Safest Countries for Solo Travelers

Shutterstock/Veronika Galkina

  • From Uruguay to Japan to Denmark to Canada, there are safe countries for solo travelers in every corner of the planet.
  • Those seeking a safe solo experience and lots of outdoor activities should check out Canada, Iceland, Finland and New Zealand.
  • If you want to try delicious new foods on your travels, check out Japan.

For some people, traveling to a different country is a mixed bag. On one hand is the obvious excitement of visiting a new destination. Taking in new experiences, meeting new people, trying new foods and exploring a new culture is fun. On the other hand, there’s always a concern as to whether that new place is safe for solo travelers.

Fortunately, plenty of destinations across the globe are safe. Many of these countries are accustomed to travelers, and the locals are open, friendly and accepting of cultural differences. That said, it’s still important to do your homework before traveling solo and follow some basic safety tips.

Here are 12 of the safest countries to visit if you’re traveling alone:

Denmark

Nordic countries are famously happy, and that includes Denmark. It’s one of the safest countries in the world, and Danish people are very friendly to travelers.

Denmark’s capital Copenhagen provides a plethora of experiences for solo travelers. Chief among them is exploring the city on a bicycle. In fact, one of the best ways to see Copenhagen is on a guided bicycle tour. As one of the most bike-friendly cities in the world, there’s no challenge finding cycles to rent.

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Iceland

Iceland is emerging as one of the most desirable destinations for solo travelers, especially those who love outdoor experiences. The country’s impressive environs include vast caves, volcanoes and glaciers to explore. If you need a spa day after all of your trekking, take a dip in the Blue Lagoon’s geothermal waters to ease the tension.

And adventurers, rejoice: Iceland is ranked as the most peaceful country on earth, which makes it an excellent destination for solo travelers. One caveat is that things are notoriously expensive in the country, with restaurant and accommodations costing 44% more than the European average.

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Finland

Finland is another astonishing country for nature lovers. Known as the land of the midnight sun, it’s also one of the few habitable places on earth where you can see the Northern Lights.  Lemmenjoki National Park, the country’s largest national park, is one of the biggest parks in Europe and absolutely beautiful in all seasons, so long as you’re dressed for the weather.

While the winters are bitterly cold, the people are warm. On the safety front, it doesn’t get much better than Finland. Even the country’s capital of Helsinki doesn’t really have any “bad” neighborhoods.

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Uruguay

Many solo travelers set their sites on European countries, but Uruguay has impressively low crime rates — even compared to Canada and the United States. This makes it a fantastic destination for travelers looking for a Latin-American experience.

Uruguay is a small country, but its people are warm and welcoming. In the country’s capital, Montevideo, you’ll find an eclectic mix of cultural influences from all over the world and spanning centuries. Countless art and history museums are scattered throughout the capital.

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Austria

Located in the center of Europe, Austria’s classical music, amazing architecture and unforgettable culture fill the country. This amazing country has something for every kind of traveler, whether you prefer culture, food or outdoor adventures in the Alps. You may need a second and third trip to experience everything Austria has to offer.

Austria is incredibly safe for solo travelers, and given its influx of tourists year after year, its inhabitants welcome travelers of every kind.

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Czech Republic

The Czech Republic is a safe and vibrant country with numerous options for travelers of all kinds. With its low crime rates, solo travelers will enjoy a rewarding cultural experience in this timeless country.

The country’s capital, Prague, which is one of the hottest destination in Europe, is especially safe for solo adventurers. With its towering medieval architecture and cobbled streets, the city’s downtown is actually a UNESCO World Heritage Site. If you’re a solo traveler in search of a serious cultural experience that’s centuries in the making, the Czech Republic is the place.

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Portugal

Portugal’s low crime rates and friendly attitude toward tourists makes it stand out when it comes to safety for solo travelers. According to a survey by the Global Peace Index, the country is one of the most peaceful in the world.

Portugal’s public transportation makes it easy for travelers to discover the country. Be sure to visit the Belém Tower, São Jorge Castle and other must-see attractions. You’ll also want to listen to some traditional fado music while snacking on the country’s famous Belém pastries.

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Canada

Chances are, if you leave a wallet full of cash in Canada, you’ll find it in the same spot or returned to your local police station intact. The country is internationally recognized for its respect and tolerance, ensuring a peaceful experience for solo travelers.

Canada is also recognized for its warm embrace of immigrants and tourists, as it is one of the most sought after countries for English language exchanges. It’s an excellent option for solo travelers looking to explore mountains, forests, oceans, lakes, rivers, tundras and glaciers.

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New Zealand

According to the Global Peace Index, New Zealand is the second most peaceful country in the world. This is probably why its inhabitants are so warm and friendly.

Many backpackers and outdoors lovers visit New Zealand every year. Fjords, rainforests, waterfalls, caves and even glaciers fill this tiny country. You can even go whale watching at the Bay of Plenty. It’s smaller and cheaper than Australia, and sees a high number of backpackers every year – a very inexpensive way to travel solo.

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Singapore

If you’re a foodie, you need to visit Singapore. The country is renowned for its amazing food. Seafood, in particular, is the city-state’s shining star, with dishes such as black pepper crab, chili crab and sambal stingray dominating menus. Singapore is also home to the first Michelin-starred Peranakan restaurant in the world, Candlenut, which offers guests a taste of traditional Straits-Chinese cuisine.

As for safety, Singapore is heavily policed, giving it a very low crime rate. And since all the open-air markets give this destination a sense of bustle, solo travelers will feel both safe and connected to the city’s masses.

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Slovenia

A small country in central Europe, Slovenia has around 2 million inhabitants, and it’s a destination that stands out for solo travelers. It consistently ranks in the top five on the Global Peace Index, making it a standout destination for solo travelers.

Outdoor attractions in Slovenia include ski resorts, mountain ranges and lakes. To see the country’s best offerings, head to the city of Bled and visit a medieval castle set on a cliff. Afterward, relax in Lake Bled, a glacial lake fed by hot springs. While you’re at it, visit the island in the center of the lake.

Shutterstock/Zdenek Matyas Photography

Japan

Community watchfulness, strict laws and the use of security cameras help make Japan one of the safest countries in the world. The nation has experienced very low crime rates for decades and is known for its cordiality.

Solo travelers can enjoy the beauty of sumptuous temples and vibrant urban life. If you’re a foodie, Japan is an especially unforgettable destination. To try the best of the best sushi, head to Michelin-starred restaurant Sukiyabashi Jiro in Tokyo.

Shutterstock/Sean Pavone

Tim Kaechle

Tim Kaechle

Tim Kaechle is a freelance writer and digital nomad who loves learning and creating things for the web. When he’s not busy writing about his myriad of interests, he’s brushing up on his programming and digital design skills, all while wandering the world. He’s currently kicking around in Brazil and planning his next big adventure.

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