AC La Linea

In case you are catching up on our trip:

Gibraltar

Climbing the Rock

Marbella, Spain

We stayed at AC La Linea.  It’s a chain of hotels throughout Spain, Portugal and Italy.  The hotel itself was very nice, well priced and had a free mini bar.

Sorry about the messy photos.  I couldn’t get a photo before Jon plopped down his belongings EVERYWHERE.

Here was the view from our balcony which was also a plus.

I hope you enjoyed my commentary.

While there were plenty of good things about this hotel there were a couple of bad things.

1. The front desk weren’t much help.  We didn’t know where to eat dinner so we asked for some recommendations.  The women had to think and then gave us 3 places.  We tried one the first night and it was not good. We also about tours, day trips and things to during our stay and all the lady gave us was a map of La Linea.  She couldn’t give us any more information which was frustrating.

2. There wasn’t any conditioner in the bathroom.  I know most European (or outside of the US) hotels don’t provide conditioner but I’m still going to complain because I don’t understand why they don’t provide it.

3. Free wi-fi in the lobby but not in the room.  Just put it in the room too.

There were more pros than cons so I would recommend staying at an AC hotel if you are in Spain, Portugal or Italy.

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5 Hours In Marbella, Spain

Day 1 of vacation

Day 2 of vacation

Day 3 was spent in Marbella, Spain.  It was a 1.5 hour bus ride up the coast.

I knew it was a beach town and it wasn’t going to be hot enough to lay out but we figured we might as well explore since we were close enough.  While doing research we saw a lot about the Bonsai Museum so we checked it out.  We were the only visitors and we didn’t have any guidebook or descriptions of the plants so it was pretty funny.  It was 2 rooms filled with different Bonsai trees that were up to 500 years old.  If you’re in the area don’t waste your time.

There you go.  You can now say you visited the museum.

After the museum visit we went down to the beach and the old town.

There were street artists in the old town and their work was very beautiful.  One in general stuck out.  Watch him do his thing in the video.

What do you think of his work?

Marbella was a great day trip but next time we will definitely bring our bathing suits so we can lay on the beach.

Climbing The Rock

You can read about our first day in Gibraltar here.

The best way to see all of the Rock of Gibraltar is to take the cable car up to the top and then explore it on foot.  At the base of the rock there are a ton of “tour guides/taxi drivers” trying to persuade you to take their tour for £70 but we did it all for £17.50 and was able to go at our own pace.

We took the cable car up the rock.

The view from the top was breath-taking.  You could see Gibraltar, La Linea, Algeciras and a bit of Morocco.

When we got off the cable car we were warned about the monkeys but we also read  this ahead of time:

Barbary Macaques (Apes)

Tourists should be aware that the Barbary macaques are wild animals and do bite. It is advisable not to feed the Barbary macaque, despite encouragement from irresponsible taxi drivers. It is illegal (hefty fines are in force) and bad for their health. Never try to pick up a baby Barbary macaque – its mother will not be happy, and neither will you. If you are bitten by a Barbary macaque, you will require hospital treatment, whilst the Barbary macaques are rabies-free they can infect you with hepatitis, they are most aggressive on the top of the rock, as the most successful animals claim the uppermost reaches of the rock, their less successful fellows being shoved down the rock and the social pecking order.

(source)

Clearly these Americans didn’t read the same article.

Other things to do on the rock are:

St. Michael’s Cave

Climbing stairs and walking miles:

Great Siege Tunnels:

The Moorish Castle:

Eventually you make it down the rock and are so tired you just sit in the square and devour chips with cheese, cheesy garlic bread and beer. Yummmm!

A great second day in Gibraltar! 

A Weekend In Gibraltar

I gave a hint to where we spent our weekend here and if you guessed Gibraltar then you were right!

We wanted to get away for the weekend and go to a plane neither of us have been to so we decided on Gibraltar.  Our hotel was in La Linea, Spain but it was a 10 minute walk to the border of Gibraltar so it was not difficult at all.  We just had to carry our Passports because we had to show them every time we crossed it.

Gibraltar is a British overseas territory so we heard lots of British accent and didn’t have to worry about currency since they accepted GBP.

We saw the rock as we were landing which got us really excited.

We quickly dropped our bags off at the hotel and headed back to Gibraltar to check out the town.

 

Trafalgar Cemetery

Trafalgar Cemetery

Gibraltar Botanic Gardens

Gibraltar Botanic Gardens

Gibraltar Botanic Gardens

And then we ended our day with a drink (and Cuban cigar for Jon) in Casemates Square people watching and enjoying the beautiful weather.

Loving Gibraltar and the relaxed lifestyle.

Paris On Purpose – Hitting All The Tourist Spots

First Post: Eiffel Tower at night

Second Post: Palace of Versailles

Third Post: Being a Tourist

This is the route we took on Saturday to make sure Jen saw all of the spots before she left Paris.  We started at the Sacre Coeur where there were performers, singers and picnics everywhere.  Oh and the church is just beautiful and you can see all of Paris from it so it’s just so beautiful.

The view would have been better on a less hazy day but you get the idea from this photo.

Because I love my Flip here are videos of the performers that everyone was watching.

Then we walked  around the church and stumbled upon this cute little square filled with artists painting and selling their work.

Lindsey bought a beautiful piece of art from an artist named Bahman Borojeni (that is not him in the photo above). I’m regretting that I didn’t buy one!

We followed the winding street down a little more and stopped to see Moulin Rouge.

 

We hopped on the bus and went to the Latin Quarter to have some yummy falafel.

Paris was so much fun and it got me even more excited to have Jamie, Lindsey & Jen in London the following weekend!

Paris On Purpose – Being A Tourist

First Post: Eiffel Tower at night

Second Post: Palace of Versailles

I came up with the perfect walking route through Paris to see most of the major sites and I want to share it with you incase you are heading there soon!

Start at the Eiffel Tower.

Climb to the top.

Cross the river. Climb up a lot of steps where the Palais de Tokyo is on your right. Walk up Avenue d’lena until you come to the Arc de Triomphe.

Walk down the Champs Elysees.

Walk through the Jardin des Tuileries and hope there are actual tulips there.

Go to the Louvre.

After the Louvre walk along the river to see Notre Dame.

Then loop around to visit the Pompidou Museum.

That’s only the first day.  I’ve got another great route for the second day.

Total miles walked: 4.36 miles.  Way to go!!

Rallies In Pisa

On Feb 13th women all over Italy (200 towns and cities) held a march calling against the prime minister, Silvio Berlusconi, to resign over a sex scandal.  We were lucky enough to see (and film) the march in Pisa.

 

You can read more articles about it here and here.

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