Confessions Of An SQ Girl Part 3: My Top 3 Fun And Affordable Destinations For Solo Female Travel!

Confessions Of An SQ Girl Part 3: My Top 3 Fun And Affordable Destinations For Solo Female Travel!

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By christinelai on 07 Sep 2018

Why do I love solo travel so much?

 

Because there is a comfort somehow, in walking through the streets and getting lost amongst a veritable cornucopia of strangers. Not worrying about what anyone thinks of you because you are somewhat anonymous and having all the liberty in the world to do whatever the heck you want because you are only working at the pace of your own clock.

 

 

 

 

 

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Of the many places that I have been to as a cabin crew, these are the Top 3 Destinations that resonate the most with me.

 

 

'But so far and so expensive leh.'

 

 

These destinations are far more affordable than you think! In other words...you don't have to be of HIGH SES (social economic status) to get there. #notatas

 

 

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Plus, tried and tested: They are completely safe and suitable for even female SOLO TRAVELLERS.  Here's why I love these 3 places so much and you will too!

 

 

 

 

1. Italy

 

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Why? Great food, cheap gelato, picturesque places and convenient and affordable transportation everywhere via trains.

 

 

Well actually mainly...just gelato.

 

 

 

 

Italy has to be synonymous with Gelato. (though some say Prada...but between that and a tasty gelato...I find myself gravitating towards the latter)

 

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When I was in Italy, I found myself (unconsciously) eating four cones (double scoop no less) of gelato...

 

A DAY.

 

 

Mind you, they were double scoops too because #gohardorgohome right? And because #whystopatonewhenyoucoulddotwo. And because you should really break up with your diet when you are in Italy anyway.

 

 

 

Well, four cones a day is a reasonable amount. Especially in Italy. You ain't going to find gelato as good as this in Singapore.

 

 

 

 

 

 

My eyes would naturally narrow in on EVERY gelato shop I passed by. I would feel a surge of real excitement each time, like a child receiving Red Packets during Chinese New Year. This is no exaggeration. I, however, with much difficulty always kept my calm and showed no evidence of emotions whatsoever whenever I saw a gelato shop because I (still) desired to be perceived as a sane member of society.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Apart from the SUMPTUOUS and CHEAP gelato, waaaaayyy cheaper than Singapore, why Italy is so fab is because of the stunning scenery.

 

 

 

The Cinque Terre, also collectively known as the 'Five Villages', are one of the most beautiful and breathtaking beauties in Italy ever. Tucked away in the mountainous kink of the Italian Rivieria, these little hamlets are more accessible then you realise. In other words, they are not so ulu lah.

 

 

Rilindh/Getty Images
Photo from Rilindh/Getty Images

 

 

Train tickets are cheap in Italy. These colourful villages are easily accessible via a direct train from the Milano Centrale Station, and trains leave once every half an hour. You can get tickets directly at the station, anytime of the day.

 

 

Dreams Time
Photo from Dreams Time

 

 

 

If you are too lazy to hike across the 5 Villages, you can take the train to all the 5 villages too, starting with Monterosso, Vernazza, Corniglia, Manarola and Riomaggiore.  There is one single line and it takes just a minute to get from one village to another. Tickets are cheap too at only $5 for unlimited trips.

 

 

 

 

The most beautiful of the 5 has to be Riomaggiore.

 

 

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Once, I travelled from Milan alone to Cinque Terre for a day trip.

 

 

 

 

As I was enjoying a moment to myself, admiring the scenery while eating a gelato, a group of guys approached me saying, "Are You Singaporean?"

 

 

 

I was startled/slightly embarrassed because suddenly, my anonymity was gone. And I had a mouth stained with chocolate gelato.  I wondered. Was it that obvious? I nodded my head, and one of them said, " Oh we heard your accent as you were ordering the gelato so we knew."

 

Yup...our quintessential Singaporean accent. Can't seem to run away from it anywhere in the world.

 

 

For the rest of the day, I found myself in the company of these new found friends.

 

 

I marvelled about how amazing it was, that somehow across the miles and Oceans, we would have such destiny to meet in a foreign land and forge an unlikely friendship.

 

 

 

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Italy also has awesome food too, and their pastas are much cheaper than Singapore. I never had a bad meal there. Somehow, pasta there tastes much better than at home, but maybe it could be psychological....

 

 

 

 

 

2. Greece

 

 

The telegraph
Photo from The telegraph

 

 

Yeah, we all know about Santorini for it's famed blue and whitewashed houses. But they have loads of other gorgeous islands to visit like Mykonos, Corfu, Paros and Rhodes, which are just as lovely and easily accessible via ferry. I could wax lyrical forever about how captivating and charming Greece is, but I'll let the pictures speak for themselves.

 

 

 

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Ferry Tickets are reasonably priced too, so you could opt to go Island hopping so you can explore all the different Islands.

 

 

 

The Greek Islands are safe and tranquil, and many girls travel solo there too.

 

 

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The beaches are spanking clean and the Sunsets are simply out of this world.

 

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The seafood is in another league of it's own. It's fresh and much cheaper compared to what you get in Singapore. You'll never get such exceptional quality anywhere else in the world!

 

 

 

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Greek Food is really awesome and wholesome. As cliched as it sounds...it's the truth.

 

 

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You can attend cooking classes too ($20-30), to learn how to whip up some authentic Greek Dishes...because it's uh....exotic? (because how many Singaporeans can cook Greek Cuisine right)

And girls like to cook right? (well, mostly)

 

 

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The outcome wasn't as tragic as I expected.

 

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Good food, fun cooking classes, beaches galore, Greece should top every destination list.

 

 

 

3. San Francisco

 

 

 

Ah, San Francisco, My most beloved destination and a perennial favourite among all Cabin Crew.

 

 

 

Great and Cheap shopping (especially during sales #hellosephora) plus tons of fun things to do and see. This place never gets old.

 

 

 

The city is small and it's easy to get around. Great for solo travellers.

 

 

 

It's almost impossible to get lost.

 

 

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Rent a bicycle for the whole day at Pier 39 at The Fisherman's Wharf and cycle across the famed Golden Gate Bridge till you reach the quaint little seaside town of Sausalito, one of the most alluring towns I have ever placed my eyes upon.  

 

 

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If I  won a billion dollars in the lottery, I could probably move here and retire forever.

But since the odds are rather low, a day trip here would suffice.

 

 

 

The town has quiet and low key sort of charm, making irresistible for visitors.

 

 

'Wah but ride to Golden Gate Bridge! Siao ah...very tough leh.'

 

 

In case you haven't exercised for the past century or have your fitness levels in serious question, the ride to the Golden Gate Bridge is mostly flat and scenic, so it's a breeze even for beginner riders. It's safe enough to ride alone too. Yaaas.

 

 

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After Sausalito, you could always opt to cycle back if you aren't already half dead from exhaustion... or if that sounds like a formidable task, you could a ferry straight back to Pier 39! (clearly the more common/sane option) Easy Peasy!

 

 

 

Pier 39 has got to be one of San Francisco's most exciting and hippest places. The place is always constantly buzzing with activities (and tourists) but yet it hardly feels claustrophobic.

 

 

For the budget conscious, you could spend a whole day just chilling at the pier watching the seals. It's free! Honestly, there is something quite therapeutic about listening the the seals bark/growl/grunt. (this is accurate because I had no idea what sounds seals made till I checked with Google)

 

 

San Francisco Examiner
Photo from San Francisco Examiner

 

The seals here are pretty noisy. But cute.

 

 

 

 

Food is a huge draw here and my personal favourite, has got to be the 'Crab House at Pier 39'.  The angel hair lasagne is fabulous.

 

 

 

 

Crab House
Photo from Crab House

 

 

 

For the adventurous (or very fit) souls, you may continue your bike ride from Sausalito all the way to the Muir Woods National Monument which is part of the Golden Gate National Recreation Area.  The woods are famous for its towering old-growth redwood trees. It's literally a breath of fresh air being there!

 

 

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There is something very calming and peaceful about walking through these woods alone.

 

 

For nature lovers, San Francisco is a paradise. And for all you 'tree-hugging' people. You could literally hug a tree. There are plenty of them to go around.

 

 

 

Take a trip to the Yosemite National Park.

 

 

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The best time to go? Autumn. Why?

 

 

Because 1) Singapore NO AUTUMN RIGHT? 2) The colours of the autumnal leave are so vibrant and rich, they make really great pictures!

 

 

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If you are travelling alone you could opt to either drive, or you could easily get a bus ticket or tour package from Fisherman's Wharf.

 

 

 

While these destinations might feel pretty distant/far off/too inaccessible/unaffordable, the cost of living is actually much cheaper than you could imagine. If it's your first long solo trip, any of these three destinations would be a good and safe bet especially for female travellers. So if any of you ladies are planning a trip this year, it's never to late to put one of these down on your list!

 

 

Noxeo
Photo from Noxeo

 

 

 

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