Solo Travel: Bali
Many people have a fear of being alone. The very thought of traveling alone is terrifying . Bali was my first experience going on a vacation completely by myself and after the whole ordeal in Korea I was welcoming the idea with open arms. All in all, it wasn’t as scary as expected. In fact, it was liberating! The possibilities of traveling solo is endless because no one is holding you back or dictating your trip.
For the first part of my trip I decided to book an affordable yoga retreat in Ubud through Bali Spirit. The first three days of my trip had an itinerary filled with various yoga classes, spa treatments, and food coupons to the Garden Kafe at the Yoga Barn. In addition, the retreat covered my accommodations. In Ubud, I stayed at a beautiful hotel called the Ubud Aura Retreat Centre.
I feel as if having the first few days planned helped ease me into the trip. At my first hotel, I ended up meeting a lot of women who were just like me: traveling solo, looking for spiritual enlightenment, and in major transitions. It was comforting. In hindsight, I wish I stayed in Ubud longer because there was so much to experience- volcano hiking, the Monkey Forest, cooking classes, and bike riding through the rice paddies.
For the second part of my trip I went to Seminyak; a bustling beach town set on the southern coast. I stayed at M Hostel the first few nights to get acquainted with the town and to socialize with other fellow travelers. This is a great place to stay if you’re flying solo or on a budget. There are plenty of interesting travelers to meet who will advise you in on other places to see in Bali. After my fill of hostel shenanigans, I moved on to Kusuma Resort for some peace and quiet for the last leg of my trip.
Seminyak is a great place to surf, relax on the beach, eat, and shop. I spent many of my days indulging in coconuts and catching up on some reading. However, if you fancy more adventure, I heard Uluwatu has some great water sports.
If you’re ready for some adventure and want to take your first solo trip, here are my personal tips.
1. Have a solid plan: Organize your hotels (I go through Agoda) prior to coming and have some idea of what you would like to do. Shit happens when you travel, so it’s better to have a place to stay. If you decide to change routes, you can simply cancel.
2. Be aware of your surroundings: If the place feels sketchy, it probably is. It’s easy to be naive when you’re in a new place. You’re feeling adventuress and invincible, nothing can happen! In reality, bad stuff happens everywhere. A girl here in Bali had her purse ripped right off her body by a person on a motorbike while getting into a taxi. Another friend had his credit card information hikacked in Japan by a thief dressed in monk’s clothing. So please, leave your passport and cards at the hotel and bring just what you need out with you.
3. Pack lightly and accordingly: It’s a pain caring around a massive load with you when your solo. Plus, the more you bring the less you can bring back. Also, bring the essentials: light clothing, a bathing suit, flip flops, tennis shoes, sunscreen (the sun is brutal here), and mosquito repellent.
4. Enjoy!: It’s rare you get this quality time with yourself. Enjoy every ounce of it. This is a time to reflect, set future goals, and fulfill dreams.
If you’re still scared to book that ticket or keep coming up with excuses, ponder this. If you’ve always dreamed of that trip to Paris but can’t seem to match your schedule up with your friends or family; just do it! The time might eventually slip away and you will always be wondering about that what if. Trust me, you won’t regret it. I tried so many times to organize this exact trip with friends and family but life or excuses got in the way. So, I put my fears aside and I took charge. Life can’t wait.