Solo travel is an incredible experience — but it can also be incredibly intimidating if you’ve never done it before. That’s why choosing the right destination for your first solo trip is so important.
Even as an experienced solo traveler, it’s nice to visit a destination that’s easy to travel in so that you can spend as much time as possible enjoying your travels.
And there is one European city that ticks all those boxes for first-time and experienced solo travelers alike.
If you guessed Paris, you’re correct!
Here’s what makes the City of Light one of the best destinations in the world for solo travelers:
Easy To Get Around
Paris has a great public transportation system, making it easy and affordable to get around the city. On my recent trip to Paris, I was reminded just how simple it is to get around Paris via the Metro and to take day trips to destinations like Versailles using the RER regional train system.
You can also take the RER to and from Charles de Gaulle Airport. It’s just a 45-minute journey to central Paris from the airport by train.
Paris is an incredibly walkable city, so it’s easy to explore on foot too. There’s nothing that beats strolling the quaint cobblestoned streets of the Marais or walking along the Seine River. And if you prefer to travel on two wheels, Paris is also a bike-friendly city with lots of designated bike lanes.
Lots Of Solo-Friendly Activities
You’ll never run out of things to do or feel bored or lonely as a solo traveler in Paris.
The city is home to some of the best museums in the world, like the Louvre, the Musée d’Orsay, and the Musée de l’Orangerie. Some of my favorite lesser-known museums that are 100% free are the Petit Palais and the Musée Carnavalet, which is all about Parisian history.
As a solo traveler, there are also plenty of group activities, like walking tours, bike tours, and food tours that you can join to meet other travelers.
It’s also perfectly normal to sit at a cafe alone in Paris and read a book or people-watch while sipping a coffee or enjoying a fresh croissant.
It’s Very Safe
Airbnb just announced a list of the best solo travel destinations for women, and Paris is number one. One of the top factors taken into account when creating this list was safety.
If you’re worried about safety in Paris as a solo traveler, don’t be! Despite sensationalized news reports of crime and riots in Paris, it’s an extremely safe city, and much safer than any major city in the United States.
The biggest thing you have to worry about in Paris is being pickpocketed or falling prey to common tourist scams. Stay alert and read up on common scams.
Opportunity For Independent Day Trips
I used to live in Paris, and I would spend every weekend trying to take one new day trip outside of Paris. While the city itself is amazing, there are so many great destinations just outside Paris that you can explore independently on a day trip.
Since France has such a robust train system, it’s easy to do day trips on your own. Some of my favorite day trips from Paris are the Palace of Versailles, the lesser-known Palace of Fontainebleau, Monet’s home and gardens at Giverny, and Reims, a city at the heart of the Champagne region.
Ease Of Travel
Finally, Paris is just an easy place to travel. It’s one of the most popular destinations in the world, so it’s well-equipped to deal with tourists.
Many people in Paris speak English, including almost everyone who works in tourism or hospitality, so you don’t have to worry about the language barrier.
And contrary to popular belief, Parisians aren’t rude or stuck-up. It’s not hard to strike up a conversation with locals or ask for directions if you’re lost.
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This article originally appeared on TravelOffPath.com