Solo travel. 2 simple words, one hefty amount of baggage.

And I’m not talking luggage, far be it for me to judge if you spent half an hour crushing your suitcase till it closed (or if you’re one of those just-my-toothbrush type of travellers…)

What I’m taking about is the bad press that solo travel gets.

Too often solo travellers are met with cries of ‘don’t you have anyone to go with?’ or ‘is that not a bit dangerous?’ when really the big question should be ‘why haven’t you done this sooner?’ The thrill of going wherever you want without anyone holding you back is a sure-fire way to make you fall in love with life…plus someone with such a clear spirit of adventure is pretty sexy. Here are 5 benefits of solo travel that will have you packing your bags (or toothbrush) in no time.

>>PLEASE NOTE: This is a guide on why you should travel solo, what happens during and/or after your solo adventure is entirely your own business. I take no responsibility for any romantic entanglements, hangovers, outrageous stories to tell, post holiday blues, or your new independent self that is currently booking a salsa class. <<

1.) Get a real taste of travel

One of the best things about solo travel is that you’re under no obligation to go to those overcrowded hotspots full of bumbags and tacky souvenirs. The best solo travel goes off the touristy track and gives you an authentic insight into your destination. Solo adventurers have no time for boring brochure drivel, instead preferring to live like a local and enjoy unique cultures and cuisine. The interesting/hilarious/heart-warming stories you come home with will immediately boost your dinner party conversations.

2.) Make new friends

You may be flying solo both literally and metaphorically, yet this shouldn’t stop you from interacting with new people. In fact, quite the opposite should be encouraged. Where better to bond with someone than your mutual cluelessness at a Moroccan surfing lesson? Or your shared laughter at capsizing your kayak beneath a Croatian waterfall? And if helping conserve baby turtles in Sri Lanka doesn’t say friends forever, then I’m not sure what will. Endless adventures means endless new people to meet, and who knows what that may lead to?

3.) Achieve personal goals

This one’s important. The best thing by far about solo travel is flinging yourself out of your comfort zone and challenging yourself to a life of no regrets. The best way to defy the media’s image of ice cream eating, lonesome singletons is to show people what a meaningful, vibrant and fulfilling adventure it is to be single. Solo travel is an amazing way to live life to the full and reconnect with yourself, all whilst ticking off your bucket lists and learning how others live in this diverse world of ours.

4.) Improve your wellbeing

Travelling alone is not all about inner harmony as you may find it has some physical perks too. For starters, your eyes will shine of the spectacular sights you’ve seen and your zeal for life will radiate off you as you confidently refer to the time you went on a Vespa tour across Spain. Also, exercise will barely feel like exercise when you’re surfing turquoise waves, or hiking the Atlas Mountains. And for those of you more inclined to a cocktail on the beach, ever heard the phrase ‘don’t get toned, get tanned’?

5.) Come home feeling amazing

Finland group adventure

After all your solo shenanigans you may be returning back to the same old job, yet I can guarantee you’ll be coming home a different person. Enriched and refreshed by your unique experiences, that adventure may be over yet your friendships and memories will last a lifetime. You’ll soon be planning your next escape of the ordinary and the beauty of solo travel means it’s 100% up to you.

Like the sound of the trips I’ve mentioned? For your chance to see the world with like-minded solo travellers, check out our Flash Pack group tours!

Images: Flash Pack and Shutterstock