Tag Archives: Adventure

On the Road: Opportunities for Personal Growth through Solo Travel

Patagonia, Argentina
Copyright JC Politi Photography

Being solitary is being alone well: being alone luxuriously immersed in doings of your own choice, aware of the fullness of your won presence rather than of the absence of others. Because solitude is an achievement.
– Alice Koller

Have you ever traveled alone? Would you? Why or why not?

An article in Lonely Planet tackles this issue and provides some tips for women travelling alone. The article is called, “Conquer Your Fear: 4 Tips for Solo Women Travelers.

This article made me think about my own experience traveling alone. When I was in my mid twenties, I lived in Austin, Texas and spent a few years learning how to be alone, getting to know myself better outside the constraints and expectations of family and friends, truly learning how to savor opportunities for solitude.

To further my personal growth, I planned to travel alone to the Grand Canyon, Bryce and Zion national parks. But at the last minute, I got cold feet and asked a friend to go along. That turned out to be a bad decision; this person is, sadly, no longer a friend for a variety of reasons.

The chemistry on the trip was not good and it put a dark cloud over the whole experience. I was disappointed in myself for chickening out and promised myself I would not let that happen again.

Ocean City, Maryland
Copyright JC Politi Photography

About a month later, I took my first solo trip. I drove up the west coast on the Pacific Coast highway in a rented convertible. This trip was absolutely life-changing and ignited my passion for solo travel.

After that trip, I took many trips by myself, including a month-long trip to Guatemala before I spoke a word of Spanish.

While I love traveling with my husband or with friends, solo travel will always hold a very special place in my heart.

There is a beauty to being able to control every aspect of a trip, from what sites to see, to what time to wake up.

You can even control bathroom breaks without worrying about disrupting someone else’s plans. Such luxury!

Venice, Italy
Copyright JC Politi Photography

Getting over the initial nerves of a solo trip can be a challenge, but it can also be one of the best opportunities for personal growth.

I am glad I overcame my fears and would love to hear readers’ stories about their fears or passions for solo travel – or both.

What do you think? Have you ever taken a solo trip? Where did you travel? If you haven’t done this, do you have fears of this type of experience? If you have done this, what did you learn along the way? Why do you think we have a fear of traveling alone? Do you prefer to travel alone or with another person? Why?

I would love to hear your thoughts. Thank you for reading.

If you liked this, you might also like:

Around the World in 80 Days: Would You Do It?

What Makes Amelia Earhart So Captivating?

Is There Room at the Inn? The Eternal Quest for the Perfect Getaway

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Filed under Culture, Education, Environment, International, Parenting, Photography, Photos, social pressures, Stereotypes, travel, Women, Youth Leadership

Running of the Bulls: Would You Do it?

The Running of the Bulls is this week in Pamplona, Spain. Once again there have been a number of injuries.

The Atlantic reports that this event has been held every year since 1591. A quick search in Wikipedia finds that there have even been 15 deaths since 1910 in this annual event.

The photos are terrifying, yet somehow also alluring.

 This experience is on many bucket lists. And it certainly does seem to be one of the world’s great spectacles and an intruiging cultural event.

I would love to see the event from an apartment above the corridor, but I can confidently say, as someone who has bungee jumped and gone sky diving, I would not have any interest in participating in the actual running.

I am sure my family will be relieved to read that last line, as I have been known to take a risk or two over the years. Maybe I am getting older…or wiser.

What do you think? Would you do it? If money for travel were no object? What makes this event so compelling to so many? What is it that makes people willing to take such enormous risks for an adrenaline rush? Would you want to see it?

I would love to hear your thoughts. Thank you for reading.

If you liked this, you might also like:

Around the World In 80 Days: Would You Do it?

Is There Room At The Inn? The Eternal Quest for the Perfect Getaway

Romance In Paris: Why Do French Bookstores Continue to Thrive?

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Filed under Culture, Ethics, International, Photography, Photos, social pressures, Stereotypes, travel