While we are socially isolating, the thought of future journeys and explorations keep us going.

For many single people, lockdown is proving particularly tough. One of the things that sustains us while we are socially isolated is the thought of future journeys and explorations. That moment when we can burst out of our homes and explore the world again.

It is likely that travel will return in phases. First, we may be restricted to domestic travel, and we will delight in the rediscovery of our own beautiful country. Some long haul destinations may not be possible to visit for a while.

In the meantime, we can dream and we can make plans. Rather than “look and book”, many of us are now enjoying hours spent researching and planning, thinking hard about what we really value in life and what places and experiences are special to us (rather than what might get the most Instagram likes).

Here, Cathy Winston, Editor of 101 Singles Holidays, selects some of her favourite singles holidays to enjoy post-lockdown.

Explore the great outdoors

We’ve all had enough of indoors. Let’s go outside and enjoy nature. Singles specialist Just You has a range of group walking holidays in the UK which are exclusively for solo travellers, including routes across the Peak District and Snowdonia, as well as Northumberland’s coast and Hadrian’s Wall.

Ramblers Walking Holidays has its own property in the Lake District, Hassness House, with a low solo supplement and house party feel, as well as some women-only walking breaks. You can also choose from a variety of other walking destinations including Jersey, Guernsey, the North Yorkshire Coast, Devon and Cornwall, many of them with no single supplement.

If you prefer to explore on two wheels rather than two feet, the cycling breaks from Saddle Skedaddle cover everything from leisure cycling to road and mountain biking, with itineraries across the UK and Europe including guided and supported breaks. Freewheel around Scotland’s lochs and glens, pedal through the Cotswolds or explore the Derbyshire Dales.

Spend time with others

If you’re craving a holiday that comes complete with a choice of potential new friends, check out some of the house-party style group escapes exclusively for single travellers; the perfect combination of like-minded company, flexibility to explore on your own and no chance of being the odd one out in a sea of couples.

Friendship Travel has breaks in various destinations around the Mediterranean, as well as chilled-out gulet cruises in traditional small boats off the coast of Turkey. Or check out Club Solos from Solos Holidays on four different Greek islands – you don’t share the properties with anyone apart from other Solos Holidays guests, there’s a welcome meeting to break the ice and optional excursions.

Travel One also has a house-party atmosphere on its holidays, with hotels across the Mediterranean including Spain and the Algarve.

Immerse yourself in culture

Whether you’ve been consoling yourself with your favourite authors and musicians during lockdown or discovered a new love of literature or cinema, it’s the perfect inspiration for a holiday. Martin Randall Travel specialises in short breaks focused on art, architecture and culture. Discover the cathedrals of East Anglia, the Norman castles of south-east England, arts and crafts in the Cotswolds and more, with a knowledgeable expert on hand throughout.

Classical music lovers can attend a choice of intimate festivals with world-class performers in East Anglia, Eastbourne or Worcester with Kirker Holidays. The company has a huge range of music holidays including opera in Italy, Germany and Sweden.

Revisit your bucket list

It’s easy to leave travel goals on your list for ‘later’ but recent events have been a good reminder not to postpone your adventures. On The Go Tours has no compulsory single supplement if you’re happy to share a room, while some itineraries have a low or no supplement on certain departures for sole occupancy. How about hunting for the Northern Lights in Finland, or discovering ancient civilisations and the fairy chimneys of Cappadocia in Turkey?

Cox & Kings has top notch group tours exclusively for solo travellers, which are particularly popular with guests aged over 50. The Majestic Russia itinerary takes you from the palaces of St Petersburg to Moscow’s Red Square, while you can see bears, picturesque medieval cities and the famous Bran Castle in Transylvania on an escorted tour of Romania.

Personal development

If you’ve been inspired to make changes in your own life, why not use your first trip to help meet those goals with a personal development retreat? At Cortijo Romero in Spain, the courses include creative and active escapes as well as ones focused on de-stressing and relationships.

Skyros in Greece is known for its creative writing retreats, but you’ll also find other art, dance, music and active holidays and it also offers short breaks on the Isle of Wight.

The retreats from The Healthy Holiday Company are ideal for getting back in shape. It also has a hand-picked range of the best spa hotels across the UK.

Wiggle your toes in some sand

If the thought of lying on a lounger listening to the waves lap on the beach has been keeping you going, there are some great short-haul holidays perfect for single travellers. The Mistral Hotel in Crete is exclusively for solo guests with some special interest weeks focused on walking, photography and foodie breaks – or simply the chance to relax by the pool, stroll to the nearby beach or take excursions around the island.

Mercury Holidays has a string of hotels with no single supplement around the Mediterranean, including Cyprus and Malta, as well as on the Algarve. There are options for different budgets including five-star stays and all-inclusive board.

Return to the seas

Discover wonderful wildlife and whisky on a small group cruise of Scotland’s west coast with St Hilda’s Sea Adventures, with a maximum of 11 on board and some cabins with no single supplement, plus the chance to learn from a photography tutor or expert guide.

Or find some tempting deals for solo cruisers from iglucruise including Norwegian Epic, with its single staterooms and solos-only area of the ship, sailing the Mediterranean, as well as Fred Olsen departing from UK ports to the Baltics or down to Lisbon.

May 2020