Five Fab Girls’ Getaways You Need To Know About

Are you waiting to travel with a significant other or until your children are old enough to join? Don’t! More women are choosing to go it alone or booking getaways with friends, a La Sex and the City, while studies are proving it will make you healthier and happier in the long run.

2019 is really and truly the in which strong, independent women embrace travel, no matter their relationship status, starting with this Valentine’s Day – now that’s a trend with which we can get on board!

Here, we make sure you are able to choose from self-love and wellness destinations or getaways that are ideal for friends.

1. Turkey

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Gather your tribe and hop on over to Turkey. With direct flights from South Africa, and an easy and free online visa application, Turkey is considered affordable for those travelling on the South African rand and is a delightful destination for group travel.

There is a diverse number of getaways and holiday types to match any agenda. Stock up on trendy Turkish fringed towels, kilim carpets, hand-painted ceramics and coffee. (Be prepared to bargain!)

If the only decision you want to make in a day is when to nap or eat, climb on board a gulet (traditional boat) for a cruise along the turquoise sea. It’s a stunning, do-as-little-as-you-please holiday that can cost significantly less than a multi-stop Mediterranean cruise.

Guided getaways are ideal for groups of friends.

Teresa Richardson, Managing Director of The Travel Corporation in South Africa, loves a girls’-only trip. “You choose one itinerary, and then each member of the group can choose what they want to do to tailor-make a dream itinerary. The key to having a successful girls’ getaway trip is to ensure that there’s no pressure to do absolutely everything together – unless, of course, that’s what you all want to do.”

Guided group travel means all the benefits of travelling together, without any one person having to do all of the organising.

“Plus, if you’re a group of nine people or more travelling with any of our brands (Trafalgar, Costsaver, Insight Vacations, Uniworld and more), your group may qualify for a discount,” says Richardson.

2. India

Follow in the footsteps of Liz Gilbert of Eat, Pray, Love, and take a solo trip to India. The colourful, chaotic streets will move your heart, too.

Choose from India’s trendy wellness or yoga retreats, or plan a more active itinerary that includes all the cultural attractions, from the Taj Mahal to the romantic pink city of Jaipur.

Expansive and exotic

India as a first-timer can be overwhelming, so if you want the experience of solo travel with a safety net or to book something already organised, again, a guided holiday is the best of both worlds.

If shopping is your game, travel with an empty suitcase, suggests Loryn Holmes from Westville, Durban, who visited India with her mother on a Trafalgar holiday in August 2018.

“The clothing in India is insanely beautiful and, for around R300, you can have a beautiful cotton shirt made and delivered to your hotel four hours later. The hardest part was deciding which fabric to [use]. Trafalgar took us to a local specialist in Jaipur where we could choose ready-made garments or place an order for items to be tailor-made for us,” Holmes recalls.

“The spices are also out of this world, and a visit to a local specialist in Delhi where you can sample and buy spices, will give you the chance to cook up a storm on your return home,” she adds.

3. New York

Who could forget Carrie and Samantha, Rachel and Monica, or the city that made these TV characters famous?

New York is magical at any time of the year, no matter who you travel with.

Glam up and visit an underground speakeasy, snap a selfie in Times Square and walk Central Park (the most filmed attraction in the world).  Fill up your shopping basket in Sephora without any need to rush.

“New York can be pricey, so a guided holiday that includes (aside from your in-trip transport and 20 meals) accommodation in Midtown Manhattan, steps from Grand Central Station, is unbeatable value,” says Richardson.

Trafalgar also has departures with reduced or no single supplements on selected trips, which is more great value for singles.

4. Spain and Portugal

Spain and Portugal (the Iberian peninsula) have great food, culture and sunshine in spades. The locals certainly know a thing or two about wellness and living the good life. It is a delightful corner of the world to enjoy some me-time – making it one of the best getaways we can think of!

Visit Seville and Madrid for the best drinks

Enjoy wines infused with the region’s famous oranges. Indulge in decadent chocolate and churros at ChocolaterÍa San Ginés, one of the most famous speciality stores. In Portugal, the beaches of the Algarve beckon, while Lisbon’s steep cobbled streets reveal grand shopping boulevards and outdoor cafés serving strong espressos and the locals’ favorite aperitif: white port and tonic.

5. Japan

If city lights and a touch of the exotic are what you’re looking for, choose Japan for your one of your next girls’ getaways. There are some experiences you won’t find anywhere else on earth – never mind the cost. Highlights can include Mount Fuji, traveling by bullet train, shopping for J-beauty products in Tokyo, and exploring the quiet shrines and temples hidden in bustling cities and mountain parks.

Nothing will make you feel more refreshed and independent than a fabulous female-only getaway. There’s no way to stop time but, to truly live the good life, filled with moments of joy, comfort and good company, travel is the ticket.

Who is the writer? 

With a curious mind and a love for travel and tourism, Jenna Berndt has over seven years’ digital marketing experience in the travel industry. Jenna has a journalism degree specializing in graphic design and a keen eye for visual and written communication. She’ll never say no to any travel opportunity – be it travelling solo or with her best friends.