Granada to Torremolenos

Trip Start Nov 10, 2013
Trip End Nov 24, 2013

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Where I stayed
Melia Costa del Sol Torremolinos
Read my review - 5/5 stars

Flag of Spain  , Andalusia,
Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Wake up at 6:30, bags out at 7:30, departure 8:15. Our first destination was the Alhambra and the Generalife.  Our first stop was the Palacio de Carlos  V which was round with arches all around.and open to the air.  This palace was never finished.  It was ornate on the outside but plain on the inside.  The Arabic Palaces were the opposite.  The outside was kept plain so as not to make the poor people feel badly.  We went through 3 Arabic palaces that were decorated with tile, stucco, marble and wood.  They were beautiful.  We saw the throne room where Ferdinand and Isabella gave Columbus the money for his first voyage.  There was a lot of lattice work in the windows and in the past had stained glass between the lattices.  In between the palaces were courtyards with water features and bushes.  Many of the ceilings were made of inlaid wood in ornate designs.  Other ceilings were alabaster carvings very delicately designed.  We had a view of the tops of the old baths which were designed like Roman baths.  They had round glass openings on top to help regulate the temperature

When we finished the palaces, we went to the Generalife which was the summer palace, much smaller with lots of gardens.  The gardens were arranged like rooms with bushes as walls.  There were similar water features to those found in the courtyards.  It was a place of peace and serenity even with all the tourists.  There were lots of birds too.  We spent about 3 hours there and then got on the bus to drive to Torremolenos (tore-moe-LEAN-ose) and the Costa del Sol for a day of rest tomorrow.

It took us about an hour and a half to get there.  We passed by mostly olive trees and mountains on the way.  The city of Malaga which is the capital of this province was just before the turn to Torremolenas:  Torre = tower + molenas = mills.  The drive to the Hotel Melia Costa del Sol took us right along the beach which was deserted.  There were lots of shops and restaurants, about half of them closed for the winter.  We arrived about 1:30 and got our rooms.  Raymond gave everyone their key except us and we wondered what was going on.  When the other people were out of ear shot he told us, that for our trouble in Pamplona we were upgraded to a suite.  He has been so good about the whole thing.  When we arrived in our suite we found an entrance hall with the fridge and bar, a sitting room with a fold out couch, a large balcony facing the Mediterranean just across from the beach, a bath and a bedroom.  Larry went straight to bed and slept until 3:45.  Derek and I went down to the snack bar and had some lunch - sandwiches and fries.  Then we came back to the room and sat on the balcony to read.  It was a little chilly but in the low 60s and beautiful. 

At 4:00 we left for Mijas (ME-haas), a small city up on the mountain, all in the whitewashed Moroccan style of architecture.  The bus let us off on the main street right beside the donkey carts.  Until 60 years ago the only transportation in this village was by donkey.  Raymond walked us up the street and pointed out different shops to us and places to get good views etc.  He also showed us the Bar/Restaurante where he wanted us to meet for a free drink on him.  Then he took us to an olive oil shop where I bought some Turron Duro, a candy with almonds that is traditional for Christmas time in Spain.  Larry, Derek, and I and Paula and Mike decided to walk up to the church and the bull ring.  We took the road Raymond had pointed out at the square.  The higher up we got the more the wind blew.  We walked by little rows houses all painted white with blue buckets with flowers in them.  On our right we could see another section of Mijas on the hillside, a great photo.  We walked around the edge of the mountain Mijas is on along a walking path made of flagstones.  We had a good view of the resorts on the beach below.  We soon came to a church that we took a picture of.  The wind was blowing really hard and it was chilly.  The bullring, the smallest in Spain, was next on our journey.  We paid 4E for the entrance fee.  We went through a little museum with a stuffed bull and bullfighters outfits.  Then we went through a corridor that had a shrine to Mary and colorful plaques along the walls, I assume people who killed the bulls.  Once inside we saw two sets of bleachers done in cement and white washed with red accents.  We went out into the ring and took pictures and then up to the highest row in the balcony.  When we left the wind was blowing even harder, so we headed to the bar for our free drink.  On the way we stopped at a gift shop where I bought myself a new Spanish style spoon rest for the kitchen.

We stayed there having drinks, again with Bev whom we had met in the shop.  The three of them had beers and I had a Sprite.  Shortly before 7:00 we headed back down the hill to the waiting bus and it was still blowing and getting colder.  The bus was nice and warm.  We headed back down the mountain and went into the city of Torremolenos where the bus dropped us off.  We walked the short distance to the Restaurante Juan which was right on the beach.  It was even blowing in Torremolenos but not as bad as at Mijas.  Pitchers of sangria awaited us on the table.  We sat with Penny from Pasadena and Kerry and Bernie from Australia and had a great time.  Pepe, who is 75 and has no teeth, came to sing and play guitar for us.  He would play a song and then go away for a bit and come back and do another one.  He was hilarious.  He would sing and play normally and then he would sing in falsetto and his voice would crack.  Very funny.  We had two salads and a roll.  The salads were a green and red pepper salad and a mixed salad.  After the salads came the four starters if I can remember them all.  We had small clams in the shell, anchovies that were quite good breaded and deep-fried, not salty at all, deep fried grouper, and calamari to die for!  All the while, the sangria, red and white wines were being shared.  When it was time for the main courses they brought them out for us to see before they started serving us.  The sea bass was baked in sea salt to help keep it moist.  It was served with potatoes, vegetables and two kinds of sauces.  The other dish was a beautiful paella.  It was Linda Hill birthday so they brought out a piece of cheese cake with a lighted candle she couldn't blow out.  We all sang Happy Birthday and she said it was the best birthday ever.  At the end of the meal Raymond brought Larry a hot milk with honey, sugar and brandy in it for his cold.  I hope it does the trick.  Most of us walked back to the hotel as it wasn't far from where we were.  We saw a Latin dance class, stray cats and a crocodile sand sculpture on the way.  We arrived the same time as the bus!

Then we came to our room and Larry and Derek went straight to bed.  I folded out the couch to find a 2 inch think mattress that is very soft!  I don't know if I will sleep tonight.

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Jane on

Stunning photos. Glad the sun is shining on you. I remember going there with my mum and your mom!

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