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Brian’s Travel Diary

Tuesday, 30 Aug 2011

Location: Salamanca, Spain

MapTravelled through a variety of terrain on the train trip to Salamanca. Saw what looked like an interesting town (Avila) on the way. The countryside all along the way was very dry until we reached the outskirts of Salamanca which used irrigation from the Rio Tormes.
As suspected, the taxi couldn’t get to our hotel because of the Spanish equivalent to the Tour de France (LaVuelta) was in town. But it was not far to walk to our hotel – Rua Salamanca, which was only a couple of minutes walk from the Plaza Mayor, where today’s time trial section finished.
I picked well here! The hotel is right in the centre of the old section of town, within easy walking distance of all the major monuments, buildings and museums AND the room is quite spacious with an old glass panelled balcony that looks out into a wide street that leads from the Plaza Mayor to the Cathedral.
From this balcony we could see down to our right the last 150 metre section of the bike course, so once we had stowed our luggage we wandered down for a closer look. I managed to squeeze into a spot at the 75 metres to go mark and got a couple of short video shots of the sights and sounds. As I did this Creaky smelled out an Irish Pub, just a dribble down the street and we sat in the bar and had a couple of drinks and watched the last 4 riders finish and the presentations on the big screen.
Then we wandered back up the street and into the Plaza Mayor where they were dismantling all the La Vuelta scaffolding and barricades etc and managed to pick up a La Vuelta pack for someone we know will like it. (it comprised a cap, t-shirt, sunglasses, set of four wristbands in the colours of the 4 category leaders’ jerseys and a mobile lanyard – all in a handy little string-thing backpack)
We then visited the Informacion Tourimo and picked up a map and a sheet about opening/closing times and visit costs. Amazingly, nearly all are free!!
After Madrid, this place is magic!!! I’m sure we are really going to love our stay here.
Had a great meal for dinner, followed by ice cream in the street as we promenaded with the rest of the locals and tourists; then to a supermarket to get water and then retired to our room, ready to attack the sights/sites tomorrow (Tuesday).