Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Malaga and Sevilla

I feel like the past week in Spain was just a dream now... as soon as I got back to Nantes, I had a pile of work waiting for me and I think this is the first chance I have had to breathe! Not that I am complaining of course, I just had a week off. But that is the reason I am posting so late!
Barcelona was amazing and beautiful, and before we knew it we were on a RyanAir plane bound for Malaga, in the South of Spain in the Andalusia region. If you are interested in travelling to Spain, I would highly recommend this region because it is beautiful and sunny and warm!
Malaga has a population around 500 000, so it was the smallest of the places we visited. It was also very charming and cute. We were only there for a few days, but it was a lot of fun. Instead of posting pictures directly in this post, I am going to post my best Spain photos in a separate post, since I didn't get to add any Barcelona ones to the first post.
In Malaga, we did a lot of walking. We walked to the beach and hung out there for awhile since it was so beautiful, and we also went on a walking tour. It was just us three and the guide, so it was pretty fun. He was very knowledgeable and had a lot to tell us. Malaga is the birthplace of not only Pablo Picasso, but Antonio Banderas also. Pretty cool. We learned a bit about the Spanish Inquisition and the life and times of the Spanish monarchs.
One story that I found particularly amusing centres around Christopher Columbus. He came to ask the King Ferdinand if he could have money to check out the new world. The King said no. Columbus hung around for a bit and then asked again. This time, he was granted his wish. Why? Well, Ferdinand wasn't terribly attractive but his wife Isabella was. Rumour has it that Columbus and her had a little something going on, so Ferdinand wanted to put a stop to it. What better way then sending him half-way around the world? Well the story doesn't stop there. Columbus did his whole discover America thing and eventually returned to Spain. Isabella eventually died around the age of 40 from symptoms that seemed like syphilis, though that was never confirmed. Funny thing is that syphilis is thought to have originated in North America; so how did she get it? Well, Columbus also died of syphilis. Coincidence? Who knows.
There were many more stories, but I found that one interesting. You don't hear about the darker side of our past heroes in public school.
After Malaga, we journeyed to my favourite city, Sevilla. It has about 320 days of sunshine a year, and I don't think I saw a cloud in the sky the entire time I was there. It was amazing. Clear blue skies, 26 degrees, and the most amazing architecture. A lot of the architecture is a fusion of Christian and Muslim, or Moorish architecture. I wish I could remember the name, but it was a little strange so I don't remember how to spell it.
Our hostel was amazing and organized lots of events; we did them all! An amazing tapas tour, where we got to go to three different places and sample their various tapas, a flemenco show (dance, voice, and guitar), walking tours, a pub crawl, and learning how to make paella, as well as a BBQ night. The city itself was just amazing. It was sunny every single day and the buildings were incredible. Even though it was a tourist destination, it didn't feel as crazy as Rome or Amsterdam, or even Barcelona. It was just inredible.
I will be putting up pictures tomorrow probably.
All in all, my week in Spain was incredible... good food, good friends, good weather, amazing sight, and all around good times. I hope I can go back to see more of Southern Spain someday!

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