Every year, travel trends all point to one unrelenting truth: solo travel will never go out of style, especially for women. According to a recent study from Airbnb, 2022 saw a 55% increase in women traveling solo from the United Kingdom. While according to Solo World Traveler, Google data shows that post-pandemic solo trips rose a whopping 761%, with 85% of women ages 55+ continuing to travel solo. In fact, in 2022, 25% of Americans (about 83 million people) said they were considering a solo trip.
Numbers aside, solo traveling offers a lot of benefits. For starters, it’s easier to plan a trip on your own than corral a group of friends or balance the needs and wants of fellow travelers. Beyond logistics, solo travel has been closely tied to a myriad of women’s memoirs detailing how solo trips often lead to life-transforming and inspiring revelations.
Airbnb partnered with the personal safety app, WalkSafe, to look into the top destinations for solo traveling women. By checking out which cities have the highest percentage of nights booked by solo travelers, they culled together a list of places that routinely rank as wonderful options for women going on a solo adventure.
Paris consistently ranks as one of the safest capitals in Europe, providing a sense of security for solo female travelers. Its well-lit streets and bustling neighborhoods contribute to a comfortable and secure environment, even at night. Paris offers numerous women-specific tours and activities, empowering solo female travelers to explore the city while connecting with other like-minded jet setters. Add to the mix the thriving cafe culture and welcoming dining establishments that ensure that women can dine alone without feeling out of place. Additionally, the city’s strong emphasis on art, culture, and history offers solo female travelers a wealth of enriching experiences, all within the embrace of a vibrant and inclusive urban atmosphere.
Dubai is an increasingly popular destination for women traveling solo, offering a blend of modernity, safety, and cultural diversity. The city is known for its remarkably low crime rates, ensuring a high level of personal safety for solo female travelers. It’s also a highly organized and efficient destination with an excellent public transportation system, making it easy to navigate independently. Dubai is culturally diverse and welcoming, with a large expatriate community, so women traveling solo can feel comfortable and respected. Additionally, Dubai’s upscale hotels, spas, and wellness centers offer a wide range of amenities and services catering to female travelers, making it easy to relax and rejuvenate during your trip. From exploring modern skyscrapers to immersing oneself in traditional souks, Dubai offers an array of experiences for solo female travelers, all within the framework of a safe and accommodating environment.
Barcelona is an enticing destination for women traveling solo, known for its unique blend of culture, history, and vibrant street life. Barcelona offers a lively atmosphere and an array of solo-friendly activities, such as guided walking tours, cooking classes, and beachside yoga sessions. Its bustling neighborhoods, including the Gothic Quarter and El Raval, provide a sense of community and a chance to meet fellow solo travelers. With its stunning architecture, beautiful beaches, and a dynamic arts scene, Barcelona presents a myriad of opportunities for exploration and self-discovery, ensuring a memorable and empowering solo travel experience for women.
Lisbon is a fantastic choice for women traveling solo. The Portuguese capital is renowned for its safety, making it a comfortable and secure destination for solo female travelers. The city’s narrow winding streets and historic neighborhoods, like Alfama and Bairro Alto, provide a sense of intimacy and charm, making it easy to explore on foot while enjoying picturesque scenery. The local population is incredibly friendly, and the city boasts a thriving arts and music scene, as well as a diverse culinary landscape. Lisbon’s numerous cafes, restaurants, and local markets offer delightful dining experiences, whether you’re savoring traditional pastries or freshly caught seafood. With its proximity to stunning beaches and vibrant street art, Lisbon invites solo female travelers to uncover its treasures at their own pace, fostering a sense of empowerment and adventure.
5. Cape Town
Cape Town is an exceptional choice for women traveling solo, combining natural beauty, a rich cultural scene, and a strong sense of safety. The city is celebrated for its stunning landscapes, including Table Mountain and pristine beaches, providing countless opportunities for outdoor adventures in a secure environment. Cape Town is known for its friendly and diverse local population, making solo female travelers feel welcome and at ease. The city’s cultural diversity is reflected in its cuisine, arts, and festivals, offering a range of engaging experiences. Numerous guided tours and women-focused activities, from wine tastings to wildlife safaris, allow solo female travelers to connect with others and explore the region’s unique attractions. Cape Town’s laid-back atmosphere, historical sites, and vibrant markets make it an ideal place for self-discovery and adventure, ensuring a memorable solo travel experience for women.
Sydney is a wonderful destination for women traveling solo, offering a perfect mix of urban excitement and natural beauty in a safe and female-friendly environment. The city is renowned for its low crime rates, making it one of the safest major cities globally. Its efficient public transportation system and well-planned urban layout make it easy to navigate independently. Sydney’s diverse population is known for its warmth and hospitality, and solo female travelers often find locals to be friendly and helpful. The city’s array of solo-friendly activities, such as coastal walks, harbor cruises, and guided tours, provide opportunities to meet fellow travelers and explore iconic landmarks like the Sydney Opera House and Bondi Beach.
The Spanish capital is known for its safety, making it a comfortable and secure choice for solo female travelers. The city’s vibrant neighborhoods, like the historic Barrio de las Letras and lively Chueca, are filled with friendly locals, making it easy to strike up conversations and immerse oneself in the local culture. Madrid’s rich cultural scene, from world-class art museums like the Prado to its dynamic culinary experiences, ensures a wide range of solo-friendly activities. The city’s charming plazas and tapas bars create a perfect setting for solo dining, while its efficient public transportation system simplifies exploration.
Athens is an ideal destination for women traveling solo. The city’s rich historical and archaeological sites, including the Acropolis and the National Archaeological Museum, offer solo female travelers an opportunity to delve into Greece’s fascinating past while exploring at their own pace. Athens boasts a friendly and welcoming local population, making it easy for solo travelers to engage with the culture and feel at home. Its cozy tavernas, bustling street markets, and vibrant neighborhoods provide opportunities for solo women to dine, shop, and explore without hesitation. The efficient public transportation system and walkable city center ensure convenience in navigation. With its mix of historic landmarks, delicious Greek cuisine, and stunning Mediterranean vistas, Athens presents an enriching and empowering experience for women traveling solo in a safe and inviting environment.
Toronto is celebrated for its exceptionally low crime rates, creating a secure environment for solo female travelers. Toronto’s multicultural ambiance ensures that women are warmly welcomed, and the city’s residents are known for their friendliness and helpfulness. The city’s dynamic arts and entertainment scene, world-class museums like the Royal Ontario Museum, and numerous festivals and events offer a wide range of solo-friendly activities. Toronto’s diverse culinary landscape provides ample opportunities to savor international cuisine, while its efficient public transportation system and walkable neighborhoods make it easy to explore. With its iconic landmarks like the CN Tower and scenic waterfront, Toronto invites women traveling solo to discover its vibrant culture and natural beauty in a comfortable and welcoming atmosphere.
Melbourne consistently ranks as one of the world’s most livable cities, ensuring a secure environment for solo travel. Melbourne’s welcoming and inclusive atmosphere reflects its diverse population, and locals are known for their friendliness and helpfulness. The city’s dynamic arts and music scene, iconic street art, and numerous cultural events provide a wide range of solo-friendly activities. Melbourne’s lively laneways are perfect for exploration, offering hidden gems, cozy cafes, and unique shops to discover. With its exceptional culinary scene, which includes international cuisine and local specialties, solo female travelers can dine with ease. Efficient public transportation and pedestrian-friendly streets make it convenient to navigate the city.