Page 2 of AnnaAdventuring Travel Blog Posts

Europe » Spain » District of Madrid » Madrid October 24th 2010

We woke up early this morning to reach the Prado Museum for our imed entry... why why why didn't my brain function yesterday? The whole point of buying a timed ticket is surely to save having to get up early to beat the queues. We arrived at the Prado Museum disgusted to see the lack of queues, but had to admit it was still nice to saunter straight for the entrance and be waved through... until we had our bags searched and were refused entry. The reason? We were carrying around a framed photo in the backpack. Apparently we were not permitted to enter the museum with a pre-bought picture, I presume in case we tried to make a quick swap but seriously a framed photo was hardly going to be neatly switched with a huge ... read more
Prado Museum
By the Royal Palace
Palace Guards

Europe » Spain » District of Madrid » Madrid October 23rd 2010

With my friend ready to fly home form Madrid this weekend it seemed obvious that our last sightseeing should be in Madrid. After a week of hard work for me, and hard sightseeing for him (He's been to Paris and back, I've been to school and back) we wearily wound our way to Lleida again and took the AVE train to Madrid. Reaching Madrid we began the difficult task of locating the hostel. We reached the correct metro stop and from there were rather lost. A helpful stranger gave us directions, then chased after us to give us further directions, then walked part way and gave us more directions while his wife tutted and sighed and moaned to us that 'he ALWAYS does this - why can't he just leave people to solve their own problems ... read more
Retiro Park
Retiro Park
The Devil - retiro Park

Europe » Spain » Catalonia » Barcelona » Barcelona October 16th 2010

We spent the day in Barcelona and despite having finished a long hard week and being in no mood to travel again it was nice to have something to do which was unrelated to work and school and Balaguer in general. I found myself being in the position of tour guide and had to admit that in all my time in Barcelona I never did huge amounts of sightseeing and really couldn't recommend the best places with any real authority. Instead we flipped through the guide book and as I commented on the places I had visited I realised I was sealing my fate of seeing them again. It didn't really matter though as we chose to visit Casa Batllo and La Sagrada Familia. I love Gaudi's architecture and both places are so beautiful they could ... read more
Covered bridge in Barcelona
Light in Casa Batllo
Attic in Casa Batllo

Europe » Spain » Aragon » Zaragoza October 12th 2010

We left Granada today and started the long trip back to Balaguer. There was no time for a final walk around Granada or time to stop for breakfast. We set off, taking what we hope would be a shorter route back and made good time. We stopped in Guadalajara for lunch and as my friend laughed over being in a place bearing the same name as somewhere so familiar I had to admit I never saw anything more than the bus station and airport in Mexico. We walked briefly through a park and visited a small church before finding a suitable place for lunch, then it was back on the road again. Four hours later we arrived in Zaragoza where we were hoping to eat and possibly stay the night so we could explore the city ... read more
People in costume
Little girl in Zaragoza
Mother and son

Europe » Spain » Andalusia » Granada October 11th 2010

We had another rather leisurely start today. We planned to revisit the Albaicin barrio, the oldest part of Granada, as we'd only seen it in the dark last night but other than that I supposed we'd revert to my default plan of 'aimlessly wander and take photos as we go'. We drove more or less the route the bus had taken last night... right up to the point where we were completely lost! We eventually managed to park near a small plaza just as the heavens opened. The rain thundered down on the wind screen and I slunk back in my seat and refused to move. Eventually the weather began to look a little friendlier and we walked across the plaza and through the narrow streets and across a familiar plaza we'd been in last night. ... read more
Street in Granada

Europe » Spain » Andalusia » Granada October 10th 2010

Over a month after arriving in Spain I am finally getting to do some sightseeing and take my camera out for a bit of exercise. The past month has been incredibly tiring and I have been looking forward to this long weekend for ages. Even more so because a friend and ex-student is coming all the way from Mexico to spend his holidays in Spain and we have planned a visit to Granada! We've discussed the trip over the last week and when I asked which places he wanted to visit he listed Barcelona, Madrid and Granada. I told him to get out a map of Spain and see how far apart the cities are! Still with a long weekend the distance doesn't seem impossible and I have long wanted to see the Alhambra! I took ... read more
In the Alhambra
In the upper Alhambra
Detail on Charles V Palace

Europe » Spain » Catalonia » Barcelona » Barcelona September 19th 2010

At the end of my second week in Balaguer I finally found the time to travel to Barcelona to meet a friend. It has been a long difficult week and I really needed to see a friendly face. Life at Centre Cultural is ok, but I do have long hours and some of the classes are particularly difficult, mainly because there are no overall behaviour codes in the school and since I never physically see the other teachers during the school day there is no time to chat about individual students or ask for advice on particular classes. There is a certain air of disorganisation in the school in general. A fornight into the term I still don't have class lists and new students arrive every lesson, and I have no idea what is expected with ... read more
View of Barcelona docks
By the docks
View of Barcelona docks

Europe » Spain » Catalonia » Lleida » Balaguer September 12th 2010

Today marked my first real weekend in Balaguer. I have made it through the first week and despite the late hours I actually started to enjoy it by the end of the week. It is very different from Mexico. The easy camaraderie between teachers is missing due to a timetable that sees one class walking into the room before the previous has left and each teacher working to a different schedule so all I ever see of the other classes is a closed door. There is also the fact that I only see students once or maybe twice a week and I am struggling to even put names to faces let alone remember anything about them. Despite all this by Friday I started to feel much more comfortable with the school. It is a relief to ... read more
Castell Formos
View of surrounding farmland
View of the city walls

Europe » Spain » Catalonia » Lleida » Balaguer September 7th 2010

The new school year is seeing me settling to a new life in Spain. It has been my plan since studying in Spain to return to teach. I loved Spain the last time I was here and want to be able to explore the country further. The added incentives of being able to practise my Spanish, being closer to home, and most importantly seeing my Spanish friends again encouraged me to start job searching from Mexico. I found a job in the city of Balaguer in Catalonia. While not the most ideal location for visiting my friends in Barcelona and Girona it is still within weekend travelling distance and I am excited about the prospect of starting work here. Balaguer is a large city in the province of Lleida in Catalonia. It is situated by by ... read more

Europe » Czech Republic » Prague July 21st 2010

Our poor aching feet carried us to the nearest tourist attraction to the hostel - the National Museum. While we hobbled up the stairs I noticed a woman sitting in a wheelchair at the bottom looking confused as to how she was supposed to enter. I told her I'd find out and managed to send someone to the wheelchair accessible door around the corner whilst I ran up the main steps again to begin my own visit. The National Museum is the largest and oldest museum in the Czech Republic. The neo-renaissance building was designed by Josef Schultz and built between 1818-1891. We walked up the main staircase through the grand entrance hall and began a very fast visit. We raced through displays of natural history, paleontology, and much more. The entire museum is a work ... read more
Prague National Museum
Weeping angel

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