Solo Travel for Mature travelers……..

Solo is not Single travel as you have read in countless blogs, magazine articles and on line.  Not a mission to find Mr or Ms Right….. Solo travel is to experience EVERYTHING or to just relax and do only what you want to do.

My last trip with ‘a travel companion’ was a nightmare.    Other solo travelers may have a ‘Steve” story or have just found that solo travel is “freeing”, “expanding” and something they prefer.     I vowed never to waste vacation time again.      

Now that my trips are often 30 day adventures, Solo Travel is the perfect solution.   When possible I try to rent an apartment in a central location and take day trips to other towns or villages.   Changing towns every few days is exhausting and only allows you to see the “tourist attractions” but rarely to meet the locals or understand what is special about each place you visit.   Some of the most insightful  days I have spent were looking for replacement shoelaces in Spoletto”, using the post office in Florence or  chatting with a local jewelry artist about computers!

I have tried to become a traveler, not just a tourist.   To try to learn something about the people and place I am visiting the solution for me, was to do theme travel:   discover something new, learn a new skill or explore something different.

The harbor view from Sorrento Lingue

My best adventure was enrolling in  Sorrento Lingue school in Sorrento Italy during a 3 month sabbatical I took to see if I could consider living in Italy long term.     That in itself was an adventure.  Be sure to view a post on Sorrento Lingues’ program for 50+ students on

Meet Yle and begin your dream

This year I discovered Yle in Lecce, Italy.
The creator of this wonderful travel concierge service can make your dream vacation or adventure a reality.

I had advertised to find an Italian grandmother so I could learn how to make pasta.  I wanted to recreate the Italian American experience of learning the traditional skills every Italian grandmother teaches.
Yle found me Nonna Vata and I spent a day learning to make pasta!     She makes wishes come true and dream a reality.

Women of all ages, if you would like to visit beautiful Puglia, Italy, it is important to know that you won’t be alone here. 
Travelling Solo to Puglia can be fun and a memorable experience.
We will assist you in tailoring the trip you have always dreamed of:  accommodation, transportation, cooking classes, bike tours, wine tasting, tours by classic car, walking tours and much more. 
You will meet many Puglia natives and experience magic moments just like a local and always in good company!

From the moment you arrive you’ll be with welcoming locals and discover with them this lovely southern Italian destination. We are ALWAYS happy to welcome young or mature travelers.  
You will find this travelling experience fun, challenging and unique.   You’ll meet people, discover beautiful and inspiring areas,  eat out,  enjoy your evenings with your new local friends, take pictures all the time, cook with local mums and grandmas, savor  authentic gelato or pizza, visit food markets and join your new local friends for a coffee in a book shop or by the ocean.

We will be by your side and help you discover the beauty of Puglia…still having enough time to relax.      Every detail of your tour will be taken care of and you won’t need to worry. From the very first arrival at the airport we will be happy to welcome you and ensure you enjoy your stay here with us. 

Tours are fully escorted by Puglia native guides.    We will be able to customize a tour just for YOU and fit in with your budget and requirements, creating lifelong memories. 

Don’t be a tourist, be our FRIEND! Tours available: all year round. 
 Are you ready?!!         Come on, have a great adventure with us..we cannot wait to meet YOU! 

Contact: Ylenia      

Solo Mature Travel Comfort Zones

After many years of frequently traveling solo to Italy, there are now hundreds of articles, blogs and travel companies for Solo Travelers.    However, no one addresses or offers advise on the best way to travel SOLO for Mature travelers.

I find that my solo travel style has changed over the past few years. I do not travel on tours, with 30 other couples traveling 2 by 2, like Noah’s ark.     After a few day trips where the other travelers continued to stare or ask “are you traveling alone?”,  I would rather  take my adventure solo even if it has it’s limitations.

How do Mature Solos Travel?

Il Duomo, Florence, Italy

Although still interested in visiting historic sites, museums, markets and festivals  I find my interests now include learning something new on each trip, meeting as many locals as I can and trying to understand what it is like to be Italian.

The biggest change as a Mature Solo Traveler is that I am no longer willing to sleep on the 10 hr train to avoid a hotel room, or get up at 5 am to catch the first train to the next town.   Perhaps this is a result of having far more time to travel now.   Instead of the 10 day  trip I could manage from a “career” that never let me leave town, to the 6 weeks or even longer trips I now give myself.   My trips now are an “experience”, an adventure of being an “Italian”, even if it is only for a short time.
Long term travel comes with other concerns:  expense management,

So where do Solo Mature travelers find the best hotels, restaurants or towns to visit?   Which towns are easy to navigate on a solo trip?   Restaurant alternatives that solo diners who fear eating alone, can utilize?

The past two years, I started researching towns that offer me a “comfort zone”        A comfort zone, for me, is a location with many restaurants that a solo diner can feel comfortable in.   Cities or towns that do not require the formal tour to experience.   Short term apartment rentals in towns offer a great opportunity to live with the locals, shop daily and eat some of my meals on a balcony with a city view or even the of the sea.

On a fall trip Home To Italy last year, I found staying in towns outside cities can offer 4 star hotels at prices comparable to much lower quality hotels in the city!     In very small towns on holidays or Sunday nights a hotel with an in house restaurant can be a life saver.    Fewer guests, allow staff to offer great personal services.

The local tourist offices often have tour guides who will show you a town/city from a locals perspective.
(see my future post on Bologna)

Tell me what towns you have found that are great for Solo Mature Travelers. where is your favorite Comfort zones?