Saturday, January 2, 2016

Jan 2 2016 - Checking out of Fuengirola and Malaga

Playground on the beach in Fuengirola

This vacation to Andalucia in southern Spain is split into two chunks: rest/relaxation in the beachside region of Malaga/Fuengirola, and city hopping / road tripping the loop between Malaga - Sevilla - Cordoba - Granada. From Christmas through New Years, we've been enjoying the R-and-R portion of the trip, sharing the visit with friends and family.

Kostya (left) and Dave (right)

The scuba company Kostya and I dove with offered a New Years Eve excursion to Marina del Este in Costa Tropical and we jumped at the chance to dive in Europe's first Marine National Park. There was another family diving the same beach, and while they were working on their skills for PADI certification, they let us borrow their GoPro camera. During two easy dives from the shore down to 12 meters (Kostya is not certified), we saw a family of catfish bottom feeding, octopi in motion, eels slithering, and lots of beauty.

Making the paella!

We made it back just in time to join the rest of our group in making Paella and having a multi-course feast with fruit curry, fresh Mediterranean salad with crab, and a tasting menu of local cervesas y vinos. Just before midnight, we all ran out to the central square for the countdown. By Spanish tradition, we consumed 12 grapes at a rate of 1 per second starting at 23:59:49.

Stuffing in the grapes

Jetlag has hit Bowie in a pretty amazing way - there's no doubt he's definitely our kid. Bowie has been staying up until 1-2am and then sleeping until 1pm or so. I'm not sure if other babies travel this way but it's working out great for us. Come to mention it, the entire country seems to be on Bowie's schedule. In the late afternoon, everything shuts down so we can take a nap. Local restaurants and bars reopen and stay open late - and they're so baby friendly - it's hard not to stay up and enjoy!

New Years on the square!

New Year's day we visited the Biopark (endangered species zoo) in Fuengirola. The highlight was when we were invited to join a small group touring the lemur habitat. They decided to congregate around Bowie and go into a shrieking fit. It wasn't Bowie's favorite moment - I'm not sure he saw the humor in it!

Lemur getting close and comfortable

A little too close

After one last visit with each set of friends, we checked out of Fuengirola and hit the road for Sevilla. Around 5pm I needed to get online for a few minutes to book a campground for our annual summer camping trip, so it seemed like a good time for a pitstop. We happened upon a Shell gas station that had a lovely cafe with good seafood soup, sheep cheese sandwiches, and a tapas bar. Cafe con leche and Cafe cortado are available in every restaurant, bar, cafe, and even gas station - they all have espresso makers for serving the national hot beverage! There were other families there, including one with a baby boy 5 days younger than Bowie. This kiddo was running around a bit, and he gave Bowie a "regalito" of one of his shakers.

Bowie happily discovering what happens when you bite into a jam packet

The night ended when we pulled into the old Jewish quarter of Sevilla, its narrow windy ancient streets, and parted with our car for a couple of days. We won't be needing it until the roadtrip continues on Monday.

Posing under the light display in Malaga


aliot17 said...

It was not actually lemurs, but baboons!

aliot17 said...

It was not actually lemurs, but baboons!

Karen Wilson said...

I was so amazed by how happy and awake Bowie was at midnight! I didn't think of the time change. Haha.