Ronda & Pueblos Blanco’s
Thursday 25th January 2018
As there is NO SUN on our pitch….
we have to go out to top up on the vitamin C. We had decided to go to the beach we went to the other day and just have a lazy afternoon on the loungers with a few drinks. No such luck it was really windy and cold in the wind and we decided to return back to our dark pitch although before we did so we stumbled on the nudist community who will apparently brave any condition to get their bits brown. We headed to Puerto Banús the posh marina and instantly hated it. False people with obscene amounts of money flaunting it everywhere. Huge multi million pound motorboats, Bentley continental convertibles by the truck load only broken up by the occasional Porsche and a multitude of Range Rovers. Clothes shops advertised designer tops for €1,450 and jeans, a snip at €950 – It IS everything that we despise and that is wrong in our society all packaged up into one place. As we walked past the numerous bars with inflated prices there were a few dubious groups of men sat round tables drinking coffee all were wearing expensive designer gear and sunglasses and we wondered what next part of their criminal empire they were planning. The stories Lulu and Paul told us about Marbella and the reasons they moved away from the ‘costa del crime’ seemed to be so apparent everywhere you looked. We couldn’t wait to get out of the false environment where it seemed that the only thing that really mattered was the brand of your clothing, the make of your car and the size of your bank balance. A place where the more you have the less you can enjoy what life should be all about, friends, family and the ability to enjoy the simple things that we often take for granted. We made a hasty retreat to our motorhome glad to be away from the vile and sterile environment that is Puerto Banús.
Friday 26th January 2018
Time to see a bit of real Spain. We had decided to do a road trip around the ‘Pueblos Blanco’s’ (white villages), and where better to start than Ronda – the jewel in the crown of the white towns. The Spanish really know how to build roads and the road from Marbella to Ronda was a twisting winding feat of engineering brilliance. Right over a mountainside and down the other with wonderful views at every turn. Gibraltar and the African Coast were clearly visible. Small white towns and villages were precariously perched on the hillside and then Ronda was seen on the horizon. We parked and walked the streets
finally arriving at the great Scar in the rock that Ronda straddles.
A truly amazing engineering feat for its day (and even for today come to think of it) connected the two sides of the huge void and a truly “panoramic spectacular” seemed to dominate 300 degrees of the 360.
We walked down to the lower view point of the southern side and after marvelling at the size of this huge stone bridge slowly made our way back up the slope to the village that has become a city in the middle of a mountainous nowhere.
Our tummies were rumbling so we sought out a tapas bar and found a parador hotel with the most amazing view and a sunny sheltered table to boot.
The food was ok and certainly not as good as some of the smaller tucked away bars we have had tapas in previously but the view was truly gorgeous and to top it off accordion music from a nearby busker drifted through the air completing a truly magical setting. ‘On days like these’ from the Italian job, the theme from the godfather and other lovely tracks filled the air. Perfect tunes for a perfect spot, that was until we had just finished our food and drink and were paying the bill and he started playing “The Birdy Song” – it was definitely time to leave.
We headed down the mountain passing several other white towns all stunning in their own way some with castles, some hanging to the rock face, others with just a pretty church standing guard at their entrance.
The countryside went from bleak highland of Scotland to the Lake District to Snowdonia, welsh valleys, Peak District, and then the Fenlands Of east Anglia before returning to the feel of Spain again and then finally the costas. Spain has some of the most varied and stunning scenery that you can experience in one days drive. We ended up just north of Gibraltar again and as we had our passports on us felt that we could not leave the area without one last visit to Morrisons. Africa was clearly visible and Gibraltar had never looked so clear.