What are the safest places to travel alone in India? Solo travel in India, especially for women, can be incredibly intense. Yet there are many adventurous, fascinating places to see and experience whilst feeling calmer and more collected. I asked my top travel blogging friends, who’ve been travelling alone in India just like me, where they felt the female friendly places are. The answers are various, inspirational and honest!
Covering the tips of the rugged mountains in the north to the shimmering sandy beaches in the south, you’ll find some excellent India travel advice below. Regardless of whether you’re feeling bulletproof and prepared for all kinds of chaos, or urgently need some respite from the inevitable sensory overload, there’s a spot in incredible India for you. Let’s start planning your solo trip!
17 Female Friendly Places to Travel Alone in India
Majuli ♥ Assam
Alex + Sebastiaan ♥ Lost With Purpose
Northeast India is often overlooked by travelers. Plagued by a persistent bad rep, the area is well off the beaten tourist track. It doesn’t help that it’s relatively far from major Indian metros and popular tourist destinations. However, the Northeast is an adventurer’s dream, and a great place for solo trips in India.
While traveling around the northeast, one of the first things that will strike you is the relative freedom with which women and girls go about their daily lives. Seeing groups of girls sitting on a porch playing games is not an uncommon sight. Boys and girls mix in public much more than other conservative areas of India.
Although Assam feels more Indian than the rest of the northeast, which feels more like Southeast Asia, there are still plenty of places where solo women travel India. Majuli river island is one of these places.
Long separated from the rest of Assam and India by the mighty Brahmaputra river, Majuli moves at its own pace. The handful of tourists that make it here spend their days leisurely cycling around the island. You can also visit old satras (Hindu monasteries) and sample local rice wine.
Because Majuli’s shores are eroding, and local farmers have to restore and rebuild them after each monsoon season, the majority of Majuli’s population lives a bare bones existence. Several local organizations are trying to turn the tide by teaching locals, especially women, practical skills such as weaving and embroidery. Not only is Majuli one of our favourite solo female travel destinations in India to escape the hectic mainland; it’s also a great place to see women empowerment and education in action.
Women Empowerment in India
You can travel India and help women empowerment projects with Hands on Journeys
Udaipur ♥ Rajasthan
Bethaney ♥ Flashpacker family
The easiest place I found when travelling solo in India was Udaipur. The main sites greet many tourists but the overwhelming vibe of Udaipur is being one of the most beautiful and relaxing places to visit alone. Set on a lake dotted with palaces and grand haveli, Udaipur is a lovely place to spend a few days. It’s very walkable and not frenetic like other places in India.
Udaipur was the first place I visited in India after arriving in Delhi and I had to keep reminding myself that this was actually India I was in, not Europe!
In general, I experienced very little harassment from men throughout my two weeks of solo travel in India but, to me, Udaipur felt to be the safest city in India. There weren’t the large groups of younger men travelling around India together like there were in other parts of the country.
No one asked me for selfies or to take pictures of me (to my relief!). This may be because Udaipur is considered a romantic destination in India and the Indian travellers visiting were couples, not groups of solo men.
I would recommend adding Udaipur to your itinerary if you’re a lone traveller in India but there are Rajasthan tour packages if need be.
Jaisalmer ♥ Rajasthan
Inma ♥ A World to Travel
After visiting Kerala, I made my way from the Southern tip to the North of India, stopping in many iconic destinations such as Goa, Jaipur, and Jodhpur. However, it wasn’t until I reached Jaisalmer, that I truly fell for India. The architecture, the Thar desert and how chill and welcoming India can truly be, appeared before me.
For some reason, even though this city is fascinating and hyper touristy, it isn’t crowded at all. I was able to experience a slow pace for a few days, and rest after some hectic weeks. I named it my favorite city in India!
I know this country is like a continent and has lots more to explore, but I am not sure that I will find the serene beauty I found here, anywhere else. Time will tell.
Varanasi ♥ Uttar Pradesh
Taylor ♥ Travel Outlandish
Is it safe to travel to India? India might not be the first destination that springs to mind when you think of solo female travel destinations. In a lot of ways, it’s a challenging place for it! But if you’ve got thick skin and an adventurous edge, it can be an excellent place for rapid personal transformation.
Varanasi is regarded as one of the holiest places to die in Hinduism. Devout Hindus might make the journey during their final days of life for a chance of being cremated in a plume of sandalwood smoke and to have their ashes dispersed in the Ganges.
What sounds like a tragic place is actually bursting with vivid color. You’ll find marigold garlands and extravagant saris for sale in lively markets. Most of the time, the mood is far from somber. But what exactly makes this a good place to go solo?
If you’ve not had much experience with death, Varanasi can be a good place to encounter your stigmas and fears with the subject. Rather than pushing through the discomfort with pals, going on holiday alone to Varanasi offers time for introspection.
Aside from Varanasi’s darker side, the prevalence of healthy cafes and eclectic bakeries offers a welcome reprieve from standard Indian fare.
Another perk is that the city is popular for longer stays, meaning you’ll find loads of yoga, massage, or music workshops where you can pick up a new skill while you stay a while.
Finally, if you’re keen on photography, there’s nowhere more photogenic than the simultaneously chaotic and beautiful Varanasi. It’s a challenging and fascinating place, and it offers an experience any female traveler could benefit from.
Rishikesh ♥ Uttarakhand
Mariellen Ward ♥ Breathe Dream Go
At dusk, the setting sun diffuses a pink light, lighting up the ghats and ashram that line the Ganga (Ganges) River, and creating an other-worldly atmosphere that does indeed make the veil between worlds seems thin. Here is where the Ganga tumbles out of the foothills of the Himalayas, a mesmerizing emerald green colour as it rushes through the peaceful valley. No doubt it is this atmosphere, plus the picturesque location of Rishikesh, that has contributed to its reputation as a sacred place. Sages (Rishis) have been gathering here since literally the dawn of history to meditate, chant, worship, and practise yoga.
Today, Rishikesh is considered the yoga capital of the world, and students come from every corner of the globe to study yoga, take courses, receive Ayurvedic treatment, and generally chill out in a beautiful spot. This is what makes it a good destination for solo travellers. There are not only lots of other foreign travellers here, there’s also loads of guest houses, hotels, ashrams, cafes, stores, and other places that cater to foreigners. It’s easy to meet people, there’s lots to do, you can find healthy and hygienic food – and it’s easily accessible from Delhi.
As someone who has spent several years in India, I’ve put in a lot of time in Rishikesh and the Rishikesh area. Personally, I’ve never had a problem. I’ve never been sick from eating anywhere in Rishikesh, and I’ve never felt unsafe. However, I would never make the claim that Rishikesh – or anywhere else – is “safe.” Things can happen anywhere, and you always need to be alert. Places like Rishikesh that attract a lot of tourists, also attract a lot of the types of people that prey on tourists. On balance, though, it is one of my top recommendations for solo travellers to India.
Bundi ♥ Rajasthan
Bundi is a relatively minor city, by Indian standards, in the South-east of Rajasthan. And not an especially famous one. When I first plotted out my motorcycle tour of the country, Bundi didn’t feature on it. Indeed, I’d never even heard of it. Yet, in my opinion, it’s one of the best destinations for solo female travelers.
It was only at the insistence of a friend of mine back home, a long-time Rudyard Kipling aficionado, who bombarded me mercilessly with email requests to take the detour on my route south from Jaipur. It proved to be more than worthwhile.
Bundi is, in short, a breath of fresh air. And after a month spent touring the smog-plagued cities of Delhi, Jaipur, Agra, and many a mile of dusty roads between, ‘fresh air’ was something I desperately sought.
The first thing that struck me as I rolled into this ancient and pale-blue city was ‘where is everyone?’ The trinket sellers, chai wallahs, hotel touts, drug dealers, tour guides, con artists, and beggars would materialise usually every time my wheels stopped turning. But in Bundi, nothing. Just a few smiles and nods from folks going about their daily business.
Even though Bundi boasts a fair selection of tourist sites, with the impressive Taragarh Fort, fairytale palace and immaculate step-wells, it actually doesn’t see many tourists. And because of this I was able to make friends and socialise without having to stick to the backpacker clique.
At my hotel (just a family home where the owners were happy to rent me a spare room), the matriarch of the family took it upon herself to teach me to cook some Indian meals. These are recipes that I am still using to this day.
I love Bundi. It’s pretty, quiet, friendly and hassle free. These are all the things you might be crying out for after visiting the more famous towns of Rajasthan.
Also, some monkeys stole my chocolate biscuits in Bundi. If you are going travelling alone here, let them know that seven years on, I still haven’t forgiven them.
Arambol ♥ Goa
Claire ♥ Backpacking Bella
Firstly, it’s super lively. Just stroll through the street market or along the wide sandy beach. You may well see jugglers, yogis or even a mellow cow or two! Every evening there is a sunset party on the beach, with tribal drums and trumpets. Anyone can join in this jam or just dance along. It creates a wonderful sense of community and the colourful sunsets are simply glorious.
It’s not a tacky and touristy party town. This part of Goa has retained its laid back charm. The 16 km shore is lined with independent wooden restaurants, bars and beach shacks. You can find plenty of opportunity for peace and reflection.
There’s also little chance of getting bored. With countless courses, workshops and festivals, just follow the posters, signs and flyers and you can try something new. It might be yoga, ecstatic dance, massage, Ayurveda or belly dancing. I even saw advertisements for a laugh power workshop, which sounds like a lot of fun!
Music is everywhere in this town, if you want to find it. From people playing guitars in chilled cafés, to organised concerts, open mic nights and beach side trance parties.
A short bike ride away are attractions like the fabulously quirky Anjuna night market. You can buy potions, mirrors and hats while taking in the entertainment.
Arambol is simply special. You are bound to meet like-minded people here, as it welcomes a blend of friendly folk, old and young. The people here are warm, open and generous, and everything just seems to go with the flow. Many visitors return year after year to this place. You’ll be welcomed back by the guest house owners who remember your name.
Hampi ♥ Karnataka
Sonal ♥ Drifter Planet
Hampi in India’s Karnataka state is an easy travel destination for solo female travelers because it really is safe. It is easy to reach here on a train or an overnight bus from Goa. Being an extremely small town, Hampi has somehow managed to retain it’s low key atmosphere. The best area to chill, traveling by yourself here, is actually across the river. It’s called “Hippie Island” and it is a small river island.
Also known as “The Forgotten Empire”, Hampi’s main town has the ruins and some of them date back to 1 CE. In my opinion, the best part about Hampi is its natural landscape. There are boulders everywhere and they seem to have been precariously arranged by Mother Nature.
Fort Kochi ♥ Kerala
Sindhu ♥ Interlude Journey
Not very far from the bustling city of Ernakulam is the ancient town of Fort Kochi. It’s a melting pot of various cultures. The Portuguese, Dutch and English merchants set foot on its land in search of the lucrative spice trade. Though the fort no longer remains, the lavish mansions built by the explorers and merchants who made Kochi their home still do.
Beautifully paved roads lined with rain trees welcome you as you walk along the ancient streets of Fort Kochi. As you set out to explore the streets, you can’t help but notice the beautifully restored colonial homes. They have been converted into boutique hotels, while a few houses have become bookstores and antique shops.
The huge whitewashed British mansions and the vibrant Dutch cottages with split doors and balconies filled with colorful blooms are sure to lure you into endless explorations. If history intrigues you, you should not miss visiting the Dutch Palace and the Indo-Portuguese museum in Fort Kochi.
For all things antique, you would love exploring the shops in Jew Town. If you love seafood, there is no better place than here to try some authentic local and international cuisine. You can also buy your favorite variety of fish from the local fish market and get it cooked as per your liking in one of the sea-facing shacks.
I highly recommend embarking on a backwater cruise in Kochi to explore the fishing villages!
Fort Kochi also has many theaters and performance centers which arrange cultural performances to showcase the traditional dance forms of Kerala including the likes of Kathakali, Mohiniattam, and Theyyam.
After a busy day spent in exploring all the awesomeness that Kochi has to offer, sit by the Chinese fishing nets and enjoy the sundown as you watch the local fishermen in action. Fort Kochi is best explored on foot, so take the help of the free tourist guides provided by the Kerala Tourism Department to plan your walking tour of Kochi.
Auroville ♥ Pondicherry
Amrita ♥ Tale of 2 Backpackers
India is a cacophony of colours, odours, noise and ideas. Although solo travel is gaining a lot of popularity in India, there are still a few ifs and buts for the female solo travellers. But believe me, India is one of the safest places for female solo travellers. I have travelled across the country and my experiences have been overwhelmingly positive.
One of my favourite destinations in India for solo female travellers is Pondicherry. Located on the eastern coast of the country, Pondicherry is a quaint town where time literally takes a break. Pondicherry was initially a French settlement in India and still has the reminiscence of the French architecture in the town.
Pondicherry is a serene place with quaint colonial buildings, tree-lined boulevards, endless blue seas beside the virgin beaches and backwaters along with spiritual sceneries. Also the cafes and restaurants of the place are simply out of the world. You can linger around the sea beaches, walk down the quaint roads at any time of the day without anyone to disturb you. You can simply rent a bicycle or a scooty and travel around the town at your own leisure.
While at Pondicherry, do visit the Aurobindo Ashram, the various heritage buildings and the lovely beaches. You can also visit Auroville Township, a few kilometers away from Pondicherry. Auroville is the global nation with people from various nations living and volunteering there.
Spirituality is something that is gained by self. And Pondicherry is such a place where you can find peace and spirituality at every corner. At the Aurobindo Ashram, you can understand the beauty of simplicity and the experience the peaceful atmosphere. Auroville will definitely make you realize the power of meditation. The Matri Mandir at Auroville is a powerful place where one can meditate for hours and find the inner peace. No wonder, the place is ideal for traveling solo. Pondicherry is one of the safest and the most beautiful place to travel in India.
Varkala ♥ Kerala
Anne ♥ Travellers Archive
A couple of years ago, I went to Varkala. Before that I travelled through Delhi, Mumbai and a couple of other places along the Golden Triangle. I must admit, that the small town of Varkala, has been the first place in India where I felt relaxed.
I could go to the beach and simply lie on a sarong without having a group of Indian men around me. When I went out for dinner on my own, I could walk along the road without having millions of eyes gazing at me.
Varkala is a true gem after all the hustle and bustle from the rest of India and I do advise other female solo travellers to come here. You’ll see that there are places to travel solo in India where women can feel safe.
I stayed at a small homestay, which was led by two brothers. It was just me and another girl who stayed there in a small hut. Because it was just us, the brothers even employed a nice security guard for that period, who escorted us by his torch to my place, which wasn’t even necessary as Varkala is so nice and calm.
Another nice feature about Varkala is that the place is small and easy to simply walk around. I started with a nice Indian breakfast in one of the many restaurants that offer vast beach views. I went to yoga classes, had Ayurveda massages and went out for freshly grilled fish for dinner.
After having been there for one week, I knew the people who live in Varkala and they knew me. Thus, every morning I was greeted nicely. Trust me, that comes in as such a relief after having travelled through the rest of India. Varkala is a place where you can rest and enjoy a proper holiday – the Indian way.
Gangtok ♥ Sikkim
Viktor ♥ Traveling Lifestyle
Sikkim is one of the best solo travel destinations in India. It’s a place where Buddhism mixes with Hinduism in the amazing Nepali community. The mix of religions created a unique fusion of architecture that separates this place from all other destinations.
It’s hard not to be attracted to it especially when you can see the astonishing snow-covered peaks of the Himalayas. On some days you can spot Khangchendzonga (8598m); the third tallest mountain in the world.
It is totally different from whatever you have experienced in India before with its tribal vibe, beautiful alpine forests and magnificent mountains all around. We recommend visiting Rumtek Monastery with its collection of various historical artifacts. If you like hiking then you should trek to Goecha La. It’s a week-long adventure but the best trek for sighting Mt Khangchendzonga.
You can also taste the world famous Temi tea in the place where its harvested, schedule an excursion to see its gardens, and gain a deeper appreciation for the drink. Sikkim is becoming the first state in India that is going fully organic with its production and consumption of food material. It’s the perfect place to detoxify yourself.
We also recommend driving to the valley of Tsomgo Lake and rafting on the turbulent Teesta river. Different parts of the river are different difficulty levels so pros and newbies can enjoy themselves at the same time.
If you are interested in Tibet culture, you should definitely visit the Namgyal Institute of Tibetology in Gangtok. You’ll gain an understanding of the nuances of local cultures here. Experience the Buddhist life by attending religious ceremonies, meditating in ancient gompas and fully immersing yourself in the day to day life of Buddhists.
And if your soul is still restless after trying to find all that inner peace, you should know that Gangtok also has an awesome nightlife that you shouldn’t miss on. Sikkim is definitely at the top of my solo travel ideas for India, so don’t hesitate to visit it in the near future!
Amritsar ♥ Punjab
I went to Amritsar as soon as direct flights from Singapore started and I was blown away by the beauty of the Golden Temple and the kindness of the people. Amritsar’s old town has been recently refurbished and completely revamped with pedestrian zones, clean streets promoting the city’s heritage and lovely facades. I went during Diwali, which made the trip extra special, as I got to see the holy Golden temple all lit up.
Amritsar is a great destination for two spectacles. One is the Golden Temple itself, which receives thousands of Sikh visitors every year coming to pay their respects to the holy book. People queue for hours just to see it up close and many bathe in the holy waters in the middle of the temple complex. The Temple itself is stunning. The walls are made of intricate designs engraved on marvel, just like the Taj Mahal. Food is served twice a day at the back of the temple and you can sit down on the floor and enjoy a vegetarian meal with the locals.
Another great reason to visit Amritsar is its proximity to the border with Pakistan and the opportunity to see the the daily closing of the border with India, a really impressive show. I saw it from the Pakistani side in Lahore so did not go from Amritsar, but the show is the same. An incredible exchange of salutations, anthems and lowering of flags that ends with the official closing of the gates between the two countries. Every single day.
Contrary to other parts of India, I found Amritsar to be extremely peaceful and quiet. The locals were very nice, wanting to take photos with me at all times. They’re always smiling and looking to help. Taking cabs was easy and I also used a lot of Ubers to avoid having to haggle.
McLeod Ganj ♥ Himachal Pradesh
Crystal ♥ Castaway With Crystal
As soon as you step off the bus you’ll feel like McLeod Ganj is different. Nestled on the edge of a mountain with spectacular views, cold air and Tibetan flags adorn the tiny streets. It’s an easy place to fall in love with straight away. And the food is to die for! Here, you’ll find tiny Tibetan momo cafes, Indian street food and delicious Israeli Cafes all crammed together. Immediately you feel the peacefulness this tiny hillside town exudes, a difficult thing to find in bustling India.
The town of Mcleod Ganj itself has become such a hotspot that at times it can become quite congested and manic. If searching for pure tranquil peace and quiet as well as some crazy-good views, I would suggest heading 2 km around the corner to Dharamkot. The cute hotels here are perched on the side of the valley and can only be accessed on foot by stone steps and narrow nature-filled walkways.
McLeod Ganj is where the Dalai Lama set up residence after fleeing Tibet, and he still often gives talks in Dharamshala. If you stay long enough, eventually the Dalai Lama will do a talk nearby. I very highly recommend this, as not only is it free, but he’s actually hilarious in person.
While wondering the area, you’ll notice many volunteering signs pinned on the walls of businesses. You can find opportunities like teaching Tibetan refugees English and organised rubbish pick-ups from the waterfalls and trekking paths. There are also yoga and meditation hubs all over to find your peace and tranquility within.
If adventure is more your thing, be sure to trek the four hours up the mountain to snow-capped Triund. On top, you’ll find a gorgeous flat grassy knoll, just perfect for camping. And you’re in luck, as there are tents that are rented out to tourists to stay the night, so no need to bring your own!
Because of its small size and popularity with tourists, McLeod Ganj is a safe place for women to head alone. There’s a strong community feel there, especially when you hang out at the cafés, bars or partake in one of the volunteering opportunities. Even if you don’t make friends right away, you’ll be sure to run into the same people over and over. There’s a big reason why many travellers come here for a few days and end up staying months. Like I did.
However, if I were to give any word of warning about the town that stole my heart; It would be to exercise the same amount of caution as you would anywhere else in India or the world. It is safe, but things can still happen. While there, I had a friend pressured to have sex by her Tantra teacher. I also heard of a woman being sexually assaulted at a music festival while I was there.
Kinnaur ♥ Himachal Pradesh
Divsi ♥ Quirky Wanderer
Of all the great places to travel alone in India, if there is one place I can vouch for, it is the state of Himachal Pradesh. With simple mountain folks and their heartwarming hospitality, my trip to Kinnaur is most memorable because ‘I felt safe’. Traveling alone in India can be tricky for women. Being an Indian, I have no qualms in being politically incorrect and we have to be on our guard always! But I’d recommend Kinnaur to any solo women traveler as the people are super warm, friendly and very very helpful.
Another reason it is this way is because it is still not as easily accessible as Shimla and Manali (the more popular, touristy places in Himachal). Reached via an arduous, 11 hour long treacherous journey from Chandigarh, Kinnaur is a district comprised of picturesque towns of Kalpa and Sangla. Both of these are idyllic places, nestled in the hills with gorgeous views of the valley and rivers.
Kalpa offers panoramic views of the Kinner Kailash mountain where sunsets and sunrises are beyond beautiful. There are intricately carved temples with great folklore and delectable local mountain cuisine (mushrooms are blissful!).
Sangla on the other hand offers serene views of the Baspa river and a wonderful opportunity to take part in the local festivals held in September where locals celebrate Ookhayang with great fervour.
One can trek through tiny villages, indulge in the local apricot wine and savour the sights of the endless apple orchards. The best season to visit is undoubtedly the apple season! My best trips to take alone are village walks and nature trails as well as a day trip to Chitkul (the last village of India) and Roghi village which has the famed ‘Suicide point’.
Shimla ♥ Himachal Pradesh
Sharon ♥ Simpler and Smarter
Located in the north-west region of the Himalayas, Shimla is quite a contrast from the rest of India. Due to its position in the mountains it can get a lot colder than many of the larger cities located in the south of the country. Although it’s a popular tourist destination, there’s a lot less hassle here than other parts of India, making it a fabulous destination for single travellers.
Shimla has many things to do that make it unique. Due to it’s mountainous position, one of the most popular things to do is to take a train ride from Kalka to Shimla for a view of the mountains. This is simply the best way to take in the fabulous scenery.
Its mountainous position makes for some great walking tracks. If you are up for a hike, you can trek to the top of Jakhu Hill where you can visit Jakhhu Temple and Rothney Castle on the way. This is also the highest point of Shimla. Scandal Point is another must see location where you can take in the best views of the mountains and is a particularly popular place at sunrise/sunset.
It’s also quite a pretty place with some fabulous architecture to appreciate. This is largely due to a decent amount of colonial British buildings. Just walking around the streets is enough to appreciate them. Grander buildings include ones such as the Institute of Advanced Studies.
If you’re interested in museums, you can also visit the Military Museum in Annandale for an insight into the India Pakistan war of 1971.
With it’s fair share of adventure activates, Shimla is also a great destination to go rafting or to enjoy something more low key like ice-skating in the only open air ice skating rink in Asia. And, like most of India, Shimla is cost effective, making it the ultimate spot to escape the city for single travellers.
Tom ♥ Travel Tom Tom
Most people think I am crazy when I say that I felt completely safe while traveling solo through Kashmir. Officially, Kashmir is at war, as the region is claimed by China and Pakistan. Yet it is officially ruled by India.
When you travel to Kashmir you will find out that the Kashmiri people are nothing like Indian people and look more like Central Asians. Asking them about the dispute, they are very clear about it: they don’t really care to which country they belong to. They just want the governments to stop the conflict.
When I arrived at the airport in Srinagar, I had to register with the tourist police before I could continue my journey. I stayed overnight in a house boat on the Dal Lake with a local family. These people were my hosts and my guides at the same time. They drove me around, showed me the most amazing places and told me where to travel alone. This family was the best host ever and treated me like one of them. As a solo traveler it was the best thing I could wish for as there are very few other travelers in this region. Coincidentally though, I met a solo female traveler and she decided to join me and the family for another couple days traveling through Kashmir.
This unique region is an amazing off the beaten path destination in India and its landscapes are amazing. The nature is unbelievably stunning and there are so many amazing things to do in Kashmir. The best thing about it is that you hardly see any other tourists. People are extremely friendly and willing to show you how peaceful the Kashmiri region actually is. They’re hoping you will spread the word about it. People invite you to their homes for dinner or to drink tea asking nothing in return. I have never felt this level of hospitality anywhere else in the world. Please give the utterly stunning region of Kashmir a chance.
Ladakh ♥ Kashmir
Ellie ♥ Soul Travel Blog
With its Buddhist stupas rising up to impossibly blue skies and brightly coloured prayer flags that flutter in icy winds, Ladakh seems a million miles away from the hustle and bustle of your “typical” Indian city. There are no Indian railways here and even the chai is different.
Tucked away in the eastern corner of Jammu and Kashmir state, Ladakh is a peaceful place. Most who come here are called by the mountains – to either trek through them (highly recommended!), to travel through them by road to visit homestays or stop at stunning lakes and monasteries, or perhaps just to receive some higher wisdom.
The culture has a heavy Tibetan Buddhist influence, making it a great option for female travellers who prefer a bit more local female company. Whereas some parts of India are still deeply patriarchal, there is little trace of that in Ladakh. The people that I met in Ladakh were extremely friendly, laid-back and welcoming, and there is far less hassle / hustle than many people experience in the ‘rest’ of India.
In Leh I found it safe to walk around in the evening, and felt very relaxed. The most attention you’re likely to receive (even as a solo female traveller) is being invited to look in countless Kashmiri scarf shops in Leh. One of the best ways to experience Leh is to stay in a small homestay. Then sample some of the Ladakhi cuisine (which is quite different to the rest of India) and hop in a Bolero (shared pick-up jeep).
Ladakh is cut off from the rest of India for 6 months of the year by snow and ice, making roads impassable from October to March (you can still fly in). Ladakh is best visited in Spring and Summer when trekking routes open. “High Season” is July and August when most tourists visit but prices are higher. If you fly into Leh allow 2-3 adjustment days for the altitude before beginning trekking.
Ahmedabad ♥ Gujarat
Sandy and Vyjay ♥ Voyager
Wondering where to travel in India? One of the best places to travel by yourself is Ahmedabad. A city situated in the western state of Gujarat, it’s identified with the apostle of peace and non-violence, Mahatma Gandhi. He lived here for 22 years. The Sabarmati Ashram is a symbol of peace in the city. The aura of Mahatma Gandhi still seems to pervade the city and is alive in the peace-loving nature of its citizens.
Ahmedabad ranks second in India’s list of safest cities based on the crime rate. Apart from the statistics, I have personally experienced the warmth, hospitality, and helpful nature of the people of Ahmedabad.
Imagine a girl bedecked in the finest of jewelry walking alone well past midnight in the city of Ahmedabad feeling as safe as if she were strolling in her own backyard. This is actually not a stretch of the imagination. This actually happens during the Navratri Festival in Ahmedabad.
Public transport in Ahmedabad is absolutely safe for women traveling alone unlike some other cities. The honesty of the Autorickshaw drivers of Ahmedabad is also legendary. It is highly unlikely you will ever get scammed in Ahmedabad.
Another reason Ahmedabad is one of the the best places to travel solo in India, is the hospitality and helpful nature of the people. If you ask for directions from a local, there’s a good chance they’ll escort you to wherever you want to go. If you happen to visit the home of a local, chances are very slim of you leaving without having a meal of warm, home-cooked authentic and traditional food.
Ahmedabad is indeed a haven for solo travelers who can just sit back and indulge in the various experiences that the city has to offer. These range from the historical to the cultural, gastronomic to the architectural.
Mike ♥ Bemused Backpacker
One of the best places to visit alone in India, regardless of gender, is one that may surprise a lot of people. Delhi. I know, Delhi is a hard city to get to know at first. It is infinitely enigmatic, chaotic and bewildering in equal measure. It ensures that culture shock hits even experienced backpackers, like a baseball bat to the face, but that is exactly why it is perfect for solo travellers.
Solo travel is not meant to be easy. It is not meant to mollycoddle you or give you a sanitised experience of travel. It is there to push you outside of your comfort zone, to be a little scary. Delhi is supposed to test you. Moulding and shaping you into a stronger, tougher, braver and infinitely more awesome version of yourself. This is exactly why Delhi should be the first stop in any solo itinerary of India.
Delhi is an absolute assault on your senses at all times. The sights, sounds and smells will bombard you constantly! You will try to deal with the sheer level of people crowding around you, everywhere you go. But, if you can get past that, survive the culture shock and look beyond the surface, Delhi rewards you tenfold. You’ll be given one of the richest experiences of India ever.
This vibrant, living city will open up to you and show you a deep, lavish tapestry of culture and history. It’s a fascinating explosion of old and new. India is many things to many people, but only in Delhi can you find it all in one teeming melting pot.
If you can not only survive but thrive in Delhi, then you will have the confidence and the ability to travel anywhere in India.
Travelling alone for the first time in India?
Travelling on your own in India can be daunting but there’s locals who can help. You might want to consider getting an India trip plan from trip planners India Someday. Just fill in this no obligation questionnaire to share your ideas with them. They’ll put together a complete itinerary that you can then go ahead and do solo. They book your transport and accommodation and take the stress out of India travel. Solo travelers immediately get 20% off their trip plan and if you mention ‘Teacake’, you’ll get a further 5% off.
What are your favourite places to travel alone in India? Comment Below!
I hope all of this India travel advice has given you the strength and inspiration to go forth. Believe in women traveling alone in India! Of all the places to travel in India, my blogging friends certainly seem to be favouring the north. I agree that’s a great place to start. My independent North India trip with India Someday rocked!
With any trip, good and bad can happen in any place. Learn your self defence skills, follow my solo female travel safety tips and keep going strong adventurers! I hope these recommendations help you consider what the safest places for women to travel alone in India are. I’m wishing you happy, successful and fulfilling adventures!
Don’t leave home without travel insurance!
Don’t be a mug. Please don’t leave for your adventure without travel insurance. However careful you are, things can still go wrong. I’ve ended up in hospital in Russia, had stuff cut out of my arm in Vietnam and don’t even get me started on that time I was vomiting my guts up in Poland.
Do the right thing right now. Get a quote.