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Wayfaring Broad

Finding Buddies While Traveling Solo

A deafening buzzer jolts me from a sound sleep. Desperate for it to stop, I slam my hand across the bed to hit the green glow of numbers sourcing the shrill alarm. It was still dark out and I was a little disoriented and confused as to why I was waking up so early. Gradually, I begin to remember the reason for my pre-dawn awakening and shoot out of bed.  I showered, dressed, packed, and was off faster than a toupee in a hurricane.  The drive took about two hours, but I arrived ready to depart for the next leg of my journey with time to spare. 

So convenient, isn’t it?  The only thing I had to be concerned with was myself.  I don’t have to worry about whether someone else gets up on time. I don’t have to worry about how long it’s taking the other person to get ready. I don’t have to worry about whether I’m making too much noise that would wake someone else up. And I don’t have to worry about whether the other person might have left something behind.  If something ends up happening, I have no one else to blame but myself.  Traveling solo definitely has its perks.  There’s a freedom and independence that solo traveling delivers that I really enjoy.  However, every now and then there’s this feeling of being left out or excluded.

Many of the activities that I have found while traveling is catered for couples or families.  Even eating in select countries, especially in Asia, can bring some issues to solo travelers as some restaurants don’t allow lone customers because they cook their food for two or more and won’t serve just one. Sounds bizarre, but even if offering to pay for two servings, I have been rejected service because I was alone.  C'est la vie.  Even though I enjoy the logistics part of traveling solo (sleeping, accommodations, transportation, et. al.), there are still times when buddies can make the experience a lasting memory. 

So here are three ways I’ve discovered to find and meet people when traveling solo.

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Wayfaring Broad
I totally get it! Couchsurfing isn't for everyone, but you can use it for more than accommodations. A lot of times I already had a... Read More
Thursday, 24 August 2017 13:47
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Imperial Castle of Nuremberg


It’s late October and the autumn changes are arriving later than expected.  During my time in Wisconsin, autumn is signaled with the brilliant cocktail of yellow, orange, and red leaves lining roads and parks.  Germany was a bit of a late bloomer and the colors weren’t showing as brilliantly due to the warmer weather.  I was looking for fall colors wherever I could and up to this point, I haven’t been able to fulfill that wish.

My time in Toy Town was sadly over and now I was heading north with a stop in Nuremberg.  The only bit of information I knew of Nuremberg was the trials of the Nazis that took place after WWII.   The train ride was about 90 minutes so I started researching some things to do in the city.  The first thing that popped up was a world famous Christmas Market (Weinachtsmarkt).  I love Christmas! It’s my favorite holiday and I was crossing my fingers that I wasn’t too early to see it.  Next attraction that popped up was the Imperial Castle.  Castles aren’t’ something we have in the states. After my tour through the Rhines valley up to the Village of Sankt Goar, Heidelberg, and a day trip to Neuschwanstein; I still hadn’t gotten enough of castles.

After arriving, I do what I always do.  Found a place for my luggage, whether checking in to the hostel or renting a locker, and started exploring the town.

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German Cafes


One of the first things I noticed while trekking through Germany is the umbrella filled spaces in front of cafes.  Hailing from the U.S., it’s not that we don’t have outdoor eating areas, it’s that they’re not the standard here.  Usually reserved for nice weather and sunny days, the outdoor space of a café or restaurant isn’t as utilized as it is in Germany. A little drizzle? Indoors we go. Too hot or too cold? Indoors to the lovely air conditioning or heating.  Not in Germany!  Whether hot or cold or a little rainy not much stops people from sitting outside to enjoy their meal.  Mostly, I think because of necessity.

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The Charming Village of Sankt Goar


I was five days into my trek around Germany. Staying in the town of Mainz, named after the river it was built adjacent to, just west of Frankfurt.  I was planning a day trip to somewhere and quite indecisive about it.   Daniel, my Couchsurfing host suggested I check out a small village on the west bank of the Middle Rhine.  The transportation was a bit tricky to figure out. The best way was by train, but finding the right train to take was another story.  At the Mainz Bahnhof, instead of entering the building and taking a train, as was normal SOP, I was instructed to go around the right side from the entrance where there stood an open platform for a few selected trains. Figuring out how to purchase a ticket from the machine was a feat in and of itself. Even Daniel, a native German, found difficulty in maneuvering the selection process to pick the correct ticket.

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