Solo Travel – 10 Reasons why it is the Best Way to travel in Africa.

Solo travel in Africa

Solo travel in Africa is possible, exciting and as safe as you make it to be. This definitive guide to solo travel in Africa covers being a solo female traveller, how to travel solo, why you should solo travel and where to go as a solo traveller! Be bold and go alone with solo travel to Africa. Read our ten great reasons why it’s the best way to travel, explore and discover Africa.

Many people may wonder if it’s possible to travel solo in Africa and our answer is an obvious yes, of course, it simply involves a bit of planning and a lot of positive thinking. Women are grabbing this opportunity by the horns, in a day and age when journeying alone is entirely acceptable and increasingly necessary. Travelling solo in Africa is eye-catching, attention-grabbing and yet, at the same time, it is peaceful and anonymous, less stressful and easier. 

woman sitting on a couch overlooking the views from Sanctuary Chief's Camp in Botswana
Solo female travel is one of the most freeing experiences. To venture out on the road alone takes confidence and courage.

A solo woman traveler in Africa may be stared at, laughed at and resented or envied. Just be chilled, be sure of yourself and your needs and do what you want and need to do, with self-confidence and a set plan. The safest places to travel solo in Africa are Botswana, Namibia, Rwanda, Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania, and South Africa. Solo travel in Africa offers the best of both worlds – the freedom to be alone and the choice to connect with others and make new lifelong friends, or not. 

Follow these best tips for solo travel in Africa:

  • Plan well in advance all your flights, transfers, accommodations, budget and possible changes. Draw up your own flexible itinerary that keeps you on track.
  • Get affordable and comprehensive travel insurance and make sure you apply for Visas well in advance and according to your budget.
  • Time, places to see, budget and possible delays or changes are important criteria for your solo travel in Africa. Things happen slowly in Africa and your budget therefore needs a bit of leeway for such events.
  • Research all the possible accommodations in hotels, lodges, resorts, game reserves, campsites, guest houses and self-catering houses you choose for quality, affordability and safety. Choose the safe part of town or don’t be too isolated in the middle of nowhere – have access to transport and assistance. Avoid ‘single supplement’ charges to save money.
  • Share your movements with one other person at least to ensure you are not entirely alone and have disappeared off the map of Africa entirely! Be self-aware and self-confident. 
  • Record your journey on a blog, in a diary, via social media and photographs. You may just write that book one day!
Outdoor swimming pool with a guest on the sunbed and an elephant just a meter away by the pool
A guest relaxing by herself outside with the company of a local elephant. Travelling solo means finding new friends along the way, even if that friend isn’t your usual human type!

Now read our 10 top reasons why solo travel is the best way to travel in Africa!

You are Never Really Alone 

You are a fascinating phenomenon to many Africans who will want to get to know you or chat with you for a short while. As a solo traveller, you can choose how social you want to be.  

You Learn that Experiences Count More in Life than Material Goods

Living out of a suitcase alone is liberating as you are in control of what you have with you and nothing else. You don’t have space to buy things, you don’t need things and your days are packed with indescribable experiences – environmental, cultural, social and historical sensory explosions.

Your Journey is Neither Circular Nor Linear

On your return, you will not be the same person you were when you left home. Your planned journey will probably develop many unexpected directions as you meet super people, discover new sights to see and find things have changed uncontrollably. Learn to go with the flow in Africa.

White Sand Luxury Villas
This is your time! Spend your travels how you want to. From relaxing in a pool with your favorite snacks and drinks, to doing that long awaited bucket list experience!

Africa Becomes Addictive, Compulsive and More-ish

Once you have travelled Africa, you will never want to leave and you will already be planning your next trip when you return home. It’s the foundation for humanity, it’s our home, and it’s where we want to be. 

It’s a Proper Refreshing Holiday with Time to Reflect

A time to slow down, be alone, look inside your soul and see what you need in your life going forward. A time to be free of baggage and worried thoughts, to meet other cultures, see beautiful and maybe shocking things, and rethink life. 

It’s a Top Life Challenge

It means being brave and stepping away from that comfort zone called home. Be ready to catch public transport, stay in strange lodgings, meet weird and wonderful people and have your heart and mind opened to change.

A ranger taking a woman on a guided walk in the bush
Traveling on your own is fun, challenging, vivid, and exhilarating. Realizing that you have what it takes to be your own guide is a thrill known only to solo traveler!

Freedom in its Deepest Meaning

Be free, be alone, and make decisions on your own. When things go wrong, do something about it, when things go right, rejoice!

You have Complete Control of all Aspects

No one is going to make the decisions you need to make so you are in control of your travel destiny. Book your itinerary and go, but be open to change and remember that you can only control so much on this trip. You have complete financial control too. 

Africa is Thrilling, Unpredictable and Remarkable

You can plan and you can be there and you will always be surprised. There is a challenge and a thrill around every corner in Africa and there are fabulous vistas to photograph and remember.

Africans are Friendly, Fascinating and Enlightening

It is wise to have your wits about you as a solo traveler in Africa, but most Africans are simply glad to meet you and find out about you. They will flash their friendly white smiles at you and invite you to chat for a while or give you food and a beer. There is so much to learn in Africa about just being in the moment, stop rushing and let life lead you. Things do take longer in Africa and many things don’t work as you would expect them to in the first world!

Now that you have seen all the amazing benefits of travelling alone in Africa, especially as a female, let’s see where the top places to go in Africa are:

  1. Sossusvlei, Namibia – quite the most popular place in Namibia, these dunes are indeed among the highest in the world, many reaching more than 200 m. Packed with keen photographers, desert worshipers and those who love dramatic sunrises. 
  2. Western Cape, South Africa – one of South Africa’s largest and most diverse holiday destinations offering a smorgasbord of sensory delights from Cape Town and Table Mountain, to the whale route, the Winelands, the flowers, and the penguins. See some of the best beach, mountain, and desert areas in the country. 
  3. Okavango Delta, Botswana – experience the Jewel of Botswana, possibly the most unique ecosystem in Africa, a pristine wildlife region that ranks top in the world for its unique wetland system flowing through a desert. 
  4. Masai Mara, Kenya – pick a time that coincides with the Annual Wildebeest Migration and enjoy an intense wildlife spectacle with scintillating predator-prey interactions. Guaranteed sightings of the Big 5 plus large numbers of hippo pods and crocodiles in the Mara River.
  5. Gorilla Trekking, Rwanda – fall in love the natural rainforests of Rwanda and find iconic gorillas in the incredible three national parks of Volcanoes, Akagera and Nyungwe Forest, positively brimming with wild animals and birds in their natural habitats.
  6. Lake Malawi, Malawi – the 9th largest lake in the world, and the 3rd largest and 2nd deepest lake in Africa – diverse rustic chic accommodation lines the banks of this ocean-type destination where fishing, boating and swimming keep you busy.
  7. Serengeti, Tanzania – voted Africa’s top safari destination, home to the Wildebeest Migration where extraordinary photographic opportunities and clear visuals of lion kills on the vast open plains.
  8. Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe – also called “The Smoke that Thunders”, one of the Seven Wonders of the World, the largest waterfall in the world, and a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
  9. Barra and Tofo, Mozambique – enjoy a medley of fascinating cultures in this region famed for its Manta ray and Whale shark populations. The best diving and fishing opportunities and sightings of the rare dugong.
  10. South Luangwa, Zambia – an unspoilt nirvana with some rare endemic animal treasures such as Thornicroft’s giraffe and Crawshay’s zebra. Go there for productive leopard sightings and the puku, which is rarely seen outside Zambia.
The dunes in Namibia
Huge! The largest sand dunes in the world in the vast Namibian desert are awesomely enormous and eerily enticing.

Africa is the Place of the Safari so Go Solo!

Now you should be convinced that it is safe to go solo in Africa – as a female, an adventurer and an eco-traveller, just do it. Make sure you plan ahead, choose your countries, describe your itinerary and book your tickets, your accommodations, travel insurance and activities in advance. Africa is slow, caring and the heart of humanity. We’ve got you covered.

FAQ Solo Travel in Africa

  • Is It Safe To Travel Alone In Africa?

Yes, it can be daunting to travel anywhere alone and in Africa, a cultural shock too. But Africa is a warm-hearted continent and all you have to do is have your wits about you, be prepared and be open-minded. 

  • Is It Safe For A Woman To Travel Alone In Africa?

Yes, it is mostly safe for female travellers to travel solo in Africa but the safest countries are considered to be Botswana and Malawi, so maybe choose an overland tour or a group of like-minded solo travellers to keep you company. It is also best to be organised and keep alert, but going solo is fun.

  • Is It Safe To Drive In South Africa?

It can be frightening to drive in South Africa thanks to speedsters, people who always overtake, crazy taxi drivers, people who drink and drive and those who disobey road rules all the time. It is generally safe but be sure to follow all rules, stick to the speed limits and don’t react to angry drivers. 

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