In case you missed it, we are halfway through our roadtrip down the south east coast of Spain, you can read Part 1 of the road trip over here.
At this point, we were both totally wrecked but determined to squeeze every last morsel of awesomeness out of our trip.
THE HIGHLIGHT REEL
- OMG - so much good ice cream. I indulged every day. Sometimes twice a day. It was that good.
- Eveything about Nerja. A tiny coastal town, ringed by mountains. Sah pretty. Our AirBNB hosts were incredibly friendly and lovely people too
- Basking in the sunshine + warmth made my lizard self happy.
THE NOT SO FUN STUFF
- The heat in Granada was so dry, and so intense, and probably the least favourite part of our whole trip. It was even less fun when I realised that we could not drive to accommodation as it was in the middle of a pedestrian only area. That fifteen minute walk, uphill, in 40 degrees while carrying our 20kg backpacks and various carry on bags was REALLY FUN. There was also no aircon in our AirBNB. Haha it makes me sweat just thinking about it.
Otherwise known as the hottest place on earth!
Our next stop after Alicante was Granada, which was about a three hour drive away. The main reason I wanted to come here was because it was on the way to our next destination, and because I wanted to visit the Alhambra, a palace and fortress with Islamic and Muslim architectural influences and history. Sadly, I did not pre-book our tickets which meant by the time we got there all the tickets for the palace grounds had sold out and we were unable to explore inside the palace (insert many sad faces here). We were able to wander the grounds though, which were insanely beautiful.
CAVES OF NERJA
We were pretty eager to escape the heat in Granada, so we left early the next day and headed towards our next stop - Nerja.
As we were too early for our accommodation, we detoured via the Caves of Nerja (Cuava de Nerja). These caverns are so cool, and are actually used as an amphitheater where concerts are played.
After we had left the caves, we took a ten minute drive up the mountain to visit this picturesque little mountain town, full of white-washed buildings. It was a maze of cobbled alleyways, full of plants (turning my desire to start a garden into a full blown obsession). After wandering around for a bit and satisfying my inner-photographer, we ended up having a really nice lunch overlooking the town.
This was one of my favourite stops along the way. The coast was really spectacular, and these are some of my favourite photos! There aren't too many, because after we took a quick walk to explore and get our bearings (and eat some more ice cream) we hustled back to our accommodation, swapped our backpacks for swimmers and jumped in the ocean.
We were able to swim and walk around the headland for quite a while. I picked up a great collection of pebbles that Dan was kind enough to carry back for me😂😂
This was the CRAZIEST day of our entire trip.
We left at 7.30am to drive down to Gibraltar (a three hour drive away, located at the very bottom of Spain), and we arrived at about 10.30am.
Following the advice from the Internet (always a risk) we parked in Spain and crossed the border into Gibraltar by foot. This was a super smart decision, because by the time we made it back from the rock to border control we were in a mad rush, and the car queue to get out was so long. The internet told me that Spanish border control authorities can stop and fully search your car if they just decide they want to, and that they regularly do this - and boy, the internet was not wrong! The car park was a five/ten minute walk from border control, but it saved us hours and avoided us a lot of stress about potentially missing our train to Madrid.
It took us almost two hours to get from border control to the top of the rock in Gibraltar, the buses were really slow and silly me didn't pre-book tickets for the cable car to get to the top.
The biggest reason we wanted to come here??
They were waiting for us the second we got off the cable car, and one even jumped from the window, off Dan's head and onto the girl in front of us. It opened her bag (using the zipper) and had pulled our a bag of nuts and jumped away again before any of us could really do anything about it!
While we were on top of the rock on Gibraltar, I was lucky enough to meet and photograph a very fresh, very new newborn monkey (with it's umbilical cord still attached). Those photos are pretty special, so I'm giving them a blog post all of their own which I will share with you next week. ♥
After we left Gibraltar, we ended up half running back to border control (took us about 30 minutes), crossing over the border (first time I've ever been in two places at once! One foot in Spain, one in Gibraltar), driving up to Malaga (90 minutes away) and catching the train to Madrid. We finally arrived in Madrid at about 8pm. It makes me tired just thinking about it!!
But, like everything, it was so worth it and I have no regrets. You can sleep when you are dead right?
Coming up next week as well is a roundup post (with all the links in one spot) as well as summary of all our travel statistics (because hello, I'm a giant nerd and things like km travelled and steps walked apparently excites me).