India is a beautiful country that is perfectly suited to the urge to travel, and this is how solo travelers can get the most out of their travels.
Traveling solo is a great opportunity to have meaningful experiences on your own and to bond with new people. However, in many countries, the lone traveler must choose between distant solitude and zealous interaction. India, being one of the best destinations in the world for solo travelers, offers visitors the best of both worlds.
Safety when traveling solo
“This is unlike any other place. This is India. Everyone who comes here falls in love – most of us fall in love multiple times.”
Some destinations such as Manali, Rishikesh, and Pushkar are hot spots for regular visitors and long-term tourists. Every tourist was there once for the first time, so most of them are more than happy to help and advise newcomers with empathy and goodwill.
Beyond other tourists, the locals are known to be welcoming and selflessly helpful. It is not uncommon to hear of local families feeding and harboring occasional lost and confused tourists.
Related: Safety Hacks All Female Travelers Should Know
In addition, there are several guest houses and inns that specialize in providing a safe living experience. Popular with solo travelers, the Mustache hostel in Rishikesh offers female-only dormitories and has a solid reputation for safety and comfort.
- Cost per night: $ 11 / night with breakfast included in an 8 bed female dormitory.
- Approvals: Free parking, free WiFi, private bathroom, shared lounge and terrace, laundry facilities, on-site restaurant, swimming pool
- Nearby attractions: 500m from Patanjali International Yoga Foundation, mountain view
Solo activities for travelers to India
In many tourist destinations there is a glaring lack of activities for the solo traveler. This can be a big drawback, especially if each attraction is aimed at families or couples. No one wants to stand out as the only solo party at a hotel, restaurant, or attraction. In India, this is not a big problem. In fact, many travelers who visit India find that the tourism industry is optimized for solo experiences in many ways, from the wide availability of single beds and dorms to the culture of spiritual individualism. Locals and other tourists generally won’t treat a single traveler any differently from a group.
Moreover, India is famous for its yoga retreats. Varanasi is considered the spiritual capital of India and happens to be a classic destination for solo travelers.
In the north of Varanasi, the Sarnath Vipassana Center provides individual en-suite facilities for students participating in one of their multi-day courses. Widely frequented by solo tourists, the course requires participants to choose whether they wish to attend a male or female class.. Applications can only be made through their website and must be completed well in advance as places are limited.
- Cost: Classes are not commercialized and depend on donations from alumni
- Site: The retreat is located in Sarnath, Varanasi, close to the sacred Buddhist site, Dhammedka stupa
- Hours: Days start at 4 a.m. and end at 9 a.m.
Related: Why Everyone Should Visit India (& What To Watch Out For)
Solo traveler fees
Often times, tight budgets can prevent the potential traveler from flying solo. It is true that, depending on the destination, sharing invoices with a partner or a group can significantly reduce costs. In India, a tight budget will rarely be an obstacle.
Even if a traveler prefers a private room with comfortable amenities such as hot water, western toilets, and clean beds, prices can be more than affordable as long as one is flexible. The general rule is: the further away the city, the lower the cost of living. If the city has an airport, it will necessarily be more expensive. Therefore, if a solo traveler wants an affordable price, their best bet is to take a bus or train out of the city they landed in as soon as possible.
Domestic travel is safe, inexpensive and accessible. Landing in Delhi, one can escape to the golden city of Jaisalmer at minimal cost and save money on a hotel by sleeping on the train. All trains in India have sleeping bunkers with pillows and blankets provided. Tickets can be purchased in person at stations or online. There are also low cost travel agencies with offices in every city.
- Road: Delhi to Jaisalmer
- Time: 17 hours and 15 minutes
- Cost: Ranging from $ 8 in sleeper class to $ 40 in first class, with several options in between
A solo traveler to India can do it all: find solitude, meet new people, and engage in culture, all in relative safety and with the comfort of an affordable price.
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Aditya is a writer and philosopher with a penchant for adventure.
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