We were pried away from Granada by a reserved car rental, so we taxied to the train station to pick up our “Seat Ibiza,” a little diesel, stick-shift hatchback that was destined to drive us to Spain’s Costa del Sol, through the mountains, and then onto Sevilla for as its final destination.
The Costa del Sol was rumored to have nearly as many beach tourists as grains of sand, but as we wanted a dia en la playa, we chose a day/night in the town of Nerja. We navigated *to* Nerja without much difficulty, but found ourselves a bit turned around in the town’s narrow streets [insert spousal bickering here]. We finally arrived at our “resort style” hotel, put on our swimsuits, and spent a relaxing day on the rather breezy beach covered in brown sand and “river rocks.” Dinner was included in the price of our hotel, so we couldn’t pass it up (dinner was also not at all good). We also brought down the age median at the hotel, if you know what I mean. But I digress…
Morning saw us on the road again. We followed the coast for a bit, past Marbella, then shot North towards the town of Ronda. The road to Ronda – which rises dramatically from the coastal elevations – was not made for those (of us) who tend to get carsick. I was miserable for the first hour or so, but couldn’t help but be stunned by the scenery. Spain’s mountain ranges are not something I’ve heard much about, but they are not to be missed for a traveler with time. To us, they seemed a greener, though not quite as high, version of the Rocky Mountains.
From Ronda, we took the scenic route through the Sierra de Grazalema, a beautiful national park dotted with white towns kept dry by terracotta roofs. In hindsight, a stop in one of these small towns would have been an excellent change of pace from the rest of our itinerary. Maybe someday..
A few photos: