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Best Destinations for Retired Solo Travelers

Planet Cruise has curated an in-depth travel index revealing the best destinations for solo travelers.

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Solo traveling has become more than just a fleeting trend. New data from Planet Cruise reveals a striking 36 percent surge in adults contemplating solo holidays within the next year, and searches for “solo travel for over 60” has increased by more than 55 percent in the past 12 months. The allure of adventure and self-exploration has enticed many to venture alone, so Planet Cruise has curated an in-depth travel index revealing the best destination for solo travelers, factoring in elements such as safety, group activities, local hospitalities, and cost-effectiveness. 

Tokyo takes the top spot, giving solo travelers not just a blend of rich culture, advanced technology, and a vast array of attractions but also lets them feel safe navigating its streets. Prague, renowned for its historic beauty and vibrant nightlife, clinches the second spot, while Beijing takes third place. 

RankCityCountrySafety LevelsFriendliness IndexAverage Hotel  Cost Per NightGroup ToursAttractions
1TokyoJapan7644£2481,00010,000
2PragueCzech Republic75.362£1131,0004,000
3BeijingChina72.343£962,0002,000
4HanoiVietnam62.99£863,9343,221
5ShanghaiChina70.143£1181,0002,000
6Chiang MaiThailand76.420£619121,656
7BudapestHungary65.558£1291,0001,000
8ViennaAustria71.964£1428402,000
9RomeItaly47.741£2955,0006,000
10BucharestRomania7219£791,0471,379

Here are some highlights from the report:

  • Asia Leads the Pack: Tokyo stands out with impressive safety levels, over 10,000 attractions, and a vast array of 1,000 group tours. Other prominent Asian cities like Beijing, Shanghai, and Bangkok also make the list, offering a blend of history, culture, and modernity.
  • European Gems: Prague, renowned for its fairy-tale ambiance, boasts a friendliness index of 62 and offers travelers 4,000 attractions to explore. Other European favorites include Budapest, Vienna, and the romantic city of Rome.
  • Safety First: Munich in Germany claims the highest safety rate of 79.2, closely followed by Hong Kong at 78.3. Safety remains a pivotal concern for solo travelers, and these destinations deliver with their world-class standards.
  • Budget-friendly Options: For those watching their wallets, Pattaya in Thailand offers a tantalizing hotel average of just $30 per night. Kolkata in India provides an affordable stay with hotels averaging $53 and over 600 attractions to explore.
  • Diverse Attractions: Cities like Paris and London top the charts with 8,000 attractions each, ensuring solo travelers will never run out of exciting ventures.

“Solo journeys present an unmatched opportunity for personal growth,” says Dave Mills, Planet Cruise’s global supply director. “Choosing the right destination can elevate the entire experience. Safety, cultural richness, and budget-friendly options are key factors solo travelers appreciate, and these cities offer just that.” 

Additionally, solo travel is great for the health and wellbeing of people over 60. According to health expert Carolina Goncalves from Pharmica, there are myriad benefits.

  • Navigating unfamiliar destinations and engaging with diverse cultures provide robust stimulation for the brain. As retirees immerse themselves in new environments, their cognitive faculties are actively engaged. This consistent mental activity promotes neural connectivity and brain plasticity, potentially attenuating age-related cognitive decline.
  • Travel offers the elderly an invaluable opportunity for physical exertion. The inherent movement involved—be it through guided tours, trekking diverse terrains, or urban exploration—facilitates cardiovascular health.
  • Solo travel bestows a sense of autonomy, promoting psychological wellbeing and reducing stress-related physiological markers, such as cortisol, thereby improving sleep quality and overall mood.
  • Diverse travel environments expose the body to a range of microorganisms. Such exposures, when non-pathogenic, can strengthen the immune system’s defenses, enhancing its ability to combat future potential pathogens. However, travelers must exercise caution; not every exposure augments immune health. Prior to travel, it’s prudent to consult healthcare professionals, stay updated on vaccinations, and adhere to region-specific health guidelines. 
About The Author
julieKeller_author-1

Julie is the co-founder of Well Defined and a longtime influencer and advocate in the wellness world. Along with her work at Well Defined, she is an executive recruiter and marketing specialist for Hutchinson Consulting. She is also a consultant and content strategist for numerous wellness brands. She is the former editor-in-chief and publisher of American Spa and was named a 2019 Folio Top Woman in Media in the Industry Trailblazers category and a 2018 winner of ISPA’s Innovate Award. She is also a seasoned journalist, specializing in spa, travel, health, fitness, wellness, sustainability, and beauty. She has been published in Departures, ForbesTraveler.com, E! Online, Gayot.com, Insider’s Guide to Spas, Luxury Travel Advisor, Marin Magazine, Ocean Home, Smart Meetings, Spa Asia, and Travel Agent.