Thursday, October 27, 2011

Spain in 7 days

A very succinct account of our holiday in Spain.....
Its been over two months since we came back, it has taken me so long to not a great travelogue which is what I originally intended but a few snippets that I can remember!

Spain Holiday – in 7 days….

Aug 26th 2011

We set out to Madrid….arriving at Madrid for a driving holiday. After our baggage the car rental process took much longer than expected. We first got a car which did not have a connector working for the SAT NAV system. The company had to finally change the car which took about an hour and we figure the SAT NAV we purchased for UK and Europe specifically for the trip did not function in Spain for some reason. Mind you we had tested it back in London and it would show us the way till Madrid across the seas! So we had to rent a SAT NAV which was in English so we lost out a good 3 hours in the process…

We drove to the hotel and managed to see Madrid by Cable car….It wasn’t as exciting as they described though it gave a very good view of the entire Madrid city.

We spent the evening at H20 mall one of the biggest as it was the closest to our hotel.

August 27th 2011

R turns 9

But T was very ill and we had to make a choice of leaving her at the hotel to recuperate. We knew she can’t take the walking we needed to do in the city.

We visited the Royal Palace – Madrid although we had to wait for an hour in the queue in the hot sun.

Very impressive and well worth the visit

Though I would advise taking as you could avoid all the queues. It was really worth the visit and one could spend a half day comfortably!

Prado Museum

Well worth a visit. We were very impressed. Had a spectacular range of paintings.

We really couldn’t do much as we had to come back and be with T and on our way back we lost our way  as the bus driver didn’t tell us where we should get down!

The metro trains and buses were excellent although most information was only in Spanish.

August 28th,2011

We went to El Escorial

A 16th century Royal Monastery. A must visit if you are visiting Madrid .We drove there on our way to Malaga our next destination.

August 29th,2011

We didn’t do much in Malaga other than go to nearby malls and a beach.

Regrettably I think we should have at least visited Picasso Museum.

Things we probably missed in Southern Spain

Casares - part of Malaga province, a working village with a population of ~ 4000, at a ht of ~1400 feet and ~14 km from the sunny costa del sol is a picturesque white village. A white village with real character; widely photographed picture post card village. The houses are all painted white and dotted like sugar-cubes on the slope of a hill. See it from the top or the bottom the view is fantastic!! The village is beneath a 12th century Moorish castle which currently lies in ruins but remains accessible. Views from the top are stunning. The white village on one side and windmills spread across the landscape with Rock of Gibraltar in the background on the other. As the history goes, Casares during the roman times was allowed to print its own coins. The above photo is view from below.

This is one place I think we should have driven to which I discovered subsequently.


Benalmadena Cable Car ....


In retrospect I think we missed these places due to lack of planning as we had a long drive and was keen to visit  Barcelona.

29th August ,2011


We spent a night at Alicante. Enjoyed the beaches .

We visited

The Castle of Santa Barbara:

The Castle of Santa Barbara is one of the biggest mediaeval fortresses of Spain that is located in the center of Alicante. This major landmark of the city stands on the top of Mount Benacantil, which offers the most fabulous views of the city. Whilst looking at the castle from El Postiguet beach, one can see an unusual projected part in the shape of a human face known as the Moor's Head.

San Juan Beach (La Playa de San Juan):

This premier sandy beach of the city is located around 4.5 miles from central Alicante. The long and open beach has been awarded the Blue Flag of the European Union. It is the perfect spot for sunbathing and swimming with a good selection of shops, bars, cafes, restaurants and water sports on the beach.

Aug 30th and Aug 31st,2011


We headed to Barcelona.

Had three days to look around the city.

Visiting Montserrat – We dorve down but had taken a wrong turn and went down a narrow lane up the rocky  mountains. It was truly scary and the SAT NAV for some reason kept taking us forward till we reached a point and decided to return to the highway. Every turn was almost like we will fall down a steep cliff.

El Corte Jingles – a great shopping chain

Sep 1st 2011

Aqua Brava – a great water park

Sep 2nd ,2011

We had to drive back from Barcelona to Madrid to catch our flight after driving through Spain for 3000 kms !
All in all I think we cover a fair bit of the main attractions with the time we had at our disposal!

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