Traveling alone comes with a certain kind of romanticism: hand-making pasta with the locals in an Italian villa, belting karaoke surrounded by your newest friends in Tokyo, feeling at one with your thoughts while cruising down the Pacific Coast Highway in California.
Romance aside, however, solo travel isn’t easy. It can feel daunting to be solely responsible for managing logistics, making plans and navigating foreign spaces all while looking out for your own personal safety. Still, that difficulty is often part of what makes solo travel such a particularly powerful, poignant experience.
That’s why we partnered with Uber, a company that’s committed to helping us traverse new territories both safely and confidently. Together, we asked five real women about their most transformative, profound solo travel experiences and the life lessons they inspired. Ahead, allow their testimonials to spur your next solo adventure.