‘I Didn’t Want to Leave’: Woman Spends 500 Days Alone In Cave

Beatriz Flamini might be the Michael Jordan of living in a cave.

In a strange and personal adventure, the 50-year-old Spanish athlete entered a cave 70 meters below the Earth in Granada, Spain, on November 21, 2021. She was 48 at the time.

Today, she finally exited her subterranean home and shared her secret project of isolation with the rest of the world, El Mundo reported. So what’s her take on the often debilitating impact of living without sunlight or any human contact for 500 days?

“I didn’t want to leave,” she said at a press conference (translated from Spanish), and there wasn’t “any bad moment.”

For that statement alone, I’m ready to accept Flamini as possibly the most psychologically resilient person on the planet. Though monitored by scientists, she spoke to no one and received no information from the outside world. Food and water were left for her without any physical contact.

Her time underground is likely a world record for voluntary cave living. Known mostly for climbing and alpinism, Flamini spent her time exercising, plus knitting, painting, exercising, and reading 60 books by headlamp. She also made a video diary for the documentary, and drafted a book about the experience that she plans to publish.

She views her cave tenure as “excellent” and “unbeatable,” according to the BBC.

“There was a moment when I had to stop counting the days,” she said.

(Below is her last Instagram post from November 2021, a month before entering the cave and giving up all communication.)

Balance off, hallucinations on

When her team came to escort her out of the cave on Friday, Flamini believed that something dire had changed their plans. From her perspective, she’d only been underground for “between 160-170 days.”

“I’ve been silent for a year-and-a-half, not talking to anyone but myself,” she said. “I lose my balance, that’s why I’m being held.”

There’s no doubt much more to learn about Flamini’s adventure, from the “auditory hallucinations” to the invasion of flies that left her covered in the tiny bugs.

“I’m not going to say more because if I do, you won’t read the book,” Flamini said.

Andrew McLemore

An award-winning journalist and photographer, Andrew McLemore brings more than 14 years of experience to his position as Associate News Editor for Lola Digital Media. Andrew is also a musician, climber and traveler who currently lives in Medellin, Colombia. When he’s not writing, playing gigs or exploring the outdoors, he’s hanging out with his dog Campana.