City breaks for singles

By Cathy Winston, Editor

If you’re new to solo travel, city breaks are one of my top ways to try holidaying alone. There’s no need to commit to anything longer than a (long) weekend, there’s plenty to entertain from museums to sightseeing, and in bigger cities you can blend into the crowd rather than feeling like you’re standing out.

And whether it’s your first single holiday or your fiftieth, there are plenty of ways to see some of the world’s great cities.

Cultured city break

From art galleries to museums and world-class performances, as well as destinations which have inspired great literature, an urban escape is an easy way to indulge your love of culture.

See the sights in the company of an expert guide, including the chance to discover places not always open to the public with Martin Randall Travel. The company’s list of themed tours includes destinations in the UK and Europe, including new tours exclusively for solo travellers such as St Petersburg.

Or discover some of Europe’s most important music festivals and events with Kirker Holidays, including the Verona Opera festival and a series of short breaks around the UK.

City break plus

If you prefer the thought of joining a group tour to exploring solo, there’s plenty of choice for city lovers – usually with a taste of the rest of the country along the way.

Join one of these group tours to Italy such as Tuscany (Florence, Pisa, Siena) with solo specialist Just You.

Further north, you can combine fascinating Rekyjavik with some of Iceland’s highlights, the Golden Circle and Blue Lagoon, on a West Iceland Wonders tour from Regent Holidays, as well as a Reykjavik city break.

Or visit Russia’s two great cities on a tour exclusively for solo travellers with Cox & Kings – their other tours for single travellers includes a chance to discover Cape Town as part of the Splendours of South Africa itinerary.

Further afield, Inside Japan Tours can tailor-make itineraries while the Tokaido Trail tour visits both Tokyo and Kyoto. Or InsideAsia Tours can transport you from Hanoi to Ho Chi Minh City, along with Hoi An and Hue, on its Highlights of Vietnam tour.

And most tours in Thailand include a stop in Bangkok. On The Go Tours has no compulsory single supplement on many of its small group tours – the five-day Thailand Express visits Bangkok, Chiang Mai and Chiang Rai if you’re short of time, while the longer Thailand, Temples & Tribes includes all three as well as a chance to discover more of the country’s culture and history.

Thailand for Teens is ideal for families while Bangkok Beach & Beyond and Bangkok to Koh Samui both mix beach and city.

And for older travellers, Saga’s singles-only tours are exclusively for over 50s. The Magic of Andalucia tour visits Seville and Granada as well as Cordoba and Jerez.

Summer sunset over Riddarholmen, a small islet connected to the old town of Stockholm. In the photo one of the oldest buildings in Stockholm stands out, the Riddarholm Church, the burial church of the Swedish monarchs.

City breaks with a difference

If you feel you’ve done Paris and Barcelona and the rest, how about this Reykjavik city break – go in the winter for the Northern Lights, or summer for the Midnight Sun.

Why stop at one city when you could see a whole string? Joining a cruise can take you to the capitals of the Baltics or past some of the great Mediterranean cities, as well as plenty of choice in America and Asia too.

The informality of Norwegian Epic includes plenty of solo-friendly touches, and its itineraries include the chance to cruise from Barcelona to Naples, Rome and Florence.

Or discover the Baltics with one of Fred Olsen’s itineraries, which are ideal for older solo travellers.

Over-50s will also love the small ship cruises from Saga Travel. Saga Sapphire visits a string of cities as she approaches her Grand Finale cruise in 2020, while more than 20% of the cabins on the new boutique-style Spirit of Discovery will be for solo travellers, with cruises to northern France’s cities and the Baltics planned.

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Last updated: 10 October 2019

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