Vagabondess: A Guide to Solo Female Travel by Toby Israel
Vagabondess: A Guide to Solo Female Travel by Toby Israel is a book for women—and all people!—who want to travel solo, face their fears, and live the adventure of their dreams. This book is for the travelers, the feminists, the adventurers, the seekers and the curious. The author shares insights from over 10 years of solo travel through Asia, Africa, Europe, and Central America. Vagabondess is much more than a guide. It is a collection of travelogue, philosophy, stories, and, yes, travel advice. It is about embracing the vagabondess—her spirit of adventure, her curiosity, her dedication to growth and discovery—who lives inside each of us, showing up in our lives in a myriad of ways. If you were waiting for someone to tell you that your dreams are just crazy enough, and then give you some practical suggestions for how to get there, then this is the book for you. “Why Vagabondess? A vagabondess has earth and salt to balance her air. Her lifestyle is not a romantic, Instagram-filter utopia, but rather gritty and smeared with sweat. A vagabondess is not a symbol of an ideal of a life. She is alive. A vagabondess weaves magic into the everyday and touches the profound with her toes as she wanders—aimlessly, purposefully—through her inner landscape and the outer wilderness of the modern world. She unites nostalgia for a freer past and hope for a liberated future by living squarely in the present tense. For solo female travelers, the vagabondess is an attainable objective, not a holy grail. She is within easy reach, if only we look in the right place: inside.”
Vagabondess by Toby Israel is, in my opinion, a must read for any would-be travelers. Inspiring, exciting and considerably insightful, this guide is unlike any other you can buy. Not a list of places you can visit, this is a conduit to ‘traveling mindset’ and is about lifestyle and perspective. I found it totally uplifting.
If only I could have read this book when I was eighteen, maybe then I would have been brave enough to step out of my comfort zone and walk through France picking grapes. Alas, that time for me has well gone, but the dream of those days was so vividly brought to life through reading this book, I wish, I wish, I wish. I really can’t recommend this book high enough. I am not about to go trekking across the world, but the words reached deep into me, I feel uplifted. I can therefore say with sincere confidence, that this is more than a beginner’s guide. There are immensely helpful lists such as: How to pack one bag for life; Money saving techniques and Taking care of your health, to name just three. The chapter on safety is invaluable to women traveling solo.
Vagabondess however, is about attitude and beyond the traveling tips is the heart of Toby Israel. Her manifesto is my favorite part, I can’t write it all here but let me share the beginning and the end of it: Go out into the world and struggle… and remember to move through this world with grace. Toby’s eternal optimism in human nature is breathtakingly refreshing, her thought process both inspiring and encouraging.
This book is about embracing your vulnerability and following your heart and dreams. It’s about listening to your instincts and living the life that’s calling to you… whether that’s traipsing the globe or just finding the right place for your forever home.
In Vagabondess, Toby Israel has gracefully written a wonderful, inspiring and delightfully engaging guide to the mindset of a wanderer. An absolute must have for anyone wishing to take that first step out of comfort into the unknown. This invitation to go and explore your own path comes highly recommended by Chick Lit Café. Book reviewed by T N Traynor for Chick Lit Café.