Whether you're single by default or selection, chances are very good that one day you won't be — which is why this single girl's travel bucket list is for you. As wonderful as relationships are, they're not the most conducive to waking up and taking off. Dating means another person to think about, another ticket to buy, and another seven tequila shots to order. Having a partner in crime is an awesome experience, to be sure, but who's to say that partner will be as into the travel scene as you are? It's not for everyone. And then there's the simple fact that sometimes travel is just better when you're by yourself; experiences are richer, excitement is more intense, and spontaneity is more feasible when you're on your own.
Look — I'm not saying all chance of travel goes out the window once you have a significant other. But as long as you're unattached, use this time to pursue a little adventure. Be the go-getting, wanderlust-satisfying twisty bobcat pretzel minx that you are before you commit. Because I love you, and because I want you to see all the things so that we can talk about them when we're 60, I've compiled the ultimate list of places every single girl should visit at least once. And if you are one of the lucky few out there with a soul mate you just can't leave behind, have no fear — these locations hold up for dream couples as well. Happy travels!
1. New York City, New York — To Blow Your Mind
Ah yes, the Big Apple. We're talking the largest, richest realm of diversity, buzz, and beautiful oddities (and people) out there. Go. Go now. Go before it all looks the same, because gentrification. A week in New York will change your world view. Honestly, nothing looks or feels the same after you take those first few steps into Times Square. Who knows? You may very well go once and meet someone who changes everything for you. As it's a place talked about the world over, it attracts both men and women who might just be in search of people just like you. It's also one of Facebook's Top 50 Cities for Singles Looking for Love, which must mean something to someone.
2. Austin, Texas — For A Bit Of A Surprise
This young city is a hub for art, music, and great people. The downtown scene is absolutely wild, and though it's likely not the first city on your list, it's a place to visit at least once. At minimum, you'll see the most infamous southern state of Texas a bit differently. At best, hot cow-people who might broaden your horizons.
3. San Francisco, California — To Open Your Mind
My personal favorite on the list, and the region that will forever have my heart, the Bay Area is a force to be reckoned with. SF is one of the only places in the world where intense technological sophistication pairs so very beautifully with an open, free mentality. It's like a gorgeous angel with flowers in her hair riding a hovercraft; the ideal blend of beauty and the future in a world that doesn't quite know what kind of future it wants. Given this, it's the ideal city to visit to figure out what you really want in life — and who you want to share it with. San Francisco will make you rethink any preconceived notions you may have had about life and love, and that's a beautiful thing.
4. Anywhere That's Not A Resort, Mexico — For Some Much-Needed Perspective
Don't fly straight into a resort on the Mayan coast. Instead, head someplace where you'll see the people. Interacting with people from a completely different culture can be an eye-opening and incredibly humbling experience. Take the opportunity to search someone out who can teach you a thing or two about the real world.
5. Paso Robles, California — For The Sunsets, Wine, And Some Time Alone
I grew up in Paso Robles, a smallish town nestled halfway between San Francisco and Los Angeles. Famous for its wine, it's stuck somewhere between the Victorian era and the modern age. Charming and slow-paced, it's a place people go to contemplate, reflect, and get wasted on some of the best wine the world has to offer. It's a pretty great region to spend quality time alone, and may be one of the best places to go if you want to learn about yourself a little better. Because we all need a grasp on who we are as people before we let anyone else in.
6. Las Vegas, Nevada — Because "The Hangover" Is A Real-Life Experience
For all my ladies out there who are sure they'll be in the downy embrace of party girl mode for eternity, this city will be your Chipotle within a realm of mediocre burritos. Three days, maybe four if you're a wild one, will guarantee at least two months of hangover-free mornings. Pictures or it didn't happen.