There are blogs that exist for the sole purpose of solo travel -- and especially for females, so I'm not going to reiterate what's already been done. Here are my top 3 reasons, in no particular order, for why I'm doing 10 days by myself for spring break -- in areas I've never set foot on in my lifetime.
1. By design, solo travel forces you to learn how to be alone with yourself.
For some reason, us females have a tendency to even go to the bathroom in groups starting from middle school. Traveling alone makes you come to terms with yourself and your personality. Are you more introverted or extroverted than you thought? Spend time being comfortable alone. Get to know yourself, and what better situation than a challenging one?
2. You can do whatever you want.
That's not completely true, if you consider extremes, but you are the only one making choices. You decide when to eat, what to eat, where to go, how long to stay. You have the world in front of you, and no one is restricting you but yourself. This sounds selfish, but here's a counter argument to that -- it's actually scary to be this selfish. At least in my experience, my life revolves around a schedule that is indirectly determined by others. Getting to work at a certain time, class schedules have set times, and you have filtered choices. When I am on my own, I always struggle with the endless options. It doesn't help that I'm already an indecisive person, and figuring out what to do with yourself is one of the hardest parts for me. To quote a fellow study abroad student's reaction to my trip: "I wouldn't even know what to do if I traveled by myself!" Well, that's what I'm trying to learn, old sport. :)
3. You get more connected with the world around you, including meeting interesting and kind souls (and sometimes, not-so-kind).
Without the distraction of someone else traveling with you, you can put your full attention into taking in the atmosphere and beauty of a place. You'll appreciate it in a deeper sense for yourself. When you're on your own, you are also more approachable to strangers (compared to traveling as a couple, family, or group of friends, since no one likes to intrude). There's a certain indescribable feeling of peace and freedom. You're more open to meeting strangers, and vice versa.
I'm not above saying that I don't have it all together. I hope to conquer all these reasons and more -- I can't recall ever eating out on my own, or arriving at a new location to find my hostel when it's dark. There's still iffy details that remain elusive -- bus timetables, for example. I'll learn to improvise and take the fast trains by myself. And hopefully, my Italian skills will improve by a million.
I signed up for this because I felt ready to tackle this trip. Taking a trip with friends will be more likely down the road than doing a solo trip to areas of Italy that are more inaccessible.