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Women on the Road Blog

Solo travel tips for women like you - the first Tuesday of every month >>

(and to say thank you I'll send you the 'list of 9' indispensable items I NEVER travel without!)

My Wandering Mind

As I like to say – I’m opinionated and I plan to stay that way. This section is where I voice my opinions about… anything travel, however remotely related, and things that are a bit more personal.

Ten Years of Women on the Road

I was 30,000 feet above the Sahara when I saw her. Plodding in the opposite direction, she had wild red hair and was bent over with the weight of a heavy backpack. I blinked and looked again and she was gone. She had been in my mind only. But she looked uncannily like me. I began life [...]


Do you ever get the urge to travel without exactly knowing where to go? Do you start by asking whether you should revisit a place you know and love, or go somewhere you've never been? And how do you decide? Before you begin to make travel decisions and go rummaging through your guidebooks, you might want to settle this [...]


2016 – The Year That (Almost) Scared Me

I finally finished this year-end post around two in the morning... And then I hit DELETE. Its original title was "2016 - The Year That Scared Me." But then I qualified it because it did have a few delightful interludes. Let's face it, it has been a scary year. Trump was incomprehensibly elected to the US presidency, [...]


(Back to Part 1) I should have started far earlier. Yet here I am, the day before departure, my bed strewn with odds and ends that I think I'll need for a month in Central Asia. It's not that I don't have a packing list - I certainly do, and it's elaborate. But I'm traveling solo, I'll be [...]


Finding a place to stay in Kyrgyzstan, part 10 of my real-time series on preparations for a month of solo travel in Central Asia.


Central Asia research

(Back to Part 1) That little bit of research I undertook to plan my initial itinerary barely counts. I now have to engage in more serious research. My pattern tends to be the same wherever I go: I start off with a long list of things to read and do, and feel lucky if I make [...]


(Back to Part 1) When the travel doctor told me I'd need a typhoid vaccination, I clenched my teeth, envisaging a long, thin needle creeping closer. No such thing. All I did was swallow a little pill every other day for three days. Bliss. It's not always this easy, and depending on where you travel, protecting [...]


(Back to Part 1) Communicating with people is one of the greatest gifts of travel. We can do it in many ways - art, gestures, expressions - but to me, language is the most complete, allowing for nuances, emotion, information and even the intangible. Language helps us walk into someone else's world and sample it from their point of [...]


(Back to Part 1) Every trip starts with an arrival destination - but it's anyone's guess what happens after landing. Some trips are highly organized, with sights and facilities reserved each step of the way. Others, like my own trip across Africa, are more hit-and-miss, with few plans beyond landing. This time I need some sort [...]


Central Asia budget

These are my Central Asia travel budget preparations as Part 4 of a step-by-step look at planning a one-month backpacking trip.


(Back to Part 1) "Weren't the Istanbul Airport terrorists from Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan?" Yes, they were. Scared, no. Cautious, yes. "So why are you going to visit those two countries? Aren't you scared?" And that's been the gist of my email Inbox for days. I'm planning to travel through Kyrgyzstan the first half of September and [...]


Part 2 of a step-by-step look at preparing for a one-month solo female backpacking adventure. Here's what happens when the unexpected hits - and how even the simplest of plans can go haywire from the beginning, and how to deal with change.