This paragraph by Laura, a volunteer at the yoga retreat Blue Osa in Costa Rica (http://www.blueosa.com) really sums things up for me, on traveling. No need to rack my brain trying to put my feelings into words, Laura’s already done it for me!
“Nothing challenges me or pushes me to the limits of my comfort-zone quite like going to a foreign place. It is within these new environments that I am exposed to parts of myself that I didn’t even know existed; fears, perspectives, biases, world views, value systems, and deeply imbedded cultural norms. I am forced to analyze the world through new lenses. I’m asked to interact with others and I’m allowed to participate in diverse ways of life. While these experiences challenge me and can sometimes be difficult, it is undeniably one of my favorite parts of traveling by myself.”
Truth be told though, I find traveling alone well, lonely. I’m a sharer and would much rather have a companion to share exploration and perspectives about a new place.