A Travellerspoint blog

Goodbye Spain

Hello......

sunny 29 °C

I realize that this delay in posts from me must have been agonizing for everyone so we apoligize for any trobules it may have caused and we will be spending all night catching everyone up on our journey. So josh and I have been extremly busy, more so than ever and we have lots to tell. That last post I left we had dropped off lots of stuff at the post office and hopefully it will eventually arrive in Canada, we relly have no idea what we were supposed to do besides write the one address we know. Our plan was to leave Marbella this day and arrive in Malaga a couple hours later, where we would catch an overnight train to Valencia where we would catch our plane to ...... a few days later. I am not disclosing the name of where we are going because I think its time I added suspense to my posts. Anyways as usual it was easier said than done and when we arrived in Malaga we went to the train station to find that the first train availble was on the 22nd, which was two days after our flight was booked for. So any other route we planned for was booked days after our flight was leaving. And the reason being, of corse it was still Easter week. So we resorted to a long overnight deathly bus ride to Alicante, see what I did there I added a personal touch of drama, brilliant. So it was about 12pm when we bought our tickets and our bus ride would leave later that night at 12:30am. So I did my usual bus waiting routine and read my trashy british/UK gossip magazines and newspaper. I really enjoy the newspapers they write, they are almost as bad as the magazines and somehow they still believe they are writing legitimate/serious news. So we caught our bus and arrived very unbeautifully the next moring in Alicante at 7:30am. We had previously booked a hotel so we took a cab and arrived there quickly after. I love the reactions we get from hotel reception. Most times (especially after dealthy bus rides) we arrive at our lovely hotels looking not so healthy so i think they almost always think we are coming to beg for money. So of course we took a much needed nap. We later on took a stoll down to the harbour where we assumed we were staying in another large resort area, due to the plethera of massive yaghts parked in the harbour. The next moring we woke up semi-early to go exploring, keep in mind this city was an accidental stop and we had no plans for it. Good thing the main attratction was hard to miss. The city has a humungous, massive, gigantic incredibly large fortress overlooking the entire city. So we opted out on the five hour climb up there and took the 4Euro, 3 minute elevator ride up to the top. We got a magnificent view of the city which was very beautiful and explored the area. The really great thing about the fortress was inside some of the old tunnels art exibits we being held. The was a really creepy one held in a tunnel which was completly sealed off until someone entered than which a guard would seal it off right after. Horror movie music was played and tiny deranged figurines of animals spun slowly on a moving circle. At the far wall a black and white shadow movie of people dressed in animal costumes doing strage things such as blowing up ballons was being played. The walls in the next room were decorated with scratches of again, deranged animals. By the five minutes I had spent in there were up I was ready to scream and hurt something, that music was insane, I felt quite bad for the grandpaly security guard who had to watch over the exibit. I did notice some rage in his eyes when we first arrived... So we left and did stuff, the next morning we got up early and booked it down to the harbour and caught a ferry to a little island called Tabarca, and when I say small i mean population of 100, and 3km long and 1/2km at its widest. The reason for our tip there being that we heard there was some snokeling here. So we arrived and quickly found out that the book we read most likely meant in the summer when the island was actually alive. There was no businesses, just a few souvineers shops and a tiny grocery store. We knew there had to be something good because as we arrived in the harbour you could see a photo shoot taking place off to the side of the island. As well as soon as we got close to the island the water turned into the most beautiful thing I have seen yet. The water was the clearest, purest and greenest I have ever seen, even more beautiful than spain or portugal. I guess this would be the mediterranean. So maybe it would be ok here. We arrived when it was overcast but when the sun came out 20 minutes later I could see why we and the boat loads of other people were coming here. The beach was terribly rocky and there were wood shavings instead of sand. But the water was the most incredible site I`ve seen. Here there were reefs and turquoise blue waters meeting the dark water. The sun was soo hot that day that nothing was better than that freezing beautiful water. We went exploring over the rest of the island and walked out into the reefs. So that was our day and went back to Alicante explored, packed and got ready to leave for Valencia where we would catch our flight to somewhere. So extremly early the next day we left for the bus station late, as for some reason neither of our credit cards would go through and we had no cash, good thing Josh is a quick sprinter. We took our bus ride to Valenica the trip was nice but once we got to the city we were glad we hadent been able to get to the city when we first had tried. There is just something about large Spainish cites, they are cluttered, dirty, and unwelcoming as opposed to the smaller cities that are the most beautiful places that we have ever seen. So hours later we arrived at the Valencia airport to catch our plane ride to ............ Milan, Italy!!! Against our original plans and iteneray we decided to go to italy, just beacause it was soo close so we thought we would just pop on over. So we flew a short while until we reached the Milan airport. One funny custom that me and Josh always laugh at is when the plane lands everyone arupts into loud clapping and cheering, were they expecting a different outcome??? We caught a bus into the city center and went immediatly to an internet cafe because we had no place to stay. Obiously we havent learnt anything from our pervious escapades. The stupid things with these internet booking sites is that you are unable to book for the day that it currently is and no one could call for us because they are not allowed to use the phones for customer use. So we went on the suggestion of our lonely planet book and decided that we did not need to stay in the city and the we would move on. Apparently besides being the capital of fashion which is a HUGE thing there is nothing much to see in Milan. I think it would have killed me to go see the shops where I could afford only a sock.

Posted by sarahskill 12:32 Archived in Spain Tagged air_travel Comments (0)

The Great Divide

Ronda

sunny 28 °C

So early the next morning we were off to Ronda, a small city that Josh was very excited to see and I was reluctant to go to. The city is situated on a huge gorge that divides the city into upper and lower parts. I am really glad we went because this was another one of my favorite cities. The valley that surronds the city was absolutly gorgeous and green with lots of rolling hills. Everyday we have had such good weather so I pretty much fall in love with every place that we go. The city architecture is also very amazing, very very old and detailed. So we arrived and took off to see the first amazing view when I met a little stray dog taht would follow us for a couple of hours. I have decided to carry a little bag of dog food with me so all the dogs will love me!!! The thing I hate most about this blog is the fact that I will see so much during one day but when it comes to writing about it how much can i write about how beautiful one place is. Take my word for it and do a search on Ronda, Spain. So we walked and looked at some very old mines which was little creepy and the million stairs back up was a nice little workout. I hadn´t been feeling well all day so Josh and I split up so I could go relax, in other words, shop. So the sad/wonderful things about all of these little beautiful towns is that since the European Union much more money has come into these places and all places are being broughten up to "European standards" so all these beautiful places are very touristy. There is incredible shopping everywhere which makes it very hard to control myself but I have not been buying much at all, just little souvineers here and there. So we met up later and had some cappchino which is mandatory in Europe and left for Marbella. That night we went back to the coast and had supper and had a bottle of wine, then another, and another on the beach, and one more on the beach before we went to sleep. So the next moring was easter when I finally woke up very painfully. I had mentioned to Josh how much I love easter because I love hunting for the candy. So he got me up and told me I had a bunch of stuff to find around the room, yess!!! I was so excited and still very inebriated from the night before so I went and began my hunt. I told him it was ok if he just wanted to hide Euros so he did, unfortunatly they were the chocolate kind as well as lots of lindor chocolate eggs, yumm. So we were supposed to leave that day but I was in soo much pain we booked for another night. So that was a big waste of a day, eventually I came alive and we went for supper and organized our trip. So this morning we woke up early and went to the post office. I have been trying to send stuff home since our days in Lagos, Portugal which was a least a week and a half ago so I have been carrying around this stupid postal box for days now because Spain shuts down for Easter as you should know by now. During this time I have collectd more stuff as well as I went through my belongings to send off what was not absolutly essential. So 86 Euros later and 24 pounds lighter I left the post office with a whole new type of backpacking the minimalistic kind.

Posted by sarahskill 10:51 Archived in Spain Tagged tourist_sites Comments (0)

Little Britan

Rock of UK

sunny 27 °C

The day after our big trip to Africa we were still tired of Spain so we went to the UK for a little day trip. About an hour bus ride from Tarifa we arrived in a city that surronded a very large rock out on an island. The was the rock of Gilbraltor. So at the tip of southern Spain sits Gilbraltor which is home to about 30,000 people and is a UK territory. So here you can ride double-decker buses, drink in english pubs, and unfortunalty the currency is British pounds another way of saying EXTREMLY EXPENSIVE!!! This beautiful little piece of Britain is very famous for the hundreds of monkeys that live up at the top of the Upper Rock. When we arrived we found a little tour van that would show us everything we wanted to see so we took off up to the Upper Rock. First we stopped at the Pillars of Hercules. The Pillars of Hercules is the ancient name given to the promontories that flank the entrance to the Strait of Gibraltar. And in mythological times was believed to be the gateway to Hades. It was a foggy day so we could not see Africa but we got some great pictures, very surreal. Next we went St. Michaels Caves, the Cathedral Cave was long believed to be bottomless, probably giving birth to the story that Gibraltar was linked to Africa by a subterranean passage over 15 miles (24 Km) long under the Strait of Gibraltar. The cave consists of an Upper Hall with 5 connecting passages and rocks between 40ft (12.2m) and 150ft (45.7m) to a smaller hall. Beyond this, a series of narrow halls leads to a further succession of chambers, reaching depths of some 250ft (62.5m) below the entrance. Here we began to see some of the monkeys. They just hang around, swing onto cars, hunt for food, and mostly sit around and be cute. What is differnt about this place is there is no regulation of how the people or monkeys interact. I dont even think that someone works their regularly except to feed the monkeys. So you can touch them and play with them, just a note the older and the bigger ones are also the mean ones. Babies monkeys are really fun and sometimes they seem randomly on to people. So next stop was the Great Siege Tunnels, the labyrinth of tunnels inside the Rock of Gibraltar is arguably the most ingenious defense system ever devised. The tunnels were built during the Great Siege from July 1779 to February 1783. The Great Siege Tunnels, 8 square feet (2.4sq m)by 82 feet long (25m) were cut into the Rock by sheer hard work and guts. In just five weeks 18 men equipped with only simple hand tools and gunpowder, achieved this great task. Afterwards we we to the top of the rock to visit the Apes Den. This is where most monkeys can be found lazing around. They were really fun to vist and soo cute. We were up so high in the fog that looking over the edge you could only see white, good pictures soon! So at the end of the tour we were back down on the main street where we looked around at shops which were ridiculousy expensive and then went to a British pub for tea and scones, mom aren´t you proud!!! We went to Safeway so I could get my UK gossip magazines and we were off to Spain. Early nex morning we were off to our next stop, Marbella. This was just a small dot on the map and lonely planet said nothing about the city, but we had to stop somewhere because everywhere else was filled up due to Easter Week. Much to our surprise, Marbella has turned out to be one of the most beautiful cities we have been to. I am very surpised nothing was written about it but could be because it is a very popular resort town. The city is located in a amazingly beautiful valley full of greeness and surronded by sparkling blue waters. This area attracts money from all around the world and the houses here are spectacular as well as the many gorgeous golf resorts that populate the area. So when we arrived early in the morning almost everything was closed but we had a placed book because otherwise another Seville day could have happenend. We shelled out a bit more money than the last few placed and was well worth it. In Tarifa we had stayed in a boring plain room with nothing in it, but here was more like a hotel where everything is much more personal and clean! So this day we would not get our room until 12:30 so I updated the blog for a while and later we went exploring the beautiful coast of Marbella. This was a very relaxing day and did not do much but stroll and then off to sleep.

Posted by sarahskill 11:53 Archived in United Kingdom Tagged tourist_sites Comments (0)

MoreRockOn Travelling

Moroccan Adventures

sunny 28 °C

So this brings us up to April 12th. April 11th was a very important day, so Josh and I wish happy birthdays to two very important people. Happy birthday to Brenda Murphy (Josh´s mom) and happy birthday to Karl Murphy (my dad)!!!! Isnt that funny but in a really creepy way, no relation for your info. So anyways April 12th, Josh and I woke up and came to the conclusion we had had enough of Europe so we decided to go to Africa for the day. Tarifa is the gateway city of Spain to the Strait of Gilbraltor where the Atlantic Ocean meets the Mediterraen. So just a 35minute ferry ride away we can head to Morroco, Africa. There was no way we could pass this trip up. For a while we planned on touring ourselves but for 53 euro with much included we decided it was a better deal to go with a group. So we headed over to the ferry terminal and went through the most relaxed security ever, something like airport terminal sercurity but with an old man asleep who was supposed to watch scans of the bags. We arrived in Tanger, not Tangier that is the english version, much to my liking. The boat was very fast and very wavy. Our lonely planet guidebook suggests the first thing to do when you arrive in Tanger is to leave. This is due to all the swindlers and street salesman that fill the city. This I was really excited for, I wanted to see all their little tricks and scams they would try and pull over on us. So we boarded the tour bus and began a tour of newer Tanger. We stopped for a little camel ride, you will see me posing with my camel he was very happy to be on camera.
IMG_0689.JPG
So we got to see some of the nicest neighbourhoods in Tager which were gorgeous huge palm tree yards with mansions that included tons of rooms, all complete with metal window guards and gun carrying soilders for security. The downtown was very sketchy, people weaving in and out of traffic, stopping at vehicles to ask for money. There was no real rule for the road you kind of drive where ever there is room. There was some very nice architecture but most was run down. I really love arabic writing and the language is funny, lots of spit. The people you could see were very weary of us and watched carefully as we did for them. It was a very busy city full of tradition such as the men and women in their full length dress and somewhat modern though much behind compared to our standards. So we got our first taste of Morrocan salesmen went we got off the bus for our camel ride. Out of nowhere about 13 men with all sorts of junk mostly bracelets and cheap hats were in our face showing off their merchandise. And they really would not leave you alone. First time you said no, they showed you more, second no it was a lower price, thrid time it was more for the same price, fourth no it was what price do you want, fifth no it was even more for a lower price, sixth no it was what price do you want, and literally they would not take no for an answer even if you walked away they would follow. A few times I quickwalked around through the group to loose the men. Most important rule NEVER make eye contact with the salesmen, you cant imagine how fast they can get to you for some baggering, second NEVER look at the merchandise, in 0.2 seconds they zip right over if you even take a teeny glimpse out in their direction. Once they had gone through most people they disappeared from where ever they came from and we were off again. We went down to some older areas of town, where we had a spectacular view of the sea. We wandered through a bit of the maze they call Tanger. Every so often we would hear the prayer call to remind everyone to pray, just imagine an elderly voice not saying much just a droaning mumble for minutes at a time. Every so often men would appear with crappy stuff to sell. At one point we had a drum and cobra snake dance, very cool. But always remember nothing here is for free and the performers turn on those who do not tip. So again we were off and went to our Morrocan lunch which was definitly the best meal we have had since we were here in Europe. It was a five course lunch, with soup, kabobs, cous cous and chicken, and some deep-fried pastry cookie slathered in some liquid sweetness and to follow the best morrocan mint tea, delicious!!! Meanwhile we had a traditionial Morrocan band play for us during lunch. Again, always tip or the old sweet men become not so nice. The fun really began as we took a tour of the town centre a big bazarr. Here we saw what looked like men selling faucets and pipes, electric cable, and used painting supplies, but what it really is the men are offering the skills as tradesmen. You talk to them, figure out a price and take them home with you. During this time we were of course attacked by salesmen, you cannot imagine their persistance as well as how aggressive they were. We went through an open market where everything is sold very fresh and right in front of you. Then we went to an very upscale morrocan carpet store. The owner went over the difference of these very fine carpets compared to others and showed us tons of beautiful carpets. Downstairs was where all the heavy goods were sold, including jewlery, leather work etc. Here the salesmen were also persistant but once you said you were just looking they usually backed off for a while. Inside we were safe but just taking a look out the side door 30 men and more had lined up holding goods and yelling "Senora" to catch your attention. If you dare looked they went crazy showing off their stuff and yelling. So all of us tour group stayed inside and then we were off again to a pharmacy. Here we all had a little seminar on the natural spices they carried and the uses etc. Josh bought some whole ginseng which if boiled for five minutes should be the same as drinking red bull all day. I bought some mascara which looks very primitive to put on, but this would be the same stuff indian women use and they always have gorgeous eye lashes. Besides I lost mine so I had to buy some more. After we were off the the Continental hotel for a short break before we were off to the ferry. I found some beautiful pillow covers made in Casablanca, Morroco which I will use in my own first place!! Then we were off to the ferry, harrassed by more salesmen. I stopped to ask a price on some painted plates at a stand. The guy followed me after I said no for 15euro, then he offerd 2 for same price, then three for same price and finally turned around after he had followed for 1km or more. They really never give up. We sadly left on our ferry back to Spain. I really enjoyed our trip to Tanger, it was very exciting and the people live a completly different way. I think if you are in a large group as we were you would definitly be attacked more. I watched others who were only in pairs and they were left alone for the most part. So I only regret not staying for the longer trip.

Posted by sarahskill 08:59 Archived in Morocco Tagged tourist_sites Comments (0)

Hot Hot Heat

On the go

sunny 25 °C

So that last few days much has happenend and I am sorry I cannot update the page as much as I would like to, but for the most part we are busy moving all the time and the internet is harder to come by then you would expect. So surfing in Lagos was a great success. The first part of the day was spent shuttling around from beach to beach to find the best waves, we picked one of the worst days, either the waves were non existent or much too big. We had a really good group though, a bunch of young Germans and our teacher, crazy portugese Ricky. The best part was that 10 of us were crammed into a LandRover, a little stuffy. We got to our beach and did some warm ups and went straight into the water for our lessons. We went through a little storm which was fine since we were already drenched from head to toe. I would have to say that surfing is really fun and I know Josh had a total blast. What we practised most was just riding the waves which can be super tricky. I definitly had some very messy spills which can be a little terrifying and disorientating, but we caught on quite fast so I am happy to report we are both ok! I am also very happy to report that I stood up my first time! But not for very long becasue it was completly the wrong technique and knew I was going to get it from Ricky! Josh spent the rest of the lessons learning other things to do on the board since he was pro after not much time ( i could have too I just wanted to make him feel good, look out for my surfing videos coming soon) So as usual we asked for another nights stay at our pension and went to sleep. The next morning I went and collected more shells and then we went to the famous Zoo. It was a blast, we had a good time laughing at how funny animals are. I love Zoos from different parts of the world you really get to see some amazing creatures. The funny thing was out of the spectacular and beautiful animals we did see I picked my favorite animal and it happens to be the prarie dog. Oh my gosh we have the best pictures of how cute this thing is!! The two we saw had the fattest butts you have ever seen and they sit on it and just eat all day. We have really good pictures and that brings another thing up I am sorry I cant show more pictures however this site only lets me show about 10 a month, i am working on changing that. So we asked for another night because we love our little city so much. We know who all the town drunks and bums are, we have little town dogs that come to visit us and we know what every resturant is like. The next day we took a day trip to Sagres which is the most southwesternly point o Portugal and thats about it as we found out. What I found out about Portugal is that many people here "own" dogs but do not tend to feed them so like I said each city has its share of town dogs which are always sooo cute. In sagres I have a nice picture of five dogs just basking in the sun together, and dogs do not like oranges. So we went back into town and made our big plan of going to Seville, Spain. The week leading up to Easter is a huge deal for Spainards and we had seen a lonely planet video that said seville was where the main festvities were held so we wanted to be there. So the day started off on a bad note and was to continue going down hill from there. Josh left early to find out what time the bus would leave for Seville, so that we could leve early enough to enjoy some of the events that night in Seville. Two hours later he was back to let me know that no buses ran between countries on weekends and that we would have to take a train to Faro, and then another bus to Villa Real, and then a ferry to Alamonte, Spain, where we would catch a bus to Seville. Even with this much confusion of transportation it was much easier said then done. So we left and I chopped of a little of my pinky finger in the gate of our old elevator, I just added that in so you would know exactly how poopy our day was going to be. Oh and by the way we had made hotel reservations the night before because as I said this is a crazy we and all hotels were full and doubled up prices. Hostels were cost sometimes 70 Euros which is riduculous. So I checked this morning and they had been canceled due to some unknow reasons. So I quickly looked up what ever place I could find and booked it for much more.
We waited at our train station and met an american guy named steve travelling by himself. He was interesting to talk to because he was exactly what I had pictured josh and myself being like, a travel bum. He had been doing this for months already and did not come with many funds saved. He was surving off 15 US dollars or dahllers as he said. But he was the type happy to stay in abandoned huts with hay or the cliffs of the grottos in Lagos. So we caught our train to Lagos where we a couple hours to waste. We had a lunch which consisted of a chicken sandwhich which was pretty much the entire chicken with skin and feathers attatched yummy, so I threw it to the piegions. We got on our train again and headed to Villa Real. A couple hours later we arrived and then walked a coupole km to the ferry. About five minutes later we were in Spain again. Even though it was such a quick period I really enjoyed sunny, blue water, white sand, and palm trees Portugal. So we arrived in Alamonte, Spain just counting on the fact that there would be trains or buses waiting to take us to Seville. Our former pension owner was extremly helpful and let us know that buses would be running all night. So the three of us scavenged our way around town and finally found our way to the bus station. So here we were at the station at 7:30 pm ready to catch our 8pm bus. Now the crazy thing about crossing that five minite piece of water is that within that distance, time changes by one hour and not in our favor. So we were here to catch the last bus of the night and missed it by half an hour. Alamonte was small enough to not have a train station so we were SOL especially if you count our 80 euro a night hotel reservations. In this time along came two guys who did the same ferry thing so happy to be exactly on time to find out the were an hour behind. One was an italian and one a german who were both studying in Lisbon. So we bonded about our crappy timing over some beers and the football game in the bus station. We checked the times of the buses the next day and one would be leaving for Seville at 6:45 am. So it was then we decided that the best idea would be to stay up all night drinking and meet the bus bright and early. We began our adventure in the town square where many other people were doing the same. Josh and I had a few bottles of liquor with us, we had collected them over time so we mixed some really strong martinis which we shared between us five and just enjoyed the beautiful park, 8 hours to go... So we made our way around town and stopped by a few different bars. At one we watch the football game between Real Madrid unfortunalty David Beckham was not playing:( and some other team. As you known Europeans especially Spainsh are obsessed with the sport so it can be a very exciting event. I have to say it is one of the best sports to watch on tv. Between us five there were some interesting conversations about the differences between the places we live especailly when we told the Europeans the cars they drive are so teeny of course they think that ours are just gigantic. Like true spain many of the people did not start coming out until 12am and luckily for us the bars were open until 5:30am when the police had to come shut them down. We went and met some more travellers and went to another square which was sooo beautiful. The square was full of amazing tilework and surronded by palm trees which were full of birds. So at 6am it was time to get to our bus where we all passed out for the hour ride. When we got to Seville we had the daunting task of finding our hotel with no address. We were extremly low on energy so our movements and thought process was a bit slower than usual. To us this normally would have be an easy task, we would only have to find an internet cafe and then get our address. But it was Sunday, the worst/stupidest day in the world to travel most places including Spain espacailly the Sunday of the easter week. The reason I hadnt written down the address was because I was expecting Seville to be much smaller and though that we would be able to ask a cabbie and he would of course know where it was. So Seville has a population of over 700,000 so this was not as easy. Everything was closed for the day so we were out of luck and began walking to really no where but just started going because we were desperate. We went to a few places in the area and most wanted 85 euro and up per night which is about 120 CAD. This is something we probably should have went with but being a backpacker we thought there has to be something cheaper. Onwards we went and desperatly searching for an internet cafe where we already had 85 CAD a night reservations that were going through that day at 12pm even if we never found the place, by the way it was about 10am at this time. So we were tired and slow by had a ticking deadline fast approaching. We were a bit aways from the centre where we soon found ourselves. On the way we asked magazine stalls and resturants where to find the internet and some would point us in that direction where we would go and find closed cafes. During this time Josh and I had turned into bitter enemies because of course this was the other persons fault. So we split and headed in other directions to find something or anything!! I was close to tears when I found the city tourism building with a big sign FREE INTERNET. I went inside and shed some tears when they told me that the internet is always closed on the weekend and would make no exceptions, how do you close the internet??? Anyways so I met Josh and made him go inside because I was soo mad and he got a list of places where to stay. All hostels were full which was ok because per person they were charging as much as two could split on a hotel. Keep in mind all prices double if not triple during this wonderful weekend in Seville. The only good part about our journey was that we were in town centre and were there to witness a large parade into the main cathedral. So we kept walking and find more hotels where each one went up significantly 108E, 156E, and the one I liked the most 256Euros, oops I knew we didnt look like the others in that place! During this time we had a few elderly men take us to a place with "cheap" rooms. During these escapades we would follow the men for about 15 minutes through a maze of tiny streets where we would get to a not so nice hostel where beds not rooms were 70 Euros each, what a waste of time and the other was 90 Euro. At this point we had not had any water or food since late the night before so were pooped and gave in and went to the first hotel for 85 euros a night which wasnt too bad. Mean while reservations had gone through for our other hotel that we never would find. So went and had a nap as much as we could through the noise of the parades outside. I got up later around four had a shower and we went down to see the spectualar Eater parades, the entire reason I had wanted to come to Seville and the reason we were having such a hard time travelling in Seville. Their parades I am not clear on the symbolism but to sum it up men, women, and children walk barefoot through many streets of the city wearing black and white klu klu clan looking costumes. One has nothing to do with the other but once you see the pictures you will understand. At some points in the parade men wearing popeish looking garmets carry large candles and swinging insence in front of about 20 men hidden under the blanket of a large detailed float depicting Jesus and others. This is the time when all the population of Seville is out in the best clothes, I sure felt grubby that day. After a few hours we went back to the hotel and I slept again and later got up to go see some more parades. Seville as much as I hate it, is really gorgeous. Not like the other Spainish cities we have been to. Lots of modern olf buildings if that makes sense mixed with roads lined with very tall trees. The next day we left early morning to find a internet cafe which was only a street away and tried to find a place in Cadiz where we might be able to do more surfing. This was another smaller city on the tip of Spain and most importantly feet away from the water. We couldnt find anything because as Seville the rest of Spain is booked pretty solid. We decided on Santa Maria which was supposedly very close to Cadiz. Our hotel was gorgeous, it had a swimming pool almost the size of an olymic pool, with a tennis court, and a couple metres away from the beach. So we caught our bus from Seville and made our way. In Santa Maria we were dropped off at the station, or the side of a highway which it really was. As soon as we got off Josh realized he had left his favorite hoody on the bus:( Oh and by the way like the first reservations we had made for Seville the second ones hadent gone through so we never did pay for the other hotel we never found. So at this wonderful hotel in Santa Maria they had no record of my reservation, awesome. I went to an internet cafe grabbed the number and we checked in a bit later. So we lazed around that day and the next morning we wer off to Tarifa another home spot where we would stay for a few days. We were a bit ballsy and went without reservations because apparently many hostels are not on the internet. We had a short stop in Cadiz and it wasnt much anyways so we werent worried about missing it. We arrived in Tarifa later in the afternoon. The reason for our long stay in Tarifa is that it is on the very tip of the spainsh coast where we would make a few day trip to other places. Tarifa was a little piece of shopping heaven. If you have ever been to Banff it is like the tropical water sport opposite of Banff. The street was skate shop, skate shop, skate shop, cafe, skate shop, etc.. The city is very young and and full of surfers and hippies. And it has my favorite the small windy, maze of cobblestone streets. There are two parts of the city the new part and a walled in old city with the tiny cobblestone streets. So we searched for a bit and found only one place with room left, a plain old boring little room with two beds, sink, and a window, ahhh back to the basics. So this day we shopped a bit. The only reason we could shop is because I am sending home a huge box of stuff to lighten my load. Tarifa is a small city or town I not really sure, but it is a very popular area and somewhat has its own brand. You can buy tarifa cds and there are many many shops with Tarifa branded clothing, which I have a few things of. So that was it for our busy moving week.

Posted by sarahskill 09:54 Archived in Portugal Comments (2)

(Entries 11 - 15 of 22) « Page 1 2 [3] 4 5 »