This can be one of the most challenging things about travelling solo – avoiding that awkward feeling in the evenings, especially if you don’t enjoy dining alone. Remember that just because you are by yourself, doesn’t mean that others will be questioning why you are alone. You may encounter other solos doing just the same as you and having Wifi in so many places helps remove that awkward feeling too.
If you really don’t enjoy dining alone, go out earlier or swap your evening meal for a larger lunch one then just grab some street food in the evening. Take a book when you go out for dinner and read that as you wait, or take a notebook and write down what you plan to see the next day. You can always eat out in bars instead of fancy restaurants, or cook your own at hostels.
Ideas of what to do in the evenings:
- Go to the cinema. Some countries may have English subtitles.
- Watch TV to try and pick up more of the language, or download your favourite series on your computer or phone.
- Visit a comedy club.
- Watch a show or find out if there is any live music nearby.
- See if there are any dancing lessons or take yourself off to a salsa club.
- Learn a language in an evening course.
- See if there are any local or cultural events on.
- Find out if there’s an evening walking tour where you can meet others and then go for a drink or meal afterwards.
- See if the hostel you are staying in has any nights out or just sit in the common area and ask if anyone wants to grab a drink or explore the area with you.
- Check bars for happy hours and sit at the bar chatting to the bar person.
You may not even feel like going out by yourself drinking and dancing so you could use the time to read, Skype home (depending on the time difference), or write in your diary or blog. Go to bed early so that you wake up earlier and explore more of the town or city by daylight.
If you do decide to venture out, be careful how much you drink and don’t leave your drink unattended. Being by yourself and drunk is not a great combination when you’re trying to find your way home in the early hours and you could be a prime target for muggers. Don’t forget that the mood of a place can change at night so don’t walk along a beach by yourself at night or venture into any sketchy areas.
Whatever you choose to do, embrace your solo evenings and make the most of the time by yourself.
If you like what you just read, find out more in the book A Female Guide to Solo Travel.