Solo trip in Nov?

Old Oct 5, 11, 12:19 am
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Smile Solo trip in Nov?

I'm female, in the early 20's and planning to travel alone for about a week in mid November but can't decide where to go. I primary like to walk or take public transportation. Driving/biking is out of the question. I can also swim (if it's a snorkel/scuba destination). I live in the states, and am willing to fly (have points!). I'm not on a really tight budget but don't want to spend too much. I've never traveled alone (this would be my first) and I would really appreciate any suggestions Thanks in advance!

Last edited by chuumi; Oct 5, 11 at 7:54 am
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Old Oct 5, 11, 6:19 am
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Not a swim/snorkle destination, but I often do Paris solo in November. No crowds, best prices, weather is still good. You can get some real deals on airfares for T-giving week.
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Old Oct 5, 11, 7:53 am
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Ahh! I didn't mean it had to have snorkel/swim - I will edit my post.

My concern with Paris is that it's too city like or is it not? But I am also unsure if it's safe to go to a less city-like destination. I do like the idea of Europe because I've been to a few places and there's a lot to see/quiet.
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Old Oct 5, 11, 9:42 am
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Can you give us an idea of where you have traveled? Asia, US, Europe, South America? What did you really enjoy?

Almost any big city around the world can be seen with public transport and on foot. But you implied you don't like to travel in a big city.

Let me mention a couple small towns where I've spent time and have been able to stay car free:
  • Key West - some fun sightseeing there including Harry Truman's Little White House and Heminway's house as well as being a very pretty setting
  • Charleston - wonderful restaurants, lots of sightseeing, core historic center to the city
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Old Oct 5, 11, 9:53 am
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Internationally I've been to:
Asia - HK, china, Japan, singapore, malaysia
Europe - London, Italy

I enjoyed Japan the most but I went with a group of people. I don't really want to go to Asia right now. Australia is a bit too I think. I don't dislike big cities, but Paris does remind me of NYC (born and raised in the heart of the city). Most of the people I've chatted with, also disliked Paris so I'm a little iffy on that.

My concern with Florida is that I feel like I need to drive? I want to be able to walk around in a city like Florence.

I should have wrote this early! Thanks!
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Old Oct 5, 11, 10:03 am
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Here are a couple European cities that I really enjoy:
  • Vienna - wonderful smaller city with an inner core bulging with wonderful historic sites as well as charming cafes
  • Berlin - world class museums

Another thought is a trip we did earlier this year using the train.
  • Fly into Brussels
  • Take the train to Bruges, the Venice of the north - charming small town on canals. Stay centrally, perhaps at Crowne Plaza Bruges
  • Train back to Brussels. Stay there a couple days near Grand Place and see museums such as the new Magritte Museum
  • Train to Den Haag. See Escher Museum in the former Queen's palace very near to the lovely Starwood property Des Indes. (If you need to drop a town, this is the one to drop.)
  • Train to Amsterdam. Stay a couple days to wander around old city and see museums such as Van Gogh and Anne Franck House
  • Fly home

And welcome to FlyerTalk, chuumi.
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Old Oct 5, 11, 7:22 pm
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For your first solo trip, I'd probably recommend a larger city.

You can stay in hostels or B&B's which will make it easier to meet other people for those times you don't want to be by yourself.

I wouldn't compare Paris with NYC at all. It's a wonderful walking city. I'd go there anytime of year, every opportunity I can get. If you get there and don't like it, get on a train and head somewhere else.

Places that I could easily spend a week in alone without feeling like I needed to drive.

Paris
Rome
Northern Italy
Chicago
Boston
D.C.
Barcelona
Costa Rica
Hanoi
Ireland (ok, I'd probably want to drive here, but I know I could get by without it)
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Old Oct 5, 11, 8:08 pm
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Originally Posted by missydarlin View Post

I wouldn't compare Paris with NYC at all. It's a wonderful walking city. I'd go there anytime of year, every opportunity I can get. If you get there and don't like it, get on a train and head somewhere else.
I totally agree with missydarlin. It's not even remotely similar to NYC IMO. I think it's the perfect place to go on a solo vacation. It certainly meets your criteria of wanting a walkable city with a good transportation system.

Bobette
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Old Oct 6, 11, 7:35 am
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I also agree with missydarlin - both on where to stay if you want to meet others & that Paris and lots of other places are great get-aways for a week without a car. I would add Prague to the Europe destinations.
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Old Oct 6, 11, 11:07 am
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Many years ago when I was still in college I took my first solo trip to Europe. I spent about a week in Amsterdam in March and loved every minute. You can take day trips to very interesting towns (Zaanse Schaans, Haarlem, etc.) and there are so many things to do in Amsterdam.

The city is built low, so you don't feel like you're in a metropolis. It's extremely walkable and there's a great tram system. Nearly everyone speaks English. The canals are very interesting and there's something of interest around every corner.

Paris is also wonderful, but you need to master the metro to get around. By November the weather will likely be quite cold in either place.

On a completely different note, the islands of Micronesia are incredible for snorkeling, especially Palau. That would be a completely different type of trip, also much more flying involved.
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Old Oct 8, 11, 5:05 am
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I feel the odds are in Europe's favor. I have been looking up cautions on women solo travel but what do most of you do for nightlife there or nighttime sightseeing activities? Do you think it's safe or is it mostly day travel?
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Old Oct 8, 11, 8:41 am
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Originally Posted by chuumi View Post
I feel the odds are in Europe's favor. I have been looking up cautions on women solo travel but what do most of you do for nightlife there or nighttime sightseeing activities? Do you think it's safe or is it mostly day travel?
I get a copy of 'Time Out' or something similar. I personally don't go clubbing, but there are evening performances (dance, ballet, concerts). Sometimes the larger museums have evening events. I'm comfortable dining alone, so I often take my time over a leisurely evening meal. I also enjoy a good guided walking tour and some of them are in the evening.
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Old Nov 28, 11, 8:45 am
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I know its almost 2 months since your post but...for future reference, Check out San Antonio, Texas. I didnt think much of it when I was told I would be going, but I stayed on the Riverwalk and really enjoyed it. I was there for 11 days and alone every evening except for 1, and was out every evening eating, drinking and being merry. Lots to see and do along the river and in the Alamo area and it seemed very safe as well. It would be a good quickie trip, I plan on going back in the spring!
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Old Dec 11, 11, 11:56 pm
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Also late, but another budget friendly option is a Caribbean cruise. You might have some spring break stereotypes associated with it. However, I found it to be a great vacation for the super-busy person who needs a "beach bum vacation" or some serious down time. Celebrity Solstice class is a nice way to go for a low key cruise with some dressing up for dinner if desired. Royal Caribbean Allure and Oasis are a little more active and have good entertainment.

I'm all for exploratory vacations but sometimes I need down time to recharge my batteries. A cruise pretty much feeds you, transports you, and you have a room to nap in any time you want. And almost every day you wind up somewhere different.
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