Well the summer has done what it was intend to do and has put some much needed pennies back in the bank. “We’ve earned the pay – lets go and play” and with our ferry to France booked for the 8th November we just need to complete the last few weeks of our contract here, get Catori the motorhome serviced, MOT’d and damp checked for her warranty, de- camp and pack away our comfortable enclosure, see friends & family and then we are off. There is a lot to do to de-camp as the awning needs to be taken down cleaned and re-proofed and then everything from the awning, the awning itself and other stuff that we are not taking with us (and that is a lot) needs to be packed, and squeezed into the Dub for the winter before she goes into storage. So no more trips away in the Dub for us this year I am sad to say.
Our minds turn to what to do and where to go.
The aim is to spend about 6 weeks getting to the south rather than making a mad Run For The Sun. We hope to see a bit of northern France, via Bayeux, Fougers, Nantes and Rochefort then head south through the Vandee to Biarritz before heading along the north Spanish Coast via Bilbao, Santander Gijon, Santiago de Compostella and Vigo. Then continue south into Portugal and down its coastline via Porto, Coimbra and Lisbon until we reach the Algarve. As it’s our first full winter away we have decided to have some time on campsites when we finally get to southern Portugal and Spain. This is to break the pattern of being on the road every day and enjoy a rest from traveling. We have booked about a week to ten days in five sites for very different reasons. Albefura in Portugal for Christmas and New Year (we arrive 21st December and leave 2nd January) and are hoping to join in some festivities there. We then head east along the Algarve into Spain and then via Seville, Cadiz and Gibraltar to get to Marbella for 16th January to see our friends Lulu and Paul who moved to Spain with their beautiful girls Angel and Arabella about two years ago and have never looked back. On 24th we then move north east via Malaga, Granada, Almeria on to Cartagena for February 1st where we hope to catch up for a drink or two with a friend and work colleague Dave and his wife Alison who moved to a villa in Mazarron in May last year. ( It’s true to say that both Lulu & Paul’s and Dave & Alison’s departure from the U.K prompted us to change our lives much earlier than planned). On 12th February we head further north via Torrevieja, Alicante, Benidorm, Calp (where we also have an invite from a couple we met on site this year who own a villa there), and Denia to a site just north of Valencia for 22nd February this will allow us to explore that special city. On the 1st march we then head north again via Benicassim, Peniscola, Salou and Tarragona to a site near to Barcelona for 7th March . In between the sites we will have a week or so to stay on aires and explore the towns, villages, sights, and beaches between our stops. Barcelona is the last planned stop and a natural “grand finale” in Spain before heading back to France on 14th March. There is the possibility of staying at a site in Paris for a week for a ‘Paris in the spring’ experience however a lot of the last leg will depend on our need to return back for work next year and if the contract starts at the end of March. If it starts a month later then I’m sure Italy will beckon.