My name is Mar, I am from a tiny town south of Barcelona and I love all things related to travel.
At Once in a Lifetime Journey I share articles about out of the ordinary trips, places you may have never heard of, my passion for food and wine and, often times, about luxury journeys. I enjoy the finer things in life. Who doesn’t?
I like staying at high-end resorts, traveling business class, being welcomed like a high-tier loyalty program owner, getting lost in remote luxury lodges, taking helicopter (or anything that flies) tours, sailing among pristine waters and embarking on other great travel experiences like the Trans-Siberian or the Maharajas Express.
But I also crave an equally large amount of reality, messiness, chaos, randomness, dirt, noise and genuine interactions with the real world, the one that is not featured in the glossy travel magazines and that may not even be available. I love getting lost in places nobody goes to and turning heads when I mention my next trip. Djibouti you said? You spent 9 months in Sudan? You were in Yemen? I believe that the culture and humanity of some of the least visited places is a treasure I am in constant search for. So expect to read about people and places that nobody talks about.
How did it all start?
Over the past 10 years I have traveled practically non-stop, taking a plane every week to exotic destinations in the Middle East, Europe, Africa and Asia. I have visited almost 90 countries on all continents except for Antarctica. I have been an expat for the past 9 years, living in London, Montreal, Dubai, Johannesburg, Tegucigalpa and Singapore.
Read more about my 10 years as an ultra-frequent traveler here
You are a lucky girl, you may think. I was indeed, extremely privileged. As a telecoms consultant, I was fortunate to have a job that required me to work with clients everywhere and travel the world, all expenses paid. And I sure made the most of it!
A life on the road also means being stuck at an airport for hours on end or witnessing some of the most dramatic political and social developments in the continents I lived in. I was caught up in Uganda’s riots, lived through Kenya’s post-election violence on the ground when all the airlines cancelled their flights and in Sudan when shootings closed down several embassies. I had a project in Madagascar when the coup took place and I also discussed how to resolve the constant contractor kidnappings in Iraq. I woke up to a line up of kalashnikov wielding soldiers in Congo and had sleepless nights because of undesirable wildlife or bugs. I never slept more than 3 nights on the same bed and I frequently woke up not knowing where I was.
But I would not change it for anything.
As much as I like the high-life, through the years I realized that what genuinely draws me to a life on the road is the addiction to hearing stories that have never been told before. I am in permanent search for those places that nobody visits where visitors don’t equate a dollar sign and where infrastructure is inexistent.
I started this page because I believe the best things in life are better when shared. I enjoy writing and reflecting on some of the most amazing trips I have taken and helping others with tips on how to replicate them. Sometimes it is only after I’ve come back and written about an experience that I fully understand how amazing it all was. It will be truly magical to come back in 10 more years and re-read my thoughts. I hope that you also find them inspiring, interesting or amusing. I write in three parts of cynical travel sarcasm, touching moments and stunning places.
And if you are looking for some help organizing a trip, I am always happy to share anything that I learned, simply get in touch with me via the Contact page.
I am always available for a coffee if you are passing through Singapore or give me a shout if you are in Asia! With the amount of traveling that I do, I might just be there!