Traveling alone is an incredibly rewarding experience, and more and more women around the world are taking the plunge. But with so many destinations to choose from, it can be hard to know which ones are the safest. To help you out, here are the 20 best countries for women traveling solo, ordered by rank. Austria tops the list in terms of the percentage of women who feel safe walking alone at night, with 79%.
Spain is the safest country for women traveling solo according to the Danger Index for Women, due to its high road safety and low legal discrimination and violence against women. Ireland is another great option, with particularly low levels of discrimination, gender inequality and violence against women. The United Kingdom is a historic state with many attractions for visitors of any kind, and it's generally considered very safe. However, it ranks a little lower on this list due to its low score in gender inequality.
France is a popular destination in Europe, but you should still remain vigilant when traveling there. Scandinavian countries are always a safe bet for women traveling solo, with low levels of crime and harassment. Sweden scored lower than other Scandinavian countries due to its low score in sexual violence between people outside the partner and between intimate partners, as well as to the global gender gap. New Zealand is an ideal destination for lovers of adventure, sports and nature, as it's the second most peaceful country in the world according to the Global Peace Index.
The Philippines is also a safe destination for girls traveling solo, thanks to its kind and hospitable people and English being one of its two official languages. Iceland earns a spot on this list due to its safe and progressive environment for women. Switzerland is also among the 10 safest countries in the world, although petty crimes like theft do occasionally occur in larger cities. Finally, Canada is huge and has tons of hiking trails and other outdoor activities for adventure seekers in its various national parks.
No matter where you choose to travel solo, always use your best instincts and “street smarts” at all times to avoid being targeted by crime.