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Dutch tourist found safe after 19 days in Spanish ravine

Woman rescued after almost three weeks without food had survived solely on water.

Mary anne goosens optEnlarge
Jantje and Fritz, daugther and son of Mary-Anne Goossens, who spent 18 days trapped at the bottom of a Spanish ravine, smile at the entrance of the hospital in Velez-Malaga on July 6, 2011, where their mother is staying for observation. (Jorge Guerrero/AFP/Getty Images)

A 48-year-old Dutch woman who went missing while out walking on a trip to Spain was found safe after spending 19 days in a ravine with no food or shelter.

Mary-Anne Goossens, a mother of two, survived the ordeal by drinking water from a nearby river before being found by a group of mountain hikers, Reuters reports.

Dutch doctor Bernadette Veeger who lives in the area and was one of the first to speak to Goossens after her rescue told El Pais: 

She thought about eating ants, but couldn't bring herself to do it.

Though Goossens described herself as "weak and hungry" after being found, she was otherwise in good health and was airlifted to hospital for observation. 

The day after arriving in Spain on vacation, Goossens had gone out by herself for a hike, but became lost after straying from the path, the Telegraph reports. As she weakened, she thought it would be better to remain close to a water source and hope that someone found her.

Her family became concerned after not hearing from her during her trip and traveled to Spain to search for her. 

Rescuers described her safe recovery as a "true miracle".