As I walked through the jetway, leaving soon to another country with no one but myself, it finally sunk in. Who does this? What am I doing here? Is this even a little okay? On the surface, these questions are alarming and worrisome, but as they ran through my mind, a broad smile expanded across my face.
A few months prior, after revealing my solo plans, I was inundated with concerns from my friends and family. As much as I appreciate and understand they were only looking out for my best interest, I felt frustrated and grew to be a bit skeptical myself.
Regardless, I knew this was something I had to do. Not to prove anything to the doubters, but to venture out on my own and seek my independent capabilities. And did I ever.
Although Mexico is infamously known for being what some might call “sketchy,” not once did I feel unsafe. From the time my feet touched the tile floors in the airport to the time I was en route home, I felt comfortable, calm and collected.
Being my first time in Cancun, I was astounded by the beauty of the city! The water is gorgeous, the beaches are dazzling and the weather was perfectly warm. Because it’s such a relaxed destination, everyone there is friendly and at ease. There wasn’t one time when I regretted my destination decision – even after I had a bloody nose from beach volleyball oops!
When people ask me what my favorite part of the trip was, with no hesitation I answer “the hostel.” It really saddens me that people in the US have such a bad idea about hostels because this was the highlight of my trip. They truly are missing out on a lot because of this misleading fear.
The hostel was amazing not because of the exclusive bar it had, or the complimentary breakfast and dinner they offered, or the pool and activities they hosted, but because of the overall communal feel. Everyone is there for the same reason you are: to discover and travel the world. People who stay at hostels come from different parts of the world (I was among one or two other Americans there for my stay), but are also entirely like-minded. Everyone is there to meet new people and to gain valuable experiences they’ll never forget.
When I went to the beach with a group of new friends from the hostel I ran out into the crystal clear ocean with a beer in hand and took in the beauty and thanked myself for doing what I did. That was such an impactful moment for me because I’m truly grateful for the urge that was planted in my mind months ago to go on this incredible adventure that will always be in my memories.
The vast amount of people I met in just one short week makes me teary-eyed because they were honestly all so amazing! I know I’ll always keep in contact with some and because they were a part of my first solo adventure, they will all have a special place in my heart 🙂
In addition to the amazing people and locations my adventures were spectacular! Aside from my many beach excursion I also took a catamaran to Isla Mujeres one day and went snorkeling through an underwater museum, went to a private beach and did some shopping on the island.
I also went on an amazing expedition that involved snorkeling, zip lining, repelling, cliff jumping and kayaking – all in one day. It was exhausting but so, so worth it. Definitely one of the highlights of my trip. You can see for yourself below, the smile tells all.
Originally, my trip was planned for Saturday to Wednesday… yeah, that didn’t happen! I was far from ready to leave and ended up extending my trip until Saturday… sorry not sorry. With that being said, I highly, highly recommend and encourage every 20 something to go on a solo trip at least once. I say once, but if your experience is anything like mine was, you’ll be planning your next solo trip the week you come back!