Thursday, May 28, 2009

24 Feb 2009 - Day trip to Valencia

For a long time we have thought it would be a good idea to spend a day in Valencia, but somehow had never got around to it. So we were really pleased when David and Rosemary, who had been there a few times already, suggested that we go together.

We met in Benissa and shared a car to Xeraco railway station, where we caught a train to Valencia. The railway station is right in the middle of the city, and next door to the bull ring.

Even if, like us, you dislike the whole idea of bull fighting, the bull ring is still pretty impressive. And we were surprised to see that they have regular bull fights, and that seats are pretty cheap. The more exposed to the sun, the cheaper.

David and Rosemary took us to the bull fighting museum, which is interesting if quite blood thirsty.

From the museum it is possible to go into the bull ring itself to have a look around

There was no bull fighting, but there was lots of work going on, either cleaning or decorating.

No idea who the matator on the statue might be

We had a busy day ahead, so did not stay long at the bull ring

Our next stop was the town hall and Plaza Ayuntiamiento. The square was being prepared for some event connected with the fiesta

We had a cup of coffee overlooking the square, and watched the world go by

We walked through the old town to the linen market, which was very interesting but much in need of a good overhaul

Jan and Rosemary were very interested in the shops, but not tempted to buy anything

This impressive building is not the railway station, it is an indoor market

Quite an impressive ceiling for a food market

Each aisle seemed to specialise in a different food

Not sure what this building was, but I think it was something to do with trading

Like all of the other places we visited, entry was free

We were all starting to feel a little tired and ready for lunch

Jan particularly wanted to see the cathedral

There is a lovely little park just outside the cathedral

It was popular with the locals as well as tourists

A nice place to sit is always welcome during a city walking tour

We could look around part of the cathedral, but would have to pay for a full tour

There were a lot of cafes to choose from within sight of the cathedral

After lunch it was a short walk to another square

A short bus trip brought us to the Bioparc area

Not at all sure what these very modern building were

but they are very impressive

A lot of the area was closed to prepare for an open air pop show

We eventually just ran out of steam, and made our way back for the 4pm train

23 Feb 2009 - Monday Club Eye of Montgo

Montgo is a mountain overlooking Denia. From a distance it looks like a sleeping elephant, and is one of the most famous local landmarks. Its very popular for walking, and we have walked most of it. However we had never visited The Eye, a cave which looks like the elephants eye from a distance.

We had always thought you had to use ropes to get there, but when we realised you could walk to it we were very keen to do the walk.

From the car park you can quite clearly see The Eye

Right from the start there was a steep climb

Jan and Peter leaving the finca

The Finca is the white house in the right background

Wendy leading the way

Pat, Jan and Ann. Behind Sylvia, Ken, Margaret, David and Rosemary

Although the climb is steep, the path is good and no scrambling

Just approaching The Eye

This is a good indication of just how steep the final part is

Pat and Tom arriving at The Eye

Pat, Wendy, Me and Rosemary

Jan, Rosemary and David

Janet, Sue, Wendy, Ken Sylvia and Colin

Jan and Rosemary, a picnic lunch with a view

The lunch spot taken from the cave entrance

Tom and Pat waiting for David, Peter and Ken to return from the cave

David, Ken and Peter just as they come out of the cave.

Ken looks pretty shattered after his cave exploration

Ken telling Colin just what it was like

Time to start back down, but that is often harder than climbing

One last photo call from the Montgo Eye

An unusually serious look from Peter