4 Places You Need To Travel Alone
Traveling is exponentially stereotyped with either a Alfred Hithcock’s “Rebecca”, (or “Taken” for those modern day enthusiasts) or either a Wes Anderson’s “Darjeeling Limited” type of journey. But the truth is, travel rates are rising with the solo-troopers. In 2013 only 16% of travelers in America decided to expand their horizons alone, now in 2015, it’s up to a solid 37%. Not only are travel agencies acquiring a flux of better one-on-one deals for their clientele, but retreating alone is an increasing fad. And I’ll be damned if I don’t write to you and say, “Go for it, travel alone, dive into your strangest and potentially-perpetual curiosity for culture, explore the world and hell no, there is no shame in doing it alone!”
This may sound like one of those baby boomer generational single-mom campaigns that rave about the benefits and possibilities of raising a child alone; well, that’s because this is like one of those ads on the mid-century AdWeek. Except it’s just you, yourself, and your mind. There’s something peculiar and intriguing about glancing out your window, barely noticing the love affairs down by the street, but also knowing the next homey window you’ll be staring at won’t be a familiar pane. It’ll be a looking glass window, perhaps with a love affair inside instead of it, or perhaps it’s not a love affair at all — you have the same window, just a different view this time around.
Most times we feel the need and absolute craving to share our thoughts, feelings, and world with someone else. It is human nature, after all Thorton Wilder said so best: “People are meant to go through life two by two”. There are these pristine moments of solitude, seemingly euphoric moments, which captivate us completely to draw us into this belief that we cannot be our own best friends or our own lovers, and that’s simply not the only truth. Vacations have become notorious for honeymoons, baby show-and-tells, family bonding or running away—all of which are also a need and frankly, a time worth having. But what happened to exploration and transcendentalist-inspired vacations? We need to save those moments of intimacy for ourselves too.
In fact, the past five years, the number of solo travelers around the world has shifted from single people to those in committed relationships. There is something gained when you explore on your own, even if it’s just taking the long way back home. You can gain a whole world of access to your dreams and aspirations, one’s you never thought desirable or accessible. Sometimes, living in the hustle and speed of New York, I believe the only magic left in this world remains in words and time. But truth is, magic is found in the land you walk on, not the streets you rush by; magic is found when you dive into the roots of yourself and come back with a different perspective that you just couldn’t get if you would’ve had to wait those 5 extra minutes in the bar. Pack a week worth of bags, get on that bike, plane, car, or bus, and just ride.
If you want to appreciate yourself, go to the West with the best; but if you want to find yourself, that has to be on your own—and next to love, its the most fulfilling of experiences.
4 states to visit on your own:
Red Rock Canyon, Colorado:
Delicate Arch, Utah:
Joshua Tree, California:
Great Basin National Park, Nevada: