Page 25 of RENanDREW Travel Blog Posts

Europe » Spain November 27th 2007

Southern Spain and especially Andalucía is steeped in the belief of duende - a spirit / mysticism that immerses all things. While we wouldn’t go as far as saying our Spanish trip was spiritual or mystical, I think it's wonderfully appropriate to say that our time in Spain was magical. Both Andrew and I have discovered a special affinity with the Spanish food, wine, culture and land, and we are really torn about whether we come back here on our next overseas trip (to visit the northern and central regions) or whether we go somewhere ‘brand new’...but I suppose as dilemmas go, this one is a lovely one! Visiting family was a wonderful highlight of this trip but it was really hard to say good-bye to my siblings - once again, as we have done so ... read more

Asia » Malaysia » Wilayah Persekutuan » Kuala Lumpur November 23rd 2007

The journey eastward to Kuala Lumpur from Barcelona included a transit stop in Amsterdam because we were flying with the devil’s own flying Dutchman - KLM; and as you may have already guessed, it didn’t quite go to plan. We arrived at our gate in Amsterdam’s Schipol Airport to be first told that the plane was overbooked (we already had boarding passes), a few minutes later we were told there were technical difficulties, then we were told that we had to stay overnight in Amsterdam and catch a flight at midday the next day. Needless to say we were not impressed because as it was we only had two days with my brother in KL. Anyway, off we had to go with our crappy little overnight care bags to a really crappy hotel. The Schipol Airport ... read more
melaka street
melaka street

Europe » Spain » Catalonia » Barcelona November 20th 2007

Let me begin by saying that I love love love Barcelona! As is increasingly the case in Europe, it was cheaper to fly to Barcelona’s El Prat de Llobregat Airport from Granada than to catch the train. Vueling Air was superb and is now my new favourite budget airline in Europe. One of the first things we noticed when we landed in Barcelona was that Andalucía seemed a whole world away from Catalonia, and really in most ways Catalonia could so easily be a completely different country. We stayed in the wonderful gothic neighbourhood of Barri Gotic, just off La Rambla. Legend has it that in a previous incarnation our hotel was a house of pleasure (it’s a very respectable hotel now though), which was visited many times by a young Picasso, and that his painting ... read more
park guell
la sagrada familia
modernista apartments

Europe » Spain » Andalusia » Granada November 17th 2007

We caught the Renfe train from Ronda to Granada, which was a wonderful wonderful thing to do. If we hadn't done so we would never have experienced the sweeping mountain scapes; the seemingly brown barren land that sprouted grove upon grove upon grove of blackest olives; the glimpses of everyday village life such as the highly charged soccer match right next to one of the local train stations; the abandoned industrial estates; or the surreal wind farm that stretched as far as Andrew could see (I had been rocked into a deep sleep by then)... Granada is nestled at the foot of the great Sierra Nevada mountain range, and lives in the shadow of the great Alhambra. It is a beautiful town with more 'old grandness' than you can poke a stick at... huge cathedrals, over ... read more
carlos V palace

Europe » Spain » Andalusia » Ronda November 15th 2007

We had read that the train trip to Ronda was gorgeous, but it was more convenient for us to catch the bus from the main bus terminus in Seville. It was a very pleasant and easy journey and we got a cursory glimpse of the beautiful yet harsh country that is Andalucía. At times it reminded us of the dusty brown and pale green Australian landscapes and I think I even spotted a few eucalypt type trees, but the similarity ends there. The little villages built into the hillsides, the bountiful olive groves, and the goats and donkeys roaming the farms leave you in no doubt that you are in southern Spain. Ronda is one of Andalucía’s famous pueblos blancos (white villages) and probably one of the most incredible looking places I have ever been to. ... read more
new quarter from old city wall
old quarter from new bridge
old quarter

Europe » Spain » Andalusia » Seville November 12th 2007

Seville is the capital of Andalucía, and the center of bullfighting and flamenco...none of the former and lots of the latter for us thanks! We arrived at Seville’s San Pablo Airport late at night and the intense haze of cigarette smoke just outside the airport doors befuddled us into catching the wrong bus into town. It wasn’t a major disaster, and it was really a little lucky as we wouldn’t have otherwise caught a taxi and experienced a ride with a craaazy-wanna-be stunt driver. The hotel was only three blocks away as the crow flies but apparently 10 minutes via all the very small crazy one-way lanes. The driver did every possible thing he could to scare the life out of the travellers on their first night in Seville...and just when I thought he was going ... read more
plaza de espana
museum of traditional costumes
kitty in cafe

Europe » United Kingdom » England » Greater London November 8th 2007

Coming back to London is like putting on my favourite pair of old jeans - no matter how long it's been or what ungodly hour I arrive at - it's so nice, easy and comfortable! The 20hr flight over from Melbourne’s Tullamarine Airport was quite good considering all the things that could have gone wrong... we nearly had a flight delay of five hours in Malaysia’s Kuala Lumpur International Airport but we got upgraded to an earlier flight; we nearly got bad seats but smiled our way into great seats; our luggage nearly didn’t arrive with us at Heathrow Airport as a result of a change in airports...but it all ended well eventually. This London visit was more about seeing family than about London itself, so we only had a day or so to do 'London ... read more
london streets
station architecture

Europe » Spain November 7th 2007

How beautiful it is to do nothing and then rest afterwards... ~ Spanish Proverb Hola people! Welcome to our Spanish travels...and as if a trip to Spain was not enough, a very special added bonus was that we stopped off in London to see my sister and Andrew's cousin, and then checked in on my brother in Kuala Lumpur on the way back home. In Spain we predominantly spent time in enchanting Andalucía in the south, but could not resist a few days in Barcelona as well. I have to apologise for the delay in uploading this travel blog, we got so so so caught up in the places we went to that sitting at a computer was not very high on the agenda, but I did manage to write about 80%% of the blog while ... read more

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