Oasis: A beach to myself in Kenting
A couple years ago I traveled to Taiwan
solo. After exploring Taipei and its environs I decided to take the train then the bus down to the southernmost tip of the island and spend a few days by the beach in Kenting. Down there no one I met spoke a word of English. Thankfully, with my knowledge of Japanese (and hence Chinese) characters, I managed. I was originally going to stay at a hostel but the main stretch where the bus drop me off had a handful of hotels that were super cheap because it was the off-season. The manager didn't speak English of course but she was so nice and hospitable and directed me where to rent a bike and even brought me local fruit. During the several days I spent there, the few tourists I encountered were locals. Everyone was friendly. Walking around at night checking out the stores and eating street food was completely safe, even for a female solo traveler. On one of the days I spent the entire day at the beach. And I had the entire beach to myself! Talk about a solitary retreat. The beach patrols came around in shifts, and at the end of the day they invited me to have a drink with them right there by the beach. I had a taste of their local whiskey while we nibbled on green mangoes. It was one of those travel moments that I'll always remember. Because even without being able to speak to one another it was a moment of connection.