Hotels We’d Travel the World For, Just to Stay Again

by | Mar 13, 2024

A woman walks through the lobby at an upscale hotel with her luggage.
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Last updated on April 15th, 2024

Featured image: Explore these JoureyWoman recommended places to stay across the globe | Photo by djoronimo on Envato

Women recommend their favourite places to stay around the world

Curated by Carolyn Ray

For solo women, finding safe and affordable places to stay can make or break a trip. This month we feature recommendations from our private Solo Travel Wisdom group that take you around the world to locally owned guesthouses, boutique hotels, retreats and for a splurge, a Sicilian palazzo.

This is just a sampling of some of the recommendations to be discovered in our Women’s Travel Directory, a free service we host to help you plan your travels. Our Accommodations section features hundreds of places to stay recommended for women, by women, and is searchable by city, country, type of accommodation and budget. We invite you to look for locally owned and women-owned places to stay when you travel. 

What’s a place you’d return to just to experience it again? Share it on our Women’s Travel Directory so that others can learn from your travels.

For March 2024: Share your recommendation and you could win a $50 gift card, which works across all major hotel chains! Click here to enter your recommendation! 

12 Women-recommended places to stay

1. Buenos Aires, Argentina

Hotel Tango de Mayo, in Buenos Aires, Argentina. If you are looking for a quaint hotel in the heart of the old city with 1930s decor and the best place to get tickets to tango shows this is it. I stayed here for two days in December 2023 and found it filled with many single women travelers from around the world. We all have recognized its charm. It is clean, has impeccable service and a rooftop bar from which you can see historic buildings and landmarks. The hotel has a strong connection to the Tango and it is very evident in its decor. Every rug has the steps of the Tango woven into it. — Karen H.
Book it here!

2. Paris and Normandy, France

I just returned from a wonderful 3-week solo trip to France. I stayed in 6 different hotels (because I love trying out hotels). I stayed primarily in Paris with a 4-day getaway to Normandy. I traveled by Metro, Uber, SNCF train, taxi. I mostly walked everywhere. Hotels: Hotel La Perle (St Germain near St Sulpice), Hotel des Grand Hommes (across from the Pantheon), Hotel Odeon by Malone (near Odeon theater and Metro), Hotel des Marronniers (St Germain on rue Jacob). In Normandy: Domaine de Bayeux in Bayeux and Hotel Musardiere in Giverny. — Anne M.

Bangalore, India

In Bangalore, Shreyas Retreat is a beautiful, hidden oasis. Long-time friends and like family for me since 2014. I have encouraged many to go there and they have all enjoyed it immensely. Yoga, meditation, treatments, karma-yoga and all in the lap of India. — Heather M.

image that reads safe places for women to stay

4. Rome, Italy

In late Nov 2022, my friends and I stayed a week at a small 3-star hotel in Rome near Piazza Quinerale on Via XXIV Maggio. Hotel Hiberia was clean and comfortable, with easy, walkable access to many of Rome’s landmarks. But the nicest thing we found was the attached (off the hotel lobby) Ristorante Petrucci. As we were finishing our meal out steps the fellow from the kitchen (he made pizzas on Tuesdays & Thursday evenings) who began singing opera for about 20 minutes… what a treat! And every dish we had, including the arosto carciofi (roasted artichokes) and our nightly 2 bottles of Prosecco made our stay even more delightful! — Sue W.   Prices start at $317/night. Book a room here!

5. Cinque Terre, Italy

If you can find an apartment with a balcony, and it covers all your other needs, book it, as far in advance as possible. We stayed at “Romantic apartment with a breathtaking view — and a garage” on VRBO for a total of €762 for five nights. This worked out at €50 per person per night when split between three friends. An apartment gives you the option to eat in. One with a balcony allows you to enjoy a leisurely drink at the end of an active day, while soaking up the pastel glow of Cinque Terre’s famous sunsets.

A view of colourful Vernazza in Cinque Terre

An apartment with a balcony is the perfect way to soak up Cinque Terre

6. Lisbon, Portugal

My first international trip SOLO. I just spent eight days going to Portugal in November. I did try a hostel for the first time on my first night in Lisbon. I liked my hostel so much that I returned to Lisbon over the last two days and returned to the hostel. The hostel gave you a free drink and a wonderful breakfast. Here is where I stayed, Independente Príncipe Real, Lisbon, Portugal. — Rachel N. 

7. Edinburgh, Scotland

I stayed in 2021 at the Destiny Scotland on Market Street across the street from the main rail station and down the hill from the castle. Super close to the Royal Mile. Very reasonably priced, a nice suite, and is super convenient to everything. — Trina D.  Prices start at $175.00. Book it here!

8. Palermo, Sicily

While in Palermo, Sicily in February 2024, I was fortunate to spend three nights at a guesthouse on a quiet side street in the historical part of the city. Owned by the gracious and welcoming Rosa di Stefano, Palazzo del Poeta (Poet’s Palace) has been completely restored over a six-year period. Comfortable and luxurious, it felt like I had my very own Sicilian palace, complete with beautiful art, scrumptious breakfast including Sicilian pastries and a lending library. If you want to treat yourself this is the place to do it. Prices start under $200 and include breakfast and other perks. — Carolyn R. Book it here.

9. Cape Town, South Africa

I was in Cape Town in October. I stayed at a lovely guesthouse which served a wonderful breakfast. The staff was great and was very accommodating, ie, arranging transport, information, etc. I loved it there and would highly recommend it. Welgelegen Guesthouse — Karen B.  Prices start at $170.00. Book it here!

Aerial view of Cape Town with Table Mountain, the harbour, Lions Head and Devils Peak

Karen suggests Welgelegen Guesthouse as a base for exploring Cape Town / Photo by jacoblund on Envato

10. Llanes, Spain

I really loved the Montemar Hotel in Llanes, Spain. What a fabulous town. The north coast of Spain was uncrowded in early October. The Picos de Europa National Park is stunning. — Virginia M. Prices start at $65.00. Book it here!

11. Scotland, United Kingdom

I stayed at Cluny Hill, a former Victorian Hotel, in 2016. I was there for the Experience, part of the Findhorn Foundation. It was right at the beginning of my ‘Year of Curiosity Sabbatical ‘. It certainly proved to be a meaningful way to start my adventure. Lots of fun & sweet moments, especially their philosophy of ‘Love in Action’. I’m exceedingly grateful for my time there. — Monique G.

12. New York, USA

In New York, I have enjoyed the Pennington House, a Quaker Guest House. It is about $150 and a 5-minute walk from Union Square. A help-yourself breakfast and you can join the community for a free evening buffet of great, healthy food. — Nancy C.

Learn More About Finding Places to Stay

As the CEO and Editor of JourneyWoman, Carolyn is a passionate advocate for women's travel and living the life of your dreams. She leads JourneyWoman's team of writers and chairs the JourneyWoman Women's Advisory Council and Women's Speaker's Bureau. She has been featured in the New York Times, Toronto Star and Zoomer as a solo travel expert, and speaks at women's travel conferences around the world. In March 2023, she was named one of the most influential women in travel by TravelPulse and was the recipient of a SATW travel writing award in September 2023. She is the chair of the Canadian chapter of the Society of American Travel Writers (SATW), a member Women's Travel Leaders and a Herald for the Transformational Travel Council (TTC). Sometimes she sleeps. A bit.

1 Comment

  1. Molly Collie

    So great to find this site and to be able to read tips and more for solo traveling women. I have traveled solo going to group trips or on my own for a few years now and always like to learn more. Will definitely share along the way too


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