7 Reasons Why Women Traveling Together Stirs the Soul
When thinking about traveling as a woman, travel writer Sreshti Verma sums it up best: “When it comes to travel, [women] are too fed up or too dependent.” Amen, sister. Let’s face it: we’re worriers. We often don’t indulge in trips for ourselves for a variety of reasons. From guilt to time to nervousness, we’re great about coming up with all sorts of excuses to not book that dream trip with gal pals (or meeting some along the way). But did you ever stop to think about how powerful and beneficial women traveling together can be? For yourself? For each other? Heck, for the world? (We’re not exaggerating! Read on.) So embrace your wanderlust along with that extra X chromosome. Here are seven reasons women traveling together is an incredible, soul-filling idea—and why some BAMF adventurous females we know definitely agree.
1. They share experiences and life stories.
There’s something about stripping away our daily hangups of being good enough, smart enough, brave enough—yes, even attractive enough, and focusing on what it is we have in common. (Which is, coincidently, discussing how we handle our hangups.) Being a woman is tough. We’re hard on ourselves and frankly, we can be hard on each other. But adventure travel brings unique opportunities to connect on a deeper level. The stories that come out around the campfire aren’t the same stories that are shared sitting at a bar or on someone’s sofa.
Women traveling together not only have the opportunity to share past experiences and stories, they get to create new ones! Whether you’re hiking a steep trail, snowshoeing through snow drifts, or getting the hang of surfing—remember you’re all doing it together. You don’t have to describe the emotions or physical pain associated with these challenging moments. Your travel partners faced them, too. These women will celebrate the same successes and commiserate the same challenges right along with you.
“There is a camaraderie among women that reaches emotional depths that are often not experienced in mixed-gender groups. This “freedom” to have emotions within experiences can then become shared among the women traveling together, when the emotions are not in conflict.”
– Explorer Chick Anna
2. It creates a sense of sisterhood.
Female bonding reaches epic, Beaches-level proportions when women travel together. It’s true! There’s a reason the women on your trip felt that specific destination or adventure sounded appealing, right? These are your peeps. They will get you! Or at least appreciate you. And isn’t that was sisterhood is all about? At Explorer Chick, we hear countless stories of women who met on one of our trips or Mini Adventures and have been BFFs ever since. Finding yourself in the company of other like-minded women means (duh) there’s a good chance you all have a lot in common. Different life stages also plays a big factor in finding instant connections. There are college grads, career women, newlyweds, moms, recent divorcees, empty nesters, and everyone in-between! It’s like having the companionship of a best friend, the wisdom of an older sister, and the enthusiasm of a younger one—all along for the ride.
“Adventure traveling with women is an experience like no other. When alone together in challenging situations, I have seen true sisterhoods form. We challenge one another. We applaud our achievements—both individually and as a whole. We encourage one another to push on and not give up. We allow ourselves to try new experiences and learn from our mistakes. In the company of women, we allow ourselves to grow.”
— Explorer Chick Kimberly
3. Women traveling together don’t have to play their “roles” and can enjoy total freedom from typical responsibilities.
Sure, vacationing with partners and/or kids has its place in our lives. We love sharing places and experiences with our significant others and family members. But all too often, we find ourselves playing the same roles we play in our everyday lives. Caregiver. Decision-maker. Provider. Wife. Mom. Woman. The list goes on. Many times on “vacations,” women can find themselves carrying on much the same way they do at home—just in a new location. This is why it’s crucial to take a step back and do something out of the ordinary and just for yourself. It’s not selfish, it’s self-care. Remembering and indulging in who you are at your core means a chance to recharge—which in turn makes you a better [insert your multiple roles here].
“I think it’s a mom thing—other moms get the push and pull of wanting (and being OK with) quiet/alone time and then re-emerging to chat and have drinks. Husbands are another person to take care of. I don’t feel that way with friends (unless [of course] there’s an existential crisis).”
— Explorer Chick Lisa
4. They provide each other heartfelt support, feedback, and encouragement.
Adventure travel for women is different because it changes you. You aren’t snapping photos from a bus seat, you’re in the middle of attraction. You’re climbing up Half Dome, hiking to Machu Picchu, or crossing a glacier in Canada. None of these things is easy, and that’s what makes your female travel support group so critical. You have to find the right group of women, of course. At Explorer Chick, we have a strict No Debbie Downers or Mean Girls Policy.
When you do find your female crew of travel adventure junkies, it’s life-changing. Why? Because, they get it. They know when you need someone to hang back on the trail with some desperately-needed words of encouragement. They cheer you on when you reach the top. Best of all? They recognize that look of determination on your face and know when you need some quiet time to think through that next foothold. In short, your fellow female travelers are there for you in an authentic, no BS way.
“My mom [is the person] who introduced me to camping and hiking as a child. [She] pushed me to step out of my comfort zone and take an introduction to backpacking class (now my favorite hobby). She has introduced my siblings and me to so many of our country’s national parks.”
— Explorer Chick Patti
5. It’s transformative.
“Travel not only to find yourself, but to find out who you’ve been all along.” How powerful is that? If you’ve read the origin story of Explorer Chick, then you know why these words hit home. We’ve all been called to responsibilities in life where we sacrifice for others. But is that the only way to live? Don’t we deserve to have experiences to look forward to and memories of our own to make? We’ve also all had our share of disappointments. Life happens! We roll with the punches and continue on our journeys. Whether it’s part of a life transformation or just rejuvenation, you don’t have to do it alone. There’s so many—too many—women out there who
want need this, too!
“I feel like you get new experiences and try different things [more so] than the same old husband and kid trips.”
– Explorer Chick Janie
6. It creates a sense of security and a safe space to just “be”.
Be silly. Tell that dirty joke. Take your shirt off and flash some mountaintops. When it’s just us women, we get that rare opportunity as adults to let go and play. No one cares if your pedicure is chipped or you count dry shampoo and a second layer of deodorant as “showering.” When you’re on an adventure travel trip with other women, it becomes a safe place to share your authentic self.
“[My friend] gets me outside, makes me take in the view despite my fear of falling off cliff to my death, and continually pushes me to chase after joy after one of the worst years of my life.”
— Explorer Chick Meighan
7. Women traveling together means an opportunity to travel “solo”.
Newly divorced and experiencing career burnout, Explorer Chick founder Nicki Bruckmann quit her 9-to-5 job to focus on where her life was headed. “But first,” she shares, “I needed a vacation.” A real vacation. One that would challenge her, give her time to reflect, and shake her out of her rut all at once. Unfortunately, she couldn’t find what she was looking for. Trips like that just didn’t exist—especially not for an adventurous woman wanting to go it alone. “The gears started churning and an idea was born,” she states. “I decided I would create a company that brings together women looking to truly experience real adventures on their vacations.” Not only that, but a company where women would feel safe traveling without a companion. And so, Explorer Chick was born. (Thank you, Nicki!)
“I needed a vacation, [but] there was one teeny, tiny problem: I was out a travel buddy. I was rearing to go, but at the same time stuck [and] completely at a loss. There was no way I was the only woman in this predicament.”
– Explorer Chick Founder Nicki
8. Women traveling together is empowering.
There’s a great article in Forbes that talks about community, confidence, and transformation, but also stresses the importance that travel has on women in our economy. Our Guides (who many have a second income to support themselves) are passionate about sharing the outdoors with other women. There are countless female-owned restaurants, gift shops, hotels around the globe. There are women who create amazing backpacking food, outdoor-related artwork and a variety of other products and depend on these businesses for their livelihood.
Traveling is a boost to the economy and according to the World Tourism Organization (WTO), 54% of people employed in tourism are women— compared to 39% in the broader economy. Investing in travel is not just about investing in yourself. It supports other hard-working women as well! So yes, going on an adventure travel trip is not only empowering for you, but for women in travel-related industries everywhere.
“[My husband and I] just don’t have the same interests when we are on vacation. I love vacationing with my girlfriends. It’s liberating and soul-filling at the same time.”
– Explorer Chick Kelli
Of course, we believe traveling with like-minded, strong women is a travel experience like nothing else. The memories created. The challenges faced. The bonds formed. And as you can see, you don’t just have to take our word for it. But in truth, it’s something you have to experience first-hand for yourself. We certainly hope you will. (Still, we think Explorer Chick Karen does a pretty darn good job summing it up, so we’ll let her have the final word.)
“In particular to traveling with the strong, amazing women who gravitate toward this company, Explorer Chick Stephanie and I were sharing with some of the other ladies…that a huge benefit is that you already know that you will have shared interests, a kindred sense of adventure and at least somewhat similar personalities.
We are all very different here, but so many of us are also bold, loud, up for anything, at least a little raunchy, love a beer/cocktail/shot/glass of wine, and are looking to have new experiences and make unforgettable memories. We raved about the camaraderie, the support, and the not having to pretend to be something that you aren’t. Traveling with women, with Explorer Chicks is authentic. And that is awesome.”
— Explorer Chick Karen
Join our sisterhood: The We Are Explorer Chick Facebook Group
No, not of the “Traveling Pants” variety. Our sisterhood is bigger than that! The We Are Explorer Chick Group on Facebook has over 4,300 members—and the most positive ones. They join because they’re interested in more travel, want to know more about a future trip, or they’ve traveled with us already and want to keep up with fellow Explorer Chicks.
Everyone is there to share memories, ask questions, get answers, cheer each other on, rejoice in others’ victories, and support them in hard times. It’s the most amazing thing to watch! (If you haven’t joined already, we invite you to do so! You’ll be welcomed with open arms, just like you would be on one of our adventures.)
Even if you’re thinking “I have plenty friends,” know it’s not just about that. It’s about being with other like-minded women who want more out of life; whether it’s by visiting new places, getting over their fears, meeting new people—or all three! We all have something to look forward to: an opportunity to connect with each other.
How has traveling with other women stirred your soul? Join our group and please let us know!