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Five tips for enjoying Italy as a solo traveller

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Five tips for enjoying Italy as a solo traveller

February 15th is San Faustino - aka Singles' Day - in Italy. In honour of the occasion, we've put together five tips for travelling alone in the 'bel paese'.


1. Take in some culture

Museums, art galleries and other cultural sites are the ideal places to visit alone, as you can go at your own pace and avoid being rushed by impatient companions (or held up by sluggish ones, depending on your disposition).

READ ALSO: San Faustino: Why February 15th is ‘Singles’ Day’ in Italy

An audio guide is always a plus, allowing you to shut out the outside world and fully focus on what's right in front of you.


You'll be surprised how much more you're able to take in when you're not continually scanning the horizon for a travel-mate's bobbing head.

2. Follow your nose 

One of the many pleasures of solo travel is not having to follow any fixed itinerary or timeline.

With only yourself to answer to, you're in the rare situation of being completely free to wander wherever you want - which means you're more likely to make interesting, off-the-beaten-path discoveries.

When you're in a neighbourhood you like, try setting aside Google Maps and simply following your nose down the streets that look most appealing to you. You never know what hidden treasures you might stumble upon when you're not bound to a schedule.

READ ALSO: 23 famous quotes to inspire you to travel to Italy

There's no telling what you might find when you have the freedom to wander off alone.

There's no telling what you might find when you have the freedom to wander off alone. Photo by TIZIANA FABI / AFP.

3. Book a small tour

If you're feeling the need for a dose of human companionship, join a small group tour or food or wine tasting session. 

There's nothing like taking part in fun activities on holiday to spark friendly conversation and general jollity between strangers (wine tastings are particularly conducive to this). 

READ ALSO: Nine overlooked Italian towns you should visit

By the end, you might even have made a friend you want to spend more time with - or you can simply zip up your satchel and be on your way, free from social obligation.

4. Table for one

How to eat out alone in Italy, where the social element is a key part of restaurant dining?

One of your best options is the apericena - an early-evening drink that comes with a small dinner. While many cafes and bars serve an aperitivo drink with snacks, those serving a more substantial apericena are fewer, so have a look online beforehand for recommendations near you.

READ ALSO: Nine tips for making the most of a Rome city break

If you're looking for a full meal, many restaurants are fine with single diners, but choose well: you want somewhere with a fairly casual vibe, and not anywhere small that relies on filling all its tables to stay in business.

Tell the person greeting you at the door that you're alone; if they pull a face or seem unhappy, cut your losses and head elsewhere.

The apericena can be a good option for solo diners in Italy.

The apericena can be a good option for solo diners in Italy. Photo by TIZIANA FABI / AFP.


5. Plan an evening activity

When you're travelling solo, it can be tempting to hole up in your hotel room after dinner - which is fine on occasion, but there's no need to completely forgo nightlife just because you're alone.

Have a look for evening concerts, plays, cinema screenings or film showings in your area, and take yourself out to at least one. There are few things more delicious than dissolving into a crowd as an anonymous spectator and abandoning all sense of self for a few hours.

READ ALSO: Why now’s the best time to discover Italy’s secret lakes and mountains


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