The entire month of March is dedicated to celebrating women and their accomplishments and last year, various travel authorities cited 2017 as “the year of the female traveler.” Since then, 2018 has become known as the “year of the woman.” What better way to recognize such important strides – both individual and communal – than to take a solo trip? Considering cultural immersion, learning opportunities and overall inspiration, these eight destinations are welcoming solo female travelers.
“There is a direct correlation between higher job satisfaction levels and work-life balance, especially for female professionals,” said Kieran Donahue, vice president, brand, marketing and digital for the Americas at Marriott International. “Travel plays an imperative role in that balance creating opportunities to not only reset, but also learn from the culture of a new destination. As a solo-female traveler myself, here are some of my favorite picks for 2018.”
Columbus, OH – The city is preparing to host the Women’s Final Four® from March 30 – April 1. In the year of the women, these 2018 games will be ones to remember. Columbus is fostering creative talent like never before with female chefs, artists and fashion designers. Located downtown, The Westin Columbus is in center of it all. Solo travelers will enjoy visiting the Short North Arts District with its boutiques, restaurants and galleries, or going for a run at the Scioto Mile with 33 acres of riverfront parkland.
Maui, HI – This Hawaiian island is ideal for solo female travelers who want a connection to the restorative Pacific. For the adventure seekers, there are plenty of group tours and activities including hiking, zip lining and more. The island’s immersive activities offer the opportunity for solo travelers to form connections with kama’aina (residents) and visitors alike. Of course, being on an island also means no shortage of relaxation. With more than 30 miles of beaches, even the biggest beach bums won’t make a dent.Luckily, those staying at Wailea Beach Resort – Marriott, Maui are steps from Wailea and Ulua Beaches and can take advantage of a robust calendar of fitness activities at the ocean’s edge like full moon yoga or an intro to scuba in one of the resort’s five pools.
Washington D.C. – Spending National Women’s History Month in the nation’s capital is great for many reasons. Not only is it the birthplace of many female empowerment movements, but the city is walkable (or “bikeable, thanks to D.C.’s bikeshare program). There are plenty of landmarks and sights to see year-round, but D.C. is especially beautiful in springtime when the nation’s Cherry Blossoms are in full bloom. The historic Mayflower Hotel, part of Autograph Collection is within walking distance of free museums, and has been the home to many famous, achieved women such as Amelia Earhart, Sophia Loren and Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis.
Chicago, IL – It’s not hard to keep yourself busy in Chicago, especially when staying in the heart of the Magnificent Mile, a location perfect for women looking to explore all of Chicago’s top attractions and retailers. For all travelers, the Windy City offers places to see and food to eat, but The Gwen, a Luxury Collection Hotel, Michigan Avenue Chicago offers a uniquely female hotel experience. Rooted in the history and heritage of downtown Chicago in the 1930’s, the Gwen’s historic façade was created by sculptress Gwen Lux in 1928, a female artisan making a mark in a predominantly 1930’s male design city. The hotel allows visitors to celebrate women today while celebrating women of the past. Throughout March, sip on the specialty cocktail, the Future is Female, at Upstairs at the Gwen.
Sedona, AZ – Offering a perfect blend of relaxation, adventure and self-reflection, Sedona offers something for every solo female traveler. Though it is known as the “mecca of spiritual healing” for its meditation, yoga and spas, the desert town offers adventure courses, off-roading tours and nearly 200 hiking trails for those looking to get moving and try something new. While you can see the most breathtaking views of the majestic mountain ranges from Courtyard Sedona, the best way to experience the area is by getting outside. For those who prefer to enjoy quiet time at the hotel, guests will enjoy the view deck, meditation point, fire pits and even an early morning meditation class in nature.
Montreal, Canada – It’s not a bad idea to spend a solo trip with some of the nicest people in the world, but that’s not the only reason Montreal is a perfect destination. A city with bilingual residents and a European feel, Montreal is a quick trip for those from the east coast, and offers a plethora of shopping and museums. Montreal also offers everlasting opportunities for dining and drinking with an incredible culinary scene. Be sure to try Quebec’s guilty pleasure – Poutine – a dish that consists of French fries and cheese curds topped with a brown gravy. Enjoy Old Montreal, discover Mont-Royal or attend a concert at the Montreal Symphonic Orchestra. Opening this month, the AC Hotel Montreal Downtown is in the heart of Montreal’s entertainment district within minutes of prime shopping and dining.
Punta Mita, Mexico – One of the most visited beaches in Mexico by women from all over the world, this small fishing village is ideal for those who enjoy ocean breeze and warm rays of sun. While the destination attracts thousands of women every year who are seeking a natural and stress-free landscape, it is located just a few miles away from Sayulita, an ideal place to try a new water sport. Sayulita offers fairy tale-esque hotels like the recently opened W Punta de Mita, which is perfect for the dynamic and energetic traveler.
Montevideo, Uruguay – With an exotic touch and sense of local hospitality that many travelers flock to, the country of Uruguay is already popular with large numbers of solo female travelers. The capital is one of the most popular cosmopolitan cities in Latin America, while The Old City offers a beautiful combination of art deco buildings and colonial houses. Many female travelers seek the traditional Uruguayan cuisine and find some of the best options in the Mercado del Puerto, which features savory restaurants and hidden gem shops. While the Aloft Montevideo Hotel caters to the modern woman, those seeking something more traditional will enjoy the Sheraton Montevideo Hotel.
Panama – Panama is welcoming the female travelers who are global explorers seeking authentic cultural experiences beyond the famous Panama Canal. Panama City is filled with modern skyscrapers and urban nightclubs that contrast the colonial buildings of Casco Viejo and the jungle of the Metropolitan National Park, demonstrating the diversity of this Latin American destination. Located within an exclusive neighborhood just minutes away from both the airport and Panama City’s city center is the new Santa Maria, A Luxury Collection Hotel & Golf Resort. Make time to explore the area’s beauty including the turquoise water, historic architecture, wonderful restaurants and outdoor adventures.