Sunday, April 16, 2017

'Olives are us' in Villanueva del Trabuco, Andalucia

This week we are walking on good tracks around Villanueva del Trabuco. Some of the tracks are through olive groves but we also walk along the banks of the Rio Guadalhorce. This is a new walk and will take about 3 hours and is dog-friendly although there is a small amount of road walking where they must be on a lead. As the weather is getting warmer we will meet at the swimming pool car park in Trabuco at 9:30, to get to the car park take junction 7 off the A92M towards Trabuco past the petrol station and over the massive speed bump, then take the first right then turn right again up the hill and the car park is on the right-hand side just before the forest. The first half hour of the walk involves a gradual climb and the rest of the walk is fairly easy. We will be stopping two-thirds of the way around for refreshments. Click here for details of the walk thanks to Paul & Toni of Hike Spain

View from the olive groves

and another

Rio Guadalhorce crossing

Half way round the walk

Sunday, April 9, 2017

Wednesday Walk 12th April

This weeks walk is a new one which is made up using some tracks that we have used before combined with some new ones. It is a FLAT route, so we should easily manage 5k an hour (only joking), on tracks near to Salinas. It should take about 3 hours and is dog-friendly. Meet at Bar Mejias in Salinas at 10:30 to drive to the start. Refreshment about half way round at Hotel Carlos Astorga.

It was a nice flat walk as promised but it took 3.5 hours instead of 3 as it was about 16 kilometres.
We had 9 people and 7 dogs turned up for the walk. It turned out to be a very hot day and if the temperature stays the same we may have to start our walks earlier. We did not quite manage to do 5kph but near enough 4.56 kph.

We spotted some interesting caves near to Hotel Carlos Astorga?

Saturday, April 8, 2017

Beautiful beaches in Tarifa and the Costa de la Luz

Drove to Camping Paloma via toll motorway, much better than using the free one. Tarifa is a great place to go if you are into Kite or Wind surfing. In Tarifa, we went for a walk on Playa de Valdevaqueros with Scoobie where the were hundreds of kite surfers and some windsurfers in the sea and on the beach. As we were walking along a kite suddenly dive bombed us and I let go of Scoobie and fended off the kite, good job it didn't have a heavy frame or I would have had a broken arm. Scoobie was very frightened and had her tail between our legs and was desperately trying to pull me off the beach, not happy at all. We walked along the beach in the dunes and Scoobie calmed down a bit.

Playa de Valdevaqueros on Sunday

Scoobie terrified after almost being killed by a kite

Went for a 30 km bike ride from the campsite around Tarifa and back. On the way back we called in at Mercadona for something for dinner as the restaurants nearby were closed on Mondays, we bought cheese pies and they just happened to be the last two, which is always the case in every Mercadona that we shop in. Walked for an hour along the beach, no dive bombing today as it was Monday and the surfers were all back at work, so Scoobie enjoyed it.

Where have all the surfers gone

Moved to Zahora where we found a wonderful campsite called Camping Pinar San Jose that had first class facilities and was only one kilometre from the beach. Walked to the beach at Canos de Meca to find lovely sand and very few people. There was no wind so we walked towards the lighthouse at Cap de Trafalgar, it is such a beautiful beach that it is hard to imagine the loss of life that took place during the Battle of Trafalgar in 1805, then we cut across the dunes back to the campsite.

Canos de Meca beach with Cap Trafalgar in the background

Had a meal across the road from the campsite at Hostal Restaurante Los Pinos. We were disappointed with the meal, it looked nice but the portions were small and nothing special.
The wind got up during the night but we still went for a bike ride which was not easy, but it was fairly flat. Had a meal in the campsite restaurant, which was very nice.

Look what we saw on our bike ride

Went to Camping Rosaleda in Conil de la Frontera, which was the best campsite on the trip, with spacious plots and very modern services. In the evening we had a choice of entertainment, line dancing or whist, both of which we declined.
Walked into town and onto another fabulous beach of Conil de la Frontera where one person actually braved the sea, too cold for us.

Conil de la Frontera beach

Sunday, April 2, 2017

Wednesday Walk 5th April

This week's walk will be from Cuesta La Palma to Fuente Camacho and back with a stop In Camacho for refreshments. The walk is dog-friendly and will take about 3 hours plus stop in Camacho along undulating tracks, some road walking for which dogs should be on leads. Meet at bar Mejias in Salinas at 10:30 to drive to the start.

Saturday, March 25, 2017

Wednesday Walk 29th March

Next week's walk is a new one. In fact, we don't know what it is yet. All the details that I can give you now are that it is FLAT and will be somewhere around Tarifa meeting 11 am. Please let me know if you will be joining us.

Thursday, March 23, 2017

Something good for England after Brexit?

I have a good idea after Brexit why don't we stop European players playing in the English Premier Football League. That way we may be able to develop some good players to play for England. After last night's pathetic performance against German's reserves. Shocking!
Let me know if you agree.

Sunday, March 19, 2017

Wednesday Walk 22nd March

This week's walk is a new one on good tracks around Archidona. Incorporating parts of Pete & Karen's walk along the ridge overlooking the Marin Gorge. The walk should take around 3 hours with one big downhill part. Dog-friendly with refreshments at the end. Meet at bar El Encuentro in Archidona at 10:30.

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Perfect way to spend a rainy day in Andalusia

Woke up today to discover that it was raining in sunny Spain. Looking at the forecast it was due to last all day, what to do?
We decided to drive to Alhama de Granada to visit the Arab Baths at El Ventorro. The session started at 12 noon until 1:45, when we arrived there we were surprised to see two very good friends of ours who also had the same idea of what to do on a rainy day. There were about 13 people there in total but there was still plenty of room in the baths. We enjoyed a very relaxing time and completely forgot about the stormy weather outside, although it was still raining when we left.
Definitely a good idea for a rainy day.

Stormy weather

Sunday, March 12, 2017

Wednesday Walk 15th March

This week's walk will on tracks around Archidona and is an easy walk and should take about 2.5 hours and is dog-friendly. Meet outside Las Rejas in Archidona at 10:30. Refreshments in Archidona near end of the walk.

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

El Puerto de Santa Maria

We arrived in El Puerto de Santa Maria and started looking for our hotel only to discover that the road to the front of the hotel was closed as they were resurfacing it. Eventually decided to park up and walk to the hotel. Checked in to the Hotel Monasterio de San Miguel and the receptionist apologised about the chaos at the front of the hotel and said that we could park the car in their underground car park for free. He put us in a room at the back away from the road works and overlooking the swimming pool.

After settling into our room we went on a walk around the town going down to the ferry to check on times for the next days trip to Cadiz. We went around the Basilica Menor de Nuestra Senora de Los Milagros, big name, our first view of it, it looked like a ruin, but when we went inside, at a cost of €1 each, it was a shock to us how splendid it was.

Later we went out for a meal to restaurant La Cuchara where we had Tuna stew which was very nice and a bottle of Cune wine.
Next day we went to Cadiz.
When we got off the ferry from Cadiz we walked to La Merced cake shop for a coffee and cake which was very nice. Went back to the hotel and got ready for our evening entertainment, which was a walk to Bodegas Obregon where we sampled their very fine sherries and then went searching for a restaurant for a meal and we ended up at the Jaipur Indian Restaurant where we enjoyed a very fine curry.
After leaving the hotel we had breakfast at Bar Manolo's which was very popular with the locals and we had our usual coffee and toast, olive oil and tomato before making our way to visit the bullring on our way to Castle San Marcos where we had to book with a tour guide, 11:30 was the allotted time for the guide in English. It was well worth it as the guide gave us lots of interesting information about the castle and we also sampled some sherry that the owners of the castle made, which was really nice.

Afterwards, we went back to Bodegas Obregon to buy a one-litre bottle of dry and one of sweet sherry to take back home.