Meet my cousin, a solo traveler, a fellow blogger, a fellow geminian and an ardent traveler who inspires me to want to try solo traveling. Read on to find out what she has to say about her solo travel adventures.
Tell us about yourself and how you started traveling.
My name is Adejoke Jagunna and I am a state tax accountant by day and an avid world explorer/ foodie by night. For as long as I can remember I have always enjoyed visiting new places, trying out different food and just exposing myself to people different for me. My first international trip was summer 2001 to visit with my cousins who were living in Dubai at the time. I spent about a month with them and had the time of my life, it was so amazing realizing that there was a beautiful world out there outside of Nigeria, where I grew up and I knew I wanted to explore. Ironically I flew back to Nigeria on 9/11/2001 but being a kid back then I didn’t even realize the significance of that day.
What made you decide to travel on your own?
Fast-forward 12 years later I was now living in the US, had been working for a few years and decided to take a trip to Cozumel Mexico to celebrate my birthday, I was supposed to go with a friend but she was unable to come so I decided to go on my own. Mexico was an amazing time, I went snorkeling, rented a car and explored the island, made friends with people at the resort I was staying and overall had a blast. Once I got back home I knew the travel itch was back and this time I could actually afford to travel. Even though I had wanted to travel for a while I found myself canceling travel plans because friends or family couldn’t make it and honestly the thought never crossed my mind to just go alone. After Mexico I knew I had discovered something about myself… I could travel alone and I enjoyed it, and so there was no stopping me.
Were you afraid before your first solo travel and how did you conquer the fear?
I wasn’t particularly afraid, the thought had just never crossed my mind that I could go somewhere alone and have a good time. In hindsight this was probably silly considering I had moved halfway across the world to go to college and start a new life, although I had family around, and I was thriving. I chatted with my uncle who travels solo often and realized what I had been missing out on so decided to just do it.
What city/country is the best for solo travel in your opinion?
I honestly have not found a country I am interested in that is not do-able solo, off course some are more dangerous than others but I would say somewhere in SE Asia. Although I haven’t explored yet I know there are a ton of solo travelers in that region and the countries have a lot of accommodations for solo travelers. From cheap food, hostels, active night life, beautiful experiences, it’s hard to go wrong there.
Which of the cities that you have visited solo is your most favorite and why?
It’s hard to pick a favorite solo city because a lot of my trips have been favorites and solo trips. Top 3 would be Reykjavik Iceland, Caye Caulker Belize, and El Nido, Philippines.
What advice do you have for anyone contemplating solo travel?
Start with a city you are comfortable with and then just go. It doesn’t have to be international and it can be a long weekend trip.
I find that with solo travel the first step is just trying it out to see if you like it. Worst case you discover that you hate solo travel or like me and other solo travelers you fall in love with it. The best part of solo travel for me is that I can do things on my own schedule. I can spend as much alone time as I want, and when I get tired of my own company I go out and mingle, push myself out of my comfort zone and talk to strangers.
Where is next on your travel horizon?
I am planning a month long solo trip this year, fingers crossed that I can successfully pull it off. I am a little nervous about this one because the plan is to cover multiple countries, some of which are not English speaking, but I have nothing to lose and I am confident I can pull it off.
Enjoy some of her solo travel pictures below 🙂
You can follow Adejoke’s adventures on Instagram @bellajoya and also on her blog http://www.bellajoyatravels.com
Have you ever traveled solo ? if so, to where? how did you like it?
Live Inexpensively Always,