From Torremolinos I took the metro to Malaga, where I took a train to Cordoba. I stayed two nights in a guesthouse in the old Jewish Quarter. Cordoba has the highest summer temperatures in the whole of Europe. And with 36 degrees Celsius in the afternoon it was already very hot to stroll around in the historic centre.
Cordoba was a Roman settlement on the right bank of the Guadalquivir, taken over by the Visigoths, and followed by the Muslim conquests in the eighth century. In that time Cordoba became the world leading centre of education and learning and the second largest city of Europe. In 1236 Cordoba was conquered by the Christian conquest. The large history still shows off by examples of Moorish architecture, such as the Mezquita-Catedral.
During my stay Cordoba hosted its annually Festival de los Patios. Many houses of the historic centre opened their private patios to the public and compete in a contest in floral decorations.
Although the covid pandemic was still active, I went a week to Gran Canaria to enjoy some sunshine. I stayed in an all inclusive hotel, where we still had to wear a face mask. And also in supermarkets a face mask was mandatory. The festivities for Winterpride 2021 were reduced to limited access by the need for tickets for the concerts. However the Yumbo centre was still packed. And (mainly) Germans started off the carnaval season (11/11) on the beach.
Autumn in Europe equals low temperatures, grey skies and rainy days. But not at the Spanish Canary Islands! So I escaped the cold and the rain to enjoy a week in the sun in Gran Canaria. During this week the Maspalomas Winterpride took place as well. During the days I spend most of my time on the beaches of Playa del Ingles and Maspalomas (next to the famous Maspalomas dunes). On saturday I joined the Pride Walk. And in the evenings I partied at the Yumbo centre, where every night performances were done by o.a. 2Unlimited, Tara McDonald, Berget Lewis and several DJ's.
Since I enjoyed the beautiful beach on Mallorca in 2018, I decided to visit another Balearic island this year. I took a direct flight from Eindhoven to Ibiza (Eivissa). From the airport it was just a short bus ride to my apartment on Playa Figueretes in Ibiza Town.
Although Ibiza is famous as a party-island, I spend most of my time in the Old Town (Dalt Vila) or at one of the beaches on the southern tip of the island (behind the salt flats and the National Park of "Ses Salines") and on the neighbouring island of Formentera.
Ibiza Dalt Vila is a huge walled fortress on a hilltop surrounding a cobbled street town. From the city walls there is an amazing view on the harbour (with its yachts and jet set) on the one side and the bay of Playa Figueretes and PLaya d'en Bossa on the other side.
Just 7 kilometres south of Ibiza lies Formentera, the smallest of the Balearic Islands. The island is 19 kilometres long, has no airport and a population of under 10.000 people living there. In the peak season (July-August) the island is overwhelmed by Italian tourists.
When staying in Ibiza town I took a boat that got me in the Formentera harbour within an hour. Because the island is flat and sandy I discovered the northern part of the island by foot. Here are some unspoilt almost Caribbean beaches with clean sand and transparent water. Real paradise!
In search of some late October sunshine, I booked a ticket to Malaga, a city on the Spanish Costa del Sol. Although it is supposed to be sunny here 300 days a year, during my stay half of the time the sky was covered by clouds. Still the temperature was perfect to wander around the streets of Malaga.
The size of Malaga is best seen from the Gibralfaro hill. On the foot of this hill lies the Alcabaza castle and the Roman Theatre. From here the old historic centre, the harbour and the city-beach Malagueta are all within a short walking distance away.
As usual I wanted to work on my tan as well. So when the sun was out, I spend my time in the infinity pool on the rooftop of my hotel in the resort town of Torremolinos or at one of the beaches just outside Malaga.
European summer is in full swing and I decided to put my towel on a Mediterranean beach for a week. Since I had never been to the Spanish Balearic island, I chose Mallorca as a destination.
I expected Mallorca to be very touristy and when I arrived on the Palma de Mallorca airport my prejudice was directly confirmed by the amount of incoming flights from all over Europe. My hotel was situated in C'an Picafort on the Northern Bay of Alcudia. This resort town is popular among the Germans, resulting in being spoken to in German in supermarkets and restaurants. Thanks to the internet I found some less-touristy restaurants for my evening diners.
The beach in front of C'an Picafort was crowded by families. Though after 45 minutes walking along the beach I found a more relaxing area in from of the natural reserve of S'Albufera on the Es Comú beach. This virgin stretch of more than five kilometers of white sand is bordered by dunes and pines. The crystal blue waters had shallow slopes and the northern breeze brought some refreshing air during the "baking and book-reading days" on the beach.