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I have to ask this question, why does everyone go to the seaside? What is the inners of Spain like?
We never go to the coast, it’s inland Spain for us. Right now we’re at 2000 feet, and the wind’s a bit chilly, but it’s sunny and we’ve been walking or cycling every day. As we say in Scotland “there’s no such thing as bad weather, only inappropriate clothing.” The sites are quieter, the people are friendly, you try to speak some Spanish as English isn’t always spoken. The scenery is dramatic, the trails are well marked, the roads are smooth for cycling, there’s very little traffic, the villages are (often) beautiful, but always on a hill. And we move around, finishing in Extremadura.

Obviously it doesn’t suit everyone, but it suits us.
 

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We never go to the coast, it’s inland Spain for us. Right now we’re at 2000 feet, and the wind’s a bit chilly, but it’s sunny and we’ve been walking or cycling every day. As we say in Scotland “there’s no such thing as bad weather, only inappropriate clothing.” The sites are quieter, the people are friendly, you try to speak some Spanish as English isn’t always spoken. The scenery is dramatic, the trails are well marked, the roads are smooth for cycling, there’s very little traffic, the villages are (often) beautiful, but always on a hill. And we move around, finishing in Extremadura.

Obviously it doesn’t suit everyone, but it suits us.
Thats just the sort of place I would have gone to with Hans 20 years ago when we were both pretty mobile. Hans never wanted the seaside, said there´s only one way to look, backwards to the land 😁. He wanted to go to Croatia, but not to the coast, pity we never got there. A hire car might be the answer for me where you are now.
 

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Inland for us too. We have mountains on three sides of us.
 

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We enjoyed both the coast and inland ! Inland is a lot cheaper, many of the aires were 3€ per night, one was foc including 16a EHU. The coastal aires were often full and/o in grotty areas. There was a marked difference in temperature though, the mountains were several degrees colder.

We have promised ourselves to go back, down the spine of Spain to see different scenery, but the views that we did encounter were stunning !
 

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I expect it’s what we choose to have from a holiday, my choice would be sight over sound. When I see pictures of crowds on beaches and full sites that’s not for me, but to go to one of my German forum meetings with a few dozen other van its a different thing, then it’s friendship, fun and laughter.
 

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We were very very impressed by the warmth of expression that we received from Brits, Spanish, German, Dutch +++, Irish and French ! Whether it’s because we were in a multi-country location but the help, advice and assistance was brilliant.

In many ways it was more obvious than when we are in French sites, although the many French sites run by the Dutch reflect a really good experience, and their knowledge of languages depressed me as I mangle my way through French alone as a Modern Language. MrsW at least speaks German fluently as well as French although she maintains (I nearly said “swears”, but she doesn’t) her German is rusty !

Why are the British so poor with learning languages ? Is it a failure of the Education System, individuals or just plain xenophobia ?
 

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At the secondary modern school I Went to Dave languages were not on the curriculum, a German lady in our road taught me how to count, to say good morning, afternoon and night and don't be so nosy😃 that was something written under the flap of a Lederhosen purse I bought in Switzerland when I was 14. The next language I had only one lesson of Italian there weren't enough people for the course to carry on, but I remember a banana is a banana in Italian 😁.
German with Michael Thomas I started when I was 40 the trouble there was my German husband didn't want to speak German, his Mother would speak to him in German he would answer her in English, when we came here they thought he was English or Dutch.
I have tried 2 online courses and got bored, but I can hold a conversation with people in the village, they understand me and if I don't understand them I say so and they always get the message over some other way. I do jump at the chance of speaking English though because I'm lazy. My eldest brother spoke French & Italian fluently got by in German and Spanish, he just had a brain that sucked up languages, my brains full of too much rubbish it can't absorb decent stuff. 😂 Oh by the way, he hadn't a clue about computers, tablets or mobile phone's.
 

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Discussion Starter · #69 · (Edited)
We have managed to get up to Lesson 14 on our Coffee Break Spanish CD's on this trip. It is always our intention to start them at home on 1st December but then we always forget. This year I have written in the calendar so we will start early. We have to repeat each lesson at least twice to get it all/most/some to stick. Mrs G has short term memory issues plus lacks confidence with languages so does struggle a bit.

Our winter trips are about finding the sun and warmth hence going to the coast and starting geographically southerly in Spain before working our way north. We wouldn't come to the coast in summer as it would be too hot and way too busy but at this time of the year we mostly get shorts/T shirt weather.

We had a little walk on the beach yesterday. It's not big but there is a boardwalk leading from it so we can walk down the coast through a nature reserve...

Sky Plant Plant community Cloud Water
 

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Why are the British so poor with learning languages ?
Because English is so widely spoken, as a visitor, there is rarely a need other than to learn the very basics of another language.
peedee
 

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Not too many people my age speak English in the East, they were supposed to learn Russian in school, it was under protest so not many can say more than good morning etc. the men know a few curse words though 😁
 

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Both the Dutch and the Norwegians have told me that the one good reason their English is good is they watch BBC TV. I also read English is one of the easiest languages to learn, you only need to memorise 80 verbs and you can get by.
peedee
 

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Sorry, Graham, this seems to have hijacked your really interesting thread (I have already taken electronic note of some of the sites as possible inclusions).
He's there now Dave so it will be 10 days of sunbathing, paddling and ogling the bikini clad girls from now on :D:ROFLMAO:🤣.
It keeps the thread to the top as well.
 

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Discussion Starter · #77 ·
Yes it's no problem Dave.

Paddling at the moment, will be restricted to the rain puddles though given the weather we have been having.

It follows me around I'm sure of it....
 

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Discussion Starter · #78 ·
Day (or more correctly, half day) trip to Cartagena

We hired a car from a local company which is British owned and run (Clarity Cars). We have a Ford Fiesta for 3 days for £79 which includes delivery and collection. As such we took a day trip today to Cartagena which is around 30 mins by car.

With Mrs G's fatigue levels to worry about, we seldom do more than 2 things when we visit somewhere and mostly leave places after lunch. I would say that there is enough stuff to see and do in Cartagena to keep most folks occupied for 3 days at least, so we will definitely be back.

We parked in an underground car park on the sea front which is 100m or so from the Naval Museum (free entry) and the Roman Theatre. It was €5 for 3 hours. We had coffee next to the Roman Theatre (several cafe's to choose from) before entering the museum. It was €6 pp entry but there is a discount for pensioners and disabled (€1 off Mrs G's ticket). It's not a huge Roman museum as it goes however the centre piece is the magnificent outdoor excavation of the theatre itself. Very impressive...

Bouleuterion Building Amphitheatre Landmark Archaeological site


The Museum has lifts so you don't have to walk up the numerous flights of stairs to get to the top. You are also allowed to walk in the theatre itself as long as you keep to the path areas.

After visiting the Roman Theatre, we walked alongside the castle walls which runs parallel with the coastline for around 10 mins and then visited the Castle de la Concepcion. You can get a joint ticket to use the panoramic lift up to the castle and then there is walking/wheelchair friendly access (i.e. no steps) to get into the castle itself. Again with a €1 discount for Mrs G, the joint tickets were €4.50 and €3.50 respectively.

The panoramic lift and viewing point did make our knees go a bit weak however it is worth it for the views as well as saving energy. The tower in the photo below is the lift and the view is over an amphitheatre/bull ring...

Cloud Sky Sunlight Building Window


The castle presents some great 360 degree views over the local area, which tbh was about the best of it for us. After having a bimble around and looking at exhibits etc, we headed downhill and back to the centre of the town. Just a tip: if you don't fancy the Roman Theatre Museum, you can get great aerial views of it from the castle plus when walking down you pass right next to it, so can see it without the need to go into the museum itself (or indeed, pay an entry fee)

We had a (late) lunch and then headed back to base taking a more scenic route than the direct autovia.

Next time we'll visit the Civil War Museum (it's near the castle) and also the Military Museum (free entry) I think.

Murcia tomorrow...
 

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Discussion Starter · #79 ·
Day trip to Murcia

Murcia is around 45 mins driving from our campsite and is a much bigger city than Cartagena. We parked in an underground car park not far from the river and then went for a bimble and promptly got lost! We stopped for coffee and the waitress was very helpful in directing us although she spoke no English and my Spanish is best described as un poco !!

Back on track we headed for the Santa Clara Monastery and Museum however when we got there, whilst it was open, there was a service going on so we didn't feel it right to wander around.

We then headed for the Cathedral de Santa Maria which is a very fine edifice indeed and set on one side in a nice Plaza (Plaza del Cardenal Belluga). There is a charge to get in to the Cathedral which we find to be quite a rare thing in our travels, so we paid for that and also to look around the museum (€6 each for the 2 things but €1 reduction as per yesterday. As is the way with cathedrals, it is very opulent however it was sad to see that every alcove was barred and locked so no going into the sacristy; the choir; or any smaller chapel areas at all. One thing we did see was an actual confession going on which was a first for us to see on our travels in touristy places that is.

The Cathedral...

Sky Window Temple House Facade



The Plaza also contains another fine building - the Episcopal Palace - which is free to enter into the courtyard.

After a late lunch we came back to site. The parking was very expensive at €9.25 for around 3.5 - 4 hours but as it's the principal city I guess you pay for that.

Murcia is much larger than Cartagena with more bustle and more walking to get to different sights so as such, we preferred Cartagena.
 

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Now read that you have hired a Ford Fiesta….

I had read that you had parked in an underground car park and was VERY impressed with Spanish facilitation, but it now makes sense , 🤣

Your pictures and account are great - very moorish (deliberate typo !) and are giving us ideas for the future, keep it up please.
 
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