Wednesday, May 6, 2015

The Circumnavigation of the Iberian Peninsula Begins

Tuesday, Cinco de Mayo, 2015:


Today we embarked on one of mankind's greatest adventures, The Circumnavigation of the Iberian Peninsula!

Many have tried over the many centuries. Would we have the stamina to do it?

Our first goal was to drive from Murcia to the Mediterranean Sea village of Nerja on the peninsula's southern Costa del Sol. 

The day started at Murcia's
Enterprise Rent-a-Car office

The bad news was the news from Phil Bullard, our insurance agent in California. While our car insurance on our two vehicles in Camarillo does cover all of our rent-a-car needs in the USA and Canada, it does not cover us on the Continent.

Phil's strong recommendation was to buy the full coverage that Enterprise would offer us.

Consider my ass fully kicked.

Now that the price of renting the needed vehicle for the journey had skyrocketed, I figured what the hell, lets up grade to a bigger car too while we were at it.

After all, when the Iberian Peninsula was first circumnavigated by Vasco de Gama in 1499, did he use a small craft? NO!!!

A bigger car it was then.

Our Renault Scenic Cruisemobile

It was great to drive and easy on a big body like mine.


We departed La Hacienda at 9:30 a.m. with Laurie acting as co-pilot.

She aided with directions and took a few photos of the countryside while I drove.


White Hill Towns

Natural Wonders

Rest stop after two hours of driving

After all of our Cobras road trips by bus, I have come to love these little café-bar-restaurants along the open road. They have lots of atmosphere, unusual souvenirs for sale and offer really good food at moderate prices.

The World's Biggest Slice
of Tortilla de Patata

It definitely hit the spot!

More Natural Wonders

A New Autovia

It would lead us to Nerja by way of Granada.

We decided not to stop in Granada as we had visited their extensively three years ago and now we want to explore as many new destinations as possible on this trip.

Our well located, quaint
hotel in Nerja

Ian is our host at this pension in the heart of all of Nerja's action. From England, he is a proud Sheffield United Football Club (founded in 1889) supporter.

There is good food to eat in Nerja

Nerja Plaza near the
Balcón de Europa

Leading to one of the
many playas

Since it was a bit overcast, we decided to explore what Nerja has to offer today. The weather report said that it would be much brighter and warmer on Wednesday, so we decided to beach it then.

The Med

Doesn't every city in Spain
have one of these?

Wondrous Flag

It was now time to enter Nerja's main church.

La Iglesia de San Salvador

The Sacred Heart of Jesus

Jesus and Mary

Tomorrow's Playa


The cannon sat underwater
for over 100 years

Laurie with King Alfonso XII

The King first visited here in 1885 and saw the view out over the Mediterranean Sea from this vantage point. He remarked that it was Europe's Balcony and the new nickname stuck.

Green rain spout

Blue rain spout

I can not in good conscience call either a gargoyle but they are certainly cousins of the Gothic creatures.

Laurie and the Med

Laurie's House?

I liked the slanted roof tiles

Wine on Europe's Balcony

Trinkets for sale

Helping to beat the heat

At least they aren't fans

The Sun did finally
make an appearance

Where's Laurie?


The Sun comes out and Laurie made her move on the King!

Rock mosaic walkways


Does Ben Todd know about
this injustice?

Champions League Semi-Final Game
Juventus 2 - Real Madrid 1


El Balcón de Europa
at night

A well lit playa

This will be our playa tomorrow as it is only a five minute walk from our hotel.

Lovely . . .

. . . Really LOVELY

The shops were open late on Tuesday
on the way back to our hotel

In the lobby of our hotel

I told you that our host Ian is a BIG fan of this team.

The view from our hotel's
third floor garden

What a GREAT first day of our journey!

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