Santas, candles & policía

Published by 2TogsOnTour on

Well my good intentions of keeping the blog up to date have gone out of the window somewhat – I think I’m about 3 weeks behind so here goes ….

After leaving Camping Ribamar we headed to Montanejos “hot” springs after seeing a post by a fellow traveller on Facebook. However, while it was a lovely spot the lake was frío and murky so I only managed to brave a quick dip up to my waist. After filling up with fuel we headed to a nearby reservoir (Emblase de Arenos), which we had to ourselves for the night.

Next stop was Castello, a free aire right next to the beach which we had stopped at last year. Nearby is a huge Asian shop where we were hoped to find a new sheet/mattress cover so that our daughter would have somewhere to sleep when she visits next week. Unfortunately, when we had checked our drop down bed we discovered that the original mattress cover and sheet were covered in mould yuck! Sheet and cover purchased (and of course a few other items we never realised we needed!) we headed to the port. We had a lovely Menu de Dia at Restaurante COPAS – Calamares, Valencian Paella, dessert and a drink all for
€ 13 – what’s not to like?!

After a walk in the early morning sunshine and a quick go on the outdoor gym, we headed further along the coast. We decided to stop at a lovely spot directly behind the sand just south Cullera. Spent the afternoon on the beach topping up our vitamin D levels. Overnight and the next day we had heavy rain showers – can’t complain its the first rain we have had since we have been in Spain. We spent the day catching up on chores and as Mr B wasn’t feeling too special we headed to a paid aire. It was located in a very urban area and was therefore fairly noisy – nevertheless, it did the job for one night.

The sun returned the next morning – phew! so beat a quick retreat from our urban stopover and headed to Denia. I had read on one of the local Facebook groups that on 15 Dec there would be an event called Illum de Nit – 7,000 candles burning around the town, late night shopping and music. We found a lovely spot near the castle with a perfect beach view, a complete contrast to last night’s stop.

Bumped into our temporary neighbours, Graham and Carolyn, on the way to explore the town. We ended up exploring several bars with them instead and finally had dinner at one of the restaurants on the outskirts of the old town (sorry can’t remember its name, this may be due in part to the amount of lubrication we had taken on board during the course of the afternoon!). Most enjoyable. I have to confess we weren’t much better the next day – intended to take a look around the castle we took one look at the steep hill leading up to the castle and decided to sit in the sun eating tapas instead. We were blessed with a warm evening for The Ilum de Nit. Seeing all the candles flickering outside the shops and around the squares accompanied with Spanish carols and a vino or two was very atmospheric

Bidding farewell to Graham and Carolyn we headed to Camping Alicante Imperium at Villajoysa which was our base for a few nights while our daughter made a flying visit.

We took the tram from our site to Alicante – the tram follows the coast line most of the way – what a scenic journey. We then hopped on a bus up to the airport to meet our daughter. A very simple journey, but on checking we discovered that we will be able to drive Trinny into the airport for the return journey.

After a relaxed spot of lunch in one of the beach-side restaurants in Villajoyosa – paella again at Skye’s request. We then headed to the Valor chocolate factory (there are two in the area). We were given a short presentation and factory tour. Unfortunately, we had missed the English tour but managed to get the general gist of what the guide was saying and the free tasting at the end made it worthwhile!

Every year the rally at the Almafra Camping in Benidorm do a Santa Walk. Last year we stumbled upon the walk and Mark, Jan, Jackie & Joe invited us to join them for the afternoon. We had a great time however after somebody decided Sambuca shots would be a good idea things got a little messy. Originally we hadn’t planned to be in Benidorm so had declined Mark’s invite to meet up with them again. However as we were a short tram ride away from Benidorm we decided to show Skye the Benidorm experience and once again gate crashed the walk. We met the Santas along the promenade at Levante beach and had great fun joining in the carols accompanied by vino and tapas. We all had a great time, however this was marred a little when Skye realised she had had her phone swiped!

The next day was a not so good – Skye’s flight was cancelled due to the drones saga at Gatwick. We managed to book her another flight the following day, which at least gave us time to visit the police station to obtain a crime number for the missing phone. In Benidorm there is a police station (nr. Morgan Bar) specifically for tourists ( S.A.T.E “El Servicio de Atencion al Turista Extranjero”). The staff there were really helpful. They took all the details in English and add them onto the police system in Spanish and then gave us a crime number for insurance purposes (thankfully Skye had separate insurance for the phone). The flights the next day diverted and delayed and we had a nail-biting few hours, exacerbated by Skye not having a phone, how did we ever manage before mobile phones? 🙂 It was relief to hear that she was safely back in Canterbury.

After all the excitement of the last few days, we decided we could do with a little bit of R&R so headed up to the thermal pool near Fortuna. There are thermal pools at a few hotels in the area and also at the local campsite. We managed to park up outside the site and use the pool as guests for €9 each. There are two thermal pools at 38C with various jacuzzi areas and a cold pool which we didn’t venture into. Feeling rejuvenated we headed to an aire in Lorqui, free services and located next to a bar – perfect.j

Well that’s our story up to 22nd December – next stop Christmas – well it will be once we have decided where we want to spend it!

Montanejos springs – N40 4′ 30″ W0 31′ 50″ – day parking
Emblase de Arenos – N40 5′ 21 W0 33′ 55″ – free parking
El Grao de Castelleon – N39 58′ 47″ E0 1′ 21″ – free aire with services – a little squashed, but great location
Cullera N39 6′ 41″ W0 13′ 35″ – free parking
Alqueria de la Condesa  –  N38 56′ 19″ W0 9′ 10″ – paid aire
€ 10 Euros + 3 for EHU
Denia – N38 50′ 53″ E0 6′ 8″ – free beach side parking
Villajoysa – Camping Alicante Imperium – €17 pn with ACSI discount
Fortuna – thermal pool N38 12′ 23″ W1 6′ 26″
Loruqi – N38 4′ 46″  W1 15′ 29″ – free with services – next to bar

Categories: General


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