5 Reasons Why You Should Go On A Solo Adventure

In the end, you can’t have someone tell you what the world is like - you have to find out for yourself.

I took the leap two years ago. I decided I needed a different kind of scenery. My white college apartment walls were getting too bland for the dreamer that was living inside of me. I needed an adventure to challenge me and help find myself. In April, I applied for a job in New Zealand, and to my surprise I actually got it. A month-and-a-half later, I was trading the Carolina heat for a wintery Dunedin; a charming town on the south island of New Zealand. I was only there for a little over three months, but those three months taught me more than I would ever get in my four years of undergraduate education. Out of all of my lessons, these are the ones that stood out to me the most.

Hike Bealey Spur in Arthur’s Pass | Photo: Vincent Frascello

1. You are 100% responsible for yourself.

When you move to a new place, you only have yourself to rely on. When your plane touches down in that country, you most likely won’t know anyone. In an instant, you learn what you are truly capable of. Everyone will go through this moment when they take the leap. Uncertainty, excitement, and even a little fear are all a rite of passage for anyone who decides to leave on a whim.

2. Don’t wait for anyone else.

Yes, it may seem perfect to move somewhere with your significant other, or a best friend, but don’t put your happiness on the back burner for someone else. Before you know it, leaving in a month can quickly turn into leaving in two years when you are waiting for that perfect moment that is the best for both of you. Trust yourself, and trust me when I say you will meet amazing people when you get to your destination.

Hike the Mount John Walkway | Photos: McKenzie Roers

Hike Roys Peak | Photo: Daniel Ernst

3. You’re running out of time.

You might tell yourself that you have time, but in reality you don’t. Life is a fragile thing, and you never know what is going to happen next. Not only Is your life not cookie cutter, but the world isn’t either. Everyday historic cities, monuments and traditions are slowly leaving this earth. See them before they are gone. See them so you can tell your kids and grandkids about them. Traveling not only shows you amazing things, but it turns you into a storyteller for future generations, and the world needs more storytellers.

4. You will meet interesting people.

When you travel alone and stay at a hostel, more than likely you will run into other solo travelers. These people will most likely be the most fascinating people you will ever meet. They will inspire you to do new things and to continue to travel this world. You never know what you could do next. Maybe someone will give you the idea to be a nanny in Paris, be a volunteer surf instructor in India or maybe teach English to children who really want to learn, but don’t have the resources to.

5. Your life will sort itself out.

Many times people don’t leave because they feel as if they have things to deal with at home. Trust me when I say it will work itself out. Not everyone will understand why you left, but when you return they will fully grasp every reason why you exited out the doorway. While you are away, you will figure out who your real friends are. The ones who care will keep in contact as much as possible, and they will understand when you are caught up in the wanderlust of life and might not have Wi-Fi for a few days. When you return home the ones who love you and care about you will be right there to hear about all your adventures and wish they had tagged along.

Hike the Brewster Track to Mt. Armstrong | Photo: Kyle Frost

Hike Isthmus Trail | Photo: Maggie Evans

In the end, you can’t have someone tell you what the world is like - you have to find out for yourself. It is ok to be alone and enjoy new things with just yourself. New Zealand showed me that. I met great people, learned about a new culture, made amazing friends and best of all I started to find myself. You only need to remember that the world will support you and your endeavors. You must be fearless, you must be brave and showing that you have a little rebellion can be a good thing. Take the leap and always adventure.

Please respect the places you find on The Outbound.

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures. Be aware of local regulations and don't damage these amazing places for the sake of a photograph.