A Solo Journey

A Solo Journey

The year began, as always, as a season when the city receives fewer visitors because it is winter and spirits are ready to embark on new projects. Personally, I engage in doing new things or fulfilling plans that I hadn’t been able to accomplish due to being very busy. But there are travelers who prefer this time, people who take advantage of the lack of crowds, finding good deals on plane tickets and hotel nights, and starting the year with a break.

This year, I had the fortune of being the guide for young women who had embarked on a solo journey, reminding me of my own experiences—those moments when one needs a bit of time, to wander through an unfamiliar place and experience that unknown feeling of being accompanied only by oneself, not knowing anyone around and therefore not fearing their expectations or judgments.

Johanna, a young mom who set out to explore various cities in Europe, strolled with me in the Reina Sofía museum. Although it was the end of her journey and she had seen a lot of art, her emotions were on the surface. The experience of traveling with herself had transformed many things in her and it was a privilege to share with her a bit of her journey.

Alexa, an American flight attendant who had decided to improvise a trip ‘because life was being life,’ was starting an experience that would surely allow her to discover many aspects of her personality that she still doesn’t know opening up endless possibilities for growth, learning, and creation.  We walked together as if we were two friends who already knew each other, and even though we had never seen each other before, I had been in her place a few years earlier. It was in that same neighbourhood, in that same situation, when I, a young mother in my thirties, fell in love with Madrid while traveling solo.

I believe it is not a coincidence that we meet and that these paths repeat themselves because it reminded me that when one learns to be in their own company and enjoy it, they grow, and traveling alone is an extraordinary opportunity for that.

Maria Iturralde

I'm a communication profesional, specializing in strategies for social projects and a lover of cultural connections. Originally from Ecuador, I've made Madrid, Spain, my home, balancing work remotely with enjoying the city's vibrant culture. Madrid isn't just where I live; it's where I've explored every corner, discovering its unique charm. By day, I'm a dedicated communication consultant, and off-duty, I'm out exploring Madrid's streets and museums. I also enjoy giving private tours, sharing the city's stories from a local perspective. It's not just a job; it's my way of bringing Madrid to life through storytelling. Join me on this journey as I blend professional know-how with a passion for Madrid's cultural richness.

Maria Iturralde

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walksinmadrid@gmail.com