18 August 2014

Monday Morning Photo - Vall de Laguar

The stunning mountains and valley Vall de Laguar in Alicante, Valencia. Wind upwards away from the coast to the highest town of Campbell. If you like the winding roads and views of The Alpujarras if will love the rugged, snaking roads and fabulous walking and biking country here.

13 August 2014

Wild Swimming in Lakes and Rivers of Andalucia

The scorching summer heat of Andalucia is here and with it the need to cool off. Forget the noisy municipal pools, there's a better way to bring your temperature down, go wild swimming in the numerous lakes, rivers and reservoirs. Here are just five places to take a picnic and spend the day in the heart of the fabulous Andalucian countryside.

Cueva del Gato – Ronda

Cueva del Gato or Cat's Cave is a fabulous natural rock formation that is like the face of a cat.

Junta de los Rios – Almunecar

A favourite spot for thrill seekers and those into adventure sports. A bit of a trek is needed to get there but it's worth it when you do.

Embalse de Negratin

Embalse de Negratin - Guadix

Follow the campsite signs down to the lake and a beach-like area for paddling and swimming in an unusual lunar-like landscape.

Embalse de los Bermejales — Granada

Another huge reservoir around Granada, busier but more child-friendly than the rivers.

Rio Borosa - Cazorla

The tumbling river has many beautiful spots for jumping off and bathing in.

wild swimming, Rio Borosa, Cazorla
Rio Borosa, Cazorla

31 July 2014

The World’s Smallest Chocolate Factory - Mijas

“Chocolate Factory” we both read the sign at the same time and looked at each other. Eyebrows raised, eyes alight and a nod of agreement and off we trotted in the direction of Mayan Monkey Mijas Chocolate Factory - MMM, the smallest chocolate factory in the world and within our reach in the delightful town of Mijas just inland from the Costa del Sol, Andalucia.

Cocoa butter, cocoa beans
Cocoa butter, Cocoa beans, Cocoa flakes

The queue of people waiting to enter and others leaving the shop doorway with delicious looking choccy ice creams told us we’d found the spot and we weren't the only ones. What interested us more than the ice-creams were the home-made chocolate bars on display and the option of making your own.

Another almost imperceptible nod and we found ourselves donning hair protective caps and heading towards taps running with chocolate. Chocolate on tap!

Chocolate on Tap

In our element we patiently listened to the history of chocolate, eager to get our fingers under the stream of chocolate. Ice creams came and were waved under the stream of plain and milk running chocolate and off they went into the stop and into eager hands.

Out came molds and tough decisions were made whether to make milk or plain chocolate bars which of course necessitated a fingers-under-the-tap-tasting session and how they should be decorated.

MMM's Display of Homemade Choccys

Constantly running chocolate, chocolate on tap what a joy – I asked hubby if we could have our own (he is a plumber!). First we drizzled some milk chocolate over the base of the mold then filled it with plain chocolate, vibrating it to settle it and get rid of any air bubbles and then popped it into the fridge for the longest 20 minutes of my holiday.

And the results were mouth-wateringly divine, melt-in-the-mouth, home-made best ever chocolate bars. Sadly it didn’t last long.

21 July 2014

Monday Morning Photo - My Favourite Cordoba Flower Patio

Detail stone mosaic from my favourite patio from this year's Cordoba Flower Patio Competition. There were of course many fabulous patios open during the competition and I only get around a fraction of them, 19 I think, a post will be happening shortly.

This year hubby (who is no fan of pots or flowers) came with me and admitted that on the whole he enjoyed the experience and it had made him aware of space and the importance of architectural features. Since then he has made me a long-wanted arch and I'm more likely to get my fountain now as well.

08 July 2014

Monday Morning Photo - Cordoba, Patio and Pots

Typical Andalusian courtyard with pots. Last courtyard visited during the Cordoba Patio Flower competition this year at dusk.

Cordoba Patio Competition

See the complete list of Monday Morning Photos

19 June 2014

Spain's Top Landmarks

Spain tops the list, along with Italy, for the having the most monuments on the TripAdvisor Top 25 Landmarks of the World List.

Both countries have three landmarks on the list.

Spain's Landmarks

No. 5 - The Mezquita in Cordoba

No. 16 - The Alhambra in Granada

No. 20 - Sagrada Familia in Barcelona

12 May 2014

Monday Morning Photo - Perfect Pose in Cordoba

I couldn't miss the opportunity for this shot when in Cordoba recently to see the Patio competition. A horse rider wearing typical a typical Cordoba hat and outfit posed briefly in front of the Alcazar.

07 May 2014

CBBH Monthly Photo Challenge - Full Circle

It's been a while since I took part in Marianne from East of Malaga's CBBH Photo Challenge. The title 'Full Circle' took my fancy, having just been looking through some photos I instantly thought of these.

Every olive tree as far as the eye can see and beyond has a circle of land underneath prepared for the olive harvest to start in December. These pics were taken from a walk along the Via Verde de Aceite between Martos and Alcaudete which we walked in early December to see the Roman Bridge.

Then on completing the post I realised I'm a month behind! I thought I'd publish the post anyway. Enjoy the ocean of olive trees in Jaen province and if you'd like to visit the area check out my holiday rental home Casa El Reguelo.

05 May 2014

Monday Morning Photo - Renaissance Baeza

Renaissance Baeza, my favourite UNESCO town twinned with Ubeda.

Other related posts.

Hotel Review Hacienda La Laguna, Baeza.

See the Monday Morning Photo List

Other UNESCO sites in Andalucia

What to do on a Weekend in Jaen

01 May 2014

Epic Adventure Photo Competition Entry

These are my entries for the Blacks competition in collaboration with Explore.co.uk for budding photographers and bloggers.

The four categories are: Wild, Fast, Panoramic and Epic.


Serrania de Ronda




28 April 2014

Monday Morning Photo - Spanish Bull

The Spanish roadside bulls are a much loved sight when travelling and never fail to draw out my camera hoping for a decent photo to add to my collection and to tick off those that I have seen. When a passenger of course.

So when my son made some pallet wood bulls for a craft fair I had to hang and snap one.

See other related posts.

Black Bulls and Guitar Playing Bottles

Recycled Pallet Wood Furniture

Spanish Black Bull Monuments