Another long week of driving as we now settle down for our final four weeks of this great adventure. One of the things that have amazed us during the past months is the resilience of people. This week we have stayed at places we had stayed in the past, one campsite and three ‘Areas’ as they call them here in Spain. Last October when we arrived in Valencia it was their provincial holiday, and everywhere was full. We have visited three sites on Park4Night and found all of them full. Suddenly a new site appeared and we headed over to ‘Camping Nomadic’ a brand new Area and were the very first guests. Like all new openings there were lots of little things to do, but the excitement of the owners and the joy of having their first customer was lovely especially with Covid still in full flow.
Well, we came back 11 months later, and it was a joy to see how their hopes had blossomed, the little things all solved and the site mature was a revelation plus to be remembered was lovely too. They have lots of guides things to do in the area, plus bike hire. All in all a great stop if you are going to Valencia. The cycleway to the city is easy to follow and flat so getting to see the sights is easy. There is a regular train service from the nearby town as well. For the record €13.70 per night EHU €4.00 there are toilets, showers, and laundry facilities.
So why all the fuss on my part, well it is that it is so easy to find a place to stay in Spain without booking, you genuinely can be a nomad. Our first stop in Spain was a campsite €21 including tax and EHU Camping Barcelona is great relaxed and has a lovely swimming pool, a bar, restaurant, and laundry facilities. They offer luxury coach to the city which is about 20km away for €5.80 return. Plus, regular free shuttle bus to the nearby town every half hour during the day, all with no fuss. Oh and if you like golf there is a brilliant course nearby and it had an offer on so was able to get a game in as well
Sometimes you just want to go to a place and my brother was in Girona with friends playing golf, as we had not seen each other since 2019 we swung back north to say hi, here again was a simple Area €13 a night, very industrial but safe and clean with basic facilities.
In the UK we found we had to book almost everywhere and there seems to be a fuss, park in line with the stake, don’t do this, don’t do that and much much more expensive. I feel we are missing a trick. We don’t have many Aires in the UK and we could do with them there is an organisation called CAMpRA trying to encourage these stops in the UK, look and see if you can help.
Barcelona is a radiant city and we visited once more, and it was noticeably quieter than when we had last visited. The market was a lot more enjoyable as there were less tourists and we realised that it was real market with everything you might need at good prices. We revisited the Cava Bar El Xampanyet and it was just as we remembered and busy, we can recommend it good fun food and value. We followed up with a visit to the Picasso Museum next door, again an enjoyable afternoon. All of that said Covid seems to have changed how we view cities and we were happy to be back on the site using the swimming pool than visiting the sites. I hope we will move on from this but it is how it feels with masks and such always being in attendance, plus crowds of people.
As I mentioned my brother was only 60km up the road, so we took a swing up and disturbed his golf tour for a short while to say hi after 2 years. We enjoyed a lovely meal and the next morning swung south stopping off at Valencia to visit El Palmar and taste authentic paella in it heartland surrounded by rice fields.
Now we are near La Manga on the Mar Menor where some friends are coming out to visit and we will hopefully take in some sunshine before we finally stop being Nomadic and head home in the middle of October.