Loneliness – The Downsides of Solo Travel

When my cousin left me after three weeks of travelling together, I could quickly feel the negative sites of travelling solo.

I was really in love with it beforehand for two months, enjoyed my freedom and the advantages of hostel life and meeting people easily when you have no other chance of socialisation.

But after I fell in the laziness and easiness of living in Airbnbs and spending every day with my cousin, it was harder to get back to it than I thought.

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There also were a few problems I had to face that didn’t make it easier for me to get back to it: First of all, my flight from Sydney to Perth got cancelled and the stress and tiredness affected my mood. I also had a lot of blog work that I wanted to catch up on after enjoying most of my time with my cousin, which made me feel like I want to be alone to work. On the other hand, I missed the socialisation and talking to others, but my hostel in Perth was also home to some alcoholics (yes, they really were, starting to drink in the morning and already being drunk after lunch) who didn’t make me feel comfortable to stay in the common area for long. In that period of time, I also met two nice boys/men that I started spending some time with, but who started liking me more and saying/doing things that annoyed me and made me wanna rather spend time on my own. Knowing that my family would arrive in only 3 weeks made the time even harder, as I knew it was so close but still not there yet.

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Of course, there were also silver linings. Knowing that my family would arrive in Australia soon and that it wasn’t many days to get through until I could finally spend some time with them. Long phone calls with my parents and friends, that almost made me feel like sitting on the sofa next to them talking. A lovely German couple I met and spend two days with baking brownies and playing lots of cards. Using the time to treat myself – sleeping in, working out in the morning, having a big healthy brunch. Watching Youtube videos in bed without feeling guilty for the time I could have done something productive.

Experiencing the feeling of loneliness and being homesick is part of travelling solo and I think that every traveller faces these kinds of days in some stage and at some point of their travels.

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For me, this week in Perth was the first time on my Australia journey of negative emotions for several days. Before I was feeling very comfortable in my situation, knowing what to do to keep me feeling great, but after my cousin left I kind of fell into a hole that I couldn’t get myself out of completely.

Luckily, I never felt a really strong depressive mood or anything, as I always tried to keep myself busy, around some nice people and thinking positive, but I also didn’t get back into feeling like myself.

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Because of that, I decided that it would be time to change something and as I had really amazing experiences so far with taking part of guided tours for several days (like I did on the Great Ocean Road or in the Outback), I booked another 6-day-tour to see the beautiful South-West of Australia.

I knew that having an adventurous and busy schedule with many great places to see and awesome things to do, as well as a group of people around me,  would make me feel good and just like I hoped so, it was a great decision. The six days flew by very fast and even though I returned to the same hostel and the same dorm room afterwards, everything felt different.

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I had a much better experience being in Perth afterwards, even though I didn’t have touristy things to keep me busy and have things to do, but instead I had met some nice people on the tour that I also spend time with afterwards back in Perth and I also met new faces in my hostel that I could hang out with. Once again, I used the time to work on my blog, work out and take time for myself and this time I could luckily enjoy it much more.

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Things that Help Me when I feel Unhappy, Lonely or Homesick while Solo Travelling

  • Surrounding myself with people. Going in the common area/kitchen, find people to talk to or just listen to their conversations. Working on my laptop in the common area instead of the dorm, going into bookshops and reading/browsing through their books, going in the park to listen to music/podcasts.
  • Watching your favourite Youtubers that make you feel cosy, inspired and just overall good
  • Focussing on yourself. Taking time for body and mind care, working out
  • Call or text with people that you miss. It might make you miss them more, but sometimes all we need is crying a bit and feeling better afterwards
  • Thinking about all the positive things. That I am currently living the life of my dreams and doing every day whatever I desire
  • Keeping myself busy with touristy stuff, blog work, food shopping and cooking, working out… find something that you like to spend your time with
  • Reading, listening to podcasts and audiobooks or music
  • Book a tour for a few days. In my eyes they are worth the money and you meet great people and have great experiences. It is also great for couples/travel mates that are together 24/7 to be on a tour with more people to hang out

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