Barcelona, Spain (1) – La Sagrada Familia

Either you hate it or you love it.  I’m stuck in the middle…I can’t say I hate it but I can’t say I love it.

So many detailed creations, it would take all day to see it all.  Hopefully, I captured enough photos to appreciate the workmanship.  I recommend to take the time to look at each photo to see all the detail.  It wasn’t until I started sorting through the pictures before I realized how intricate it was.

Construction started in 1882 and anticipate the completion by 2026, 100 years after the architect’s death.  Gaudi’s architectural plans, which were partially destroyed in the Spanish Civil War, are being redrawn, using today’s technology.

With the long line-up to get in, we decided to stay external.

















































Alicante, Spain (4) – From the Beach to the Station

As we make our way back to the train station from the beach, I captured a few photos of how lovely this place is.

Eateries on the edge of the beach



A large plaza outside of the Casino.  Casa Carbonell in the background left (a historical residential landmark).  We make our way to the end of the plaza where we find Explandada de Espana.



Explandada de Espana, a large walkway along the Mediterranean



The curved tiles on the Explanada gives an illusion that you are not walking on a flat surface



Moving away from the coastline we come across Av. Federico Soto, a pedestrian boulevard that runs North/South from the beach to the inner city






Even the garbage containers are pretty












Alicante, Spain (3) – Kite Surfing on the Mediterranean

Seeing the beach and the sea from the castle, we were intrigued and made it our mission as a destination.  When we made our departure, we discovered a complimentary elevator ride that took us down the hill.  Once we exited the elevator, we walked through a narrow tunnel that ended at the beach.







Looking back up at the castle, it would have been interesting walk down.  Good thing we discovered the elevator, otherwise I’m sure we’d still be wandering around somewhere.


The start of a kite-surfing competition



Pretty colourful as they make their way out into the Mediterranean









It’s amazing the distance they go out





Alicante, Spain (2) – Castillo de Santa Barbara

The Castillo de Santa Barbara is located on Mount Benacantil beside the Mediterranean Sea.  The walk through the remains of this huge castle area was quite surreal.  Well maintained to keep that historic feel, we see things that existed back in the Bronze Age.  It was very thought provoking.


The slow climb up









Ruinas de la Ermita de Santa Barbara






Inside the main entrance, wall displays different coat of arms that presided









Palm Fig






There was a sign that says this was the oven in the kitchen



Ruinas de la Tahona – the grain mill









A wonderful outdoor resting place where we took a break with a cool drink









Macho del Castillo






Tunnel to the elevator that would take us to the Beach




Alicante, Spain (1) – From Mount Benacantil

Unlike our past holidays where we would partake in about half dozen days trips, Alicante was the only day-trip we took this time around.  A short two hour train ride south of Valencia, it was no brainer to visit this community.  However, what I thought was going to be a small lazy village along the Mediterranean ended up being a large city full of active life.

The slow climb on Mount Benacantil to Castillo de Santa Barbara awarded us with stunning views of Alicante.  We start by looking northwest and working around clock-wise 360 degrees.











The yard of Castell de la Santa Barbara in the immediate foreground and the neighborhood of Cap de l’Horta in the distance



A solitary boat against a gorgeous turquoise mediterranean



At first we thought these were surfboards, later to discover they are kites



Tall residential highrises along the beach



There are a number of casinos along the marina…fancy boats and gambling



Behind the tall tower (which is the Estudiotel Hotel) is the train terminal.  That is where we started the visit and that is where we will end the visit.  It was a 14km day for us that included a climb equivalent to 34 floors (at least that’s what my phone says).






Valencia, Spain (7) – Cruising

We walked about 45 kilometers through the streets of Valencia over a three day period.   We love cruising and exploring the different areas.  Even though the tourist sites has things to offer, we appreciate the residential neighborhoods.  It allows us to be immersed in the local culture and rub shoulders with the citizens of this wonderful city.

(For a larger view, just click on the photo)


Valencia, Spain (6) – Ciutat Vella

Ciutat Vella is a neighborhood located in central Valencia.  Most of what is considered Old Town resides in this area.  You will not find as many historical buildings as other major European cities, but there was enough to keep my camera going.

Post Office



Esglesia de Sant Joan del Mercat



La Seu de Valencia



Esglesia de Santa Caterina



Torres de Quart – 15th-century gothic towers



Casa “Punt de Ganxo” 1906



Esglesia de Sant Joan del Mercat (l) and The Central Market (r)



Valencia Nord – one of the two main train stations



Bullring of Valencia



Post Office



City Hall



Iglesia de San Agustin



Torres de Serranos