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WTnow Mar 15th, 2007 10:53 AM

Ahhh, Andalucia...trip report ..sort of
We just finished up our 3 generations tour of Andalucia with a group of 6 and aged from 80 to a 6 year old.We are wintering in southern Spain and had about 2 weeks to give them a nice taste.
Thanks to all who helped me with our planning!!

I gave them almost a years warning to exercise, read up on the area and get good walking shoes,but they did not have the inclination to listen. My husband nicknamed it the "invalid tour" as it was hard for the elders to walk from the train station just to the taxi.

But even with these challenges we managed to have a wonderful tour for all. We saw Marbella,Nerja,Ronda,Cordoba,Seville,Granada,Jerez , two great flamenco shows and our village.

We mainly just saw the highlights of each as we also needed to allow time for lots of rest and recovery. We had spectacular meals and some of that was luck and some was planned.

We are leaving here in two weeks to go back to Seville for Holy Week and then on to Morocco and seven straight months of touring ( Greece,Turkey,Italy and croatia to Prague) so I have my work cut out for me and no time for a trip report here.

But I am blogging my trip reports ( as always) if you are interested and looking for details on any of these areas.

We stayed at the Armadeus hotel in Seville and just loooved it.We have some fussy people and everyone was very happy with thier rooms and the service. We stayed in the new section and had breakfast on the top tower on the old one....very nice.

We did not make it to Malaga and the Picasso Museum as we all really needed a rest day instead, to just hang out at the Marriott Marbella resort which was our lovely base. ( We ended up rushing our child to the doctor,but that is a whole other story that worked out well in the end and she still has the shiner).

Parking in the garage under the Parador de Ronda was a spectacular idea that worked good with our big rental van ( altho getting in thru the corkscrew was a thrill).

We saw the horse show in Jerez and went horseback riding on similar Andalusian horses near our village. My father in law had lots of fun meeting and talking to people in our village and my daughter looved taking her auntie to school with her to meet her teacher and friends.

We managed to see and do a lot despite our challenges and time frame and everyone had a wonderful time and never felt too rushed.

I just loooved Seville and think it is one of the most beautiful and unique cities in the world, so I am very happy that we will have another week there soon. The flamenco and food was spectacular...did I mention that already? ;) March is a great time for touring Spain...the weather was divine and no crowds.

Pegontheroad Mar 15th, 2007 11:48 AM

I enjoyed your report. We went to Andalucia a couple of years ago. My sister, who is a wonderful travel companion otherwise, is not a good walker. She always claims she's going to get in shape for our next trip, but she never does. That's really okay, though, as it gives me an excuse to be lazier than I would if I were left to my own devices.

josele Mar 15th, 2007 02:14 PM

So nice you enjoyed your stay. Come back soon.

Lily Mar 28th, 2007 01:53 PM

Did you enjoy the horse show in Jerez?

WTnow Mar 29th, 2007 07:20 AM

You know, I was a little disappointed in the horseshow in Jerez. I guess I expected more and all of Jerez was a bit of a disappointment.

I suppose my romantic fantasies got in the way. Of course I had some romantic fantasies about Seville as well and it MORE than impressed me.

The website of the horses is so great,but the show is quite slow so a little boring. Of course it is worth the price just to see them jump on hind legs across the arena. THAT was spectacular!

Most of it tho was quite slow and not the highlight for any one on our tour. If you are really into dressage perhaps it would be more interesting. They are beautiful animals.

We did have a fabulous lunch in Jerez with great service. I am glad I saw the horse show ( for the jumping if nothing else) but I would not go again. ( Compare that to Seville where I am returning to again this Sunday or good flamenco which I could never tire of seeing).

So if it is out of the way and you are not big sherry fans, I don't think I could recommend it.

Perhaps it is better at the horse show in May. I really wanted to see the image of the girls dressed in flamenco riding on the horse. But it was all men but one woman in dull gray costumes and even front row seats ,things are seen from a distance.

The website is much more exciting than the show.I think we had more fun just stumbling on them training the horses at the arena in Rhonda at the bullring.

We had a LOT more fun riding the horses ourselves...that one was a big hit for ALL and next time I would go for the beach ride on them.

Thanks Pegonthe road...glad you enjoyed it.

laartista Mar 29th, 2007 07:43 AM

Great report WT. Looking forward to your report on Morocco.

Lily Mar 29th, 2007 10:49 AM

Thanks WTnow for your feedback on the horses in Jerez. I'm thinking of leaving Jerez out of my itinerary all together after reading several posts with indifferent or negative posts about it.

WTnow Mar 29th, 2007 02:01 PM

Thanks laartista! I am sure my morocco trip report will not be as fun as yours was, but I will give it my best shot. I am nervous and excited about that trip. I hope to write it as I go, but will not be able to upload it until after we get to Barcelona around April 22.

I did 26 entries on the blog after our Andalucia 3 generations tour and I learned the lesson the hard way that I need to write as I roam.

We are moving thru too many countries, so I would never catch up if I did that again. But there will be a lag sometimes and we will upload at resting places like that nice beach spot near Barcelona. ;)

I already have 4 gigs of pics, so that is getting a bit wild and I know I will take tons soon.Who knows when I will get my albums up of this trip.

Lily, I hate to discourage you about Jerez because after all I was just there a few hours so just first impressions. Chanol here lives there and can prroblaly tell you what is wonderful about it.

I think my expectations were too high as the horse ballet was one of the things I was really looking forward to. Then it was like , " Is that all there is? ". Even my 6yo thought the sherry tour was more exciting ( and it was none too exciting as I found the storks feeding their young on the roof the best thing there).

I LOOVE Andalucian horses,but the show could and should have been so much better IMHO. I expected the town to be more aristocratic and prettier as well with all that sherry money, but what we saw was not.

BUT its just one little opinion,listen also to others who love it and why.

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