Many of us at Go Girl Travel Network are relatively young and grew up in a world in which women can, and often do, travel solo. To us, the idea that we might travel only with male companions- or as part of a large tour company- is both antiquated and mildly offensive. As the beloved Evelyn Hannon of Journeywoman fame can attest, it’s only within the past 25 years that this worldview has become common. For me, at least, that’s within my lifetime. Many of us know Go Girls who have been walking this earth much longer- 40, 50, or 60+ years- and for whom this perspective is a reality.
Today, I write to these Go Girls.
Maybe you’re getting ready to retire from your day career. Or maybe you have children who are finally getting old enough to grant you the kind of freedom you haven’t had since you first got pregnant. Maybe you’ve been saving for years and years to take a vacation that’s just for you, or are looking for a way to spice up your annual ladies’ getaway. Or maybe you’re breaking free from unhappiness, oppression, or violence and using a trip abroad to give you a fresh start.
Reasoning aside, your considerations for travel may be different than those of the 20-something Go Girl. You might’ve had your fill of hostels in your younger years and long for the peace and quiet of a private room. You’d prefer to have someone else take care of the nitty-gritty details of your first trip to a foreign land. You want to travel solo or in a small group, but have had enough of the mass-produced tourism industry.
You’re interested in something new.
Enter small-scale fitness cruising, a different option for female travelers seeking all of the above. A combination of adventure travel, luxury travel, and solo travel, these cruises balance geographic exploration with a variety of physical activities and comfortable accommodations. Think of it as being the best of camping and sightseeing: imagine doing yoga in the morning, hiking to ancient ruins in the afternoon, and then enjoying an island dinner in the evening. Even better, imagine doing all that at a pace that suits your level of physical fitness, whether you run marathons or prefer to remain seated.
The company that sent me to Turkey, Mediterranean Delights Fitness Voyages, is a new women-run company that targets these experiences and more at female travelers in any age range. You can check out their sample itineraries here, or drool over photographs of your destination on their main page. Having had the pleasure to participate in MDFV’s maiden voyage, I can assure you that the website does the company justice. The majority of the passengers, women in their 40s, were equally enthused by the experience.
A few notes, however, before you go signing up:
First, you will want to be somewhat active in your day-to-day life if you plan on participating in the hikes.
The hikes are not particularly strenuous- one of our number had a knee injury and was able to join in all activities- but you will want to be able to walk for several miles and have a good knowledge of your physical limits and boundaries.
Second, children will likely be bored and out-of-place.
If you have kids, plan a different vacation.
Third, if you have a male partner, ensure that he is comfortable being the odd man out (literally).
This was not a deal-breaker for my husband, as you will learn in a later article, but it is worth keeping in mind.
All in all, however, this is the perfect pick for the adventurous, active woman on the go. Grab your swimsuit, start practicing your Turkish, and get ready for the trip of a lifetime.
Editors’ note: Erica’s post is sponsored by the amazing Mediterranean Delights Fitness Voyage, who sent her to Turkey as part of our “Bring a Go Girl to You” program. Our views and opinions are completely our own! Click here for our full disclosure statement.