I could go on and on about the benefits of solo travel, but the truth is, sometimes it gets lonely – and it did for me in a few cities on this last trip. Something I recommend to people traveling solo for the first time is to sign up for a tour. As one of my tour guides once told me, when the guide asks everyone where they are from, it gives people on the tour permission to then talk to each other: “Where in Bulgaria are you from?” “I have an aunt and uncle in Indianapolis – is that nearby?” “I’ve always wanted to go to Luxembourg,” – even if you legitimately have no context for the place they mentioned. I knew I could fend for myself in the smaller cities, but I wanted to explore the bar scene with others when in Prague, and signed up for an Urban Adventures’ Beer & Czech Tapas Tour.
In March, I continued my whirlwind trip of 10 cities in six weeks, and accidentally added one more city to that list. March came in like a few days in magical, mythical Cesky Krumlov, Czech Republic, where I met a person whose profession is “fire eater”, and went out in the only Starbucks within a half hour in a drizzling, ghost-town-in-the-winter on the Jersey Shore. That makes it seem like I’m not happy to be home – this is not the case. It’s awesome sleeping in my own bed, having access to all of my possessions that are not packed away in my sister’s basement, and not having to pay for all of my meals. Well, and having phone service all of the time, being in the same time zone as most of my friends, and being able to catch up on Real Housewives of Beverly Hills. And, of course, being with my family and the pup, and reuniting with friends.