Every year on November 11, singles around the world celebrate being unattached on Singles Day – originally a Chinese holiday that’s considered the antithesis of Valentine’s Day. A day for singles to devote to practicing self-love and appreciation, what better way to spend it than on a solo travel trip?
With 21% of Vietnamese travelers likely to travel alone on their next trip,* Booking.com has curated a list of six destinations for travelers wanting to embrace their independence and explore alone. From wellness vacations to island hopping, and from snorkeling to budget friendly, the choice is endless and it’s all yours as a world of adventure awaits.
City trip in Liverpool, United Kingdom
A destination highly recommended by Booking.com travelers for its friendly locals, the city of Liverpool doesn’t take itself too seriously. Known for The Beatles, Anfield football stadium and the River Mersey, this happy city is full of warm and welcoming ‘scousers’ and interesting activities – perfect for solo travelers.
Travelers can visit the pulsating Cavern Club, a former jazz bar that’s now the cradle of British pop music, or the Beatles Story Exhibition, dedicated to the British rock band for a behind-the-scenes look at Abbey Road Studios and a trip in the Yellow Submarine.
The city’s ongoing urban regeneration program and rejuvenated waterfront is transforming its once ramshackle center into one of the most agreeable and bike-friendly destinations in northern England. Cycle through the impressive parks and soak up the city’s impressive cultural heritage – including its many listed buildings and two grand cathedrals, old and new. A tour of the Georgian Quarter offers a well-preserved window into the past with its handsome townhouses and charming streets dotted with historic pubs. Or the industrial-chic Baltic Triangle area features superb craft ale taprooms, another great spot to chat to locals.
Where to stay: Titanic Hotel Liverpool is located on the waterfront and home to the dockside Rum Bar, as well as the impressive exhibition and banqueting space, The Rum Warehouse, offering opportunities for solo travelers to mingle with friendly scousers. A former warehouse, this stylish and spacious stay features original elements including exposed brickwork and vaulted ceilings. Guests can relax at the subterranean Maya Blue spa, a wellness sanctuary complete with a hydrotherapy pool and steam room, or enjoy dinner at the delicious Stanley’s Bar and Grill.
Snorkeling in Ko Ngai, Thailand
Offering stunning beaches with white sand, crystal clear waters and idyllic palm trees, Ko Ngai is a great destination off the southern Andaman Coast for solo travelers to discover a fascinating underwater world alive with tropical marine life. Encircled by coral, this densely forested tiny island is part of Koh Lanta’s National Park and a secret paradise for single beach-seekers looking to simply chill-out in a hammock and enjoy the water.
The coral reefs along the island’s coastline are a perfect place to go snorkeling or diving to observe the different species of fish, and kayaking and paddle boarding are also popular activities. A true off-the-beaten-track hidden gem, with no roads or large stores, travelers can enjoy amazing day trips off the islet by longtail boat: the neighboring islands of Koh Mook with its famous Emerald Cave and Koh Kradan with more incredibly beautiful coral reefs are well worth an island hop or two.
Where to stay: Located on the peaceful beach of Koh Ngai, Thanya Beach Resort is a seafront hotel offering stylish traditional Thai wooden bungalows. Nestled in tropical gardens and forests, this blissful oasis features a gorgeous pool and laid-back bar where guests can meet fellow travelers. Group water activities such as snorkeling, diving and boat trips are available as well as excursions to nearby islands for sightseeing and shopping. There’s also a top-notch restaurant, serving traditional dishes and Thai fusion seafood along with a selection of local Monsoon Valley Thai wines.
Yoga retreat in Bad Füssing, Germany
With 88% of Vietnamese travelers indicating that they want to have time to themselves to relax when on vacation*, finding a restful retreat for both mind and body is a great way to spend Singles Day. Highly recommended by Booking.com travelers for yoga, Bad Füssing is a popular spa town in the district of Passau in Bavaria for solo travelers seeking a wellness break and deep relaxation in idyllic surroundings.
Visitors can choose from a wide selection of yoga classes and retreats available, from yin to vinyasa practices and for complete beginners to the advanced. When travelers aren’t flexing their downward dog, they can soak their muscles in the healing thermal baths this town is famous for, with the warm mineral water unlocking health-boosting powers. Or, get active on a Passau Inn River Walking Tour through the historical alleyways of the Roman city of Passsu just a short drive away. Travelers can explore its two bridges, baroque-style St Stephen Cathedral and former Bishop’s Palace.
Where to stay: Set amongst lush greenery, the Mühlbach Thermal Spa Romantik Hotel is the ultimate wellness stay for solo travelers including a free thermal spa with an indoor and outdoor pool, a Finnish sauna and a whirlpool tub. Guests can take advantage of the property’s daily yoga classes, with options for indulgent massages, body wraps and scrubs and more onsite hot spring action for the ultimate relaxation. Breathing in the air at the spa’s salt mine is even said to have a calming and healing effect on the body to reconnect and revitalize. Evening options include delicious traditional Bavarian fare and a bar complete with a cracking cocktail and wine list where guests can socialize.
Nature in Búzios, Brazil
Where better to spend Singles Day than surrounded by slopes and hills full of natural beauty in Búzios, a resort set on an ocean peninsula east of Rio de Janeiro. The chic seaside resort that positively invites travelers to get in touch with nature is dotted with boutiques, fine restaurants and luxury pousadas, and comes highly recommended for nature by Booking.com travelers. There are countless ways to connect:
Travelers can take a peaceful walk along the beautiful wooden promenade towards Praia Joao Fernances, soaking up the colorful houses and huge bronze statues of historical figures – and stop to swim in the three small coves at the end. Or, they can take to the turquoise waters on a Boat Tour in Búzios around the peninsula where white sandy beaches and dramatic sand dunes await. Adrenaline-filled activities, such as trekking and diving are popular and reveal the uniqueness of the region’s fauna and flora. Now considered Brazil’s answer to St Tropez since Brigitte Bardot famously put this old fishing village on the map after a stay back in the 60s, Búzios is well worth a visit.
Where to stay: Abracadabra Pousada is a luxe, light and airy ‘pousada’ inn located on a clifftop with incredible views overlooking the main bay from its infinity pool. Just a short walk to central Buzios and its beaches, guests can bliss out on the pretty terrace and order a cocktail from the resident mixologist at the bar. This next level inn with its rustic and minimalistic décor has a Booking.com Travel Sustainable badge for its efforts in sustainability, including serving locally sourced food at onsite restaurant Místico, and offering free bicycle hire for guests to explore the surrounding bountiful nature.
Island hopping in Yaeyama Islands, Japan
There are many ways to explore an island, but if travelers are looking for a chance to visit more than one destination and discover different cultures, traditions and cuisines, then hopping from island to island will help them discover more on their solo journey. The remote Japanese Yaeyama Islands are a hidden paradise southwest of Okinawa renowned for their lovely beaches, superb sunsets and bright green sugar cane landscapes. With some of the country’s finest subtropical jungles and mangrove swamps, the islands also offer Japan’s best snorkeling and diving.
Another great feature of the Yaeyama Islands is the variety and ease with which travelers can explore them: plentiful ferry services run between Ishigajo city and the nearby islands and visitors can explore three or four in one trip. It’s recommended to use the beautiful Kohama Island as a base and enjoy day trips to the nearby Taketomi and Ishigaki islands.
Where to stay: Haimurubushi is the southernmost resort in Japan set on the remote island of Kohama. Overlooking the ocean, this beautiful stay with direct beach access is an ideal place for selfcare. Guests can unwind by the pool or treat themselves to a wide range of treatments at the first-class spa tailored to the hotel’s philosophy of recovery and rebalancing. The resort also features a bespoke restaurant offering traditional Japanese food centered around ‘nuchi gusui’ meaning medicine for life. With activities organized by local guides such as healing experiences, horse riding, water sports and island buggy tours, it’s not surprising this property has a Booking.com Travel Sustainable badge for the steps it has taken to offer guests a more sustainable stay.
Budget friendly holiday in Hanoi, Vietnam
In a world of budget travel, Hanoi is definitely a bucket list spot, making it to the list of top 10 destinations recommended as budget-friendly by travelers on Booking.com. The capital of Vietnam has lots to offer visitors! Solo travelers would soon get a taste of the city as they set foot on the busy traffic streets, and begin to appreciate the culture and mix of architectural styles, and of course, the exquisite yet affordable local cuisine.
One can hop on a Full-day City Tour to visit several of Hanoi’s most significant temples and historical building such as Tran Quoc Pagoda built in the 6th century, one of the city’s oldest pagoda, the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum, Presidential Palace, One Pillar Pagoda, and Museum of Ethnology.
Food-lovers are suggested to join a guided street food tour, a private tour that walks you through the city’s most iconic restaurants. Don’t forget to stop along the way and taste the first-try ‘egg coffee’ while in Hanoi.
Where to stay: Hanoi Prime Center Hotel, conveniently set in Hoan Kiem district of Hanoi, only a walk away to Hanoi Old City Gate and Hoan Kiem Lake, is the place to experience the city’s vibe at its best. One extra plus to the travel sustainable property is its closeness to several attractions of Hanoi, including Thang Long Water Puppet Theater, St. Joseph Cathedral, Quan Thanh Temple and Imperial Citadel.
For those singles inspired to celebrate Singles Day traveling, Booking.com is sharing Late Escape Deals to tick another destination off their 2022 wishlist. Discounts start at 15 percent at participating properties indicated by the “Late Escape Deals” badge, and are valid for stays with check-out on or before 3 January 2023. In addition, Booking.com is giving travelers around the world the keys to unlock a new level of additional perks with the introduction of a third tier to its Genius loyalty program. Designed to make every trip a better experience, Booking.com’s loyalty program is completely free, easily accessible and membership lasts a lifetime – travelers simply need to create an account to achieve Genius status for life. As Genius members unlock new levels, they get access to larger discounts and more travel rewards that never expire. All travelers have to do is sign into their Booking.com account and look for the Genius logo to identify benefits, discounts and perks.
*Research commissioned by Booking.com and independently conducted among a sample of 48,413 respondents across 31 markets (2,000 from USA, 1,864 from Canada, 1,999 from Mexico, 2,003 from Colombia, 2,005 from Brazil, 2,002 from Argentina, 1,020 from Chile, 1,777 from Australia, 818 from New Zealand, 1,999 from Spain, 2,002 from Italy, 1,998 from France, 1,990 from UK, 2,005 from Germany, 2,003 from Netherlands, 985 from Denmark, 999 from Sweden, 910 from Croatia, 918 from Switzerland, 1,986 from Belgium, 998 from Russia, 953 from Israel, 1,999 from India, 1,990 from China, 901 from Hong Kong, 1,775 from Thailand, 1,001 from Singapore, 975 from Taiwan, 1,800 from Vietnam, 1,757 from South Korea, 1,001 from Japan). In order to participate in this survey, respondents had to be 18 years of age or older, had to have traveled at least once for business or leisure in the past 12 months, and planning to travel in 2022 and be either the primary decision maker or involved in the decision making of their travel. The survey was taken online and took place in January 2022.
**Endorsement data from Booking.com based on the most recommended and relevant destinations by global travelers for friendly people, nature, wellness, street food and yoga retreat