Women travelling solo learn valuable lessons

Women travelling solo learn valuable lessons

Travelling alone can be liberating, and women in Bengaluru are doing it more than ever before.

They say the experience teaches them many lessons.

Nithyashri, actor and dancer, loves travelling solo for a variety of reasons. "I have travelled to Rishikesh, Auli and Surat. I'm an adventure junkie," she says.

She believes travelling solo teaches women important lessons. "You might have to trust a truck driver for a lift or someone on the road for a favour. You have nobody yet you have everybody. There are times you feel you belong to the people around," she says.

She says she learnt it was okay to be afraid, and always felt strong after a trip. Women used to travel earlier but social media brings wider notice, she says.

Candida Louis, a biker, agrees social media encourages more women to take up the challenge. "Travellers share their stories online. I recently did a ride to Wayanad, Vypin, Alleppey, Varkala, Munnar, Kodaikanal and Yercaud, all within 15 days," she says.

Candida, who did a 32,000 km ride across 22 states, doesn't plan much. "I love to experience things as they happen. The only things I carry are my biking gear and enough clothes," she says.

The advent of technology has allowed travellers to share their location live on WhatsApp or call, says Candida. "I honestly feel our country is safe for women to travel in. People might get curious about my riding gear and why I am alone, but they are always quick to help when needed," she adds.

She says it is important to heed your gut feeling. "If you feel a place or situation isn't right for you, leave immediately," says Candida.

Jayasmita Dutta, a business excellence lead, went to Amsterdam and Belgium recently. "Solo trips can make one stronger and happier. When I travel alone, I realise public transport is best as it is cheaper, safer, more reliable, and it makes it easier to plan," she says.

On a solo trip, Jayasmita says, one doesn't have to worry about what your partner or family would want to eat or where they might want to go to. "There were times I got lost but I was able to stay calm," she adds.

"The hard reality of a solo trip is that sometimes you can be really broke. This is when you realise that you can walk it up and you test your own strength."
Nithyashri, Dancer

Keep in mind
Always watch your back. Trust your instinct.
Pack light and pack enough.
Always have water in hand. You could also carry a packet of biscuits for a quick energy boost.
Carry pepper spray to use in an emergency.
Always keep someone aware of your travel plans.
Share location updates whenever possible.

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