I became a National Trust member

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*Please note this is not an advertisement blog and I am not being paid to post this; I just think it’s something that could be of some value to some readers.*

Last month I decided to join the National Trust and I’m super excited about it!

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links, meaning, I get a commission if you decide to make a purchase through my links, at no cost to you. Please read my Disclosure page for more info

What is the National Trust?

I’m sure many of you already know, but for those that don’t, the National Trust is Europe’s biggest conservation charity, which looks after over 500 heritage sites across England, Wales, and Northern Ireland as well as coastlines, the countryside, and green spaces so that people and nature can thrive  and this is done mostly through the help of people’s donations through memberships.

What’s in it for the members?

As a member, I now have access to over 500 heritage sites where I will be able to present my card and get free admission as well as free parking to the sites. Of course, it’s not entirely free because you have to pay for the membership card to begin with, but it is a fantastic investment for plenty of fun and adventures for a fraction of the price I would pay as a non-member.

Overseas and non UK citizens

Not only this, my membership also gives me access to similar sites across the globe because The International National Trust and similar organisations are all in partnership.

The membership is also offered to people in the US, but otherwise non-UK citizens can purchase a touring pass ( prices below)

Membership prices

Memberships last for one year, and there are different types of memberships that can be paid for either as a one-time payment or monthly payments. Although it is worth paying for one all at once, you will receive a £15 National Trust gift voucher. Here are the prices:

Membership Prices

Individual – £76.80 a year/ £6.40 a month

Young person – (18 to 25) £38.40 a year

junior – (5 to 17) £10 a year

Joint – (2 adults) £127.20 a year/ £10.60 a month

Family – ( 2 adults and all children) £133.80 a year/ £11.15 a month

Family – ( 1 adult and all children) £83.40 a year/ £6.95 a month

Touring pass for non UK citizens

Individual ( £37 for a 7 day pass or £43 for a 14 day pass)

Two people (£65 for a 7 day pass or £77 for a 14 day pass)

Family pass ( £71 for a 7 day pass or £91 for a 14 day pass)

See here for more information on the touring pass.

Already seeing the benefits of this little membership card

I bought the individual one because I usually travel alone, and I’ve already realised how valuable it is to have a membership. I recently took my first day trip using my card and would have had to pay a £10 admission fee if it weren’t for having the membership. My next planned day trip would have cost me a £19 admission fee, so it’s definitely worth it for people who like to take day trips.

For more information about the National Trust and its sites visit here.

I hope you have enjoyed my blog today

Stay blessed 🙏🏾

Natalie ❤️

Greater Manchester: Hollingworth Lake County Park

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Hollingworth Lake is situated in Littleborough, Greater Manchester, England.

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A bit about the history of Hollingworth Lake

The lake was first constructed to serve as the primary water source for Rochdale Canal, but in the 1860s it turned into a well- liked tourist destination.

Early in the 20th century, it started to lose popularity as a tourist attraction and was used as a training camp for the second World War.

Following World War II, Rochdale Council acquired the reservoir and boating rights and designated the surrounding areas as a country park in 1974, giving rise to the name Hollingworth Lake and Country Park, which is now a popular tourist destination once again.

I can’t believe I didn’t visit this location until earlier this year. It is one of the most beautiful places to grab a moment’s peace and quiet and another great find on the outskirts of my city.

I’d say this is a great place for those living or staying in Manchester seeking tranquility, and it’s only a 40-minute drive away from the city centre

Additional information

There are plenty of facilities here, including its very own caravan park. Take a look here to find out more and make the most of your day trip here.

I hope you enjoyed my blog today

Thank you for visiting

Stay blessed 🙏🏾

Natalie ❤️

Bangor: The oldest city in Wales

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Earlier this year, 2002, in May, I travelled to Bangor. I went there with some big expectations because it’s the oldest city in Wales. You’d think that I would have a tonne to tell you, but I’m sorry I don’t since, in all honesty, I wasn’t all that impressed on this trip and I couldn’t get to some of the places I wanted to visit.

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links, meaning, I get a commission if you decide to make a purchase through my links, at no cost to you. Please read my Disclosure page for more info

It was a little run-down

It looked pretty dingy and run-down, at least in the city centre, and there were lots of boarded-up shops, which is really sad for a once-thriving city.

Since I just visited the centre and not too far outside of it, I can only report on those areas. Given that I was only there for a single day, there may be far more to it and several locations to find that I am unaware of. Please don’t misunderstand me; I’m sure there are many that genuinely enjoy Bangor, but I suppose it depends on individual tastes. But nonetheless, I did find some beauty spots.

Things start to look up

I remember Googling the location to see what places and things I could visit around the city centre or within walking distance of the center; normally, I take buses and venture out, but I didn’t want to do that; I wanted a fairly relaxed day without having to rely on public transportation, and though there weren’t many recommendations near the city center, I decided the things recommended would suffice.

As a traveler, I have an important rule I go by, and it is that no matter where I go, regardless, I must make the most of the adventure and look for all the positives of a place. So I started to seek out some of those recommendations I had found within walking distance.

Garth Pier

Garth Pier is a listed structure and the second-longest pier in Wales, ninth overall in the British Isles. It is just a short 14-minute walk from the centre of Bangor.

There was a 50p charge to entire and no time  retrictions at least when I went.

The pier and its surrounding area were beautiful.

After a walk down the pier, I walked around the cute residential area and found this little spot of beach down an alleyway and ate my lunch here; if I had known this part of the day would be the best highlight of my day, I would have stayed a little longer, but the curious Annie in me wanted to get going with zeal to see what else was on offer.

Port Penrhyn Harbour

Port Penrhyn Harbour was once a major exporter of slate from Penrhyn Quarry, which was once the world’s largest slate quarry.

There wasn’t that much to do here, but it was nice to walk around and enjoy the views of the mountains in the distance.

Lon Las Ogwen

Now this is the most disappointing part of my trip because I was really looking forward to visiting Lon Las Ogwen and the pictures looked absolutely breathtaking.

I couldn’t find this place for some reason and ended up here with no idea where I was, but it definitely wasn’t Lon Las Ogwen.

I had Google Maps on to help me find this place, but it kept leading to a set of gates that were closed, and then to a restricted residential area that I couldn’t get access to. So it ended up just sitting here. It was so quiet. I was here for almost 40 minutes, and I didn’t see a single person, just birds. It was actually quite blissful, but it was a little chilly. I couldn’t help but think how beautiful this little spot would be on a day when the tide was in.

As I wasn’t successful in finding this place, you may want to take a look here to discover more.

Besides the above-mentioned, I didn’t really do much else besides browsing in some shops and purchasing a new jumper before heading back to the train station.

Other recommended places I didn’t get to visit

Penrhyn Castle

I wanted to visit Penrhyn Castle, but unfortunately for me, on the day I went, the castle was closed and was only open over the weekends, although now it is back to its normal opening hours. The castle and its gardens look so beautiful, and I’m looking forward to visiting one day in the near future.

Menai Suspension Bridge

I also wanted to visit Menai Bridge; however, it was a 20-minute bus ride away or a 45-minute walk, and given my limited time, I wasn’t able to do so.

The Menai Suspension Bridge, which was built by Thomas Telford, is connected with the Britannia Bridge, built by Robert Stephenson, and connects Anglesey to mainland Gwynedd. It is a popular tourist attraction. The Swellies are located between the two bridges and are popular for their swirling whirlpools and ever-changing tide currents.

Overall thoughts

Overall, it wasn’t the best day trip. However, I would definitely go back to see the sites I missed I think had I gotten to visit these places, it would have added a lot more value to my trip. Nonetheless, it was good to get out and visit a new destination.

I also thought it was a little unfortunate that over the years, the oldest city in Wales has not received as much investment as other cities have, but I’m happy to learn that there are fresh plans and finances for a redevelopment. So I’m quite looking forward to seeing what will happen in the future in this city.

All in all I would definitely re- visit with a bit more organisation.

Hope you enjoyed my blog today

Thanks for visiting

Stay blessed 🙏🏾

Natalie ❤️

Peak District: Kinder Scout

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Kinder Scout is located in the Dark Peak of the Peak District in Derbyshire and is the highest point in the Peak District. It can be reached via Edale, which was the route I took. Well, I didn’t take any particular planned route I just wondered where the other path would lead me and ended up here.

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I was unaware that Kinder Scout had served as the setting for a significant moment in British history at the time.

It was the location of a large-scale walking trespass that would alter British history about access to the countryside.

History of Kinder Scout

It was the place where a mass walking trespass took place on April 24, 1932, by members of the Young Communist League in protest of members of the public being denied access to remote parts of the countryside.

The protest was a coordinated protest that involved three large groups of walkers all heading towards Kinder Scout at the same time. It was supposedly a peaceful protest; however, some of the walkers got into scrambles with a few gamekeepers, which led to their arrest and prison sentences of between two to six months.

At the time of this protest, there were several other protests seeking access to the Peak District, but the harsh prison sentences of the Ramblers distinguished the Kinder Scout protest from the others, which spread publicly on TV and in local and national newspapers. This resulted in the empathy of thousands of other ramblers, since trespassing is not a criminal offence in England and the harsh punishments had only been for the few scuffles with gamekeepers, which seemed to not go down well with the other ramblers and members of the public.

The outcome of the mass trespass

This was arguably the act that led to the National Parks Act’s enactment, the accessibility of the countryside for walkers and the working class, and the creation of extensive footpaths like the Pennine Way.

The most picturesque trail

I’d say Kinder Scout is the most picturesque and beautiful trail I’ve hiked so far, but on this particular day it was hot and probably not the best day for a good scramble up the rocks, so I made my way down to the stream, took off my boots and socks, dipped my feet in the water, had a picnic for one, and sat back to read a book while listening to the sounds of the stream and the two little sheep.

There was only me in this spot, so it made the moment even more special. It was the ideal spot for a perfect summer day.

I’m looking forward to the cooler months to scramble over the rocks and see what’s beyond.

How I got on the Kinder Scout trail

1. I took a left at Edale Train Station.

2. I walked straight past the Ramblers Inn pub on the left.

3. Keep walking straight and past the Old Nags Head pub on the right.

4. I followed the Grindsbrook sign and walked through Grindsbrook Clough.

5. I took a left after passing Grindsbrook Clough. I took a left and followed the path to another nearby clough.

6. After entering the gates here, I went across a tiny little foot path, turned left, then right, and I was on Kinder Scout.

I hope you enjoyed my post today

Thanks for visiting. Stay blessed 🙏🏾

Natalie ❤️

Peak District: Edale Village

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Edale is a little village in Derbyshire, in the Peak District, or, to be more accurate, part of a small group of settlements or hamlets, and has a population of just 353, according to the 2011 Census.

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The village has two popular pubs, a cafe, a local shop and post office, a school, a church, and a railway station that is on the route of one of England’s most scenic train routes.

Despite its seemingly remote location, the village is a very popular place where walkers and hikers camp and pass through to explore the picturesque village and the surrounding countryside.

Hiking in Grindsbrook, Edale

When I first visited this place, I had intended to go Mam Tor, but I was unable to find it due to poor planning and lack of a GPS, so I decided to turn around and walk in the opposite direction to see where I ended up.

I recall walking as far up the footpath as I could and seeing a sign that said “Grindsbrook. I followed the sign and went through Grindsbrook Clough and headed straight up toward the mountains, through the gate, and followed the footpath.

I arrive at the first vantage point with views overlooking the beautiful Edale and further afield.

The more I walked along the footpath, the better the views got. I just knew that this was going to be another place I was going to want to explore further.

The views were amazing. It was such a beautiful day, and there weren’t that many people around on this randomly scheduled Tuesday walk. I felt like for the most part I had the whole place to myself.

I’d say despite my clumsy planning, it was quite a successful first hike in this part of the Peak District.

I returned to Edale the following week in search of Mam Tor; I didn’t find it, but I did end up on another beautiful trail, which I’ll tell you about in my next and upcoming blog.

I hope you have enjoyed my blog today

Thank you for visiting

Stay blessed 🙏🏾

Natalie ❤️

Greater Manchester: Portland Basin Museum

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Portland Basin Museum is located in a nineteenth-century warehouse in Ashton-under-Lyne in Greater Manchester near a beautiful canal side.

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I visited here with my mum in 2020, just before the first COVID-19 national lockdown for England, hence us wearing our face masks in the photos.

Since I’m blogging more about locations in and around my city, I recently discovered the images on my old phone and decided that this museum deserved a worthy spot for Manchester my blog.

Stepping back into the 1920s

The museum has exhibitions where you can experience what life was like back in the 1920s in Tameside.

The 1920s street

We had a great time exploring the street of the 1920s.

My mum, who educated me with her own knowledge and recollections, made the trip much more informative and enjoyable.

My mum, who is in her sixties, was able to tell me about several things that were still in use in the 1950s and 1960s. I loved hearing about all her memories and stories as she recalled them from each of the items.

It was lovely to see how her expression changed when she came across items that brought back her memories. She was wearing a mask, so I couldn’t see her face, but I could see that her eyes were sparkling.

Exploring the industrial heritage and farm

We had the opportunity to learn about the region’s historical industrial heritage and what it was like to work in the mines by hearing personal accounts from those who had done so.

Life on the farm

There is also a part where you may read in detail about the early days of the local farming. 

We thought this was very intriguing.

Additional information

There is much more to do and learn about here in addition to what has already been covered, but I want to make this post as brief as possible.

The portland basin Museum, in my opinion, is a great place for visitors of all ages and has a lot to offer.

Admission:

Admission is free and the museum it’s usual opening hours are 10am to 4pm accept on Monday when it is closed.

Click here to find out more information if you plan to visit.

Hope you have enjoyed my blog today

Thanks for visiting

Stay blessed 🙏🏾

Natalie ❤️

Greater Manchester:The beautiful Dovestones

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You may recall that I wrote about Dovestone Reservoir earlier this year.

Since I didn’t have many pictures to offer in the other blog, I thought I’d share more pictures on how breathtakingly gorgeous this place is now that I’ve been on numerous occasions.

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I’m constantly in awe of this place because there are so many various circular pathways, and every time I come here, I discover something new.

One of the greatest attractions, the trinniacle (a stack of rock formations), has eluded me up until now; however, my sister and her husband recently found it, and my sister has promised to accompany me there, which I’m super excited about. Additionally, there are a few locations I have yet to visit that I have found on Instagram.

There are magical hidden waterfalls everywhere, and it’s like the gift that just keeps giving.

Also, I finally hiked right up to the top of Chew Valley. It was the first time on top, and I walked across the moorland there. The views of Dovestone Reservoir were stunning. 

If you want to learn more about the history of Dovestones, click here. Thinking about visiting? You can check out my last blog, where you can find details of how to get here.

I hope you enjoyed my blog today

Thank you for visiting

Stay blessed 🙏🏾

Natalie ❤️

I went skydiving!

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If you follow me on Instagram, you might have noticed that I recently skydived. I’m still in a state of disbelief! I never truly envisaged doing it. EVER!! So how did I end up doing one of the strangest things I’ve ever done?

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links, meaning, I get a commission if you decide to make a purchase through my links, at no cost to you. Please read my Disclosure page for more info

Why I went Skydiving

At a family memorial gathering last year, I chatted with a younger cousin, who was 20 years old at the time. We were talking about her turning 21 when I asked her what she planned to do to celebrate. She asked if I would go skydiving with her because no one else would and she wanted to go skydiving. I hesitated for a long time before responding with a positive yes.

I agreed because, in my 40s, I wanted to conquer fear and venture entirely outside of my comfort zone, and what a terrific way to begin! (Keep in mind that this is after a few brandies).

Oh no, what did I commit to? I thought as I woke up the next morning……I still had a few months to wrap my mind around it, despite me feeling like this. However, boy, did those months fly by so quickly. Before I knew it, it was August 2022, and the day had finally arrived for me to skydive.

On the day of my skydive

Surprisingly, neither of us was anxious, and we had laughed and talked the entire one and a half-hour ride journey to the centre.

We waited around for a few hours for the weather to improve, but even then, neither of us felt nervous. I thought for sure the nerves would start to kick in once we arrived, but nope, not at all.

Preparations for our skydive

We were the first two students summoned that morning to jump. We had already decided that I would be the first to take the leap, with special instructions from my young cousin that I wasn’t allowed to scream in case it deterred her from participating lol.

Our instructors first met us and took us to a building where we put on our jumpsuits and received instruction on our exit and landing positions.

I was somewhat familiar with it because we had already viewed a quick training video on it at the centre earlier that morning.

My instructor was a really nice, friendly guy. although I am going to call him P for privacy purposes. I was happy that my wish had come true because I had read many positive reviews about him and hoped that he would be my instructor. I was also quite happy to find that he had been a skydiver for 35 years. This was certainly great to hear, seeing as he was in charge of pulling the parachute.

After meeting my instructor, I was introduced to my photographer for the day, another nice and friendly gentleman. Again, I won’t use his name for privacy purposes. Following a brief interview, the filming and photographs began. It was like a “lights, camera, action” moment.

The moment of the big jump

There it was.There was nothing left to do but board the aircraft and prepare to exit. And to be honest, I was still astonished by how composed we both were. At this moment, neither of us felt anxious, but that was about to change- at least for me.

As we reach 11000ft P helps me put my goggles on whilst giving me some final suggestions and advice, and then shuffles us towards the door so that my legs are dangling out of the plane. I’m now a little nervous at this point, and I’m not sure if I want to do it now.

The photographer jumps, and as I watch him fall through the clouds, I find myself falling through the air with a deep stomach drop, gasping for air, panicked and nearly losing exit position. This is not fun.

P then gives me a comforting pat, releases my hands from the harness, and extends my arms so they are in the flying position. At first, I was a little hesitant, but after a few seconds, I stretched my hands out and believed in P; I felt like I was flying, and it was such a lovely experience, and then the parachute opened.

The journey with the parachute was extremely enjoyable, however I did experience some motion nausea. As a matter of fact, I felt queasy for at least two hours afterwards. Oh, and as I descended on the parachute, I had the worst ear pain I’ve ever had. I occasionally have ear discomfort, generally when I’m on a descending aeroplane, but never as bad as this.

Verdict: would I do it again?

I would absolutely do it again despite loathing the first few seconds of it, feeling queasy, and getting ear pain.

The best and most liberating thing I’ve ever done!!

The only thing I would change is the height; I would go for the 15000ft rather than the 11000ft because you get a 60 second free fall instead of just a 38 second free fall. I think I would have benefited more from this since I only started to really enjoy the last few seconds of the free fall.

Would you ever do a skydive or have you ever done one?

If you want to skydive in the UK I highly recommend Black Knights Parachute Centre . I also recommend booking a photographer, they capture every moment of my experience. I received a hundreds of amazing photos and three videos. (This is not a paid advertisement, I just highly recommend this company)

Hope you enjoyed my blog today

Thanks for reading

Stay blessed 🙏🏾

Natalie ❤️

Lost in life at almost 40: The truth about me

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I wrote this blog today because, one, I want to be transparent with my readers and Instagram followers, and two, society sure has a way of tearing people down, hopefully this post may help someone who has felt, or feels the same.

A traveller’s life is frequently very different from a person’s reality. The way I come across is important to me, not for the approval of others but to stay true to myself.

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links, meaning, I get a commission if you decide to make a purchase through my links, at no cost to you. Please read my Disclosure page for more info

I started travelling after a series of challenging events in my late 30’s which had caused me to re-evaluate my life at 38 years old, only to find that everything I had been working towards wasn’t really what I had wanted, but fitted rather nicely with the expectations of society. Sure, I had the means to live in a lovely two-bedroom highrise apartment, which I referred to as my penthouse (it wasn’t 🤣); a nice car; a bachelor’s degree; and a diploma in the healthcare sector, along with a nice title job as “A Clinical Support Worker.” It all sounds really nice, doesn’t it? But what did it matter? Because in spite of accomplishing all of this, it would be diminished within seconds when people learned I was almost 40, childless, not married, and single. as if these were the only things that defined or valued me as a woman or even a human being.

I shouldn’t have cared what other people thought of me, but I was so insecure, unhappy, and completely dissatisfied with my life that I did.

This put me on a path of self-sabotage and I knew I had to take a deep look into my life and re-evaluate it.

Self-evaluation of my career

My self-evaluation of my life came at 38 years old, after being diagnosed with depression. At first, I thought my diagnosis was triggered by my late dad’s transition a few years earlier, though I do think this was just the last straw, but after my self-evaluation, I realised I had been unhappy for several years before this occurred.

The truth is, I hadn’t been living as my true self for several years because I valued what others thought of me far more than what I thought of myself. As a result of this, I made decisions and choices based on what was more acceptable in society, which ultimately resulted in me betraying myself for years.

I hadn’t really wanted to be a healthcare professional but a dancer who travelled the world, but it was a back-up plan more acceptable in society and it didn’t get frowned upon like my dancing desire, so at just 19 years old, I made the decision to choose healthcare as a career.

I started out as a pharmacy counter assistant and later became a qualified pharmacy dispenser, and then, at 22, I decided to study for a health and social care diploma and later gained a bachelor’s degree. From here, I worked in hospitals and did a number of healthcare roles, but was never satisfied for more than a few years in any of them. I suddenly found there was nowhere else to move because I didn’t have the desire to work in the healthcare sector anymore and found myself stuck.

While I was feeling lost and stuck in the face of my true reality, I began to subtract back to a time when I was truly happy and had a full zest for life. I was taken back to around 20, just about the same age I had dropped my desire to dance and travel. It was here that I realised the reason I had been unhappy was because I never followed my dreams.

I wasn’t bothered about the dancing anymore, but the passion to travel never left.

I realised I had to pursue this long awaited dream.

Self-evaluation on having children

I often pretended I didn’t want children. It was better to be judged as selfish or be seen as strange than to have people pressuring me about my biological clock when I would say I wasn’t sure if I wanted children. This would trigger anxiety within me because I felt I was running out of time, and I sure didn’t want it up for open discussion for everyone to have an opinion on, especially since I didn’t ask for their opinion.

The truth here was I didn’t even know if I wanted kids, but during my self-evaluation I realised I didn’t ever think to ask myself why I even wanted children. To be honest, I couldn’t even answer my own question. The only thing that came to mind was that it is simply what society expects of me, and the idea did not originate in me but was embedded as an expectation by adults from being a small child.

I realised I wasn’t really bothered; I could take them or leave them and know I’d be fine either way.

Self-evaluation on being single and Unmarried

Once I realised I wasn’t too concerned with having children, I didn’t need to do much self-evaluation about marriage or being single and rushing to meet someone. Though I did ask myself why I wanted to be married or be with someone, this was easy. I wanted a best friend with whom I could share my life experiences.

However, since I wasn’t too concerned about children, I realised there wasn’t a rush to meet someone. More than this, the years of betraying myself caused me to actually want to figure out who I really am so I can know what I really want, and for this part, it requires me to be single for a little while.

The true version of me

Today I am 41 years old, and for the first time in my adult life, I have started to live in the world as no one other than myself. I have failed trying to be someone other than myself, and I have found I do a pretty damn good job at being me.

Since my self-evaluation, I’ve given up my apartment and car to free up money to do more of the things I like. I’ve given up my health care job because there wasn’t much point in continuing something I wasn’t enjoying. Now I work part-time in hospitality as well as travelling abroad during my holidays and travelling around the UK during my days off.

I don’t know what I’m doing with my life. I’m just winging it and making it all up as I go along, but I’d rather be happy, authentic, and live my truth than be fake and pretend I have it all figured out.

If I’m going to last in this world, it has to be by living as my true authentic self because it is painful, exhausting, and completely unfulfilling otherwise. 

One last thing….

My travel journey isn’t just about how many countries or places I visit; it’s about finding out who I really am, what I want, and for inspiration for my next career move. This is largely why I chose to travel solo.

Besides this, I am practising on a daily basis to choose a deliberate life filled with deliberate and satisfying choices that feel good and satisfying to me, instead of considering the options and beliefs of others like I did when I was younger.

I hope you have enjoyed my blog today.

Thank you for reading 🙏🏾

Stay blessed Natalie ❤

Spain solo trip: Day 4 Lost in Barcelona

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What better way to end a trip to Spain with a visit to my favourite city again, Barcelona

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How I got to Barcelona from Loret De Mar

I took the bus from the main bus terminal in Loret De Mar and purchased my ticket on the day at the bus station. It was a direct service where I had to pick time slots to travel to and from the city and was also was given designated seat numbers. The lady behind the counter explained that it was important that I stuck to my seats and times as it was a busy bus service.

The journey took around one hour and cost €10.90 for a return ticket.

Completely lost with no GPS, I wanted to cry

I arrived at The Barcelona Nord Bus Station to find I couldn’t get a GPS signal on Google maps. Before I knew it, almost an hour of my 6 hours had passed and I was still no closer to resolving the issue. You can only imagine my frustration, so I decided to walk whilst keeping it on in the hope of it picking up my location.

Hooray! It worked well, for all of two minutes, and after I had walked well away from the bus station, I was completely lost!

At this point, I felt so anxious and my mind was so clogged in panic mode that for the next few minutes, the vulnerable child-like part of me took over and I wanted to cry. But then, as always, the more mature and wise part of me shows up to reassure and nourish that vulnerable side of me, and then I was fine.

Letting go of resistance

I often have little moments of feeling anxious when travelling solo. I don’t see them as a bad thing, but rather a chance for personal development, growth, and confidence. In these moments, I have to take a break and think about what my path of least resistance will be. It usually involves stopping for a coffee.

Once I’m calm, my mind becomes unclogged and I’m able to think more logically and find solutions. My conclusion here was that, since I knew the name of the station to get back to, it wasn’t really being lost and I could always maybe get a bus or uber back to the station.

I came out of the coffee shop with the intention of making an adventure out of being lost.

Once the resistance was gone, everything started to fall into place.

Here’s what happened:

I found Basílica de la Sagrada Família

First of all, I came out of the coffee shop and walked whilst enjoying the view. In the distance, I could see the top of a spiked building. As I got closer I realised it was the Basílica de la Sagrada Família.

I didn’t get to go inside since I was limited for time, but I was so excited to see it since I’d never seen it before.

I started to see buses that would take me back to Nord Bus Station

Whilst enjoying my stroll around the city, buses started to appear with Nord Bus Station highlighted on the front. The place I needed to go back to to catch my bus.

Not only this, I started to see several buses with Lorer De Mar highlighted on the front. The place where my hotel was where I was staying.

The truth is, I reckon many of them had gone past me, but in my clogged up state of mind, I wasn’t able to see the apples for the trees.

Google maps started working again

I just happened to try Google Maps in a final attempt and noticed I had automatically been signed out of my Google account and needed to sign back in. I am not sure why this happened. It has never happened before.

Free to roam and find all the places of interest

Now Google Maps is working again. I was able to find the places I wanted to visit. This meant I could revisit the Gothic Quarter.

Last time I was here, I remember feeling mesmerised by this medeival quaint neighbourhood. I had been hoping to revist again on this day. I’m so glad I got to visit again, but after spending around half an hour here, I decided I had actually enjoyed being lost, so I turned off Google Maps and went back to wondering freely.

I couldn’t really tell you where I ended up roaming, but it was so nice to wonder so freely in this beautiful city, and being lost in Barcelona ended up being my favourite part of my entire trip.

Unfortunately, my phone’s battery was low, so I couldn’t take pictures of my adventures, but I can confirm that this is an incredible place to get lost in.

I hope you have enjoyed reading about my solo trip to Spain.

Thanks for reading

Stay blessed 🙏🏾

Natalie ❤