The 2021 Solo Travel Index

The best countries to visit when traveling alone

If you’re the sort of person who likes to throw their bags in luggage storage straight upon arrival and get out there exploring a new city on your own, then have you ever thought about setting off on your own solo adventure?

Whether your friends haven’t quite caught the travel bug like you, you hate being burdened by having to plan around other people, or you simply want to set off with a backpack and see where the journey takes you, there are plenty of reasons why traveling alone can be a super rewarding experience.

Solo travel opens up a lot of opportunities and freedoms, allowing you to make your own agenda, make new friends, and grow as a person.

But whether you’re straight out of high school embarking on a gap year or looking for a new experience later in life, traveling on your own can be a pretty daunting experience, so we’ve analyzed a number of destinations around the world to find out which are the best, safest, and most affordable places for solo travel.

The best countries for solo travel



7.29out of 10

Iceland is an increasingly popular destination for solo travelers, and with good reason. It was the highest-ranking country for three of the 12 factors that we looked at, in particular when it came to things to do, many of which involve outdoor pursuits exploring the various glaciers, volcanoes, caves, and caverns.

It’s also an exceptionally safe country, with a safety level score of 76.2 and a crime level score of 23.8, meaning that you can explore this beautiful country with peace of mind.



6.34out of 10

The Mediterranean nation of Malta takes second place, known for its historical ties to multiple dynasties and the many fortresses and temples that they’ve left behind throughout the years.

But even if you’re not much of a culture vulture, Malta’s location in the Mediterranean Sea, between Sicily and the coast of North Africa means that it also benefits from beautiful weather, and was amongst the driest and warmest of the nations on our list.



6.21 out of 10

Portugal is known for its beautiful landscapes, beaches and architecture, and great seafood, but it’s also a friendly and safe country too, taking third place on our solo travel ranking.

The Iberian nation had one of the highest safety and lowest crime scores of the countries that we analyzed and also had a high score when it came to the quality of accommodation in the country.

The 2021 solo travel Index

Key Number of attractions Number of bars Number of restaurants Group activities/tour guides Cost of a one-way public transport ticket Average cost of a nightly hotel stay Number of hotels Average hotel rating Crime index score Safety index score Average temperature (°F) Annual Rainfall (mm) Solo travel score /10 (Per 100,000 people)

Things to do






The best country for...




per 100,000 people

Iceland had by far the highest number of things to see and do, with thousands of attractions such as volcanoes, geysers, hot springs, and lava fields dotted across the rugged landscape.

There are a total of 573 attractions per 100,000 people in the Land of Fire and Ice, including national parks such as Vatnajökull and Snæfellsjökull, but also museums showcasing the country's Viking history too.


United States


per 100,000 people

Traveling isn’t just about seeing the sights, and if you want to make friends while you’re on your travels, you’ll want to know there’s a good nightlife scene too.

The USA has the highest proportion of bars per person, with 27.8 per 100,000 people, ranging from fancy wine bars to edgy dive bars and everything in between.




per 100,000 people

Sampling the local cuisine is another huge part of traveling and there are few better foodie destinations than Japan.

The Land of the Rising Sun has 636 restaurants per 100,000 people, serving up local dishes such as sushi, ramen, udon noodles, and more.

Group activities/ tour guides



per 100,000 people

If you’re traveling on your own, it’s good to meet up with fellow travelers to experience the local sights and Iceland once again was the top-ranking destination in this regard.

Iceland has 297 group activities and tours per 100,000 people so that you don’t have to go for that hike alone!

Cost of public transport



for a one-way ticket

As a solo traveler, you’ll undoubtedly need to make use of public transport to get around. Of the countries that we analyzed, Cuba had the most affordable price for a one-way ticket, at just $0.10.

For a cultural experience in Havana, try the almendron, 1950s classic cars that double as coach/taxi services.

Cost of a hotel stay

Sri Lanka


per night

You’ll probably want to stick to a strict budget when traveling alone, especially when it comes to your accommodation.

Sri Lanka was the cheapest country when it comes to the average cost of a nightly hotel stay at just $23 a night (at the weekend).

Number of hostels



per 100,000 people

Once again, Iceland took the top spot, this time when it came to the choice of hostels on offer, with 6.82 per 100,000 people.

Most people visiting the country base themselves in the capital, Reykjavík, before taking day trips out to various natural landmarks and attractions.

Quality of hostels



out of 10

While saving money is key to a solo traveler, you also don’t want to skimp on quality. When it comes to the average review score for hostels in the country, Finland was the top-scoring, with 9 out of 10.

Finland draws a lot of solo travelers in search of the famous Northern Lights, which can be viewed from the province of Lapland, within the Arctic Circle.

Crime & safety



crime score/safety score

Feeling safe when visiting a foreign country is always important, but it takes on extra significance when you’re traveling alone.

Thankfully, Switzerland is one of the safest countries in the world, with low levels of crime and violence and while you should always be vigilant wherever you travel, you can have extra peace of mind in Switzerland.




The weather is also a big consideration while traveling, and while Singapore has the highest average temperature of the countries we analyzed, with 81.7°F, this is perhaps slightly misleading as rather than blazing sunshine, Singapore experiences a tropical rainforest climate, with high humidity and rainfall!




per year

If you want to avoid a downpour while on your solo travels, the destination on our list with the lowest average annual rainfall was Jordan, with 97mm a year.

Of course, Jordan is situated in the Middle East, with an arid desert climate with very little rainfall.


We used various online articles and lists to build an initial list of countries considered to be good for solo travelers, before analyzing each one on the following factors.

We then gave each country a normalized score out of ten on each of the factors, before taking an average across each of these scores to reach our final overall score out of ten.


The number of attractions listed on Tripadvisor, per 100,000 people.


The number of bars listed on Tripadvisor, per 100,000 people.


The number of restaurants listed on Tripadvisor, per 100,000 people.

Group activities/tour guides

The number of group activities and tour guides listed on Tripadvisor, per 100,000 people.

Cost of public transport

The average cost of a one-way ticket on public transport according to Numbeo.

Cost of a hotel stay

The average cost of a nightly hotel stay on a Friday or Saturday night according to Kayak, based on hotels selected by users in the last two weeks (as of 03/09/2021).

Number of hostels

The total number of hostels listed on Hostelworld, per 100,000 people.

Quality of hostels

The average review score for hostels listed on Hostelworld.

Crime & safety

The level of crime and safety according to survey responses to Numbeo, with a lower score being better in terms of crime, and a higher score being better in terms of safety.


The mean annual temperature according to World Bank Group’s Climate Knowledge Portal .


The mean annual precipitation according to World Bank Group’s Climate Knowledge Portal .