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grahamc

Travelling Solo/Alone

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So, much has changed in my life and I am back in the UK for a little sorting some things out, while I prep for my next step in life and to be completely honest - I have absolutely NO idea what that will be! Bloody scary if I am honest and extremely grateful at the same time. 

 

But thats not the topic..... Travelling alone is. I am giving serious thought to taking a 4-6 week trip to Kenya, Zanzibar, etc in September to do Mount Kenya, Kilimanjaro (maybe) and Serengeti migration. There will be more, but those are my top items. 

 

I have done short trips to Turkey, Czech Republic, driving trips into France, etc by myself, but this is next level..... and it scares the hell out of me! Just wondering if anyone has travelled alone and what the experience was like? 

 

This will also be a "step" in the direction I want to go, which is a much bigger/longer trip through Tibet, Nepal, Vietnam, Thailand, etc next year. Yes I am properly trying scare myself! Well outside of my comfort zone!!

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I did this back in 2001 i think it was...Kenya and Tanzania for 4 weeks on my own camping! When I get a chance will drop a proper note...although suspect things might have changed in that time!

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I wish I was in a position to do what you are , I absolutely love travelling but going back to your question.

 

The world has changed a lot even just the past few years but some things remain the same.

 

Plan your trip, be sensible, dont take a fancy expensive watch or mobile phone/ camera etc, ensure you have suitable medical cover and all that kind of stuff. 

 

I recently changed jobs and my company is based in South Africa. I have never been to the other side of the world let alone on a long haul flight. Well they wanted me to fly over meet the team etc, since I would be their UK representative.

 

To say I was apprehensive was an understatement!! SA doesnt have the best reputation but inspite of my worries , I was sensible where I went and what I did.

They did look after me very well, honestly the most lovely people I have met and a very humbling trip, makes you realise how much we take for granted over here.

 

One thing I have found the poorer the country the most welcoming they are and yes there is always danger everywhere (Salford on a Saturday night!) :lol:

 

Just go for it and trust your gut feel, if it doesnt feel right dont go there. 

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30 minutes ago, stanski said:

I wish I was in a position to do what you are , I absolutely love travelling but going back to your question.

 

The world has changed a lot even just the past few years but some things remain the same.

 

Plan your trip, be sensible, dont take a fancy expensive watch or mobile phone/ camera etc, ensure you have suitable medical cover and all that kind of stuff. 

 

I recently changed jobs and my company is based in South Africa. I have never been to the other side of the world let alone on a long haul flight. Well they wanted me to fly over meet the team etc, since I would be their UK representative.

 

To say I was apprehensive was an understatement!! SA doesnt have the best reputation but inspite of my worries , I was sensible where I went and what I did.

They did look after me very well, honestly the most lovely people I have met and a very humbling trip, makes you realise how much we take for granted over here.

 

One thing I have found the poorer the country the most welcoming they are and yes there is always danger everywhere (Salford on a Saturday night!) :lol:

 

Just go for it and trust your gut feel, if it doesnt feel right dont go there. 

 

You most likely are not aware, but I grew up in South Africa in Cape Town ;) stunning place, but such a shame the way the country is going. 

 

Definitely no fancy watches etc, but taking a fancy camera is a must, its a big hobby of mine. 

 

Definitely have that gut instinct, been to places in SA that I really shouldnt have!

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46 minutes ago, grahamc said:

 

You most likely are not aware, but I grew up in South Africa in Cape Town ;) stunning place, but such a shame the way the country is going. 

 

Definitely no fancy watches etc, but taking a fancy camera is a must, its a big hobby of mine. 

 

Definitely have that gut instinct, been to places in SA that I really shouldnt have!

Well there you go! Haha I loved the 38 degrees dry sunny heat, absolutely the best food I have ever had! Bleeding watermelons size of small pigs, people I met were all really nice.

Only thing that was a big culture shock to me the gated communities everywhere, effectively self imprisonment! Iunderstand why but still not something I expected to see.

A lot of people wanting to leave for USA or Aus such a shame. You can see the nerves on people's faces. 

 

Yet having a nice chat about VWs with the taxi driver on way back to the airport (I am a lifelong aircooled VW petrolhead, as was the taxi driver haha).

 

Anyway what camera do you have I am hippy Pentax man!

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13 hours ago, grahamc said:

This will also be a "step" in the direction I want to go, which is a much bigger/longer trip through Tibet, Nepal, Vietnam, Thailand, etc next year. Yes I am properly trying scare myself! Well outside of my comfort zone!!

Never been to Africa apart from a red sea resort so doesnt count, but some where in Asia we try to go every year, even now with a toddler.

 

People are friendly, the food is great, and your more likely to run into trouble going out in Birmingham than any of those countries you listed.

 

The big missing country on that list is India.

 

I really do want to visit Africa and we will, but out of the rest of the continents/places I've been lucky enough to go India is simply on different level of sensory overload. 

 

From the beaches in Goa, to the madness of Mumbai, the history of Rajasthan, and foot hills of Everest up north you could spend a whole life time travelling in one country and not see everything!!! Travelling alone would be amazing, but your never really be alone in the second most populous country on the planet.

 

The Taj still remains one of the if not the most magnificent man made structure I have been lucky enough to see with my own eyes. Photos don't do it justice, and if you have the chance to go its worth every mile of the trip there :).

 

Sadly we're at a stage in life where our own interests aren't any near the priority list compared to other things, but if I had no responsibilities in life I would be on a plane to any where in Asia tonight!! Book a flight to Singapore, and plan the next 12 month of country hopping enroute, and transit out to the start of the adventure almost as soon as you touch down in Changi.

 

You really don't need to worry about travelling alone in Asia, I wouldn't even bother packing much more than a large rucksack, tooth brush, a few change of cloths (advantage of been able to afford laundry service in hotels versus backpacking as a student), phone charger and camera job done, oh do check Visa status, the UK passport gets you in most places on arrival but not all....I am just slightly envious of your proposition :)

 

 

7032655897_cc0e818c65_z_d.jpg

Edited by gangzoom

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10 hours ago, grahamc said:

 

You most likely are not aware, but I grew up in South Africa in Cape Town ;) stunning place, but such a shame the way the country is going. 

 

Definitely no fancy watches etc, but taking a fancy camera is a must, its a big hobby of mine. 

 

Definitely have that gut instinct, been to places in SA that I really shouldnt have!

If you grew up in SA then you will be aware of potential risks that apply to other countries as well. 

I used to part own a business that was based in Grahamstown, couple of hours out of Port Elizabeth. This involved frequent visits to SA and I absolutely love it there, but you do need your wits about you.

A few months ago I was reading a list of the top 50 most dangerous places in the world and realised that I had worked in 20+ of them. I am still alive and have never been mugged or robbed.

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12 hours ago, stanski said:

Well there you go! Haha I loved the 38 degrees dry sunny heat, absolutely the best food I have ever had! Bleeding watermelons size of small pigs, people I met were all really nice.

Only thing that was a big culture shock to me the gated communities everywhere, effectively self imprisonment! Iunderstand why but still not something I expected to see.

A lot of people wanting to leave for USA or Aus such a shame. You can see the nerves on people's faces. 

 

Yet having a nice chat about VWs with the taxi driver on way back to the airport (I am a lifelong aircooled VW petrolhead, as was the taxi driver haha).

 

Anyway what camera do you have I am hippy Pentax man!

 

Its a brilliant country, but has too many issues! The self imprisonment is one of the main reasons I left the country. I was lucky, I had a British Passport. 

 

The food is just fabulous and its not expensive! Especially coming from this side of the world.

 

Nikon D850, but want something smaller/lighter for travelling. 

 

3 hours ago, gangzoom said:

Never been to Africa apart from a red sea resort so doesnt count, but some where in Asia we try to go every year, even now with a toddler.

 

People are friendly, the food is great, and your more likely to run into trouble going out in Birmingham than any of those countries you listed.

 

The big missing country on that list is India.

 

I really do want to visit Africa and we will, but out of the rest of the continents/places I've been lucky enough to go India is simply on different level of sensory overload. 

 

From the beaches in Goa, to the madness of Mumbai, the history of Rajasthan, and foot hills of Everest up north you could spend a whole life time travelling in one country and not see everything!!! Travelling alone would be amazing, but your never really be alone in the second most populous country on the planet.

 

The Taj still remains one of the if not the most magnificent man made structure I have been lucky enough to see with my own eyes. Photos don't do it justice, and if you have the chance to go its worth every mile of the trip there :).

 

Sadly we're at a stage in life where our own interests aren't any near the priority list compared to other things, but if I had no responsibilities in life I would be on a plane to any where in Asia tonight!! Book a flight to Singapore, and plan the next 12 month of country hopping enroute, and transit out to the start of the adventure almost as soon as you touch down in Changi.

 

You really don't need to worry about travelling alone in Asia, I wouldn't even bother packing much more than a large rucksack, tooth brush, a few change of cloths (advantage of been able to afford laundry service in hotels versus backpacking as a student), phone charger and camera job done, oh do check Visa status, the UK passport gets you in most places on arrival but not all....I am just slightly envious of your proposition :)

 

 

7032655897_cc0e818c65_z_d.jpg

 

Oops, India is on the list that I wrote down, so its just an ommission - as well as Sri Lanka. That group of countries may well be 2 trips. 

 

I have lived in London (a rather busy city) and never felt more alone at times.... I guess its a different country and cant paint it with the same brush. 

 

Have done long term travel before, ex and I spent 3 months in Japan, 1 month in Taiwan and a few weeks in Shanghai and Hong Kong - all with a big backpack and small one. Loved it!! But now its alone, which I love the idea of, but also somewhat bricking it! 

 

1 hour ago, Ponsonby said:

If you grew up in SA then you will be aware of potential risks that apply to other countries as well. 

I used to part own a business that was based in Grahamstown, couple of hours out of Port Elizabeth. This involved frequent visits to SA and I absolutely love it there, but you do need your wits about you.

A few months ago I was reading a list of the top 50 most dangerous places in the world and realised that I had worked in 20+ of them. I am still alive and have never been mugged or robbed.

 

That would be an interest!

https://www.elitedaily.com/news/world/50-dangerous-cities-world

 

Hmmmm Cape Town is more dangerous than Johannesburg..... damn things have changed! 

 

Looks like my South America travel ideas may be slightly on the risky side!  

 

 

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The gated communities people are speaking about will soon become a thing in the big cities and some suburban towns in UK. All you need are a couple break ins, endless amount of loitering and civil unrest.

 

Id feel a lot safer in a gated community with barbed wired fences and cctv than be out in the open to the elements.

 

Go there in normal clothes. No fancy brand names, jewellery or flashing cash around youll be fine. 

 

Staying out past 10pm in most African countries im not so sure. Kenya should be okay. One of my colleagues family live there and they are English heritage. He visits every year. 

 

Anyway criminals usually get street mob justice in most places before police arrive. Strangers are more likely to have your back out there than here.

Edited by GranTurismoEra
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