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Spa Guide

Seven Solo Travel Ideas You May Not Have Thought About

From learning a language to volunteering with animals, you may not have considered these seven solo travel ideas – each of which could truly expand your travel and educational horizons.

If you’re interested in embarking on a solo travel adventure but wondering how to spend so much time alone, consider these ideas. Whether you choose to ease into yoga on the beach, hike the great outdoors, release some stress with equine therapy, learn to cook your favourite foods – or something else – we’re fairly sure you’ll want to extend your time away by the end of your experience.

These seven – more unusual – solo travel ideas will give you all the inspiration you need for upcoming trips.


If you’re seeking a new experience that gives back to a cause you care about, volunteering can be a really memorable solo trip – one on which you’ll have the added bonus of being surrounded by like-minded people. From protecting animals in our oceans and on wide-open plains, to working on sustainable community projects that actually give back to the areas you are visiting, positive-impact travel is one of the biggest industry trends for 2024. For companies that provide reputable experiences, look to Journeys With Purpose who offer unique trips such as days tracking in Kenya with the country’s only all-female anti-poaching squad, and both Responsible Travel and AndBeyond for a wide-range of conservation projects across the globe.

Learn A Language

For anyone who wishes they remembered a little more of the languages they studied at school, holidaying on your own can be the perfect chance to brush-up on your linguistic skills. Whether you decide to jump in – phrase book or Google translate on hand – by visiting a less touristy destination in your chosen country, or by attending a summer course at a university abroad, a solo language trip can also benefit your future adventures by equipping you with stronger conversational skills. If you’d prefer a less formal approach, download a language app such as Duolingo or Babbel while you are travelling and use your time to practice your skills in local restaurants and shops.

Try Equine Therapy

In the market for a truly unique but potentially transformative experience when travelling by yourself? Equine therapy – which uses interaction with horses for wellbeing-boosting purposes – is an emerging trend that solo travellers should keep an eye on. It goes without saying that this is an experience for animal-lovers, after all, many of us will know the calming powers that seeing our pets can have at home, but the benefits are surprisingly well-studied. In fact, simply being around horses, as well as petting, grooming and potentially riding them, has been shown to calm anxiety, boost mood and channel self-reflection. Five-day horse retreats are now available at NIHI Sumba‘s spa in Indonesia, where the horses are available 24/7 for wellness purposes, including the chance to try horse yoga. In the UK, hotels such as Lucknam Park also offer popular Equine Day Packages for you to try.

Embrace A Staycation

You don’t have to fly off to far-flung lands on your own if you don’t want to. Instead, embrace the trend that first emerged during lockdowns and enjoy a staycation. Often overlooked by solo travellers, and particularly good for anyone trying a solo escape on their own for the first time – as you’ll feel less far away from home – this approach can also fit around a busy schedule and form part of up-coming bank holiday weekends, giving you some much needed flexibility. A recent survey found The Lake District, New Forest National Park and the Cotswolds as the three best remote staycation destinations in Great Britain. You could also book into a cosy cottage via Airbnb for a weekend; explore a nearby town you’ve never been to before; or treat yourself to a grand experience in a country hotel and spa where you’ll be treated like royalty.

Choose Calm

Whether you want to take some time out from work, break up with your phone for a little while, or try something new in the realm of wellness and spirituality, attending a retreat on your own offers calm – as you won’t be distracted by the friend or family member you have travelled with. There are plenty of options to choose from, all across the world, and many of them are specifically tailored to those attending on their own. Try one of the potentially transformative experiences in our hand-picked guide to the best mindfulness retreats. Or book in for a yoga retreat specifically designed for solo travellers to really rest and recharge, while potentially learning something new.

Go Hiking

The great outdoors is waiting to be explored and, as a solo traveller, you can go to the routes and locations you wish at your own pace and respecting your specific energy levels. Hiking can be one of the best ways to explore a country, as you’re likely to see things beyond the traditional tourist track – whether you’re in a built-up city looking for greener spaces, or a stunning country oasis. Locations that are emerging as especially good for active female travellers include Peru, Austria, Switzerland, and Ireland. Start with a shorter route of around one to two hours on a clearly-marked path or trail. Then, if you enjoy that, investigate a full day hike with the help of local companies (who can also offer small group excursions) or your hotel. You do need to plan accordingly, make appropriate safety considerations and always let someone know where you are heading, but it’s a simple way to enjoy a (potentially free) wellness experience.

Take A Cooking Course

A cooking course is a great way to not only learn a new skill, but to meet like-minded people in an environment where you can chat and interact as much (or as little) as you like. Don’t be put off by a lack of cooking skills – the majority are specifically designed to encourage less experienced cooks to try something new. One of the best approaches is to attend a class that focuses on the local cuisine of the area you are visiting, so you can share what you’ve learned with friends and family when you are back from your travels. For example, you can perfect your Thai green curry recipe in Thailand, make fresh pizzas in Italy, or try your hand at sushi in Japan. Many luxury hotels and even local restaurants now provide this option within their extended wellness and cuisine offering, so it’s worth speaking to your concierge about what’s available.

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