Saturday, April 23, 2016

Andalucia - Bulls, Horses, Wind and Coastal Scenery

Zafra – After the hail we enjoyed the hot shower in the Albergue so much so that we decided to stay another night. Having a full kitchen to use rather than our single pot stove was great to try a few more complicated Spanish foods from the supermarket.

South of Zafra was a great days riding – we set out to do 105kms but a minor navigational glitch found us pushing our bike along a muddy path rather than bitumen highway. Tim particularly enjoyed the riding through another national park = this one was paddocks of Acorn trees and black Iberian Pigs (Jamon) running around. We stayed in Almaden de la plata...Lots of fun peering into the plaza del toro.

We arrived in Seville for their biggest festival of the year = Feria. It was kind of like race day mixed with traditional costumes and horses/carriages. entire city block filled with marquees for food drink and dancing...shoulder to shoulder. We didn't have to watch out for drunks vomiting (Australian) but to make sure we weren't run over by a horse and cart.

Bull fight. Interesting. One matador did a good job and was entertaining whilst clean and efficient. The other matador seemed to do everything wrong and we weren't impressed to say the least...still no chance of turning vegetarian though!

We Spent the next morning riding exploring Seville then left to head further south. It was Incredibly windy and on dirt country roads. We stopped for a break out of the wind and decided to stay the night in an abandoned barn/shed and despite being dusty it felt quite safe and protected.

Set off again into the wind (+ rain) heading towards the coast. Reaching the coast was pleasant as the sun came out. We then started to use official camp-sites as they were actually open...and to enjoy a hot shower! Sunday's riding was short and sweet down the coast thinking to hit Cadiz the next day so we treated ourselves to a seafood basket before settling into a camp-site early.

Getting from the mainland to Cadiz was interesting...we turned down waiting 1.5hrs for the ferry as we thought we could ride the 20km in less time than this. We made it to the 18km point to find the neither bridge allowed looked like retracing the 18km hopefully to catch another ferry. Fortunately i (Tim) spotted a bloke putting on his shoes after walking along the beach...more importantly that his vehicle was an empty transport van, and a short time later we were in Cadiz across the bloody bridges.

Cadiz had a stunning coast line full of historic buildings and fortifications.

South of Cadiz the weather changed again giving us the fabulous mix of a head wind and sheets of rain. Fortunately the temperature remained high and we dried out quickly between showers. The coast will be packed in a month but currently in is a string of ghost town tourist resorts. Even with the rain our timing was fabulous...and the scenery not bad.

We got caught on Autovia (motorways) a few times...sometimes bikes are allowed and others not...either way it is always scary, give me a road train any day!

Gibraltar- our day trip was a novelty...the town itself was like a theme park based on Britain - British everything...the food was crap, prices high and even red telephone boxes. Fortunately the 'rock' mad up for the city. We were exhausted after walking up/down around it but great!

Today we head north toward ronda and the mountains. We hence thought it a good time to find the excess luggage that we had brought with us and as not essential and sent it for storage = 3.5kg less to drag up hills! Otherwise known as the 'great underpants cull'.

1 comment:

  1. awesome guys! FI and I were there in Cadiz where we tried Sherry and Gibraltar on our honeymoon cruise! Where do you leave the bikes when you go explore? The trek up the mountain was awesome on the trail on the south facing side. it was all foggy that day though