If traveling in itself is considered rewarding, solo travel in Costa Rica is one big level-up. Many people consider solo travel to be one of the most self-affirming experiences possible, where one is able to learn things about themselves they never could while traveling as part of a group. That said, it’s good to be prepared and know in advance what to expect.
Solo Travel in Costa Rica
First step as a solo traveler in Costa Rica – learn some Spanish. This is crucial to maintain independence and empower yourself to ask for what you need. You can be ready to interact with locals, which will make your life so, so much easier if you ever need help.
Keep in mind that part of being alone can include loneliness, and that “travel blues” can sneak up on even the most seasoned travelers. Luckily, there’s an excellent solution for all of us – meeting people! Introducing oneself to new people is especially easier as an individual, and if you’re staying in a hostel, such accommodations are typically filled with other solo travelers just looking to connect. Do yourself a favor and reach out to those around you, because new friends will turn your trip from good to amazing. In addition, this can be a big factor in safety, as moving around at night or in unfamiliar places is always safer in numbers. Being isolated can be dangerous, so avoid the risk in the company of good people.
Is Costa Rica Safe for Solo Female Travelers?
Undoubtedly and unfortunately, women who are traveling alone face a different set of challenges. The aforementioned information is still completely relevant, but here are a few more tips to remember:
- Do not walk alone at night. This one is pretty universal. Walking alone after dark is risky, and never worth it. The best way to evade danger is to walk as part of a large group (we’d avoid not taking taxis alone after dark either).
- Confidence: Fake it till you make it – Those who might approach you looking to scam you (or worse) are searching for people who look lost, or unsure, as these people are immediately more vulnerable. So, if you’re lost or need help, shoulders back and chin out as you walk to a shop or other establishment to seek out the assistance you need.
- Be a copycat – Mimicking local fashion choices is a great way to blend in and avoid unwanted attention (which can be plentiful). Are they covering their shoulders? How do they wear their hair? Pay attention to how women in Costa Rica are dressing, and do the same.
- Make friends. Get to know as many people as possible so that you can always practice safety in numbers (also, friends are great, just saying).
- Write down the emergency numbers. Always good to have on hand, as you never know when you might need them in a pinch.
And that’s it! Vigilance is key – stay close to friends, use common sense, and your solo trip will be one of the best experiences of your life.
Looking for more information?
Check out the following articles below for other tips about safety in Costa Rica: