Looking for advice on which countries in CA would be safest and easiest for a young woman to backpack
I have 4 months (Nov-Mar) this year to travel. I am a 21 year old female and have never gone on a long backpacking trip before. I would really like to travel central america, but am unsure about the safety of it for backpacking alone. I have heard Costa Rica is a good backpacking destination but would really like to see other countries. Any tips on which countries would be best to backpack through? And any tips for a young backpacker?
Hi Ally. Welcome to Travelblog.
If you "search" for the places you think you might want to visit (top right corner of this page) I'm sure you will find lots of advice and suggestions about what you should do and where you should go - and how to be safe.
Hello Ally, and welcome to Travel blog.
Many on this site have found Central America to be very safe.
Always good to use common sense about not drinking too much, don't walk on streets at night alone, be cautious of who you share personal information with and keep valuables with you at all times.
You may want to read a few blogs from people who have spent extended time in Central America. I would recommend
None of these are perfect examples because they are not single females. I will continue to look to find you an example.
Hi Ally. Dave and Merry Jo give you great advice about travelling alone. It's really just common sense. You'll find you meet people pretty easily, especially if you stay in hostels.
Here's a couple of bloggers I like to read, who both travel alone often. One spent some time in Central America, and the other quite often writes about Mexico.
Well...most of them...depending if you go north to south or south to north...
Belize is pretty alright...except Belize City which is whatever not very interesting..
Cost Rica for sure, add also Panama to that list.
Guatemala...depending where, but if you to Flores by bus from Belize to see Tikal, not an issue...Guatemala City has a very bad reputation.
No idea about Nicaragua and Salvador.
Honduras is known for safe Roatan...inland, it's something way different...
You could start north by Yucatan....but if you start South, that gives you Panama and Costa Rica for the first few weeks...by that time you'll have heard the stories of all those who are coming down and will be able to make your mind.
Hope this help!
In response to: Msg #168497
I would say Costa Rica.
I'm a woman myself, living in this beautiful country and I can tell it is easy to travel here. In fact, I now moved to Costa Rica since 2010.
I've been to Mexico, Cuba and Panama, USA and Canada...but I prefer Costa Rica and it is the safer country i've been in.
I hope you'll have a great trip!
[Edited: 2013 Apr 07 03:12 - Roosta:95057 - No commercial links on the forums, please. See TOS]
I would also say Costa Rica, Mexico, Panama and Nicaragua was pretty good in terms of safety:-)
Costa Rica and Mexico are both very americanized and probably a great way to start off backpacking and gain confidence, the farther you get away from the beaches the more authentic experiences for that country you will find.
It's been 25 years since I backpacked through Mexico & Belize, Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador into Nicaragua to Costa Rica and finally Panama. I was 20 years old at the time, and perhaps a bit crazy, but overall it was a great experience with only small incidents of theft & touts & misunderstandings.
80% of the people you meet along the way are kind, generous, hospitable and friendly. Then there are the other 20% - and that comes along with almost any country in this world. These dangerous people are looking for you. You have to plan your trip with the intent of not running into them. Muy difficult!! but do-able. Tourists areas a teeming with them. Try to do what the locals do...and don't stand out with fancy clothing, jewelry. Don't be wandering alone at night. Be very aware of your surroundings.
Before you go, plan your route as best as you can, including reputable hostels and bus routes. Don't hitchhike. I'd even recommend homestays (any university or college will have a list of families you can stay with cheap) Keep in contact with your family and give them an itinerary and updates.
It is always tempting to go to the bars/clubs/festivals to party but this is where those 20% hunt for you. Stay in groups, leave in groups. Always be wary of strangers you have just met offering you things. Nothing is for free! Ever. Many people get dupped by ex-pats too. My parent's bestfriends were murdered by cleancut and friendly american ex-pats hiding out in mexico. And lastly, learn some Spanish. I may not speak it well but I can read and understand it very good, and this has gotten me out of many a pickle! Adios and buen viaje!
It is always tempting to go to the bars/clubs/festivals to party but this is where those 20%!h(MISSING)unt for you. Stay in groups, leave in groups.
Excellent advice for everyone travelling anywhere in the world. Never isolate yourself if you are under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
I think you should try Curacao. The island is situated in the southern Caribbean Sea, off the Venezuelan coast, and lies outside the hurricane belt so you won't have any problems with the weather. The island has many beautiful beaches renowned for it's dive sites. The island can have great vibe and can be very affordable. As for activities you can take go swimming with dolphins, you can go bowling, do scuba diving and snorkeling, go bike riding, go fishing, play golf, go on boat trips, rent Quads/ATV. Also you can visit the famous Seaquarium, go at a ostrich farm, visit a lot of historical monuments and much more. <snip>
[Edited: 2014 Jul 03 01:35 - Roosta:95057 - No commercial links in the forums, please. See TOS]