Solo Travel: Make Your Own Traditions

IMG_1764Last year, I made a commitment to myself that I would travel solo for my birthday. Finally, I mustered up the courage to take my first solo trip and to a new continent. I looked at my bucketlist (yes, I have one) and it said “travel to 2 new continents this year”. After extensive research, I pulled the trigger to go to Europe and decided on Portugal – which turned out to be pretty awesome!

It only made sense to continue this tradition for as long as I can, and this year, I will be spending my birthday in another country, Colombia. It has always been on my wish list, so I decided to make this wish come true – yup, I’m my own fairy godmother 😉  It’s kinda cool because it’s my own personal new year, I get to reflect on the past year and look forward to another year of memories and experiences.

IMG_3218Last July, I got to ring in my birthday with my Aussie bud, Ryan, on the streets of Bairro Alto in Lisbon, Portugal. Drinking sangria and caipirnhas, taking a power nap before heading to the airport for my early flight home to Toronto. This year, I get to spend it reflecting and celebrating in Cartagena, Colombia. Pretty sweet deal, I’d say.

I’ve been really blessed with travel this past year. I started it off in Portugal solo travelling and meeting awesome friends like Andrea and Ryan, spent time in Vancouver and Calgary while getting an opportunity to hang with an old friend, went on a trip of a lifetime to the Galapagos Islands and Ecuador where I had some crazy, fun and unforgettable experiences while also meeting some pretty solid friends like Kim and Meri, pleasantly surprised by hiking the beautiful bad lands of South Dakota & meeting Top Chef dessert winner in Sioux Falls, ate my way through NYC, got to stay with Kim who gave me the real Jersey Shore experience (classy not trashy) and now, I’m off to the country I’ve always wanted to visit, Colombia.


Instead of worrying about getting a year older, and looking at the mistakes or missed opportunities in the past year. It makes more sense to shift the focus to another year ahead filled with adventure, travel and learning from the past.

Solo travel is one of the most exciting and life altering experiences an individual can partake in. It is never too late to start making your own traditions. Experience travel the way you want, on whatever date you’d like, doing whatever you want, when you want. We all need excuses to pull the trigger, so whether it’s a festival, time of year or bucketlist item.. take it upon yourself to make those dreams a reality. I saw a quote on a piece of canvas a little while ago, which said, “Life isn’t supposed to be endured, Life is supposed to be enjoyed” and it’s so true. Do you really want to be the person who looks back on their life to say, “I remember that time I almost went to…..”? I certainly don’t.


15 thoughts on “Solo Travel: Make Your Own Traditions

  1. Solo traveling is no doubt one of the most exciting and life altering experiences one can partake in. I too go on trips on my birthday, I call them “birthday challenges” which is my own tradition. Nice post!

    • Love getting away for my birthday, especially solo. Nice way to spoil yourself to do everything you want, when you want 😉

    • Awe, thx for your kind words! Your heart and gut will help you sort out your travels plans 😉 Pinterest and blogs are pretty inspiring as well!

  2. Hey, great article! I do really agree that the “I remember that time I almost went to…..” is so sad we do not even have to consider it here.

    I do have a question or a remark, rather, regarding your trip to Portugal. I suppose you are talking about sangria, not sangia, aren’t you? Btw, sangria is Spanish (just pointing it out)

    Svetoslav Dimitrov recently posted…Shenzhen – the Chinese Silicon ValleyMy Profile

    • The only person stopping us from travelling… is ourselves really 😉

      That’s embarrassing, thanks for letting me know, typo has been corrected. Regardless of what country, I still enjoy sangria 🙂

  3. I travel solo, but also with my family. We have particular rituals and things that we do as a family that I never do when I’m on my own. That is what keeps our family travel and my solo travel so special. Bravo to you for creating your own travel traditions! Keep growing them!
    Jo recently posted…Singapore Airlines Business Class A380 reviewMy Profile

  4. Glad you got to explore Lisbon, one of my favorite cities. Most of the solo traveling I’ve done is tacking on a few days before or after a work trip, and I do really enjoy it. I try to create opportunities to meet people on the road, like booking a tour, staying in a B & B, meeting up with ex-pats living in the country, or asking my Facebook friends if anyone knows anyone who might be in the place while I’m there. And I’ve met such fun and interesting people that way.
    Sarah recently posted…Surprise! Philadelphia is a Foodie DestinationMy Profile

  5. Great advise to those thinking about taking the plunge, sounds like it worked out really well for you. Plus you get the added advantage of going where ever you want, no other person to take into consideration. Where are you going next?

    • It’s a fantastic feeling and the freedom is incredible. No one to be accountable to but yourself 🙂
      If everything works out, I’m off to Argentina and Uruguay mid-Jan 2016

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