Once a challenge undertaken by only the most adventurous souls, solo travel has now become one of our generation’s fastest-rising trends.
While there’s no doubt that traveling with loved ones provides a sense of community and belonging, doing so alone gives us the ability to explore the world on our own terms, which is something every traveler needs to experience at least once in a lifetime.
However, it’s worth noting that choosing a destination for your next solo adventure is a process that requires insight and forethought, which is when data-backed reports like the one recently released by Kiwi can come in handy.
The travel agency analyzed information collected by its globally-used site in order to find out the current top destination for solo travelers.
The country that took the coveted title was none other than a stunning European country by the name of Iceland.
A Very Safe Country
Countless reports show that Iceland is one of the safest countries on Earth, which, in and of itself, is enough to charm solo travelers (especially women) from all over the world.
The region’s commitment to safety is ingrained into its very societal fabric, which explains why Iceland consistently boasts a high safety index, low crime rates, and an overall atmosphere that promotes peace of mind.
It’s also worth noting that travelers will have a far easier time staying safe and comfortable when there’s an infrastructure system in place that caters to their needs – and that’s exactly the case with Iceland as a whole and Reykjavik, in particular.
From well-maintained roads and public transportation to accessible healthcare services, the country makes it very clear that it prioritizes the well-being of residents and visitors alike.
Emergency services are efficient and responsive, providing an added layer of security for those exploring the diverse landscapes of volcanic terrains and icy glaciers.
Last but certainly not least, Iceland is globally recognized for its commitment to gender equality, which further contributes to an atmosphere of respect and tolerance among all solo travelers.
The stereotype of Northern European people being cold or unapproachable definitely doesn’t ring true for Icelanders, the majority of whom will greet you with a smile and warm conversation.
The locals are famous for their friendly nature, creating the perfect opportunity for solo travelers to mingle and interact with the country’s culture in its truest form.
Whether you’re looking to strike up a conversation in a quaint café in Akureyri or seek advice on the best hiking trails in Vatnajökull National Park, the genuine warmth of the people here will make you feel like you’re part of the community.
Though Iceland is a pretty small nation, you’ll always find someone to talk to and even share a beer with – who knows, maybe you’ll even make a couple of new friends along the way.
So Much To See And Do
Beyond its safety and welcoming atmosphere, Iceland also offers visitors a seemingly endless array of attractions to marvel at and exciting events to experience.
Let’s start with the country’s natural landscapes, which are nothing short of spectacular.
The Golden Circle, comprising the Þingvellir National Park, Geysir Geothermal Area, and Gullfoss Waterfall, will take you on a journey through Iceland’s geological marvels that’s not to be missed.
A paragraph on Iceland’s most stunning sights wouldn’t be complete without a mention of the ethereal Northern Lights, which are visible from regions all across the country from September to April.
Iceland’s cultural scene is as diverse as its landscapes.
The National Museum of Iceland and the Reykjavik Art Museum are both excellent places to start your exploration of the area’s history, while music festivals like the famous Iceland Airwaves will add a much-needed dose of fun to your travels.
Though prices in the country, especially in the capital, are notably higher than what you’d expect in other European destinations further down south or east, when you consider the overall experience you’ll get as a return, the higher price point seems worth it.
If there’s one thing that most travel articles about Iceland manage to constantly oversee, it’s the country’s rich and fascinating gastronomic culture.
Foodies, especially those with more adventurous palates, will find Iceland to be a breath of fresh air in a continent where most cuisines like to play it safe with their ingredients.
Don’t worry though; between the bold flavors of hákarl and more familiar aromas of kleinur, there’s such a wide array of traditional dishes here that all travelers are bound to find something they like.
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This article originally appeared on TravelOffPath.com