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trish & pat’s Travel Diary

Thursday, 19 Jul 2007

Location: Seville, Spain

MapThanks to a recommendation from our friends Mervyn and Doreen we headed inland for a couple of hours from the Costa del Sol to a town in the sierras (mountains) called Ronda. It turned out to be a great place to visit with an amazing gorge, old town and one of the oldest bullrings in Spain. It sits on top of a mountain with panoramic views over the surrounding sierras.

We stayed at a hotel which had only been open for one week and which was converted from a flour mill. It sits in the valley 8 kilometres out of town with a river running past the bedroom windows.

As we were the first paying guests (and only guests) we were treated like royalty. To attract locals to the restaurant they had a special dinner package of 3 courses for €8.50. The chef who is Italian and passionate about his food created some amazing dishes for us, and dinner here was an experience in itself. We had only intended to stay for 1 night and ended up staying three.

Whilst here the owner planned a driving tour for us through the sierras and white villages which were not touristy – it was a great day and a fantastic drive with spectacular scenery.

The past few days in Ronda have been one of the highlights of our trip so far.

We are now in Seville (the hottest city in Spain – weather wise that is) with 38C every day. We now understand why the Spanish have siestas because between 4-7pm the weather is scorching and just about everything closes. Most locals don’t go for dinner until 11pm or later. Seville is an impressive city and has the 3rd biggest cathedral in the world (not a patch on St Peters) and a 13th century world heritage listed palace - the Alcazar which is home to the Spanish King and Queen when in Seville.

We have loved our time in Spain – the tapas, paella, warmth of the people, the hot days and balmy nights and the laid back culture. Whilst it is not as formal or clean as France, it really is a fun place to visit.

Tomorrow we head to the Algarve coast of Portugal. Adios Spain!