Elephants in Sri Lanka (Shutterstock)
List 12 February

12 of the best trips for solo travellers

Going solo? Avoid single supplements and travel with like-minded people on these adventurous trips...

The dreaded words ‘single supplement’ are enough to deflate the enthusiasm of any lone traveller. Who wants to fork out extra cash just because they’re exploring alone? If anything, we reckon solos should be rewarded for their intrepid nature: not everyone has the courage to traverse unknown lands without a plus-one at their side.

All of these trips are either completely free of the single supplement, or are if you share with another solo traveller. And all of them are perfect for solos.

1. Traverse Sri Lanka

Explore sweeping gorges, Buddhist temples and velvet mountains with Exodus’s 16-day Discover Sri Lanka trip. Start by visiting the dramatic cave temple of Dambulla before heading to Sigiriya to make the climb up to its ancient rock fortress.

Train from Nuwara Eliya to Kandy (Shutterstock)
Train from Nuwara Eliya to Kandy (Shutterstock)

Check out the 10th-century Sinhalese capital of Polonnaruwa, then swap culture for wildlife and spot purple-faced monkeys on a hike through Horton Plains and meet the elephants and crocodiles at Yala NP. Solo-only departure on 19 November 2016.
 

2. Explore Sudan's long-lost Nubian kingdom

Delve deep into Sudan’s past on the 8-night Kingdom of the Black Pharaohs trip with Voyages Jules Verne. See the recovered Egyptian temples of Buhen and Semna at Khartoum’s Archaeological Museum, then trek through the Bayuda Desert before camping under the stars at Meroë, within sight of the 40 pyramids of the Royal Necropolis.

Meroe pyramids in Sudan (Shutterstock)
Meroe pyramids in Sudan (Shutterstock)

End with a trip to the impressive 1st-century Apedemak Temple at Naga. No single supplements on April 2016 departures.

3. Go back to Soviet-era Belarus

Join Regent Holidays on a journey through the Soviet heritage of Belarus and the area’s near destruction during the Second World War on the 8-day Classic Belarus tour.

Medieval castle in Mir, Belarus (Shutterstock)
Medieval castle in Mir, Belarus (Shutterstock)

Explore capital Minsk and the moving war-memorial sites of the Island of Tears and nearby Khatyn before taking in the remains of the Hero Fortress at Brest and the 12th-century Kalozha Church in Grodno. The single supplement is waived on set departures during 2016 – contact Regent Holidays for details.

4. Cruise to Antarctica

Explore the last great wilderness on Quark Expeditions’s Antarctic Explorer: Discovering the 7th Continent cruise. Over 11 days you'll traverse the Drake Passage before scouting for penguins, leopard seals and humpback and minke whales in the South Shetland Islands.

Antarctica (Shutterstock)
Antarctica (Shutterstock)

Scramble up icy pathways on the Antarctic Peninsula and sandwich your cruise between exploring the sleepy Argentine port town of Ushuaia. No single supplement when you book a single cabin on Ocean Endeavour.

5. Discover Iceland's eastern fjords

With new direct flights, join Discover The World on a 7-night Trek In the Footsteps of Elves tour and see Iceland’s wild eastern coast.

House in East Fjords, Iceland (Shutterstock)
House in East Fjords, Iceland (Shutterstock)

Based at Borgarfjordur Eystri, you’ll spot glaciers from the slopes of Súlur and Geldingafjall, climb Gagnheidi ridge for sweeping views of the black sand beaches below, and spot puffins and nesting birds in Brunavik Bay. No single supplement on September 2016 departures.

6. Craters and local culture in Panama & Costa Rica

Tick off two Central American gems in one go on Solos Holidays’ 15-day Panama & Costa Rica trip – plus you'll get your own room with no single supplement. See the iconic Panama Canal and visit Old Panama City before rubbing shoulders with Emberá Indians as you take a dugout canoe through Chagres NP.

Monteverde, Costa Rica (Shutterstock)
Monteverde, Costa Rica (Shutterstock)

Later, head into Costa Rica for the impressive Arenal volcano and cowboy-friendly Rincon de la Vieja NP, and spot scarlet macaws during a walk through the beach-fringed Manuel Antonio NP.

7. Soak up China's cities and countryside

Lace up your walking boots for Wendy Wu Tours’s 16-day China Adventure tour. Clock up Beijing’s must-see sights before hiking the Great Wall’s Jinshanling section and visiting panda-packed Bifengxia.

The Palace Museum, Beijing (Shutterstock)
The Palace Museum, Beijing (Shutterstock)

Slow the pace down with a trip to see the terracotta warriors of Xi’an and a cruise amid the imposing limestone cliffs along Yangshuo’s Li River before ending in Shanghai. No single supplements on 9 Sep, 23 Sep & 7 Oct 2016 departures.

8. Cruise Ecuador's Galápagos Islands

Climb aboard the SS Mary-Anne for 10 days and sail the Galápagos Islands with Into Latin America. Explore Quito before heading to the islands to snorkel among whitetip reef sharks at Devil’s Crown and spot dolphins off Floreana’s black beach.

Sea lions in Galápagos Islands (Shutterstock)
Sea lions in Galápagos Islands (Shutterstock)

Inland, see iguanas roam the foot of Alcedo volcano and tick off penguins and sea lions at Punta Espinosa. No single supplements for single cabins.

9. Tread England's chalk-cliffed isle

Hike the Isle of Wight’s wild coastal paths on HF Holidays’s Guided Walking for Solos at Freshwater Bay tours. Choose from a selection of trails, each varying in difficulty.

Isle of Wight (Shutterstock)
Isle of Wight (Shutterstock)

Take in the chalky cliffs of Culver Down or the fossilised forest at Hanover Point, and don’t miss man-made sights such as Carisbrooke Castle or the ruins of Appuldurcombe House. Trips for 3, 4 or 7 nights; all single rooms with no single supplements.

10. Revel in rock art, Namibia

See Neolithic stone paintings at their finest on British Exploring’s 11-day Rock Art of the Burnt Mountain tour. Explore the lesser-seen side of Namibia’s Brandeburg Massif and discover paintings dating back over 2,000 years, helping scientists as they map and photograph the rock art.

Oryx, Namibia (Shutterstock)
Oryx, Namibia (Shutterstock)

Spend the evenings tucking into braai (barbecue) or poitji kos (slow-cooked stew) before kicking back next to a campfire for a spot of stargazing.

11. Meander through magical Myanmar

Merge Burma’s best bits and hidden corners on a 14-day Tucan Travel tour through Classic Myanmar. Ride through the Shan Hills by train, stopping off at the ancient royal city of Hsipaw and colonial Pyin Oo Lwin.

Village in Shan mountains (Shutterstock)
Village in Shan mountains (Shutterstock)

Pedal past the temple-ridden Bagan, visit elephants in Kalaw, hop back onboard a train to take in the Shan mountains and the stilt villages of Inle Lake, before wandering the pagodas of Yangon.

12. Explore Spain's caves and cities

Combine hill walks with urban strolls on Headwater’s 7-night White Villages of Andalucia Walk. Walk the leafy hills below La Maroma mountain, spotting griffon vultures, before exploring Malaga’s Moorish-style buildings, Castillo de Gibralfaro mountain and Alcazaba Palace.

Nerja, Spain (Shutterstock)
Nerja, Spain (Shutterstock)

Tread through the Nerja caves and the rocky Barranco de Maro gorge and culminate your trip with the jagged peaks and wild flowers of the coastal Sierra de Alhama Natural Park.

13. Scale USA's glaciers and peaks

Take in spectacular views on a 13-day Alaskan Adventure with Grand American Adventures. Spot grizzlies, caribou and dall sheep among the mountains of Denali NP, and gawp at glaciers in icy Wrangell-St Elias NP.

Bears in Alaska (Shutterstock)
Bears in Alaska (Shutterstock)

Tick off whales and sea otters while cruising through Kenai Fjords NP before swapping the waters to camp out in the dense forests near Kachemak Bay and finish your journey with an icy escape to Byron Glacier.


Main image: Elephants in Sri Lanka (Shutterstock)