|Balconies in Figueras.........I have no idea why !|
It came about as 2 friends, here in the Minervois, Jane & Steve, had to make a trip into Spain to check out the availability of some tiles they needed for a building project. They asked us if we would like to join them on an overnight trip to Figueras….and we really liked the idea.
We had stopped for a coffee in Figueras last year and loved the look of the town. It has a ramblas running through the centre, and there are some beautiful buildings on either side of it.
Our coffee stop last year made us know we would like to return, but obviously, we had only seen a very small part of the town.
|Our brilliant little hotel|
|Columns covered in knitting..... I know a few bloggers who will like this one !|
|Knitted covers for trees too.|
It was the idea of being able to visit the Dali museum in the town that appealed to Mark and I. So, after lunch, S & J went off on their tile search and Mark and I went to the Dali Museum.
As we had expected, it was visually stunning, and as we had expected, there were lots of the unexpected too. I’m sure we could have spent hours looking at everything, but it was so visually astounding, it seemed better to look at a few things carefully and just try to absorb some of the rest.
We also found a museum exhibiting a fabulous collection of photographs of older Figueras residents who had been present when Figueras was bombed during the civil war. ( It was one of the most bombed and damaged towns in the Catalan area during the Spanish Civil war, and had been a stopping off point for refugees fleeing Franco at the end of the 1930s). Each person was photographed holding something that made them recall those days. They had of course been children then, and some of them displayed photos with siblings , or toys, or even their parents. They were haunting and fascinating.
A great tapas meal, a few glasses of rioja, lots of talking and a very short walk back to the hotel, because of its brilliant central position, made for a lovely evening.
Steve & Jane had found their tiles, and after a breakfast of coffee and croissant overlooking an early morning market, we set off, back to France.
Our route, rather than the quick 2 hour journey the day before, took us along the coast…..and was spectacular. So much
so, that there were a few cliff edge views that I failed to appreciate as I had
my eyes closed……and my fingers crossed !
|Jane buying mangoes|
We then headed north and past some incredible scenery, terraces cut into impossibly steep hillsides, lined with olive groves and outrageously large desert like cacti and succulents. We stopped again at Llanca, this time to sit by the beach and eat sandwiches and ice cream …well, to be honest, it was the men that ate the ice cream.
|Working out where we were and where we'd been|
Steve did most of the driving, which was tough…..steep, and narrow winding mountain roads, which required constant concentration. It was great for Mark and I, just enjoying the views. It was really good of Steve & Jane to take this route back, they’ve done it before, but they were kind enough to want to show it to us.
The trip was great….an unexpected treat, arranged at short notice, fabulous weather, beautiful places experienced and excellent company.