Solo Travel – What I’ve learned from visiting over 16 countries and 70+ cities

“Of all the books in the world, the best stories are found between the pages of a passport”.

  • It doesn’t matter if I spend months creating a color-coded calendar, detailed schedule and a map with pin locations (yes I’m aware I’m a tad-bit OCD) there is usually a chance that something will throw off my plan.
  • I learned to not let the unexpected “bumps in the road” upset me, instead, I think of them as mini adventures. The best adventures happened when I went with the flow, had faith and let experiences happen as the universe intended them to happen. 

Should I write a separate post sharing my unexpected mini-adventures?

“Not until we are lost do we begin to understand ourselves” -Henry David Thoreau

  • No two trips are alike. If I’m facing an unexpected situation, it’s unfair to compare that present trip to a previous one that may have gone flawlessly. Each trip has its highlights and perhaps difficulties but each is an experience for me to learn and grow.

  • I’ve learned no matter how many times I declare “I’m packing light this time” my bag always ends up the same, heavy!

  • I’ve learned from backpacking that I can survive with the clothes I’m wearing and only the things that can fit in a bag on my back. As meaningful as possessions are they do not define me.

  • Travel romances are the best, they move quickly and emotions run high for both people involved but honestly, they are so much fun.

Traveling is like flirting with life. It’s like saying, ‘I would stay and love you, but I have to go; this is my station’ – Lisa St. Aubin de Teran

  • In the hustle and bustle of daily life, we tend to take things for guaranteed. Traveling to areas that may not have the same luxuries I’m accustomed to has taught me gratitude. I am grateful for my beautiful home that is my sanctuary at the end of a long day. I appreciate the furnishings that make it cozy and the things that make my daily life easier.
  • Prior to traveling, I always thought it was the architecture, food, history, and museums that would impact me most. Yes, those are all beautiful and incredible experiences however I have learned that the memories that come to mind most often are those of the special people I meet along the way and the experiences I share with them.
  • Making friends with locals is single handily one of my favorites things to do when traveling.

A journey is best measured in friends, rather than miles. -Tim Cahill

  • Site-seeing as a tourist and site-seeing with a local are two entirely different experiences. There is nothing like seeing a city through the eyes of a local who is passionate about showing you the best it has to offer.
  • I’ve learned to let go of expectations, embrace and fully immerse myself in different cultures.
  • Lastly, I’ve learned that I am never done learning. Whether I’m traveling solo and exploring a new country or I’m home in California, there is room for growth each and every day.

“The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeing new landscapes, but in having new eyes.” – Marcel Proust

What has been your biggest travel lesson?

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