2023 is fast approaching, bringing a whole new year of travel planning. If you’re like us, you are already mapping out your travel plans for the next year. If you are searching for new ideas on where to go that take you off the beaten path, we cannot recommend enough these enticing and incredible destinations.
Off the Beaten Path 2023 Travel for Women
1. Utila, Honduras
Backpackers, beach lovers, and divers must add Utila to the top of their 2023 travel bucket list. As the smallest island of the Bay Islands of Honduras, Utila is home to only 4,000 year-round residents, many of whom are expats from English-speaking countries. Known for its colorful hotels, empty white sand beaches, and 80 different dive sites, Utila is the perfect place to get your feet wet in the new year. In addition to diving, you can snorkel with gentle whale sharks, kayak down the canal, and go island hopping. If you want to get out of the water for a bit, you can give back to the community by volunteering or donating to local animal centers, including the Whale Shark & Oceanic Research Center, the Iguana Station, Jasper’s Animal shelter, as well as others.
2. Ile Sainte-Marie, Madagascar
A trip to Africa can be daunting for female travelers, but Madagascar is an easy way to check this continent off your list. With a rugged coastline and a plethora of outdoor activities available, we recommend that outdoorsy travelers head to Ile Sainte-Marie. Off of Madagascar’s northeastern coast, this little strip of land is the perfect place to relax on the beach with a book, take humpback whale-watching tours, and explore the island’s only town, Ambodifotatra. Once you have had enough of the island, you can always hop back to the mainland to continue your adventure!
3. Aswan, Egypt
Most travelers end up in Cairo or Giza when they head to Egypt, but there is so much more this incredible country has to offer, including the delightful city of Aswan. Located on the Nile River in the southern part of the country, Aswan is famous for being the sunniest place on Earth, with 4,000 hours of annual sunshine. When visiting this shining city, we recommend exploring the Philae Temple, taking a day trip to the Abu-Simbel temple, and booking a sailboat cruise on the Nile to escape the heat. With a high population of Nubian people, visiting the local village and Nubian Museum is an excellent way to learn more about their culture.
4. Krakow, Poland
While most travelers will hit the famous cities of Paris, London, and Rome on their adventures to Europe, it also means they have to face massive crowds and steep prices. If you want a European experience at a cheaper price with just as many fascinating sites, we advise heading to Krakow, Poland. Dating back to the 7th century, Krakow has a rich history of culture, architecture, art, food, and more. The to-do list of must-see sights is quite long. However, a can’t-miss adventure is the Main Market Square. Not only the square, however! Around the square, you will find Town Hall Tower, St. Mary’s Basilica, and The Cloth Hall. Additionally, the Rynek Underground Museum is under the square, which preserves an ancient market, cemetery, and unique artifacts.
5. Whidbey Island, Washington, USA
While international travel is always amazing, there is much to see here in the USA that many people never come across. One of our favorite destinations is Whidbey Island in Washington State. As the 40th largest island in the USA, one would think it would be a bustling location, but instead, it is quiet, laidback, and charming. Split into three sectors, the south end of the island features the artsy town of Langley, the center of the island is primarily farmland with a main waterfront street, and the north end features a larger town due to the local navy base. If you want adorable shops, endless hiking trails, stunning views, and an escape from the modern world, this is the place to go!
Tips for Women Travelers
With all the negative press about female travel, many potential travelers get nervous at the thought of traveling solo, with a gal pal, or even in a group of women. There is no need to fear, though! With these four simple safety tips, you can kick that stress to the curb and enjoy your travels with ease.
1. Schedule Airport Transfers
Rather than attempting to find transportation on the day of a flight, we recommend booking airport transfers in advance. Companies such as drvn offer travelers the ability to book their services well in advance. You can rest assured that they will pick you up on time, safely transport you and your luggage, and perform respectfully and kindly. Make sure to remember to schedule a ride from the airport for when you arrive at your destination.
2. Book Your First Night
Even the best-planned itinerary can go awry if transportation gets delayed. The last thing a female traveler wants is to wander a new destination in the middle of the night, looking for a place to sleep. Therefore, we recommend at least always booking your first night’s accommodation. When you place your reservation, note that you may arrive late and ask them not to give away your room.
3. Be Wary of Strangers
While being open to new cultures and people is one of the most beautiful parts of travel, you never want to be too overly trusting of strangers, either men and women. It would be best if you are cautious about accepting invitations to vehicles, houses, or “private” events, as you truly never know what will be behind the door. We suggest also reviewing travel advisories prior to setting off so you can be aware of the most popular scams and where you should avoid going.
4. Never Imbibe in Excess
Our last cautionary tip is to highly encourage all travelers to limit their consumption of alcohol and drugs when they travel. While it might appear fun to let loose and go wild, overconsumption can put you in a vulnerable position where your safety may be compromised. You should always practice the same bar safety rules you would in any major city.