1. Taipei, Taiwan
Situated at the northern tip of Taiwan, Taipei is located on the Tamsui River. Taipei lies in the Taipei Basin.
What You Should Do While There: Check out the amazing night markets. Just imagine hundreds of street-food carts and pop-up stores all in a 10-block stretch. Experience the food, the fashion, the culture — all for a pretty decent price. If you’re looking to escape the city buzz, Taipei has several amazing day hiking destinations right in the city. What else could you need?
Potential Safety Concerns: Petty theft. While the general crime rate in the rest of Taiwan is said to be increasing or staying the same, the crime rate in Taipei is actually decreasing. Taipei has a reputation of being very friendly and helpful to tourists of all kinds.
2. Portland, Ore.
Portland, Ore., is situated on the West Coast of the United States near the meeting of the Willamette and Columbia rivers. It’s a city known for many things, its love of nature and bike commutes among them.
What You Should Do While There: A food cart tour. Try all kinds of local favorites for little money. After you’ve eaten all you can eat, take a walk through Forest Park and breathe in all the natural beauty that Portland has to offer. And if you’re craving something sweet, stop in for a doughnut and an experience at Voodoo Donut.
Potential Safety Concerns: Overall, generally regarded as safe with a few neighborhoods that might be worth avoiding: Hazelwood, Old Town, Lents, and West Burnside Street. Also, if you’re biking, be careful crossing Sellwood Bridge, as there is little shoulder space.
Located in Southern Ontario on the northwestern shore of Lake Ontario, Toronto has a rich history underneath a thriving city.
What You Should Do While There: Take a moment to escape the city life for a day and explore the Toronto islands. Easily hop a ferry and head to the collection of eight islands. They offer a welcoming green atmosphere beyond the cityscape that is Toronto. There are no cars on the island, so enjoy a nice stroll or bike. And while in the city, check out the St. Lawrence Market — possibly one of the best in the world.
Potential Safety Concerns: Downtown Toronto is considered pretty safe. But some sites recommend that travelers avoid straying too far from downtown into the outer neighborhoods.
4. Rio De Janeiro
Gorgeous mountains, pristine beaches, and a surplus of rainforests near a deep blue sea — Rio is one of the most gorgeous cities in the world. But it can also be one of the most dangerous. Take caution, but it’s worth a visit.
What You Should Do While There: Experience the landscape as much as possible. Go hiking on Sugarloaf Mountain and take in the glorious views. If you can, find a couple fellow travelers and explore the downtown area. The churches, the historic buildings, and the ample amount of museums give you a surplus of ways to occupy your time. And before you leave, relax on one of the beaches. It will be unlike anything you have ever experienced.
Potential Safety Concerns: As mentioned earlier, safety is a major concern. Crime rates are high in Rio. It would be ideal to find other people to accompany you out in the city.
The town that was settled by Vikings has become one of the most amazing destinations in Europe. Dublin is situated in the province of Leinster near the midpoint of Ireland’s east coast, at the mouth of the River Liffey and the centre of the Dublin Region.
What You Should Do While There: Expand your mind in one of the several museums that Dublin has to offer. The surplus of rich culture and history may surprise you. And you, of course, have to check out the Guinness Storehouse. It’s like Disneyland for beer lovers. And the FOOD. Make sure you visit Dublin on an empty stomach.
Potential Safety Concerns: Just as safe as any European city. Take the usual necessary precautions.
This city referred to as the Venice of the east possesses so much energy, chaos, and beauty. Bangkok is definitely a must-see for ANY traveler.
What You Should Do While There: Immerse yourself in the Buddhist culture. Spend time in one of the many temples and take time to appreciate the culture and everything it has to offer. Explore the waterways by boat, and eat local. The cuisine offered in Bangkok is superb. If nothing else, relax. Bangkok is a great place to slow down and remember who you are.
Potential Safety Concerns: Bangkok is not inherently dangerous. Crimes most prevalent against tourists are “stealth” crimes such as pickpocketing, scams with credit cards, or confidence tricks with fake goods or gemstones. Recent protests have raised some concerns this year, but it was recently deemed safe again.
7. San Francisco
San Francisco, the leading financial and cultural area in northern California. This city on a bay has a manageable size and a generally happy population.
What You Should Do While There: First and foremost, get brunch. There’s a multitude of cafes and restaurants to choose from. From there, head over to the Haight-Ashbury district to experience where the hippie movement was born. If nothing else, make sure you check out the Golden Gate Park. It’s breathtaking.
Potential Safety Concerns: The Mission District, while perfectly safe during the day, can be an intimidating location at night, particularly around 16th Street and east of Valencia.
A city famous for its spectacular canals, colored houses, coffee shops, and rich culture is a solo traveler’s dream.
What You Should Do While There: Go to the beach! Despite the fact that Amsterdam actually is not located by the sea, the city created Blijburg. This beach is situated on the artificial island of IJburg and there is swimming, sunbathing, and beach parties galore. If you’re looking for a quieter atmosphere, check out Vondelpark. This park is right in the heart of the city but offers a slower pace.
Potential Safety Concerns: Known as an exceptionally safe city. But, as with any city, there can be dangers of robbery, etc. Avoid talking to street peddlers.
9. Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
A city that houses monkeys and a myriad of cultures; Kuala Lumpur is a gem.
What You Should Do While There: Explore Bukit Bintang, the insane shopping center in Kuala Lumpur. Once you’re done exploring there, check out some of the local markets for fantastic arts and crafts. And of course you can’t leave without experiencing a meal on a banana leaf.
Potential Safety Concerns: Relatively safe, take normal precautions.
10. San José City, Costa Rica
A city situated 3,690 ft. above sea level, San José enjoys wonderful temperatures year-round, and its location in the Central Valley makes it both breathtaking and convenient as a base of exploration.
What You Should Do While There: Visit the impressive collection of museums and take yourself back in time. Also make sure to check out the open air markets to see the copious amounts of indigenous arts and crafts. And don’t you dare let yourself miss out on experiencing some of the best nature in the world, specifically the Volcan Poas.
Potential Safety Concerns: Fairly average. Take necessary precautions as always.
11. Reykjavik, Iceland
The center of culture and life of the Icelandic people is a necessary place for any traveler’s bucket list.
What You Should Do While There: Absolutely make sure you explore the city’s natural wonders. The Blue Lagoon, a geothermal spa, has warm waters rich in minerals. For more spectacular sites, go whale watching, and you could possibly spot some dolphins or seals too. And, of course, the waterfront strolls and walkways are perfect for a relaxing morning or afternoon walk to gather your thoughts.
Potential Safety Concerns: Considered one of the safest places in Europe, but naturally safety precautions never hurt.
The capital of Belgium AND Europe, Brussels is filled with 17th-century buildings and daily flower markets.
What You Should Do While Here: See Brussels’ very own Eiffel Tower, the Atomium. It provides great views, inside and out. Also, needless to say, get some chocolate and waffles. Belgium has some pretty outstanding selections. And absolutely do not allow yourself to miss out on the many Art Nouveau buildings. One of the best ways to do so is to spend some time at one of the Art Nouveau cafes where you can enjoy chocolate AND architecture. Win-win.
Potential Safety Concerns: No major concerns; take necessary precautions.
13. Johannesburg, South Africa
This city is great to mix big-city culture, shopping, dining, nightlife, and outdoor adventures.
What You Should Do While There: Check out the view of this great city by visiting the top of Carlton Centre. To learn more about Jo’burg, visit The Apartheid Museum for an insight into the history of the city. And certainly don’t miss out on the ample nature and wildlife. Say hello to a lion! Just don’t get too close…
Potential Safety Concerns: Johannesburg has been known to have tension among its residents because of socioeconomic inequality. As a result, Johannesburg has a very high crime rate day and night. There are plenty of safe areas, however every tourist should take precautions to avoid any problems.
The city that is spread out over 14 islands overlooks the Baltic Sea to the east and encompasses rich history along with beautiful buildings and scenery.
What You Should Do While There: Eat some of the freshest and best-tasting fish in the world at Nystekt Strömmingvagnen. You might never view food carts the same way again. When the sun sets, prepare yourself for an incredible experience with Södermalm Nightlife. And make sure to take in the nighttime views of the city.
Potential Safety Concerns: With riots in the past, travelers are encouraged to take precautions, but proceed as you would anywhere else.
15. Melbourne, Australia
A city located on a large natural bay with sprawling landscapes and rich culture, Melbourne is perfect for any solo traveler.
What You Should Do While There: Melbourne is known for its fantastic street art, so be sure to take a walk or a bike ride to take in some of the scenes. You should also check out Lentil As Anything, a not-for-profit restaurant that believes guests should contribute what they feel their experience was worth based on their financial ability. And of course, it wouldn’t be Australia without some fantastic beaches. Don’t forget your swimsuit.
Potential Safety Concerns: Australia as a whole is considered incredibly safe for international travelers, and Melbourne is no exception.
16. San Ignacio Town, Belize
San Ignacio is well-known for its close proximity to Belize’s famous Mayan ruins.
What You Should Do While There: Absolutely check out the Mayan ruins. Cahal Pech Maya Site is within walking distance from downtown and is packed full of history and surprising landscapes. And if you have the time and money, canoe down Macal River to spot various wildlife during your journey. One of the most peaceful experiences in the world.
Potential Safety Concerns: Can be dangerous for travelers. Be aware and take precaution.
17. Nairobi, Kenya
Nairobi is a city that offers urban and safari adventure. It’s the best of both worlds for travelers.
What You Should Do While There: Take a safari! You don’t even have to leave the city to do so. From there, experience some of the locally grown coffee in one of the several coffee shops found in the city. Also take time to check out the Rift Valley, where on a clear day you can see for hundreds of miles, right down to Tanzania.
Potential Safety Concerns: Be very cautious. Avoid walking around alone at night.
18. Auckland, New Zealand
A country known for its epic landscapes has an impressive city right near the water.
What You Should Do While There: If at all possible, catch a show at the Civic Theatre. The lights will go down, the ceiling will start to twinkle, and you’ll be lost in the experience. Of course you can’t miss checking out the view from the Sky Tower, and rugby fans, you can see where the All Blacks play!
Potential Safety Concerns: Regarded as safe. But always take the same precautions with your safety and possessions that you usually would at home or traveling elsewhere.
19. New York
The Big Apple, a city with so much to offer it’s impossible to see it all. But you’ll love trying.
What You Should Do While There: Visit Central Park, stroll through the West Village, admire the Empire State Building, and unquestionably treat yourself to a New York-style slice of pizza. If you have the time and the money, visit the Statue of Liberty. Pictures don’t quite do her justice.
Potential Safety Concerns: Stick to main streets after dark, but overall New York City is regarded as pretty safe. Take precautions as you would anywhere else.
Zurich is known for its astonishing landscape and for being a world leader in the financial industry. Inspiration and beauty can be found around every corner.
What You Should Do While There: Take a walk down Bahnnofstrasse. It’s a street that houses the rich, the famous, and underground bank vaults to boot. And when you aren’t enjoying the impressive cuisine, spend time taking in the scenes around Lake Zurich.
Potential Safety Concerns: Considered safe but take usual precautions.
21. Seoul, South Korea
Seoul is one of the largest cities in the world, but manages to offer a unique and unmatched experience for all visitors.
What You Should Do While There: Take a stroll through the picturesque Bukchon Village. In between two palaces, this neighborhood will keep you entertained with sights for hours. And make sure to take a hike on Bugaksan Mountain. The views are astounding. With the cuisine and the markets, there’s no shortage of things to do and see.
Potential Safety Concerns: Overall considered pretty safe. But again, take precautions.
22. Siem Reap, Cambodia
Photos and stories won’t do Siem Reap justice. It’s a place that needs to be experienced firsthand.
What You Should Do While There: Observe the sunrise at Angkor Wat. It’s said to be one of the best in the world. Also be sure to check out the Tomb RaiderTemple which was left intact — crumbling walls and all — to show tourists how the others were found. If you’re feeling adventurous, sign up for an ATV tour which allows you to watch the sunset. Just hold on tight.
Potential Safety Concerns: Avoid dimly lit areas at night, and make sure you keep an eye on your possessions when using transportation. Otherwise, normal precautions.