There’s a reason why the movie Girls Trip has been in so many headlines lately. Not only has it made history by being the first film with an all-black creative team (and that means, writers, producers, directors, and actors btw) to earn $100 million at the box office, but it also emphasizes the importance of female friendship. There’s been a lot of emphasis lately on why women should travel solo and while I 100 percent agree that every woman at some point in her life should travel somewhere alone, I also think it’s just as important for women to travel with their girlfriends.
My heart stops a little whenever a girlfriend of mine who is either married or just in a serious relationship, tells me she’d probably never travel with girlfriends again. I get it, traveling is expensive and even more expensive if you’re making plans to travel with your bae and then again with your girls, but honestly it’s probably well worth the money. I’ve traveled a few times before with girlfriends. I went on a Caribbean cruise a few years ago with my bestie (and now current roommate), I went to Vegas with a group of girlfriends two years ago, and I went to D.C. with two close girlfriends last summer. The more I do it, the more I realize just how important it is.
This year I planned a trip with my best friend and roommate to Portugal, where we met a group of girlfriends, two who are already friends with my bestie, and two women we had never met before. I was so down and to be honest, it never once crossed my mind that there would be drama or problems. Turns out my positive thinking really worked in my favor, because this was hands down the best, most amazing girls’ trip I have ever taken.
My bestie, Marisha and I spent about seven days in Portugal. We stayed at her co-worker and friend, Courtney’s Portuguese home. The place was huge. So huge in fact, Courtney and her wife opened their home not just to my bestie Marisha and I, but also to their friends Suzanne and Jacqueline. Claudia who is Portuguese and lived in Portugal her entire life, also had a lot of her family over, including her parents, her sister, her nephew, and her cousin and two kids. It was a packed house that led to an even more magical experience.
Marisha and I spent the majority of the trip with the girls: Courtney, Claudia, Suzanne, and Jacqueline, all of whom come from very different backgrounds including varying ages and marital statuses. It was a fun group of very unique women, who were able to share a special connection and a deep love for travel and life in the week we spent together.
Why is this all important? Because there’s something special that happens when women go on a trip together. It almost feels like a mental and spiritual detox of some sort. You laugh, you share, you talk, you open up and sometimes in ways you don’t often do, you tear up (I did this when I toasted to the girls one night during dinner), you relate, you relax, and judgment is totally off the table.
We did it all, explored various cities and towns throughout the country, went out for dinner and drinks quite a lot, hit up the beach numerous times, took long evening walks, watched the sunset, went kayaking, checked out medieval castles, visited museums, enjoyed home cooked Portuguese meals together prepared by Claudia’s mom – you name it! If you could think of something you’d want to do while visiting Portugal, chances are we did it – all in just a matter of days. And while I’ll always remember the places we saw and the food we ate, I’ll also never forget the precious moments I spent with these amazing women.
Traveling is a healthy escape that everyone deserves but traveling with girlfriends makes it even more memorable. I promised myself after this trip that traveling with girlfriends is something I’m going to always try to make time to do, even when I find myself in a serious relationship again, even after I’m married, and even after I have children. I’m not saying that I’ll be able to swing it every single year like I’m planning to do now, I’m just saying this is something I really want to prioritize in my life because life really is too short to not be spending it with a group of women who are just as passionate about living as you are.