This weekend, our travels took us to the South of Spain, on the beaches of the Mediterranean called the Costa Del Sol. To get the cheapest flights, you have to travel early, so we woke up at 4am and were on the bus towards the train station which would bring us to the airport for our flight at 7:25am. The good thing about such an early start, however, is that we reached paradise before lunch. We were amazed at how easy it was to get from the Málaga airport to our hotel, in a town called Torremuelle just down the coast from Malaga. From the airport train station, it took us about 25 minutes to reach our station in Torremuelle. It was, however, really difficult to find our hotel from there: it took us about 1 minute to walk to the opposite platform and through the parking lot to reach our hotel (Vista Del Rey). It couldn't possibly get any easier than that!
Although you may think that staying in a hotel next to the train station isn't your ideal for a sun destination, the electric trains were just so quiet that you didn't even notice them. They didn't come
too often, but just enough that it was convenient for you to travel around on them. And, they were cheap. About three Euros would by you a round trip ticket and take you about 25 km each way. We had an amazing room, probably the best they had. It was a corner unit that had windows on three of its sides, all facing the ocean. The hotel isn't right next to the water, which might be a bummer if you wanted to be on the beach, but considering it was a bit too cold for us to swim, it was perfect. Considering we had just left 6 degree and cloudy (possibly rainy) London, the 17 degree and sun that met us in Spain was brilliant!
After putting down our bags, we quickly went to wander around the little town we were staying in (Torremuéla). There were a few cafes and grocery stores, but not a whole lot else. We walked down to the water (about a 5 minute walk downhill) and marveled in it's beauty. Then we decided to hop on the train and visit Málaga, which is only 40 minutes by train.
We didn't hear many good
things about Malaga, so we didn't know what to expect. Parts of the city aren't super impressive, but they have an old downtown area which we found to be beautiful. Malaga has a beautiful waterfront, with a boardwalk and restaurants all lining the walk. Mike was really excited because tied up in the harbour was a beautiful yacht, called Tatoosh.....
After drooling over the boat, we went for a walk along the boardwalk and decided to try some Spanish paella at one of the restaurants there. It was alright, but we had better on Sunday (stay tuned!). We then wandered a bit more through the downtown area. We weren't sure what time the sun sets (in London right now it sets at 5:30pm), so we weren't sure how much time we had to explore in the light. We thought we could go watch the sunset over the Andalucian mountains. So we climbed up to the highest point in the city, the Gibralfaro hill, to see a wonderful panaromic view of Málaga. From the top we could see right into the bull ring in the city below. In the distance we watched a couple of tugs bring a containership into
the port. On the hill sits a Moorish castle called Castillo de Gibralfaro, so we walked up the steep path that followed the castle, but didn't actually go in because it was closed when we got to the top. We reached the top just as the sun started to set, and from there we watched as it disappeared behind the mountains.
As we headed back to our hotel, we thought that we had forgotten to pack our toothpaste. So we went into a farmacia to buy a tube. Elysia was looking for a small tube of toothpaste (under 100mL so we could bring it on the plane with us) on a shelf that had kid's toothpaste and brushes. Without really looking at the label she grabbed one that looked like toothpaste (it was under the kid's toothpaste!) and Mike went to pay for it. As we were leaving, Mike was wondering why he only got 20 cents back from the ten euro bill he had used for the purchase. So he read the label... it was dental adhesive, for dentures - not toothpaste!! We went back to the pharmasist and asked "toothpaste?" thinking that he may not speak English.
We would be happy to just own this little sailboat! Don't feel to sorry for the owner of Tatoosh though - if he wants to go somewhere in a hurry, he can take one of the three other powerboats on board - or the helicopter.
He laughs and responds.... "yeah I thought that was weird" and he immediately refunded us our money and showed us where the toothpaste was. I'd like to say language barrier, but I guess that's what happens when you assume that a box that looks like the toothpaste you'd normally buy in Canada, is actually toothpaste without reading more carefully (it was in spanish but not indecipherable). The real kicker was that when we got back to the hotel we found out that we did in fact bring our toothpaste from London! Oh well, a humourous end to a great day!
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