22 February 2007

Andalucía!

Usually for our wedding anniversary, Claire and I tend to add to the carbon deficit of the world and fly somewhere, usually short haul, as I am far too tight to put money into the pockets of the likes of Richard Branson and his Virgin airline.

I can often be found failing to get on "Airline" on the TV as a customer of Easyjet. Preferring to put my money in Fat Stelios' pockets instead. I have flown Ryanair before, but prefer to arrive at an airport somewhere near to where I want to go! Easyjet manages that quite proficiently.

The reason we do this rather than be real bikers and ride everywhere is that I have owned a weeks timeshare for about 15 years now. I bought it at a reasonable price and have enjoyed quite a few holidays across Europe and once my ex-partner used it in South Carolina.

On many occasions we have ridden to it, Hungary for example, the French Alps for another. A couple of times we have sold the week to friends to use instead of us to save losing the "banked" week.

"Banked" weeks are those that are logged with RCI and then you can go anywhere they have in their system rather than go in Week 49 to Tenerife. In fact, I am yet to go to my apartment in Sunset Bay on Tenerife, preferring to exchange with another resort.

As we have a week on the Isle of Man for the 100th Anniversary TT, Claire wanted another non-biking trip. The last in 2005 when we went to La Manga in June.

So for October 2007, we are going to the Marbella area again on the Costa del Sol. On RCI there were around 20 options for the week we wanted to go and we chose Torrenueva Park. We have stayed here before in 2004 when we went with Claire's Dad, Victor, and his partner Nancy. We did quite a bit of local touring but missed out on the one big day trip to Córdoba as the motorway to the north of Malaga was chock full of traffic due to an accident. In the end, even in an air conditioned Ford Focus estate (like a tank and lumbered like a three legged elephant) we got fed up and heated.
This time Cordoba is on the agenda. To give us plenty of time I have been looking at hotels in the area. An overnight would give us time to walk around and see the Mesquita in the early morning.

We have "done" most of the other local sights; Ronda, Gib, Malaga, so we need to get a bit further afield. I'd like to get the boat over to Tangier and have a look around. We'll have to see.

To aid my understanding, I bought the Rough Guide to Andalucía.
So far it has been excellent reading. As well as coveirng the 8 "departments" that make up Andalucía, it also has some history. It's interesting to read the background to Spain before the Moors came over and the efforts at re-conquest by the Catholic Monarchs before moving on to more recent history, a tale of coup d'etat and civil war.

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