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Having a tough time narrowing down where to go

Having a tough time narrowing down where to go

Old Jun 18th, 2022, 02:19 AM
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Having a tough time narrowing down where to go

Hi everyone! Iím (24M) planning a solo trip as a gift to myself for starting my new job. I have 4-5 weeks before I start my new job to travel. Tentative dates would be July 5th to August 2nd. But I donít start until August 8th so Iím a bit flexible.


This would be my second time solo travelling and Iíve only ever so far soloed Italy and France. Iím looking to get some recommendations on some places I should go to.


Here are some details:

- budget: I mainly do hostels but do like eating out. I have a very healthy amount budgeted but I doubt I will get close to spending even half of it, even if I did hotels and dined out at nice restaurants.

- Iíve been to a decent amount of Europe (Paris, London, many cities in Italy, Prague, Vienna, Kyiv), US, Canada, and Israel



- travel dates: Whole month of July 2022



- I love being surrounded by interesting architecture, I love wandering at night, I also am looking for the occasional club scene. A place where itís good to be your early mid 20s



- I enjoy exploring like going on cool hikes



- Donít mind museums but am not a fan of art museums (at least older stuff like renaissance)

- I have American citizenship


So far Iíve been considering a few options:


- Japan or South Korea (looks like Japan is now open for tourists, although only on guided tours. SK is fully open).

- Thailand/Vietnam/Cambodia (only downside I see is that itís the rainy season and will be humid)

- South America (Argentina/Peru/Brazil)

- AUS/NZ

- Big Europe trip (Paragliding Switzerland, partying in Berlin and Budapest, Chilling in Amsterdam, maybe even checking out the Baltics and maybe Spain and more of France or even the UK)

Thereís so much of Europe to see that I wouldnít mind doing it again. At the same time doing non-Europe would open up a new continent I have never been to. In an ideal world I would probably want to visit Japan solo, but itís closed off for only guided tours. I felt very inspired by the movie ďLost in TranslationĒ

Peru seems cool because Iíve always wanted to visit Machu Pichu

Are some locations better to visit while young? I assume some are better/worse in July time frame too

ill be posting this in numerous forums since thereís no general world forum.

Last edited by tomtomotyh9365; Jun 18th, 2022 at 02:24 AM.
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Old Jun 18th, 2022, 02:39 AM
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Spain (southern, eastern or northern coast come to mind)

Malaga, Granada, Seville Cordoba

Barcelona and north

Bilbao and Santander
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Old Jun 18th, 2022, 02:54 AM
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Originally Posted by bilboburgler View Post
Spain (southern, eastern or northern coast come to mind)

Malaga, Granada, Seville Cordoba

Barcelona and north

Bilbao and Santander
One of my ideas if I did Europe was that I really wanted to see these places: Berlin, Amsterdam, Budapest, and Interlaken. Spain would also be interesting and I think I could add it on
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Old Jun 18th, 2022, 03:03 AM
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Originally Posted by tomtomotyh9365 View Post
One of my ideas if I did Europe was that I really wanted to see these places: Berlin, Amsterdam, Budapest, and Interlaken. Spain would also be interesting and I think I could add it on
I would suggest you go to Berlin, Amsterdam, Budapest and Interlaken.
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Old Jun 18th, 2022, 03:28 AM
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Originally Posted by cdnyul View Post
I would suggest you go to Berlin, Amsterdam, Budapest and Interlaken.
Yeah if I did that route based on my interests in each city and travel style I would devote 5 days to Berlin, 4 days to Amsterdam and Budapest, and probably 3-4 days in Switzerland. If we count half a day of traveling for 4 destinations, thatís 18-19 days in total used up. Still have another 10ish days so was thinking I could add on Iceland or Scotland.
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Old Jun 18th, 2022, 03:43 AM
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Take advantage of having so much time, visit a place that is less easy to reach, where you need more time for sightseeing and travel time, and save Europe for when you will have less time, but can do short, focused trips.
New Zealand and Australia both seem to have a young vibe with interesting cities, a great art and theater scene and beautiful landscapes.
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Old Jun 18th, 2022, 04:18 AM
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Originally Posted by Sassafrass View Post
Take advantage of having so much time, visit a place that is less easy to reach, where you need more time for sightseeing and travel time, and save Europe for when you will have less time, but can do short, focused trips.
New Zealand and Australia both seem to have a young vibe with interesting cities, a great art and theater scene and beautiful landscapes.
This is exactly what I was thinking. Europe is easy to do in short timeframes. I will take a look at Aus and NZ!
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Old Jun 18th, 2022, 04:25 AM
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You need a visa for Japan nowadays.
It is peak holiday time in Europe, which means places will be busy, including probably hostels. Even with 4-5 weeks your Europe wish list is rushed. Travel between cities take longer than you think, flying is a pia with huge queues, potential for last minute cancellations, plus the pollution. Trains take longer but are likely to be less crowded and better for the environment - we are talking your future here.
Plenty of young people travel around Europe by train.
Have you considered exploring your own country?
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Old Jun 18th, 2022, 07:35 AM
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Your biggest problem with either Europe or some parts of the USA . . . you have left things very late. Flights, hotels, hostels, etc will be slammed - finding seats on the flights you want may be difficult, and hostels all over Europe are reporting massive bookings.

Plus airfares have close to doubled.

OZ/NZ may be a better option - though it is winter there
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Old Jun 18th, 2022, 08:35 AM
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What about Columbia? or Brazil?
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Old Jun 18th, 2022, 09:45 AM
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I agree with heading farther out, with that length of time. Koh Samui will be less rainy than other parts of Thailand, and it has that youthful vibe I’m told. Bangkok and Singapore are wonderful any time from both the architectural and food point of view.

We visited Siem Reap one May, supposedly the height of the rainy season. Fewer tourists, and the rains only arrived in the afternoon, so we explored in the mornings (a guide and tuktuk driver are a must) and shopped or rested in the afternoons. Clear again by nightfall, as a rule.
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Old Jun 18th, 2022, 12:12 PM
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You're young and have lots of time and evidently a generous budget. I'd skip Europe and head to Asia or South America if I were you.
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Old Jun 19th, 2022, 12:04 AM
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Here is my take on your options FWIW.

Europe - I friend has offered to pay for a week in Europe next month. I have spent the last couple of days, with the kind assistant of people here , trying to decide where to go. However, that is not the main problem, finding flights and hotels is. Flights from London to anywhere in Europe are 4-5 x normal rates and hotel room are rapidly getting booked out and are also expensive. You had better have a VERY healthy budget.

Australia and NZ. Yes it is winter in Australia but its a big place and will still have decent weather somewhere , mostly in the north. We always visit NZ in winter and rent a camper van. Most people think we are mad but we love it . Amazing hiking and a great place to be if you are into winter sports. Queenstown has a young vibe but think you may struggle to find much happening elsewhere. Sydney is arguably one of the most exciting cities in the world for a 20 something regardless of the weather but is very expensive.

Japan will not be open for anything other than v expensive small group tours - if you could find one of those, you are likely to find your companions are more likely in their 60s or &0s that 20s! It is not a great time to visit from a weather perspective.

SE Asia is problematic because of the weather at that time of year. It shouldn't necessarily put you off visiting parts of the region but if weather is important to you, head for Borneo or south of the equator to Indonesia .

South Korea is a good alternative to Japan and worth considering - a big club scene in Seoul. Perhaps not as easy a country in which to travel as Japan but similar in many respects

Taiwan wasn't mentioned but we spent a week their in July and wished we had a month , it was that good.

South America is an amazing continent. My favourite countries are Peru, Colombia and Argentina and, of those, I would suggest Peru is the easiest for first time visitor but you could easily spend a month in any of those countries and not run out of things to see/do/eat!

Some of these places I have covered in more detail in our blog.https://accidentalnomads.comwhich may provide some ideas. Just click on the destination tab.

Happy travel planning!




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Old Jun 19th, 2022, 06:36 AM
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I would never go to Japan in July or August even if you paid me. Miserably hot plus itís typhoon season. Unless of course you are going to Hokaido.
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Old Jun 19th, 2022, 08:22 AM
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I've been to Japan in the summer. (thrice!) and had a great time each time. It is not humid, so there is relief from there sun anywhere there is shade or if you have a floppy hat. Women can be seen carrying parasols. In South Korea we had four big rains during monsoon season, and even then it did not dampen our enthusiasm, though we did need to adjust our trip once to account for a very big storm.
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Old Jun 19th, 2022, 10:16 AM
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Originally Posted by janisj View Post
Your biggest problem with either Europe or some parts of the USA . . . you have left things very late. Flights, hotels, hostels, etc will be slammed - finding seats on the flights you want may be difficult, and hostels all over Europe are reporting massive bookings.

Plus airfares have close to doubled.

OZ/NZ may be a better option - though it is winter there
Every place Iíve checked even for the nice hostels during my dates arenít booked. Neither are activities I wanted to do. At least in the main European cities I wanted to visit.

I also have a very healthy budget ($20,000 USD), so I can afford to book last minute stuff.

Last edited by tomtomotyh9365; Jun 19th, 2022 at 10:19 AM.
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Old Jun 19th, 2022, 10:18 AM
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Originally Posted by crellston View Post
Here is my take on your options FWIW.

Europe - I friend has offered to pay for a week in Europe next month. I have spent the last couple of days, with the kind assistant of people here , trying to decide where to go. However, that is not the main problem, finding flights and hotels is. Flights from London to anywhere in Europe are 4-5 x normal rates and hotel room are rapidly getting booked out and are also expensive. You had better have a VERY healthy budget.

Australia and NZ. Yes it is winter in Australia but its a big place and will still have decent weather somewhere , mostly in the north. We always visit NZ in winter and rent a camper van. Most people think we are mad but we love it . Amazing hiking and a great place to be if you are into winter sports. Queenstown has a young vibe but think you may struggle to find much happening elsewhere. Sydney is arguably one of the most exciting cities in the world for a 20 something regardless of the weather but is very expensive.

Japan will not be open for anything other than v expensive small group tours - if you could find one of those, you are likely to find your companions are more likely in their 60s or &0s that 20s! It is not a great time to visit from a weather perspective.

SE Asia is problematic because of the weather at that time of year. It shouldn't necessarily put you off visiting parts of the region but if weather is important to you, head for Borneo or south of the equator to Indonesia .

South Korea is a good alternative to Japan and worth considering - a big club scene in Seoul. Perhaps not as easy a country in which to travel as Japan but similar in many respects

Taiwan wasn't mentioned but we spent a week their in July and wished we had a month , it was that good.

South America is an amazing continent. My favourite countries are Peru, Colombia and Argentina and, of those, I would suggest Peru is the easiest for first time visitor but you could easily spend a month in any of those countries and not run out of things to see/do/eat!

Some of these places I have covered in more detail in our blog.https://accidentalnomads.comwhich may provide some ideas. Just click on the destination tab.

Happy travel planning!
Taiwan seems to be closed to tourists, otherwise it would be my #1
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Old Jun 19th, 2022, 12:49 PM
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Ok so in order to narrow down locations and actually get closer to planning/making a decision, Iím gonna axe Japan and save it for later. I may also axe Thailand and save it for a better time.

So far that leaves Oceania, Europe, South Korea, and South America.

If I did South America I would probably do an Intrepid or GAdventures tour. If I did SA I would definitely want to see Machu Pichu.

The other countries seem pretty friendly to solo traveler and not be on a guided tour.

If I did Europe I would want to see Iceland (1 week), Scotland (3-4 days), Berlin (4-5 days), Budapest (4-5 days), Amsterdam (4-5 days), and Switzerland (3-4 days, I have a dream of going paragliding). That would account for 5 weeks. I probably would have to axe out a location or 2. I checked and availability for hostels among all the locations were good.

South Korea seems amazing especially for nightlife and I have only been to Europe/North America/Middle East so it would let me see another continent (unless you count Israel as Asia) but idk if a month would be too much for SK?

And after seeing lord of the rings Iíve always wanted to see NZ. How big of a deal are snakes in Australia? I have a big phobia
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Old Jun 19th, 2022, 02:02 PM
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Snakes in Australia. The old joke, the spiders have eaten all the snakes.

Oz is home to an unfair proportion of all killing animals.
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Old Jun 19th, 2022, 04:36 PM
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There are no snakes at all in New Zealand.
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