My birthday was around the corner and it was a big one. Let’s just put it this way…I’m nowhere near being 21 anymore. This year I decided it was time for some changes, one of the biggest ones was traveling. Yes, I travel all the time, but it’s for work. It has been about 15 years since I went on an actual holiday that didn’t involve working. After several failed attempts at trying to get friends together to go away with me, I decided to take matters into my own hands. Based on everyone’s schedules, finding a travel companion was becoming very difficult so I did the unthinkable. I booked a trip to go to Italy BY MY SELF. I can’t believe I actually did it but what turned out to be one of the scariest things to overcome ended up being a birthday trip of a lifetime. Read below about the food, traveling solo, the fashion and the wine!
I’m past the days of staying in cheap accommodations but I’m all about getting the best bang for your buck. I signed up with a company called Small Luxury Hotels of the World. When you sign up you get all kinds of perks like upgrades and breakfast included in your stay. The hotel I chose after lots and lots of research was a boutique hotel called, The Inn at the Roman Forum and I’m so glad I did!
One of the main reasons I went with a boutique hotel is because the staff begins to know you by name. When traveling as a single woman to a foreign country, I find it important to stay in places where you can feel safe and are being looked after by the hotel staff. I definitely got that here. I was treated like royalty and even got upgraded to a garden suite! They were very interested in making my stay exceptional when they saw I was traveling alone. They also pre-booked restaurants for me to places they recommended and sorted out all of the logistics of my stay.
Speaking of, I highly recommend, when traveling alone to a new city that you do group tours. It’s a great way to meet people and have a lot of fun. On my first day in Rome I did a guided tour booked through the hotel, to the Colosseum. What an incredible experience! If you love history or just being able to see the sights, this is a must!
On my first night, I grabbed my selfie stick and headed to dinner, but not before snapping a shot in this beautiful black lace dress from Evans Clothing. By the way, a selfie stick is a must have on solo trips!
Don’t let traveling on your own keep you from going out to dinner and experiencing incredible meals. I know how hard it can be, even in your own town, to go to a restaurant alone but trust me, it’s worth it. A big perk was, I got LOTS of free stuff. Every night the restaurants, after I heard the same reaction of “Oh no, Bella, you all alone? Too beautiful to be alone! Don’t worry we have something special for you”, I began to really appreciate their pity gifts! I was given a complimentary dessert, a bottle of wine the next night and a special starter from the chef another night… I’ll take it! So ladies, pack your bags, your best dresses and go get some free stuff.
My second day in Rome was a busy one! I woke up and hit the ground running starting out on a Vatican City Tour with Dark Rome, a City Wonders Brand. Another thanks to Evans Clothing for this great ruffled Bardot Top. Find one similar here at evans.co.uk.
My next stop was the Best of Rome walking city tour with Dark Rome. Not sure why I packed this much walking into one day but it was still a lot of fun to say the least. I definitely saw A LOT on day two!
Finally, day three had arrived, the one I was really looking forward to, the day I got to see more of Italy! Three days really isn’t enough time to see everything but I think I did a pretty good job packing it all in there. I booked another tour with Dark Rome but this time it was their Tuscany In One Day from Rome tour including a wine tasting and gourmet lunch. This was exactly what I needed after walking a million miles over the last two days.
Prior to my trip I visited the Style Studio at River Island in London to get some looks for my holiday. This is one that I fell in love with. Another Bardot style maxi dress which was perfect for summer. I foresee this being very popular again in the Spring and Summer of 2017.
Here are just a few pictures from my day in Tuscany. I can’t wait to make it back. What a stunning place!
As you can see, getting out of my comfort zone was the best thing I could have done. In fact, I think I want to take all of my trips on my own now! If you’re a single lady and you’re reading this, don’t let being single stop you from experiencing life. If you don’t have a partner to travel with or even a friend, that’s ok. I put off doing this trip for years out of fear. I’m so glad I let that go and booked those tickets. So pick a place on the map, grab that credit card and go experience a chance of a life time. You will thank yourself for it!
Take a look at this collection of my videos and images from snapchat during my travels.