Greetings from Granada

I have always been a very independent person, and I have no problem being by myself. This past weekend was a long weekend here in Spain, so I decided to embark on my first solo trip up north to the wonderful city of Barcelona. I will admit, I was a little bit nervous to travel alone to Barcelona because of the current independence movement happening in the Catalan region. Despite the many protests and rallies that have occurred in the past weeks and months, I am happy to say that my trip went off without a hitch and I only saw one small protest.


Since this was my first time traveling by myself, I decided to use a reputable travel company many study abroad students use called WSA Europe. WSA not only booked my accommodations, but also provided me with a suggested itinerary for my weekend and an express student ticket for entrance to the Sagrada Familia, the world-famous Basilica designed by architect Antoni Gaudi. Although booking a trip through WSA was probably more expensive that it would have been if I booked the hostel on my own (and I probably won’t use this service again), I am glad I used them because I was able to meet some pretty cool people at the hostel and it was a very safe and secure place. 


Over the course of my three days there, I explored solo for one day and spent two days exploring with two girls that I shared a hostel room with. I really enjoyed being able to explore with other people, even though I didn’t know them too well.


Barcelona has something to offer for everyone and has so many different neighborhoods that are each known for something distinct. The city is so unique and there is certainly no place in the world that is anything like it. I visited the 1992 Olympic Stadium, the Olympic Museum, walked around the Gothic Quarter, toured a chocolate museum and factory, climbed through Parc Guell (the free part), and had some very tasty sangria and paella. It was a very jam-packed couple of days, but I really enjoyed myself. I was so amazed that a city could be that breathtaking. I constantly found myself without words to describe the city because I was surprised with every step that I took. One of the girls I met used the phrase “beautifully weird,” and I think that is probably the best way to describe the atmosphere of the city.


Traveling by myself was such an incredible experience, and I look forward to my next solo trip (which I have yet to plan). I enjoyed being able to get up when I wanted to, go at my own pace, visit all the sites I wanted to see, and do some shopping without feeling like I was being a burden to others who didn’t want to do the same things. Obviously, there were some things that I wish I had looked into more or planned better, but that is to be expected when traveling. All in all, it was a very enjoyable experience to travel by myself in a new place and I look forward to my next trip!