Road-trip to Andalusia part 4
The White Washed Towns of Andalusia
Today’s plan is to wander through the mountains visiting small rural villages while making our way back to the coast. As I mentioned in part three I first discovered this area while researching properties back in Oregon. (If you are just now joining us you may want to begin the journey in Road-trip to Andalusia part 1.) I had found a flat with stunning views in one of these small villages but we never did see it as we quickly decided that Torrevieja would be the perfect fit for us. And it has been, plus Terri-Lynn was very adamant that she would not live in a small rural town again. We had already done that back in Gold Beach, Oregon and while yes, these places are beautiful they have little else to offer in the way of food, entertainment and everything else that city kids like us need to have in their daily lives. So I really wanted to find the small town of Montejaque that we did not move to and maybe, possibly locate the flat.
I thought it would be romantic to live in a small Spanish hill town. I’m sure I was right. But then so was Terri-Lynn. These towns are all slowly dying as the younger population chooses to move into the cities for education and work. This is happening all over the world. There are towns in Italy selling historic homes for $1 Euro. Yes, it is true. The governments are trying to save these beautiful towns encouraging foreign investment and of course rural tourism.
We walked around the town picturing ourselves living here. There are two small markets and we went to them both. Very limited supplies, though as in all of Spain the quality of the products looked pretty good, not much fresh seafood up here. We would certainly not have our Asian and Indian spices to cook with. And then we found the flat.
I wish you could see the view. Looking out over the gorge towards the mountains from the bedroom, living room, kitchen and terrace seemed amazing. But again, not much to do here and we are 2 hours from the sea.
So we continued on and found out what our main form of entertainment would be here. Much like Gold Beach it would be hiking. This was a nice stop, the water was gorgeous and we both thought this is a great picnic spot! Yes, we say that all the time. Professional self caterers. Once again being on a constant budget opens up experiences that may last beyond that of just going to a restaurant. But it was not time to eat and we had a big day planned.
For the rest of the day we drove towards the coast. Most of the towns look pretty similar. White washed Moorish villages on hilltops. Lovely, so far maybe my favorite spot in Spain (for vacation). These are all Arab villages and for nearly eight centuries was considered Muslim Spain. The Christians started to invade and conquer the region in 1085 and by 1492 Emir Muhammad XII surrendered the Emirate of Granada to Queen Isabella I of Castile, completing the Christian reconquest of the peninsula.
We stopped for lunch in Casares. Very much on the “rural tourism” trail but certainly not a tour bus destination.
All of these towns were charming and possibly my favorite part of this journey. I guess if you live here you have to be OK with living in a white house. It was getting time for lunch and according to the map this would be the final hill top town we would visit before arriving at the coast. Sounds like it is time for a cana and a tapa in the town square.
This was not the end of our day. We would continue on to Estepona, a town on the Costa Del Sol and eventually find what would be the strangest campground of the trip. I will save that for the final post in Road-trip to Andalusia part 5.