9 Travel Destinations for Introverts

By Holly Johnson on 24 April 2018 0 comments

Introverts love to travel as much as extroverts, they just prefer to skip places teeming with tourists. Breathtaking scenery, one-on-one conversations, and time for reflection are more important than, say, joining the limbo contest on a rowdy cruise ship.

The good news is, there are many vacation ideas that are perfect for introverts. Some of these destinations promote solitude, while others make it easy to get lost in your own thoughts no matter who is around.

1. Visit the Great Wall of China

The Great Wall of China actually began as a series of heavy brick walls and structures to protect Chinese empires from attacks. The first was constructed in 771 BC and later installments were connected 2,200 years ago. Today's wall is thousands of miles long, with many of its components winding through gorgeous green hills and ancient lands.

As an introvert, exploring the Great Wall of China offers a dramatic way to walk through history and learn about the past without visiting a stuffy museum. Focus your itinerary on the less touristy areas of the wall. The Mutianyu and Badaling sections are easily accessible but mobbed with visitors. You can find tours to the Jinshanling and Simatai sections of the wall on Viator. These parts are harder to get to and may involve hiking over unrestored parts of the wall, but they are much less crowded and offer spectacular views of the wall and countryside.

For an even less touristy visit, avoid weekends and peak travel times (usually May through August in China) and Chinese New Year, which usually takes place in February. (See also: 10 Flight-Booking Hacks to Save You Hundreds)

2. Summit Mt. Kilimanjaro

Located in northern Tanzania, the 19,000-foot Mount Kilimanjaro is the tallest mountain in Africa and the tallest free-standing mountain anywhere. Although the fact that you can hike up Kilimanjaro without crampons or technical climbing gear makes it one of the easiest major mountains to summit, it also means it's no stranger to tourists. Still, you can take less crowded routes, and even if you're not alone, life doesn't get much more serene than atop this majestic mountain.

Introverts can book a small group tour or even a private climb up Mt. Kilimanjaro. Prices vary widely, but according to the guide company Peak Planet, a good rule of thumb is to plan on spending about $5,000 for your trip, including round-trip airfare from the U.S. That's not cheap, but if you're adventurous, this could be a once-in-a-lifetime trip. Travel rewards credit cards can help you defray the costs. (See also: Once-In-A-Lifetime Experiences I've Earned With Credit Card Rewards)

3. Get lost in the streets of Venice, Italy

Venice may be bursting at the seams with people, but it's still one of the most beautiful places for introverts to travel. Walk to the Plaza San Marco at sunrise and you'll have the place almost to yourself. By all means, take a gondola ride down the Grand Canal and though the winding neighborhoods that make up this historic city (solo tours are around $100). Or find a cozy spot to sit in Saint Mark's Square for some interesting people-watching.

But also wander off the beaten path to the Peggy Guggenheim Collection or contemporary art galleries such as Teatrino di Palazzo Grassi. Or stroll through the Cannaregio section of town whose back alleys and sunny squares offer a glimpse of everyday life for the Venetians who live here.

4. Tour the Galápagos Islands

The Galapagos are a series of natural volcanic islands that belong to Ecuador. Because they were isolated from the mainland for thousands of years, they are home to some of the most unusual species of wildlife, including giant tortoises, marine iguanas, blue-footed boobies, and the world's only equatorial penguin.

After spending some time on the mainland, you can book a small group cruise to some of these islands. Small group trips with Intrepid Travel leave from Quito, Ecuador and start at around $2,000 per person for eight days, with boat travel, meals, snorkeling, and kayaking included. (See also: Where to Do 9 Popular Bucket List Items on a Budget)

5. Visit the quiet shores of Nevis

The Caribbean includes an array of gorgeous islands that feature crystal clear waters, gorgeous white sand, and natural beauty. Unfortunately, many islands are also crowded with beachgoers and partyers that can ruin the mood.

The Caribbean island of Nevis, however, is not overrun with people or tour groups. Since major airlines don't fly here (most people take a ferry from nearby St. Kitts), renting a beachfront hotel will get you a whole lot more than beautiful scenery; you may have the place to yourself.

There is only one major hotel chain represented on the entire island — the Four Seasons Resort. Elsewhere around Nevis, you'll find small family-run restaurants and shops, along with quaint hotels and ample beach space that provides opportunities for solitude.

Stay at the charming Hermitage hotel for quiet mountain beauty, afternoon tea, homemade meals in the Great House, and gorgeous views of the ocean below. Or, book one of the cheaper hotels on the island, which can cost as little as $150 per night in the late summer months. Rooms at the small, eco-conscious beachfront Oualie Beach Resort start at just $166 per night, for example. (See also: Caribbean Island Vacations Anyone Can Afford)

6. Head to Tulum, Mexico

Tulum, Mexico is the perfect spot for solitude because it's so beautiful, historic, and naturally elegant. Here, you'll find ancient Mayan ruins to explore, white sand beaches lapped by crystal clear water, and exotic swimming holes knows as cenotes where you can swim with fish and other wildlife.

While Mexico's bigger resort cities like Cancun and Cabo San Lucas are well known for their parties and crowds, Tulum offers an atmosphere that promotes peaceful relaxation and proximity to nature. (See also: 8 Most Affordable Beach Towns in Mexico)

7. Take in the Oregon coast

The Oregon coast offers plenty for introverts, including cozy cafes perfect for reading, expansive beaches ideal for quiet relaxation, and hundreds of miles of natural beauty. The Oregon Beach Bill even ensures you'll get access to the state's beautiful shoreline. This 1967 measure established public ownership of land along the coast, meaning you don't have to stay on the water to set yourself up for long strolls on the beach.

The Oregon coast is ideal for walking, lazing on the beach, and watching dramatic sunsets.

Or, you can hike through nearby old growth forests while keeping your eye out for wildlife. Oregon's coast is home to numerous species you may not see at home, including white-tailed deer, burrowing owls, sea otters, and beavers.

8. Explore Iceland

Iceland has long been considered one of the best destinations for solo travelers, mostly due to its low crime rate and the many amazing things to do and see. If you love the outdoors, you will never get bored in Iceland — even if you're alone. For example, you could head to Iceland to hike a glacier, explore the capital city of Reykjavik, swim in thermal pools, or explore an active volcano.

One way to go is to book a solo tour with Baltic Travel Company. Starting at around $1,100, you can see the northern lights (Aurora Borealis), spend time in Iceland's cities, or even embark on a Game of Thrones adventure with a knowledgeable guide.

Traveling to Iceland outside of the peak months of June through August will help you save money and avoid heavy crowds. Plus, there is plenty to see and do in spring, fall, and even winter if you can stomach the colder weather and short days (winter days have as few as four hours of sunlight). You can get a spectacular view of the northern lights from mid-March to mid-May, for example. And visitors in September can participate in annual sheepherding and horse-herding rituals, which take place in the Icelandic backcountry. (See also: 5 of the Safest Countries to Visit in 2018)

9. Take a budget road trip to U.S. national parks

If you like driving, a road trip around the United States may be the best idea yet. With nothing but the road in front of you, you could forget about stresses back home while watching the scenery unfold.

With enough time, you could explore some of the most beautiful parts of the world in the nation's national parks. The best way to avoid the crowds is to plan your trip any time that kids are in school. Avoid the summer months, spring break (usually mid-March), and holiday weekends when kids may have four or five days off in a row, for example.

A national park pass to see destinations like Yosemite, Arches National Park, the Great Smoky Mountains, and Mount Rushmore costs just $80 annually. You can save money by staying in inexpensive hotels or camping along the way. You could enjoy some peace and quiet while hiking gorgeous cliffs, white water rafting, or just curling up with a good book in the great outdoors. (See also: How to Save on National Park Visits in 2018)

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