Looking for a cool place to visit as a single woman traveling alone for the New Year's holiday.
December 8, 2011 12:22 PM   Subscribe

Last minute travel filter: where can I go as a single gal traveling alone for the New Year's holiday? New York City? The Caribbean? Totally open for an awesome experience.

So I just found out that due to an extra floating holiday, I will effectively have 5 days to travel over New Year's, specifically from Thursday Dec 29th through Monday January 2nd. I would be flying out of Austin, TX and don't want to spend more than $500 for a flight.

I've never been to New York City and it's on my list of places to "must visit." I'm mostly concerned about traveling alone, especially since I don't know anyone in the city, and if there's any bad weather, as I'm a Texas girl and am not used to heavy snow & ice. The Caribbean and Central America would be warmer but I'm not sure which countries would be a good place to visit (I've already been to Costa Rica). I don't want to go to Mexico right now. I've also already been to Las Vegas and New Orleans for NYE, so I don't want to revisit.

I'm basically looking for a cool, new place to travel to where I can have a fun time as a single woman traveling alone for the New Year's holiday. Thanks!
posted by lychee to Travel & Transportation (17 answers total) 6 users marked this as a favorite
Barring a freak weather scenario... it'll be cold, if not icy, in NYC at New Years.

I might look at some place on the west coast - San Francisco? I have traveled there alone repeatedly and always enjoyed myself.
posted by FlamingBore at 12:31 PM on December 8, 2011

New York City is a wonderful place, but not on New Year's. Really, it's the worst time to visit the city. Go in the Spring or the Fall when it isn't as crowded and the weather is better. If you were thinking of trying to do the Times Square Ball Drop thing, it really is not a pleasant thing. You stand in Time Square for 12 hours, there's 28 zillion people, there's nowhere to pee. It's basically hell. Plus not having a buddy to see you through that whole situation would make it even more of a drag. So, that's my two cents on New York.
posted by Lutoslawski at 12:32 PM on December 8, 2011 [3 favorites]

Why not go on a cruise?
posted by MangyCarface at 12:32 PM on December 8, 2011

A month ago I helped a friend look for lodging for New Year's in NYC. It was already getting booked up and was definitely expensive.
posted by ceiba at 12:46 PM on December 8, 2011

Marfa, TX? Maybe you want to get out of the State - but the drive along 90 is fun. And I think there may be a flight out of Austin. Or you can take Amtrak out of San Antonio if you're into trains and rent a car in Alpine.

It would be a nice place to visit alone. People are friendly and easy to talk with. Food is good. There's cool stuff to see and it's a beautiful part of the country. Get a room at the Thunderbird or any of the other fun lodging around there. There's some place that I think the San Jose in Austin also owns out there that's old fixed up airstreamers. Looks interesting. One of my favorate parts of the world. It's magic out there in the desert.

There's also a bar in Alpine - The Railroad Blues and it is a wonderful place to see live music. The shows are crazy fun.

Whatever you decide have a wonderful time!
posted by dog food sugar at 12:48 PM on December 8, 2011

Actually, New York City is unusually warm right now....and as for knowing anyone, the NYC Mefite clan is very approachable.

Although I totally agree about not trying to do the Times Square Ball Drop thing this year -- it's one of those "do it once so you can say you did" things, but you need WAY more advance planning. (It is ABSOLUTELY stupid to wait out on the sidewalk, shoot for trying to get a room in a hotel overlooking Times Square and you'll be way more comfortable.) However, there are a lot of other things doing in the city on New Year's -- a couple different fireworks, my neighborhood has a steam-whistle carillion thing, there's a road race in Central Park where people run dressed in costume...and I think at Noon on New Year's Day the Polar Bear Club still does a New Year's Day swim at Coney Island.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 12:49 PM on December 8, 2011

I'd expect Miami to be a lot of fun for NYE.
posted by allnamesaretaken at 12:49 PM on December 8, 2011

You might check Kayak Buzz for ideas. There are lots of results for under $500, including Miami for $201 -- probably some interesting Cuban celebrations.
posted by ceiba at 12:53 PM on December 8, 2011 [1 favorite]

I've often thought New York was pretty lame for NYE.

Times Square and the crazy police presence everywhere make it more anxiety inducing than fun. Most bars have $XX where XX > $50 for the night stamp deals going on so barhopping becomes infeasible. Even before 9/11 Times Square for NYE was a terrible terrible experience, it has just gotten worse.
posted by Ad hominem at 12:59 PM on December 8, 2011

Dominican Republic? It's lovely, close, and there are a lot of nice resorts.

And you could go to NYC and do any number of nice things that Weren't Times Square.
posted by ldthomps at 1:00 PM on December 8, 2011

I'd expect Miami to be a lot of fun for NYE.

Miami is actually really, really fun on New Year's. And warm, and the ocean - it's not nearly as annoying as you might think it to be.
posted by Lutoslawski at 1:06 PM on December 8, 2011 [1 favorite]

Cartagena, Colombia. Easy and cheap flight. Stay in a hostel and party with the long-term travelers.
posted by valeries at 1:12 PM on December 8, 2011

Belize. Skip NYC this time of year. Come here in the spring or fall.
posted by dfriedman at 1:16 PM on December 8, 2011 [1 favorite]

Washington DC? Fly into DCA (not IAD...), take metro downtown... find a hotel not far from the National Mall - lots of museums to visit over your stay (although I believe they're closed on the actual holidays).
posted by matty at 1:21 PM on December 8, 2011

Washington DC? - lots of museums to visit over your stay (although I believe they're closed on the actual holidays).

Just got back from DC over Thanksgiving and the only day the museums are closed is Christmas Day.
posted by jabes at 2:38 PM on December 8, 2011

I had one of the best NYEs of my life at the Iguana Perdida on Lago Atitlan in Guatemala. I believe they have this party every year - they buy a ton of fireworks and make a big dinner. There was music and dancing, and then we set off the fireworks at midnight, as did people around the lake. I showed up by myself at about 4PM on New Year's Eve and was welcomed warmly into the fold - it's a fun backpacker's scene. Then I got to wake up on New Year's Day to one of the most beautiful and peaceful places on earth.
posted by lunasol at 4:46 PM on December 8, 2011 [1 favorite]

NYC in May is amazing.

I spent a very fun NYE in Orlando one year.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 4:47 PM on December 8, 2011

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