After nearly three years or more of COVID stressful time, travel has picked up very rapidly. If you want to travel solo in 2023 and visit safe destinations with a short-term schedule while spontaneously choosing what to do without the pressure of sticking to long-term plans, here are my suggestions for the safest cities to travel alone as a woman in Europe and beyond.
How to make 2023 your best solo travel year
By visualising a place, we allow our minds to wander, spark our wanderlust, and shape our travel adventures in our imagination. Anticipation has been the best incubator of all my solo travel at 50 plus. And probably travel wouldn’t be fun without it. It’s more about our mindset to select destinations that lend feelings, pleasure and colours to a place rather than the destination itself. Our attitude creates anticipation, which we nurture with energy and positive emotions.
As this definition of anticipation from Alan De Botton says:
“The anticipatory and artistic imaginations omit and compress; they cut away the periods of boredom and direct our attention to critical moments, and thus, without either lying or embellishing, they lend to life a vividness and a coherence that it may lack in the distracting woolliness of the present.” from The Art of Travel Book.
Best Safest Solo Travel Destinations For 2023
I have picked eight universal cities for their flair, rich heritage, and beauty. Some of them have undergone horrendous attacks in the past years. While it’s natural to feel apprehensive, we must not dwell on the past and move our attention to the memories that distinguish these places for what they are. Beautiful and safest places that have rewarded travellers and residents alike with great emotions and will never disappoint.
Eight safe cities to travel alone that will not disappoint
Venice Italy: A place for reflection
I could not start from Venice as top safe place for women over 50. Although it’s right in my backyard, Venice is a place I am very fond of, and it always rewards me emotionally and mentally. After hundreds of visits – from a local perspective – I feel like I am on holiday every time I take the train and arrive at the most incredible city in the world. Besides being in my “home country” and close to where I live in Italy, Venice is one of those unique places that never tire and disappoint. Venice’s atmosphere is always uplifting, and there is something new to discover and cherish every time you visit. Indeed an extraordinary place we all shall treasure.
With nearly 30 million visitors annually, Venice is one of those cities that suffered the most impact of travel restrictions during COVID. So while I encourage you to travel to Venice Italy, I’ll also ask you to be very mindful when you visit the city and respect the local rules and its fragile environment.
The best busy time to visit Venice is Spring and Autumn, trying to avoid peak seasons and public holidays like Christmas, Easter, Carnival (Feb) and the Redeemer’s Festival (July). Contrary to what you may think, July and August are less visited months, due to the summer peak season, so if you don’t mind touring in summer, I’d probably plan a visit to Venice in July or August. This post takes you to the best places to explore Venice off the beaten track.
Where to stay in Venice For Solo Travellers. Below are recommendations about places to stay in Venice
Best Places to Stay Solo In Venice:
Related Post: all less-visited places in North-East Italy
Paris, France: the city of lights and striking contrasts
Paris’ beautiful contrasts make it a unique capital city of Europe. There is nothing better than walking across Paris’ fantastic street cafes, hidden corners and welcoming squares. The southern European vibe is well mixed with the grand buildings typical of Northern Europe. Paris and France are safe places to travel solo at 50+.
I visited in 2014 on the occasion of my 50th birthday and loved it. I highly recommend visiting Paris in the summer, if you can make it in June, la fète de la music is a fantastic event not to miss out on.
Berlin, Germany: the top multicultural capital city of Europe
I have been back to Berlin twice in the past two years. With ongoing development projects, Berlin is the no. 1 capital city in Europe for its distinctive multicultural flair that you can breathe everywhere. It’s a hub for cultural events, from film festivals to concerts and art exhibitions. It’s not my favourite German city, but I love the excellent vibe, and Berliners are friendly and open-minded. If you love festivals, you must check out the Berlin Festivals.
Prague, Rep Czech: the most beautiful city in Europe
From an architectural perspective, Prague is probably the most beautiful and affordable city in Europe, with a very scenic landscape and another fast cosmopolitan-growing town in Eastern Europe. I visited Prague for the first time in 2019 with my niece after her exam from High School. We spent three days there, and I loved it. Check out this post for quirky things to see in Prague.
Singapore: the perfect stop-over city in South East Asia
I visited Singapore in 2016 for the first time. It’s an amazingly safe city for solo travellers with a good combination of European vibe and Asian culture. Good food, a spectacular marina, and the bay’s gardens are the jewel on Singapore’s crown. I recommend it if you plan to travel solo this year and want to head down under. It’s a top destination for a 1-2 day stopover or a long layover flight to Australia or New Zealand.
Ubud Bali: a top-notch place for a “remise en forme.”
Bali had never been on my list. I had to plan it because my travel visa in Australia was about to expire, and I had to leave the country for a few days. So it just fit into my 5-month travel in 2015. I left Perth in July 2015 to visit Bali off the beaten track. July and August are hectic months for a trip. After first disorientation, I liked my stay, and despite the roosters’ madness and the thousands of motorbikes on the streets, I found those good places to hide from the crowds—a great place to treat yourself to a remise-en-form at the best price ever. UBUD is an excellent place for women travelling alone in South East Asia.
Bangkok, Thailand: A discovery place for foodies
I spent three days in Bangkok in 2019 and loved my first solo trip to Thailand. While finding Bangkok quite tiring to get around the vast distances in the city, you’ll start enjoying its relaxed flair once you get familiar with it. If you are into food, the stunning Bangkok markets will delight you. Thai Food is extraordinary and inexpensive, and you can eat top food everywhere. No need to go to fancy restaurants. When you land in Thailand’s capital city, you may want to plan more time and visit its surroundings, like going on a trip from Bangkok to Kanchanaburi.
Albany, Western Australia: The Pearl of the Southern Ocean
This list would not be complete without an Australian City. Albany Western Australia is a place that stole my heart. I recently discovered it on a solo road trip and loved it. I only had three days to spend, which is way too short to do justice to this place. If you plan a trip to Perth, I recommend checking it out, although it is challenging to plan a spontaneous trip unless you live in Perth. Luckily enough, in 2019, I could travel to Albany again and spend six days hiking and exploring the National Parks around Albany. To explore solo South West Australia by car and see it all, recommend at least 6 to 10 days to explore the whole area and do the amazing coastal walks in the national parks.
These are eight safest cities to travel alone as a woman over 50, in 2023, that will not disappoint.
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Solo Travel Over 50
First published in 2021, last updated in April 2023
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