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Spain - 2005


We chose to fly to Granada in Spain for a one week break in September. We were quite taken with this part of Spain when we visited the area the previous year. We booked direct scheduled flights with Monarch from Gatwick and these proved to be very good, compared with the poor BA flight to Alicante in 2004. Car hire for the week was also slightly cheaper and the drive from Grenada to see our friends was quicker than from Alicante.

As we both had fairly hectic work schedules, a one week break together was all that we could manage - although we were already planning a further week for later in the year. Such a nuisance when work gets in the way of holidays!

Velez Blanco

Velez Blanco from near Velez Rubio


We spent most of the week just touring the area, from the Sierra Nevada National Park, Sierra de Baza, The Tabernas Desert and Sierra Alhamilla, down to the coast at Almeria and along to Mojacar, Garrucha, Vera Playa and to Villaricos. The very diversity of the whole area was stunning - from the natural beauty of the Sierras, through the dry barren (though picturesque) areas between the Sierras and Mojacar and the more touristy coastline, including the bare bodies at the tourist settlement of Vera Playa, boasting about 2km of beach reserved for naturists.

The weather was fabulous and we ate great food from a variety of places, ranging from tapas bars to very upmarket restaurants. It amazed us that the food was always good and the service polite in these typical places.

The furthest village North that we reached from Vera, about 5km up the coast, was a small place called, I believe, Villaricos. This was the only let down on the whole trip, seeming to be an ex-pat location with almost all bars and restaurants catering specifically for UK customers - not at all what we were looking for, but obviously appealing to many. Perhaps I am being too harsh.

Embalse del Negratín

Embalse del Negratin
A huge reservoir between Grenada and Velez Rubio


One particularly memorable and unusual sight (one of many on this trip) was at the reservoir at the Embalse del Negratin, North of the N-342 near Freila. A particularly spectacular reservoir in a beautiful setting. We had lunch at a restaurant which, I believe, was called Nautico. Despite it being a beautiful day, there were few people taking lunch, from the fairly extensive menu.

The food was great, the service excellent and the scenery provided a stunning backdrop. A most unforgettable lunch with our friends, washed down with good Spanish wine, in an unexpected location, on the way to Granada.

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