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Are You a Woman Over 50 Who Loves to Travel?

Women on the Road

Are you feeling held back because you don't have a travel partner? Not sure about traveling solo?

This website is for women who have decided to see the world ON THEIR OWN. Forget the partner, forget the doubts - you can own this!

here's how it all happened

Somewhere in my mid-forties, it hit me: my job was repetitive, my relationship was unsatisfactory, and I had a severe case of wanderlust. In fact I was in the middle of what turned out to be a mid-life crisis the size of a minor planet.

So I took off to see the world

There was little travel guidance specifically aimed at women. We were just a page or two in the general guidebooks.

Things have changed - but there's still plenty of room for improvement.

Women travelers, especially those who travel solo, shouldn’t be seen as an exception, odd or different – we should be considered normal. No one questions how or why a man travels on his own, do they?

Women on the Road exists to help women with the nuts and bolts of solo travel: how to plan a trip, how to stay safe, what to take, how to budget, how to avoid getting lonely – all the things you face before, during, and after you travel.

We are curious, smart, enterprising, enthusiastic, inspired or dynamic - we are women who want to see the world on our own terms.

If I can inspire women to travel independently, strongly, proudly, and safely, that closes the gap a bit. The more of us get out there and claim the world, the more we assert our right to do so.

Remember - Women on the Road is a website written by a woman, for women!

I believe all women can travel independently: young, older, adventurous, shy, timid, intrepid, insecure, afraid, professional, student, straight, gay, grandmothers and granddaughters.

As a woman, you can travel solo for a few days, weeks, or yes, even years. I know you can!

a few words about me

The wanderlust started many generations before me: according to my father, our family descends from the Golden Horde and the warriors who swept across Asia and Europe many centuries ago.

My maternal grandfather was one of seven brothers who emigrated from France in the late 19th century, each to a different country - Brazil, Australia, Canada, the USA, England, Greece and Egypt (that's my branch of the family). 

My upbringing was no more sedentary. My father was an engineer and moved so often with his work that I rarely finished a school year in the country I’d started it.

Born in France, my first European trip was on the Orient Express when I was five weeks old (I did bring my parents along). I then grew up in Canada - where we lived long enough to become citizens - and Spain, where we returned to after each move.

I took my first solo trip (without my parents' permission) from Spain to Morocco when I was 15. I still remember sitting in a café by the sea sipping mint tea, watching the ships come in, and feeling as though I owned the world. I managed to stay an entire day before my father tracked me down and marched me back.

As an adult, I became a serial expat and finally settled in Geneva. Until that little crisis hit.

travel over 50

I retired in May 2015 and now live in rural Eastern France, the first time I live in the country of my birth.

But I’m not done with travel, not by a long shot.

As life goes on (I'm well on the 'other' side of 60), I still marvel at seeing the world.

Over the years, I somehow managed to get lost in a Mozambican minefield, paddle my way out of a Philippine flood, get shot at in Beirut, and survive an elephant cow stampede in Nigeria - so I've learned the art of taking care of myself on the road or in any foreign city and my joy is to share that learning with you.

the birth of women on the road

Funny thing – I had no intention of writing a blog, not ever.

When I first returned to Europe, I wanted to write a book about my travels, but I put it off for so long it didn't make much sense anymore. That's why I started Women on the Road.

When I first started to travel on my own many years ago, independent travel was mostly for men. So was travel information.

But we are different!

We need to be more careful at night. We have to fight off more unwanted attention. And we may be (often wrongly) perceived as more vulnerable.

Why am I telling you this?

Because I've been around the world on my own several times and I didn't have the hands-on information I needed to stay safe, travel smart or simply get from A to B.

PLEASE NOTE: Some articles on this website were written before COVID-19 emerged. I've done my best to keep destination articles updated but the changing situation has made it impossible to adjust the entire site to the realities of the pandemic or travel restrictions. You'll find updated information from the CDC about travel conditions by country but please check all appropriate sources before you travel as situations can change in minutes. 

solo travel will empower youStopping off for coffee on the streets of Istanbul...

Are you a woman...

  • Who wants a career break?
  • Who is suddenly single?
  • Looking for a gap year adventure?
  • Who needs to get away on her own for a while?
  • Trying to gain strength or independence?
  • Who wants to prove she can do it?
  • Who has a partner who hates travel?
  • Who needs a fresh start?
  • Who wants to see beyond the tour groups and souvenir shops?
  • Searching for a spiritual experience?
  • Curious about why women travel solo?
  • Or are you a woman who simply likes adventure?
  • Whatever your reasons or your situation, if you yearn to travel far and wide, you belong here!

If this is your first time on this site, you'll find a great introduction on my Start Here page that walks you through what you'll find on this website. 

If you'd rather receive your women's travel tips and strategies right in your email, Women on the Road NEWS will deliver it to you every Tuesday  (and you'll also get the list of '9 indispensables' I always travel with!)

about women on the road
  • Readers of Women on the Road NEWS have learned how to calculate their carbon footprint, use Google Maps to stay in touch, start learning new languages, eat out alone without panicking, find jobs in ski resorts, deal with travel burnout, and find free accommodation anywhere in the world.
  • Are you concerned about safety? Do you want to become a volunteer? Need to make money while you travel? Women on the Road NEWS shares precise and practical information with you about how women travel so you'll be prepared, no matter what your trip throws at you.
  • And of course you'll also get my list of 9 indispensable items, the ones I can't travel without!

"Leyla, your newsletter is great. I loved your page on how to enjoy eating alone since that is frequently uncomfortable for us solo travelers - your tips really helped. Your ezine is so packed with info and helpful links I always look forward to receiving it. It has opened my eyes to new places, different ways to travel, and useful resources. I always get extra inspiration from your ezine to travel more and be adventurous. I consider myself a pretty savvy traveller, but you are my idol!"
Diane Gilabert, San Diego, USA 

Women on the Road NEWS shows you how to:

  • Make money as you travel
  • Choose the best volunteer vacation or find the right charity
  • Decide which travel accessories are right for you
  • Pack the lightest and most durable travel clothing
  • Take advantage of the cheapest ways to travel
  • Stay with people for free by couchsurfing or housesitting
  • Decide when to go, plan a route and choose the best travel destinations
  • Handle your money wisely and avoid being scammed by con artists
  • Eat out alone - and enjoy it
  • Manage your health and know what to do if you get sick
  • Stay in touch easily and cheaply
  • And so much more - a new topic every month, exclusive to subscribers!

And if you haven't done so yet, please join me and 10,000+ other wonderful women for free travel tips, right in your Inbox the first Tuesday of every month!

(and I'll make sure to send you the List of 9 indispensable items I always take with me when I travel) 

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