Traveling Alone in Palestine

The key to traveling alone in Palestine is to view the experience as an adventure. As long as you allot plenty of time to reach your destination and are prepared for your plans to change, traveling alone in Palestine is exciting and enjoyable. Traveling alone offers the opportunity to engage with locals and foreigners on a deeper level and truly experience the flavor of your destination.IMG_5853

When traveling alone in a foreign country, you must be resourceful and flexible. If you do not have access to your own car, travel in Palestine is not difficult, but it can be rather chaotic and it rarely goes according to plan. Groups traveling together can collaboratively problem-solve their way through difficulties, but when you are traveling alone, you must be able to figure things out yourself or request help. You can combat poor knowledge of an area by asking strangers for directions. Although having a travel plan can be useful, sometimes it is better to begin your travel without expectations and simply ask directions and suggestions along the way. If possible, try to learn the approximate prices of taxis and services where you are going and where they pick up passengers, but Palestinians are usually more than happy to direct travelers toward the correct bus or taxi station if you get confused. Past this, be patient and enjoy the unexpected twists and turns that come your way!IMG_5230

Traveling alone offers a number of benefits that are lost when traveling with companions. When traveling alone, locals are far more likely to engage you in conversation, ask you about your travel plans, and offer suggestions on what to see or how to get there. Locals you meet in serveeses (shared taxis) sometimes invite lone travelers to meals or coffee, or even volunteer to guide them around their cities. For your own safety, always follow your instincts and never do anything that makes you feel uncomfortable, but also consider that offering hospitality to travelers (especially travelers who are alone) is a part of the culture in Palestine and can lead to really authentic experiences.  IMG_5022 (1)

When traveling to cities to visit popular tourist sites, you are likely to meet other international travelers who are interested in seeing similar sights. It can be more enjoyable to explore an unfamiliar area with a group, so do not be afraid to ask groups if they mind you joining their tours. This offers you the structure of learning basic informational about the history and significance of a site, but without the cost of hiring a guide.

Guided tours typically visit the largest tourist sites in an area, so you can learn about these popular locations and then leave to explore an area by yourself. This gives you the chance to interact with locals, people-watch, and experience the parts of a city that are more authentic. Ask locals for suggestions about where to eat or the cheapest place to stay, because they know their own cities far better than Trip Advisor. Asking locals for suggestions can enhance your experience in an area.  IMG_3238

Traveling alone in Palestine can offer you insights that would be impossible to achieve when traveling with a large group. Embrace the unpredictability, connect with people from around the world, and explore the less traveled paths and you are certain to leave grateful that you traveled alone to Palestine.IMG_3242