Deciding to venture out on a solo escapade by eating like a local and trying to do things never done before are important tips for enjoyable and meaningful solo traveling.
The latest research by Booking.com shows that the trend of solo travel is gradually taking the throne as the number of global travelers going on their own nearly doubled to 30% from 17% before the pandemic that flared up in early 2020.
Meanwhile, roughly 29% of Vietnamese travelers now say that they will be planning a solo trip in the future, according to the accommodation-booking platform.
The survey was made on the occasion of Singles’ Day (November 11). Booking.com shares ideas on what travelers can do if they decide to venture out on a solo escapade in the recently opened localities for travelers in Vietnam.
Domestic destinations like Danang, Kien Giang, Khanh Hoa, Quang Nam, and Quang Ninh have reopened to local tourists and are on track to officially welcome international travelers again, in a bid to revive the tourism industry.
Eat like the locals
According to travel experts, to really get a taste of a destination, it's all about experiencing it like a local. And that’s definitely true for local delicacies and immersing yourself in the way of what you eat.
For solo foodies not wanting to be too adventurous while dining alone in a restaurant, street food is a great option to sample a number of local specialties in a relaxed setting. Visiting Hoi An ancient town in Quang Nam province, one of Vietnam’s food capitals, to find the best local street food in the country, Booking.com suggested.
The cuisine of Hoi An is unique and diverse in its range of flavors, offering opportunities to discover interesting insights and anecdotes on food culture and local traditions. Visitors can try local specialties including cao lau noodles, white rose, and banh mi (Vietnamese-style bread).
“Cao lau is the most famous street food in Hoi An and also the most mysterious,” Deborah Noland, a solo traveler from Australia told about her most beloved dish in the ancient town. “Despite the ingredients of the dish being quite simple, featuring some fresh noodle, barbeque pork, crispy crackling, and salad, but definitely, travelers can’t find it elsewhere except Hoi An”, she said.
The top tip is that wherever the destination, be sure to look up its local delicacy before you set off to start planning your foodie schedule and get an idea of which places (whether a street food stall or fine-dining restaurant) really are a must-try.
Get off the beaten track
Going solo means there’s no debate or compromise necessary when it comes to where to go and what to do. According to the survey’s result, over half of global travelers (56%) and 63% of Vietnamese travelers will seek out more rural, off-the-beaten-path experiences.
These less-traveled destinations offer the chance to meet fellow minded travelers searching for similar travel experiences and when traveling off-piste, friendly faces will be welcomed.
“For that reason, Dam Mon peninsula in Khanh Hoa Province should be at the top of your list,” travel experts suggested.
Travelers can experience the life of coastal dwellers in the rustic fishing village in the place through activities such as catching their own fish in traditional boats or witnessing the beautiful sunrise every morning. The unspoiled beauty of this hidden gem remains intact through the years and can make nature-loving tourists fall in love at first sight.
“I went squid fishing and made a campfire myself right on the coast in the last time I visited Dam Mon peninsula,” Elizabeth McLean - a solo traveler from Canada told. “It’s great to buy some fresh produces that just caught from the sea and cook dinner for yourself right by the beach,” she advised.
Seek out solo options for city seekers
According to travel experts, not all solo trips need to be about finding yourself on a mountain top - a short city escape can be just as rewarding and reenergizing. Danang is the perfect getaway for those stepping out solo.
Being a socio-economic, political, and cultural hub in central Vietnam, with a west-coast location that makes for beautiful sunsets against an impressive backdrop of lush mountains, Danang offers a wide range of fun-filled activities and sightseeing opportunities for solo travelers to enjoy every moment of this trip.
The top tip for solo travelers is to join a guided walking tour to see all sides of the city too while also learning about the local history and culture.
Solo travel is the perfect opportunity to put yourself first and take some ‘me time’ to relax and unwind. If you want to spend the whole day on the beach with your head stuck in a book or taking leisurely coastal walks solo to breathe in that fresh sea air, so be it.
Phu Quoc Island in Kien Giang Province really dazzles when it comes to relaxing beach days with its idyllic white sandy beaches and delightfully fresh seafood. This triangular-shaped island will also catch the attention of solo travelers who want to indulge their love for nature with recreational activities such as hiking, camping, and photography.
“One of the tips to indulge yourself is to choose one of the most luxurious spas with dedicated service in town,” Elizabeth McLean suggests.
Do something you’ll never forget
The last but not least, it's worth challenging themselves by taking part in an adventurous journey and doing something they wouldn’t normally do. Therefore, the Ha Long Bay, Lan Ha Bay, or rainforest in the northern province of Quang Ninh are ideal destinations.
Nature has endowed Quang Ninh with many beautiful places and bestows its visitors with amazing adventurous moments should travelers explore majestic caves on their own with a kayak or go paragliding over the rolling hills.
“Quickly capture as many photos as you can, even when you know it’s a bad angle and the photo wouldn’t look good. Even bad photos can bring back a strong sense of nostalgia and memories that you cherish. Remember to bring a selfie stick to include yourself in such photoshoots”, Rose Andersen, a Netherland expat in Hanoi gave her advice.