Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Travel Tuesday: Solo vs. companion(s)?

Welcome back to Travel Tuesday! Today's suggested prompt is about your companion preferences while traveling: Who is your favorite travel partner? Do you prefer to travel in large groups, small groups or alone? As always, don't feel obligated to follow the prompt. All travel-related posts are welcome!

At the Parthenon in Athens, Greece. This is about as big as I like my travel groups to get!

So, what are my travel preferences? First, you should know I'm a bit of an introvert. If you know me well, you probably aren't surprised, but if you're a new friend or an acquaintance, you might disbelieve me. I'm not shy or even quiet, as most people imagine when they hear the word "introvert," but my alone time is very important to me. I am a good solo traveler for this reason. I don't mind alone time, and to be honest, it's kind of nice to be able to go where I want, when I want, and spend what I want without worrying about other people's preferences (how far they're willing to walk, what their budget allows, what sites interest them, etc.). Case in point? The Freedom Trail. I visited Boston for work last April and couldn't find anyone to go on the Freedom Trail with me, but did that stop me? No! I signed up for a tour and treated myself to a cupcake afterward.

The Freedom Trail, Boston, Massachusetts, on Semi-Charmed Kind of Life
Walking the Freedom Trail in Boston.

That being said, there are some definite perks to traveling in groups, though I much prefer small groups of close friends or family. When travel groups get too big, it's impossible to please everyone, and I think you're just better off splitting up into smaller, interest-based groups if you ever travel with a large amount of people. There are also arguments to be made that it is safer to travel with a companion or two rather than alone. Other benefits of group travel include taking goofy pictures with your companions ...

At the Ben & Jerry's factory in Vermont with a sorority sister.

... and, of course, having someone willing to take goofy pictures of you. :)

My longest-running (and favorite!) travel companions are my siblings. We grew up in a widespread family that traveled a lot for family holidays, and some of my best travel memories are with these two.

Siblings at the Amsterdam sign in The Netherlands in May 2013.
Siblings on a bike tour of Berlin, Germany, in the summer of 2013.
Siblings in Budapest, Hungary, during Christmas 2012.

I'm also fortunate to have someone who is willing to be my partner in travel as well as in life, and I hope our future contains many more exciting trips together!

My fiancé and I outside the Colosseum in Rome, Italy, a week after he proposed in Switzerland.
Big guitar at the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville on Semi-Charmed Kind of Life
Outside the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville, Tennessee.

So tell me: How do you prefer to travel? Any favorite travel companions you love exploring with? Link up with your travel stories and/or tips below! Feel free to grab the button, too.

P.S. — Don't forget to ask me anything before this weekend! I'm planning a post (or series of posts, depending on how many questions I get) focused on the things YOU want to know, both about me and this blog. Go to this post to comment with your burning questions!

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