I'm currently staring out at the mountains of Phuket as I type this, and it is from the emanating pulse of their energy and the freedom this place has unleashed in me that I am writing this.  
Well that, and your comments and requests to talk about how to solo travel, but the above seemed a little more poetic. 
So, here I am, sitting on my pool bed and waiting for my tofu pad-thai to be delivered to this little villa I am currently calling home while I write out the many reasons and tips I have when it comes to travelling alone. 
Three-years-ago-me would be shook.  
The thought of travelling anywhere alone use to terrify me.  I've always been independent, even as a kid, but it was always in the safety of my comfort zone that I was able to walk along confidently and do anything I needed without assistance.  Growing up, I didn't travel too much so it's safe to say jumping a plane, train or car to anywhere further than my hometown and surrounding cities was as far from my comfort zone as it got.  Once upon a time, I decided I wanted to challenge myself to broaden said comfort zone by booking a trip to New York City (you may remember this vlog).  Fast forward over multiple panic attacks leading to the date, and anxious fingers packing clothes and a toothbrush - the day of, as I puffed up my chest and walked into the airport, I was told all flights were cancelled due to weather conditions.  
I didn't cry, I didn't throw a fit. I turned around, let out a sigh of relief and ran after my dad with flailing arms before he left the airport.

Skip forward a few years later and here I am, on the other side of the planet in a complete state of solitude bliss.  I'm not exactly sure when or where I shifted from that terrified, 2 hour flight to New York to the 24 hour travel time to Phuket, but I'm happy to say this isn't the first solo trip I've taken and it certainly won't be the last.

It's the last few trips, especially the ones that aren't solely work based that have really broken me free from my comfort zone and instilled in me a new-found love for solo-travel.  From napping when I want, eating whatever I want and letting my present desire be my guide, there is a certain magic that comes from travelling alone that I think we should all feel at least once in our lives.  
It's from that place that I decided to write up this list to inspire us all to never be afraid of losing sight of the shore in order to venture off into the unknown - on our own.
So, to all of you eagerly independent wanderluster's out there, this one is for you!

Let's start with the foundation shall we? Get our souls feeling all antsy and free spirited. 


1. You Get To Know Yourself 
I mean, REALLY get to know yourself.  With no one to distract you from your thoughts, habits and behaviours, you become acutely aware of the potential road blocks or life epiphanies hiding behind the routine tasks of our normal day-to-day.  Pulling yourself out of your norm and into a new setting by yourself gives you the chance to see where your mind is at and how you're really feeling.  

2. You Get To Go At Your Own Pace 
Want to take a nap? Do it.  Hungry? Eat. Want to spend the afternoon laying by the pool? Consider it done.  Want to venture out and explore? No one to persuade. 
Your entire trip is at your own pace.  Of course travelling with someone makes for good company, but taking a trip alone has such a sense of peace with being able to do what you want, when you want and however you want. 

3. You Can Knock Things Off Your Bucket List 

There's no need to talk your bestie or boyfriend into hitting that yoga retreat.  If you want to do it, you can just do it solely for your own sense of joy and the accomplishment of another amazing adventure off the bucket list. 

4. You Can Soul Search  

It's in the absence of someone else's presence that I find myself fully able to dig deep into the connection with myself and work on that relationship.  Sounds cheesy, but reconnecting with your soul and digging up your deepest desires and fears is refreshing and healthy - and easiest with the stimulation of a new location.

5. You Meet So Many New People

This one is so important.  I love to hide behind the security of having someone with me, so ever since I started travelling more solo, I've had to push myself to talk to strangers and strike up conversations with locals.  The amount of souls I've met who - though I may never see again - have made such an distinct impact on my trips and myself as a whole is astounding.  This is coming from someone who was once blanketed in sweat and stuttering from social anxiety. Breaking free of that shell has helped make huge strides in that aspect of my life. 

6. It's Empowering

There's nothing like navigating your own trip, holding your own hand and taking yourself out to see new things to get you feeling all good and free in your own bones and skin. 

7. The Luxuries Of Things You Don't Have Time For

Examples - reading, writing, photography, napping, art, yoga, meditation.  Things you normally don't have time for in your normal day-to-day and may not get a chance to do when travelling with other people.  

8. You're More Present

Being alone obviously has you on a higher alert, but it also keeps you more present.  You tune into your surroundings more, soak in the moments, bask in the silence, burning a stronger memory into your mind of a trip you will never forget.  

Now for the learn-from-my-mistakes portion of this post... 


  • Do your research - I am someone who likes to go with the flow.  Some of the places I’ve travelled were on a whim and while that can be fun, it can also lead to a lot of confusion, frustration, time killed and/or potentially dangerous situations.  It’s best to do some research prior to travelling alone so the bad kind of surprises are dropped down to a minimal. Things to keep in mind - transportation to and from places, places to eat, temperature, time changes, local emergency numbers, currency exchange, safety of the location you're staying, etc.
  • Set a purpose or intention for your trip - What are you looking to gain from this trip? It can be anything from escaping your daily routine, reconnecting with yourself, finding some peace and quiet, meditation, exploring new places, pushing the boundaries of your comfort zone, seeing something new and amazing, you get the drift.  I find having an intention of the trip minimizes the overwhelm of trying to achieve too many things in one trip.  As long as you hit this main intention, everything else is just icing on the cake. 
  • Tell someone where you’re going - This may be given, but make sure someone back at home has the address, phone number and location of where you are going. Even if you're looking for a sweet escape, it doesn't hurt to also keep that person updated on a basic idea of where you're at or do check-ins just to ensure your safety.  
  • Bring lots of books - And keep one in your bag at all times. Oh, the reading you’ll get to do.  
  • Take lots of pictures - And get creative! The amount of tree trunks, books, boxes and even bags I’ve used as a makeshift tripod to snap a photo is crazy.  It’s become somewhat of a hidden talent of mine, but what can I say? I like to have memories of the places I’ve been to look back on.  Plus there is nothing like capturing the essence of your trip in a photo to spark that feeling anytime you need it later in life.  So take lots of photos - one day you’ll be able to show your daughter how cool her solo-adventuring mom use to be (and hopefully still is). 
  • Bring something comforting from back home - for me it's my necklace.  Anytime I start to feel a little anxious or worried, I clasp it on my neck and instantly feel the sense of home and all the people who have my back even if they aren't physically with me. 
  • Be alert, but also be open - Talk to people.  Use your better judgement of course but don’t be afraid to strike up a conversation with locals or the other solo traveller you see sitting at the bar.  I repeat again, be safe, but also be friendly! These could be long-life friends passing you by, and incredible stories to share when you get back home. 
  • Make yourself a wicked playlist -  Play it on the plane, on the drive up to where you’re staying, while you get ready your first morning and while you dance party around outside basking in the beauty that is LIFE. YOU ARE ALIVE. THIS IS LIVING. 
  • Take some time to mediate or reflect -  It’s not often we get to pull ourselves out of our norm and plop ourselves into a new area with new scenery and fresh perspectives.  Travelling alone opts for the best time to meditate, reflect and reevaluate our lives and the direction we’re heading.  Once you get home, you’ll feel so recharged and inspired to start making some major shifts and changes in your life (or start booking more solo-trips - Arizona anyone?) 
  • Soak it up! - This is life in it's purest form.  Stretch your arms up high and wake up from the daze.  Life is so short and can pass us by in an instant.  Take this time and revel in it.  Notice the lush green of the leaves, the cotton candy colour of the sky, the bends and shapes of the architecture, the sizzle and sweetness of the food.  Open your eyes to everything.  

Ah, and it seems as though my pad-thai has arrived, so I leave you with this last bit of wisdom - don’t just see these solo-wandering days as the adventure, realize your whole life is the adventure, this is just a chapter.  One that can spark the awareness of the story you're already writing.  There is no on and off button to life.  Everyday holds pockets of opportunity, avenues we haven't walked down, foods we haven't tasted and faces we've yet to smile back at.  So whether you're jumping a plane or jumping into bed to wake up to another day of your life, live each and every day with abandon. See the adventure that lingers in every present moment and shake your mind and body up from the deeply grooved routines that keep us believing we need a vacation from our lives.  The curtain is up, the lights are on, the show has already begun.  Take presence on your stage and break a freaking leg. 

But not actually... because travel insurance doesn't cover much.

So, what's your next move? 

With love, light and a belly full of pad thai, 
- K