Page 5 of Dospalmas Travel Blog Posts

Europe » Portugal » Algarve » Manta Rota May 19th 2017

Geo: 37.1672, -7.52036After not much sleep we were up and getting ready to head for Portugal. Jim and Patrick picked up the rental car as Allison and I finished packing and then we were off. We made one stop so Allison and Patrick could photograph the Rock of Gibraltar and then didn't stop again till we arrived five hours later in Manta Rota. As we crossed the border into Portugal Jim and I were able to count our second new country of our trip. Morocco was also a new country for us. Jim now has visited 60 countries and I am at 58 and counting! The property manager welcomed us to the home and showed us around. It is a beautiful home with a stunning view of the ocean. Once we got settled in we headed ... read more
Our bedroom view
Dining and livingroom
From the kitchen

Europe » Spain » Andalusia » Estepona May 18th 2017

Geo: 36.4247, -5.14485We had a lazy start to our day, but once we were up and running we headed into Estepona for breakfast. We found a nice cafe at a plaza near the center of town. We then had our final wander through this lovely town, as tomorrow we head to Portugal. Once back at the condo we started packing our suitcases and cleaning our home for the past two weeks. The condo has been perfect and Mariano the owner has been a fabulous host. The location was great for all the exploring we enjoyed.At 10:30 pm we headed to the Malaga airport to pick up Allison and Patrick. It was wonderful to see them walk through the arrivals gate. Then it was off to our condo for our last sleep in Estepona. ... read more
Jim's breakfast. Waffle with chocolate and whipped
Patrick and Allison on their way

Africa » Morocco » Tangier-Tétouan » Chefchaouen May 17th 2017

Geo: 35.1716, -5.27069We awoke this morning to the "call to prayer", such a characteristic element of the Muslim world. We enjoyed a nice breakfast of bread, cheese, olives, jams, honey, crepes and coffee, prepared by our Riad host. We then met Morad for a nice, leisurely stroll of the Medina and old town of Chefchaouen. This beautiful, mountain-top city has many buildings which are painted blue, giving the town a cool and unique feel. Unlike places like Egypt, here the shopkeepers do not aggressively try to drag you into their shops, and our walk through the city is most pleasant. We top for a coffee in a cafe on the main square, before heading out to drive back to Tangier.Upon arriving back in Tangier, Morad takes us to one of his favourite old restaurants, with all ... read more
Jim outside our hotel
Chefchaouen the "Blue Pearl"
A old way of washing clothes and rugs

Africa » Morocco » Tangier-Tétouan » Tangier May 16th 2017

Geo: 35.7728, -5.8235Over the past few days we exchanged emails with a private tour guide in Morocco, hoping that we might put together a brief, customized tour to Tangier and Chefchaouen. Our cooperative guide has been able to make the arrangements, so this morning we are up early, and drive to the southernmost tip of mainland Spain, Tarifa, to catch the ferry. Africa is a short, 1 hour ferry ride from Tarifa. We are met by our guide and driver, Morad and Omar, upon arrival in the port of Tangier.We do a short driving tour of the city, before heading to Cap Spartel and the Caves of Hercules on the northwestern tip of Morocco. We then return to Tangier, and do a short walking visit to the Kasbah, before stopping for a very tasty Moroccan lunch. ... read more
Our ferry to Morocco
Jim on the ferry
Viewpoint with Spain in the distance

Europe » Spain » Andalusia May 15th 2017

Geo: 37.8864, -4.77683We were up early today as we have a three hour drive ahead of us. We are off to Córdoba, the home of the Mezquita. Córdoba was once the capital of the Moorish Kingdom of Al-Andalus, and this was when work began on the Great Mosque "La Mezquita". After many years of additions and enlargements it became the largest in all of Islam. In 1236 Christians conquered the city and built a cathedral in the midst of the arches and columns, creating an extraordinary church-mosque.On arrival into Córdoba we managed to find parking and headed for our morning coffee. We enjoyed our first Spanish churro with our coffee. A churro is a fried dough pastry covered with sugar. Quite yummy.We then wandered our way through the Jewish Quarter, a labyrinth of windy, narrow streets, ... read more
The Mihrad
The Mihrab
Ceiling near the Mihrad

Europe » Spain » Andalusia » Málaga » Antequera May 14th 2017

Geo: 37.0194, -4.56288Today we are off to El Torcal de Antequera, a nature reserve in the Sierra del Torcal Mountain range. The area is known for its dramatic limestone formations and karst landscape. Along our way we stopped in the historical town of Antequera which dates back almost 5,000 years. Our coffee spot was in a pretty plaza with a view of a bullring built in 1848 and still in use today. We then headed up the windy mountain road to El Torcal de Antequera to start our three kilometre hike through the amazing rock formations. Climbing to heights of around 1,300 metres the views were spectacular. It was a lovely experience to hike at El Torcal. As we headed back towards Estepona we saw many shepherds herding their goats and sheep towards home. In the ... read more
Coffee time
View from El Torcal
El Tocal

Europe » Spain » Andalusia » Marbella May 13th 2017

Geo: 36.5099, -4.88635Today we visited Marbella, a city and resort area along the Costa del Sol, just east of where we are staying. We parked in the city centre, and then headed through a maze of narrow streets that twist and turn past white Andalusian buildings. The buildings are adorned with flower filled balconies, chic boutiques and trendy cafes. We stopped and enjoyed a coffee in Plaza de Los Naranjos. Then we continued our walk through the winding streets and down to the beach promenade. On the Avenida del Mar we viewed an interesting exhibition of Salvador Dali sculptures. Today is lovely and sunny, so we got to see this part of the Costa Del Sol at its best! We stopped to enjoy some gelato before heading back to our car. On our drive back towards ... read more
Dali sculptures in Marbella
Plaza de Los Naranjos
Coffee area in Marbella

Europe » Spain » Andalusia » Casares May 12th 2017

Geo: 36.4469, -5.2858We woke up to the sound off rain, but by the time we finished breakfast it had stopped. We decided to head back up in the hills north of here to the hilltop village of Casares. It clouded over again as we made our way up the windy country road. Actually, all the roads have been very good so far in Spain. We drove into Casares town area, but the roads kept getting narrower and narrower, so we turned around and parked on the outskirts. We then walked down into town and found a lovely place for coffee. As we finished our coffee it started to rain quite heavily, so we decided to enjoy lunch at the same establishment, but moved inside where it was warmer. We enjoyed a caprese salad and calamari. We ... read more
Homes in Casares
View walking down into Casares
Another view

Europe » Spain » Andalusia May 11th 2017

Geo: 36.3562, -5.23087This morning we headed south of Estepona to Puerto de la Duquesa with its pretty marina. After a coffee at the marina we headed south along the ocean promenade. We walked along to the little fishing hamlet of Castillo de la Duquesa from which marina gets its name. We toured through the small castle which was built in 1767. It rained very lightly as we return along the promenade to Duquesa. That did not deter us from continuing along the promenade to the east to the fishing village of Sabinillas. After our morning walk we headed back to our condo as the sky was getting grey. We had a nice lunch on our balcony as the sun came out again. We finally took a little tour around the complex we are staying and it ... read more
Du Duquesa Castle entrance
From above

Europe » Spain » Andalusia » Estepona May 10th 2017

Geo: 36.4247, -5.14485Today we enjoyed a very late start to our day, but we still made it into Estepona before noon for coffee. The town is quieter today which made it more enjoyable for checking out some different side streets. We also walked farther along the beach picking up shells and tossing rocks before looking for a nice lunch spot. Today we decided to enjoy some seafood at restaurant in a little plaza area near the centre of town. We ordered grilled sardines which are very popular here and a salad with different fruits and prawns. It was all delicious.On our way home we stopped at a local supermarket for groceries and some fresh prawns for dinner tomorrow night. We did a load of laundry in the afternoon and the machine cycle we accidentally chose took ... read more
Beach at Estepona
Another beach view
Our yummy lunch today

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