* ad pr trip – the following was a press trip to Gran Canaria through Jet2Holidays. This review and the social media content is an honest reflection of my solo travel experience and was written at my own discretion.
“If Not Now, Then When?” my friend asked me… It was the end of November 2023 and I was having a strong moment of self doubt and second guessing myself… We were talking about whether I was confident enough to dip my toe into solo travel and go abroad alone when an opportunity had arisen for me to do so as a press trip (how exciting). Or perhaps whether I should wait until the new year when someone (perhaps my mum who I’ve been on recent adventures with, or one of my wonderful friends) might’ve been free to come with? I had to make the decision quickly. And, so, as you may be able to tell from the subject of this blog (imagine the tik tok voice as you read this): I DID IT!
When I was sitting on the plane about to take off, I felt a mixture of excitement and nerves. I had to catch my breath a few times as I was a little emotional (a common theme of the trip). I’m no stranger to flying alone. I travelled through UK airports as an unaccompanied minor from the age of 4 to see my dad who lives in Bulgaria, so it felt almost cathartic and full circle to finally be doing it as a grown up. The irony that I am once again (temporarily) living at home with my mum, who also dropped me at the airport for this trip (and all the others when I was a kid, is not wasted on me…
This all started after I attended a Jet2 Solo Holiday Event in October and that certainly planted the seed. As a 30-something, single, childless millennial – I don’t know why the prospect of travelling alone took me so long to get on board with… I am quite independent and do lots of things in alone already. Such is life when you’ve been single a while and don’t want to let experiences pass you by. And with the new year fast approaching, I was over the moon to be invited to an event with Jet2 who I have seen do so much fun stuff with bloggers over the years… And then having the opportunity to go on a solo press trip? Pretty cool. I was so ready to discover more and jumped in with both feet.
For this holiday the location was completely up to me! After lots of back and forth, I decided to head (back) to the Canary Islands. For my third venture to this lovely part of the world! I’ve visited Lanzarote, and Tenerife in the past with friends, and loved them both, but the vibe for this was going to be different. Rather than mostly stay in the villa, hotel or pool (which I had done before – and loved), I planned a fairly packed schedule to take full advantage of the experience. Flights to Gran Canaria with Jet2 really piqued my interest, so that’s where this magical opportunity took me.
The hotel I stayed at was the Lopesan Villa Del Conde Resort & Thalasso, a rather fancy Jet2holidays hotel with a spa on site, located in the south of the island in an area called “Meloneras”. The hotel is part of Jet2’s Indulgent escapes packages – which was a whole new world for me – I’ve never been on a package holiday, let alone an indulgent one!
I’m currently living in Brighton, so a London airport was the best bet for me to take a flight out to paradise, and luckily I’ve heard great things about going on holidays from London Stansted Airport. And I’m happy to report back that it was all true! There were no trains to the airport due to strikes, so my lovely mum was able to take me and woke up crack of dawn to drive me… an angel! We made it with plenty of time and I breezed through with such ease. And the fact I was on an “Indulgent Escape” meant I went through a very speedy “priority security” queue – just marvellous!
At the other side I met a Jet2 representative and had a private transfer to my hotel. When we pulled up to the hotel it took my breath away. My eyes filled with tears (again), and my bags were handed to the hotel concierge (to be delivered to my room, SO fancy), and I took a moment to take in my surroundings.
There was something incredibly liberating about doing it all solo. Especially in a world built for couples and families (esp. as someone not interested in having kids)… I had no one to wait for, check in with, worry about… Just me. I took everything at my own pace and it felt phenomenal.
Over the course of the trip I spent an amazing day in a jeep winding through the mountains, had a peaceful few hours on the Atlantic ocean, scanning the horizon in a small boat in the, watched a pod of 5 or so dolphins at the surface of the water, went in a Submarine for the first time, made new friends, who I laughed, swam and danced with, watched incredible drag queens, enjoyed 2 beautiful sunsets (1 from a salt water swimming pool, and the other from a private spa pool), and got up at the crack of dawn for a breathtaking sunrise by the shore climbing sand dunes,and cried more times than I can count on both hands. Picture a delicate teary eyed kinda cry, with a single tear (or 3) rolling down each cheek. It was very elegant I assure you…
By the time you’re reading this I’ll be long home, and there’ll be another blog in the next week or so, with all I got up to and how you too can enjoy an Indulgent escape of your very own. I’m in the process of writing a “Things To Do In Gran Canaria” blog with my packed itinerary + links & info about each place I visited.
Overall it was such a fantastic, confidence boosting trip, I can’t thank Jet2holidays enough for facilitating such a gorgeous first package and solo travel experience in Gran Canaria. It truly felt like a dream, and I hope I have the chance to experience a magical few days like that again. I’ve already been working out if a second visit to Gran Canaria is possible towards the end of the year (perhaps around my Nov birthday with some friends). Not only am I now a package holiday convert, Winter Holidays are a new fave, too.
In the meantime I’m hoping to make it to another one of the Canary Islands for a solo trip this year (over the next few years I’m hoping to collect them all as it were). or elsewhere to enjoy time alone, because quite frankly I feel so ready for more sooo adventures right now!
Check out my posts from the trip on instagram by clicking my hashtag: #LuisaInGranCanaria and be back soon x
your queer, plus size, vegan pal 💜
a lifestyle blog, with a colourful & alternative edge... Covering: vegan & cruelty-free food / drinks / products, live music / festivals / travel (inc. adventures with mum), and self love & body confidence... to name a few.
Usually found befriending animals (especially cats)