10 destinations for solo travelers

1. Iceland 

There’s a reason why Iceland has consistently ranked among the hottest destinations in recent years: The country is a haven for travelers who love the outdoors, with caverns and caves to explore, volcanoes and glaciers to hike, and geothermal spas to soak in — and since it’s the most peaceful country in the world, according to a recent Global Peace Index report, solo travelers can explore the country worry-free.

If you’re traveling to Reykjavík, consider taking a day trip to the ever-popular Blue Lagoon, or go whale watching in Faxaflói Bay. For those wanting to get out of the city, Thingvellir National Park offers camping, hiking trails, horseback riding, and the freshwater Silfra fissure, considered one of the best diving spots in the world.

2. Costa Rica

Costa Rica has long had a reputation as one of the happiest countries in the world, and it’s easy to see why. In Costa Rica you’ll find plenty of outdoor activities to please your adventurous side, from whitewater rafting down the Reventazón River and zip lining through gorgeous rainforests to rappelling down waterfalls and hiking in Arenal Volcano National Park.

If you need a bit of respite amidst all the activity, Arenal has hot springs perfect for relaxing, or you can enjoy the white sands and wildlife at Playa Manuel Antonio, a tropical beach in Manuel Antonio National Park.

3. New Zealand

New Zealand is a popular destination for backpackers, outdoor enthusiasts, and thrill-seekers striking out on their own — maybe because it’s the second most peaceful country in the world, according to the Global Peace Index.

The country is a haven for outdoorsy types and one of the best places to meet fellow travelers. You can take a cruise through the fjords, rainforests, and waterfalls of Milford Sound; heli-hike your way through Franz Josef Glacier; trek part (or all) of the Tongariro Alpine Crossing; explore the Waitomo Glowworm Caves; or go whale-watching in the Bay of Plenty.

If you need some down time from all your adventuring, take a day trip to Waiheke Island for wine tours or make your way to the Hobbiton Movie Set to wander the real-life version of the Shire. With so much to do, you won’t miss having a travel buddy.

4. Mexico

With a thriving backpacker culture and accommodating resorts, Mexico is an optimal place for any type of solo trip. Locals are friendly and the country is dotted with cultural sites and a beautiful natural landscape — never mind all the tacos, empanadas, and tortas!  

There are Mayan ruins near Cancun, whale watching in Los Cabos, Instagram opportunities in Tulum, tamales and mezcal in Oaxaca, and a thriving art scene in Mexico City.  

5. Switzerland

Switzerland is known for its stunning beauty and there may be no better way to see the country than by train. Purchase a Swiss Travel Pass, which gives you unlimited travel by train, bus, and boat, and journey past stunning waterfalls, forests, and lakes. Then, hop off the train to hike the Alps, visit medieval castles, and drink Swiss wine.

In the country that invented milk chocolate, indulging in the decadent, creamy treat is a no-brainer. But instead of simply picking up a bar of Toblerone or Lindt at the nearest grocery store, take a chocolate-themed walking tour in Lucerne or Zürich, or visit one of the area’s several world-famous chocolate factories.


6. Chile

Chile’s landscape is as beautiful as it is diverse. Whether you explore Torres del Paine National Park or the San Rafael Glacier in Patagonia, climb an active volcano in the Lake District, or camp underneath the brilliant night sky in the Atacama Desert, you’re sure to find an adventure that suits your fancy. In Santiago, adventure meets culture, and the city is easy to navigate by foot or bicycle. You can hike San Cristóbal Hill or Santa Lucía Hill for panoramic views of the capital, browse the boutique shops, cafes, and cocktail bars in the Bellavista neighborhood, or explore the city’s many museums and art galleries.

7. Netherlands

For any first-time solo travelers, the Netherlands is a great place to get your newly-independent feet wet. In Amsterdam, with its laid-back and friendly culture, do as the locals do: Get around by bike. Start in Vondelpark, a popular urban park, then bike to world-famous museums like the Van Gogh Museum, passing the city’s picturesque canals and bridges along the way.


Head to the Netherlands between mid-April and the first week of May, and you’ll be welcomed by a glorious array of the country’s most beloved flower: the tulip. The Keukenhof, also known as the Garden of Europe, is located just outside Amsterdam and boasts over seven million bulbs and hundreds of varieties of tulips. Or, go to Noordoostpolder to see even more colorful blooms during the annual Tulip Festival.

8. Spain

Spain has a little bit of everything to please everyone: art museums, gorgeous architecture, delicious food, stunning beaches, exciting nightlife, and jaw-dropping hikes.

In Barcelona, wander Park Güell, a public park that doubles as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It features modern architecture, sculptures, and mosaics designed by Catalan architect Antoni Gaudí. Continue your Gaudí tour at Sagrada Família before moving onto the Picasso Museum. When you start to get hungry, make your way to Mercado de La Boqueria, the oldest market in the city.


You can also find some of the world’s best beaches in Spain, such as Ocata Beach near Barcelona and Socorro Beach in Tenerife. The brave and truly adventurous can join an organized hike through Caminito del Rey in Málaga or begin their journey along the famed Camino de Santiago.

9. Austria

Austria is a must-see for solo travelers with a taste for fine culture. See for yourself why Vienna is known as the City of Music and attend a concert at the State Opera House or the Musikverein. The city also boasts hundreds of museums, prime for exploring in between experiencing traditional Viennese coffeehouse culture.

In Salzburg, backdrop to “The Sound of Music,” fans of the musical can take themed tours of the city and round out their trip by visiting Mozart’s Birthplace and climbing to the top of Hohensalzburg Fortress for unforgettable views of the city.

10. Denmark

Denmark is another easy-to-tackle country for solo travelers. Start in Copenhagen and head to the Nyhavn district to see the city’s iconic wooden ships and colorful townhouses lining the canal. Afterward, take a stroll through Tivoli Gardens. While beloved for its amusement park, the popular attraction also features flower gardens, bubble fountains, and an aquarium.

Shakespeare aficionados should head to Kronborg Castle: The UNESCO World Heritage site inspired Elsinore Castle in “Hamlet.” While there, take the train to nearby Hillerød, where you’ll find Frederiksborg Castle, home to the Danish Museum of National History.

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