While a girls’ trip, or romantic break is always fun, more and more of us are planning solo getaways to far-flung places, ticking off bucket-list adventures or plotting a grown-up gap year.
According to hostel-booking site Hostelworld, the number of women embarking on a solo backpacking trip has increased by 45% since 2015.
‘It’s great to see people and women in particular embracing solo travel,’ says Breffni Horgan, Director of Product at Hostelworld. ‘It doesn’t mean travelling alone, and it shouldn’t be a barrier to those wanting to explore the world. It’s a great way to branch out and meet like-minded people from all cultures and walks of life.’
‘More of us are staying single for longer and aren’t worried about waiting for a suitable travelling companion to come along,’ adds Breffni, who also thinks that ‘better technology, with apps allowing us to easily discover our next location’ is behind the boom.
Hostelworld also crunched the numbers to find the most popular destinations for women travelling alone. And you might find the results quite surprising.
Taking the top spot is Cuba, the largest of the Caribbean islands. Welcoming over 4 million tourists every year, it’s the home of Havana rum, salsa dancing and the world famous Tropicana Club. It’s followed in second place by Central American country Nicaragua which is famed for its dramatic volcanic landscapes and beautiful beaches.
In the top ten, short-haul destinations accessible on cheaper airlines include Bulgaria and Romania – both countries where you will get a decent exchange rate, too – proof that you needn’t have a huge budget to go backpacking.
Intrigued? Planning your own solo trip?
The 10 best destinations for solo female travellers
3. South Africa
6. Sri Lanka
If you’re a woman planning on travelling alone, the Foreign Office has compiled useful advice on staying safe here.