Self Guided Walking in the Alpujarra

Here’s a piece written by a satisfied walker, Caroline, who (with a little help from Bootlace) explored the Alpujarra solo during a happy  self-guided week this year in May.

Going on holiday alone really can be great given the right circumstances – but what’s out there for a solo woman who loves walking?  Not a lot it would seem.  I could have joined a group, and probably would have done but my dates did not fit.  Then I spotted that Bootlace accommodated  ‘lone walkers’.  I went for it!   Pre-planning was effortless – I was confident Fiona knew the mountains really well and that she would plan a lovely week’s walking.   She provided me with really detailed routes and maps which I found easy to follow, and best of all was having her friendly face each morning bring me my delicious packed lunch of vegetarian and local goodies, and to chat about the previous day and the one coming.  Everything was arranged for me, transporting my overnight bag, accommodation, breakfast and lunch.  All I had to do was… walk.

Doing it with Bootlace was perfect: independence and freedom, combined with being looked after 100%.

It felt that I was a special guest of the area, having it all to myself.  Walking alone is something very special, you quickly get absorbed into the local environment and notice far more than if chatting to others.  Following your route requires really looking around you to get a feel of the landscape.  It feels really good to be out there.  You can choose your pace, stop whenever you like and just generally relax into it all.  Most days I did not pass another person, and it felt that I was a special guest of the area, having it all to myself.  Ok, evenings were a bit strained, sitting in bars trying to look content and relaxed, or stuck into a good book for more than an hour while having your meal is all fine for a night or two, but a whole week….. although I did get chatting with far more people than had I been with company.  But early nights were good, accommodation was generally very cosy, and always by the next morning was the excitement of where to go next.  It never disappointed.  
A great holiday with precious memories
The spring flowers were at their best, the water was flowing quickly through the amazing irrigation systems, and the weather just perfect for walking. Moving from one village to another felt like a very satisfying achievement. Exploring hidden treasures of paths I would have never found without my guide, was genuinely delightful. On the last day I could look back down the valley and see all the places I had stayed and enjoy a real sense of knowing it well.  A great holiday with precious memories.

If you’d like to know more about self-guided breaks go here and for getting your teeth into planning just for yourself, or with your favourite walking buddies, just email!