04.10.15 — Travel

Murcia, Cartagena & Las Montañas

If you read my previous blog post very thoroughly, you’ll know that last Friday I jetted off to the south-east coast of Spain for a few days before heading on up to the capital, Madrid! (A blog post for which will be coming very soon, stay tuned!). After a smooth flight down to Murcia Airport, me and my mum found my auntie and uncle who’s apartment we were staying at, and began the journey to their place at the Hacienda Riquelme.

A view across Hacienda Riquelme
A sign from the renovated barn area

Taking a few days out, we settled down for a few days of doing as little as we could get away with – but as ever, we ended up cramming quite a lot in. First up, we visited Torre de la Horadada (named after the tower which stands on its coast) for a stroll down the coast and some dinner overlooking the sea…

La Torre De La Horadada
Along the coast

Sitting down in a restaurant which seemed to hang over the beach below, the good ol’ Spanish came in useful as the area doesn’t seem very tourist heavy, and I ended up having the nicest chicken salad and lamb shank I’ve had in a long time!

If anyone is interested in learning a bit of Spanish, I shall soon be launching some introductory bits and bats on my website. To be kept up to date with the progress follow me on Twitter and like my Facebook! Anyway, here’s a couple more photos from Torre de la Horadada, featuring my feet.

The Spanish being as patriotic as usual
A colourful little jetty

After a night basking in the breeze from the fan, the next day came I requested that we revisit one of my favourite Spanish ports, Cartagena, after I visited a few years ago on a college-run trip with Danni. We drove up, stepped out of the car and I didn’t know what to photograph first in the pretty little town. We ended up clambering up onto the old wall, where panoramic views of the port, town, and surrounding landscape could be found…

An underpass with graffiti
Up to the wall

We soon headed down the rather fancy looking set of steps as seen above and headed out to the puerto, stopping for a few snaps along the way – I had to justify looking like a typical trashy English tourist with my camera swinging round my neck, you see.

Looking over the bay
Se fue la luz

We then came across a bronze statue of a hunched young man which my auntie had talked much about, and were told we’d to have our photo in between his legs… Yeah. Anyway – here I am, looking really comfortable:

Being an annoying tourist

Soon we began to head inland somewhat, up the slight slope of the land towards the town centre. We soon passed through my favourite area; the old town hall, the port authority building, and the pretty green square which they border. My mum and auntie took the opportunity to get up close and personal with one of the statues, and I spent way too long translating every useless and uninteresting plaque and sign in sight…

El Ayuntamiento De Cartagena
Más del ayuntamiento
This statue can't catch a break

Wandering further into town, I spent what time I didn’t waste buying sunglasses on taking photos of the architecture in the rickety narrow streets. We eventually settled down for some tapas y cañas (small food dishes and beers) at a little café in the centre, and spent plenty of time people watching and observing the locals as they went about their daily lives. I settled down to some non-alcoholic beer, unidentifiable-meat croquetas (croquettes, obviously) and tortilla española (Spanish omelette) – delicious (even the mystery croquettes).

A bell tower
La calle
Just the façade

Sooner or later, however, it was time to amble back to the car (no rush in Spain, naturally) and head back to the apartment. Climbing back up to the old town wall once more, I took some more photos in the late afternoon sun before we headed back along the gloriously smooth autovía (motorway) to have some tea.

A look over the bay
Down the hatch
The walk down to the car

The next day it was time to meet up with some of my auntie’s friends from the resort and head up into las montañas (‘mountains’ which were more like hills, truth be told) to have some traditional home-cooked Spanish food at a little cafeteria run by a little feisty old Spanish lady. I opted for calamares (squid rings) and pescado (it literally just said ‘fish’, I still don’t know exactly which fish it was), and then to finish off some arroz con leche (literally ‘rice with milk’, akin to a cold rice pudding covered with cinnamon).

Looking back down from the "mountain"
The road to nowhere

All three courses were delicious, especially when washed down with some vino tinto (red wine), which it turned out was on the house. Never doubt Spanish generosity – especially when it comes to food and drink!

After our slap-up meal and a quick chat with mama herself, we returned to the apartment and I crashed out and had a small gluttony-induced nap before dipping my toes in the pool and doing some sketches for some new parts of my website – however my clipboard was used more to swat flies away than it was to actually do any decent design work. Sigh.

The beautiful Spanish countryside
The prettiest tree

The next day it was time for a quick Chinese Buffet (traditional Spanish cuisine, naturally) and then to head for the train station at Balsicas for my journey alone up to the capital city of Madrid – which shall be the topic of my next blog post!