There are so many reasons why people decide to travel alone. Sure, convenience plays a huge part in it, ranging from things like not having to partake in activities you personally don’t feel attracted to and having a personal level of control over every single checkpoint on your itinerary. However, things go much deeper than that and people who try traveling on their own at least once in their lifestyle tend to return to this activity over and over again. Here are several things that I’ve learned from my own self-travels.

You absorb more knowledge by traveling alone

The first time I traveled alone it was on accident, seeing how a friend bailed at me at the last moment possible and I had to make a choice: “Should I stay or should I go?” Luckily, I opted for the latter. During the first tour, I noticed something completely extraordinary, the things that most tour guides talk about are incredibly informative, entertaining and fun for those who can actually focus on them. A cognition that I never noticed this before was even more shocking. When traveling in company, you are usually too preoccupied jabbering about different topics to actually listen to the tour guide or even properly pay attention to the things surrounding you. This also brings us to the next advantage of self-travel…

Mingling with locals

You would be surprised just how much one learns about the local populace and how much of their native tongue can one acquire on a single vacation, when going out there alone. When traveling in company, you are in a different country, surrounded by people who see you as a foreigner, yet, you spend most of your tour still speaking in your native tongue, conversing with someone who has the same or similar background as you. On the other hand, by being forced to interact with as many people as possible, you stand to only enrich your experience.

No such thing as a repeat trip

What this means is that although you can go twice to a same location, the trip will definitely not be the same. Think about the locals, they are people who live at the same location for decades and still haven’t explored all there is to the place. With this in mind, isn’t it a bit pretentious to assume that you can see it all in a couple of weeks. Even the change of accommodation can completely turn your trip around. For instance, on my first trip to Bali, I stayed at the hotel, while for a second trip I looked a bit closer into Bali Villa Escapes. Needless to say, it was a radically different experience. Same goes for visiting a location on your own after you’ve already been there in a company.

More time to yourself

Another thing you need to keep in mind is the fact that you can miss out on more than a tour guide’s lecture when distracted by a traveling companion. For instance, the above-mentioned Bali is an important religious and spiritual center of Indonesia, which is why it might not be possible to fully connect with the place unless you’re there on your own. Sure, a person you’re traveling with doesn’t even have to be actively distracting you, however, they might still diminish your level of spiritual intimacy. Apart from this, you can also look for various wellness retreats and have a bit more traditional form of me-time.

Becoming more self-reliant

Even though you might feel as if you’re pulling more than just your weight, either way, traveling in a pair or in a group is still a lot easier than going out on your own. When you’re all alone in a different country, you’re definitely outside of your comfort zone, seeing as how you have no one to rely on but yourself. In this way, you can learn a thing or two about your own abilities, as well as find a way to become much more self-reliant. That being said, traveling on your own can be a great way to test your mettle.

A greater sense of freedom

Finally, sometimes there are activities, patterns of behavior and customs that you would like to try out but are afraid of appearing silly or being judged by someone you’re close to. Moreover, there’s always a fear (often completely unfounded) that a person you are traveling with might bring the story back home, which can act as yet another incentive for you not to try it out. On the other hand, this also means that traveling on your own might give you a much greater sense of freedom, which can, on its own, be enough to completely revolutionize your travels.

At the end of the day, while it wouldn’t be fair to say that traveling alone is superior to traveling in a group, it is definitely different and has numerous advantages. In other words, to each their own, yet, it would be outright irresponsible to simply dismiss one of the two traveling methods without trying it out on your own. Who knows, maybe you find out for yourself just how great wanderlust and solitude go hand in hand.

Author's Bio: 

Biologist by day, writer by night, and a huge geek. My fields of expertise could be summed up to health, fitness and nutrition-related topics. My interests are on the other hand wide and ever-evolving.