. I’m an introvert by nature, but traveling solo brought out my chatty side. Talking with fellow early hikers, chatting up a new friend at dinner (who invited me hiking), I never actually felt lonely.
And just because you are traveling solo doesn’t mean you can’t call home. I Facetimed my husband and my baby every night to tell them what I did and catch up on their day.
There’s something quite soothing about being on your own, especially out in nature. I found my solo trip out to Las Vegas quite energizing. Left to my own thoughts I found that I liked spending time alone. Having never really lived on my own, traveling solo gave me a great feeling of independence and freedom!
Gives You a Chance to Miss People
I see my husband and toddler every day and as much as I love them, it was great to get away from them! There’s no reason a Momcation or a Wifecation can’t be a solo trip! Honestly at my age there’s very few people left to travel with, so taking a Momcation can sometimes mean a solo trip! And you’ll be so glad to see the family when you get back!
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These are great tips!