Nearly a week has passed since landing back in the UK from Spain. Unfortunately we were delayed for 3 hours, but with other flights being cancelled, we were actually lucky to get home. This week took me to Virgin Atlantic HQ near Gatwick and a Holiday Inn hotel around Birmingham for filming. All for the imminent launch of Accessible Travel Week. More on this in my next post.
This blog article, however, is to explain my trip to the historic and healthy Archena Spa in Spain!
As I already mentioned in my last post, accessible transport was tricky on our holiday. Once Kasia's family decided that we should all visit the Archena spa, we all agreed a taxi was too far away (ie. too expensive). As they had a hire car, they managed to lift me with my transit seat into the vehicle. It was surprisingly comfortable too. They then put my shower chair in the boot for me to use at our destination.
We all excitedly packed our swimwear and wondered how the spa would be. I was particularly unsure of the accessibility. Could I get changed ok? Would going in the pool be possible? Would I feel stared at?
As you can see from their promotional video, Archena is a haven of tranquillity and relaxation. I was pushed from the accessible parking bay all the way to the baths. They had a pool hoist for me to get in the warm waters. So Kasia was able to help me swim through the rapids, onto the jacuzzi bubbles and outside for the mountain views. Amazing. Also Kasia's niece and nephew loved the kids pool. The rest of her family loved the whole experience a lot too.
The spa even had a wetroom shower just for disabled visitors. The only tricky part was getting dressed afterwards. I always need a hoist to transfer and a bed to lay on for putting my trousers on. Somehow Kasia helped me to get dry and dressed on the shower chair. Not ideal, but we managed.
The waters were so relaxing. Being warm was beautiful. The natural minerals made me feel so healthy and happy. I never would have gone for such an experience. But being with my in laws pushed me out of my comfort zone. Something my family also do too. Therefore I would say getting out of your comfort zone for something like this is a very good idea from time to time.
Please do let me know if you have any questions on the spa or general accessible travel questions. Furthermore look out for Accessible Travel Week launching on Wednesday, where I'm sharing new videos and handouts on my travel tips.