The Secret Beauty of Solo Travel
Written By: Leland Peterman, Nature Study Area Development Coordinator
We all love getting out, and what’s not to love? Escaping your routine to go visit, wander, and explore new places is one of the most rewarding experiences a person can have. Whether it's traveling to another country or discovering what beauty one of your local parks has to offer, not many other things can supply the same sense of bliss and thriving individuality.
Without a doubt, you know what I’m talking about! At one point or another, the thrill of adventure has struck us all. But how many times were you alone for it?
For many of us, getting out means: friends. And while heading out for an adventure with friends is fantastic, sometimes it's easy to forget that we don’t need a group or a partner for every activity. In fact, there are numerous benefits to adventuring by your perfectly capable self. Solo travel can be wildly rewarding, and for most, life changing.
Getting out for a solo adventure supplies a few priceless things. First, you’ll find it delivers beaming confidence and a distinct sense of individuality. The planning, the pursuit, the moments you discover; you’ll quickly learn how special these elements become when you’re solo, and how there’s nothing but your true, perfect character to interact with them. There’s nothing quite like having an experience you get to keep all to yourself. You may just find yourself, being yourself, more than you ever have.
Second, there’s no one you know to talk to, dang! So the chances of you striking up a good conversation with someone new are almost definite. This could be over asking directions, meeting a dog, or spotting some wildlife.
And this could lead to things as simple as a pleasant interaction for the day or a new friendship. The best news though, if you don’t want to meet someone, you don’t have to! That’s the beauty of solo travel: you’re on your schedule, all the time. Regardless, community members that you may have simply passed by if you were with a group you may just notice this time around, and could lead to lifelong memories and friendships.
Of course safety is part of any outdoor adventure, and luckily we live in a time that allows us to find security in almost all situations! Always letting family and friends know your plan is essential. Let them know you're starting and ending locations and timing. Even send them an address and ask them to follow up with you! Be sure to plan your trip thoroughly so you know weather forecasts, daylight times, how much water you’ll need and any clothing requirements. Bring a fully charged phone. Want to do something that will be out of service? No problem! There are affordable satellite communication devices located at many outdoor stores. Other gadgets like headlamps, water filtration systems, external batteries, personal protection and more are plentiful and easily affordable.
Lastly, an open and mindful attitude will always be your best tool. Be ready and excited for unexpected changes or challenges. Trust your instincts and have fun! Some of the most significant memories come from tackling these little events. So when you’re ready, consider a solo adventure of your own. This could include any number of activities, so do what you love! All of our local parks have their own treasures just waiting to be found and there’s nothing stopping you from making them your own, on your own!
About the Author:
Originally from New York, and most recently living in California, Leland moved to Reno with his fiancé and two dogs for exciting new opportunities and mountain access! With a huge passion for the outdoors, he is thrilled to be contributing to the development of the Rosewood Lakes restoration efforts. In his free time he loves to be camping, climbing, playing music, or working on his home.