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  • Day20

    Travel Day - Ronda to Granada

    January 19, 2018 in Spain ⋅ ☀️ 9 °C

    Our bus to Ronda didn’t leave until 1:30 so we had ample time to do the 20 minute uphill walk to the train station. It was a scenic ride with endless fields of olive trees. In Spain there are over 5 million acres of olive groves and over 300 million olive trees. A new high speed train track is being built on this route but is unfinished, so for the first 60 km we took a regular train and then we completed the last 120 km by bus. We were among the last passengers to get off the train so we were directed to a different bus than the majority. John was sure we were on the wrong bus when the driver didn’t take the exit to Granada but I could see that we were not on the express bus and had to make a stop in a nearby town. Once we were back on the highway he could relax, except for one annoyance. We had an elderly Spanish lady sitting in the front row who talked to the driver very loudly non-stop during the whole trip.

    The population of Granada is 239,000 but it is a very busy city and seemed larger. I messed up my hotel directions and bought two tickets for the Metro instead of the local bus. Off to a bad start and John was getting grumpy. We eventually got on the right bus and it was jam-packed with passengers so there was standing room only, which was very awkward with our luggage. The other passengers were so friendly and helpful so that made the 15 minute ride bearable. We got off in the central area and even with my map app we couldn’t find our way to our hotel. Another friendly, helpful lady saw our obvious confusion so she walked with us a short distance and pointed us in the right direction. It definitely wasn’t a smooth travel day! Our hotel, the Melia Granada, was very flashy in the public areas but our room was small and plain.

    Our goal in coming to Granada was to visit the Alhambra, the last Moorish stronghold in Europe. This is how we spent day 2 in Granada. From our hotel, the half hour walk was uphill the whole way. The Alhambra gets up to 8,000 visitors per day and I wisely bought our tickets 2 months ago as recommended. I had to pick an entry time as small groups are allowed in every half hour. Security was visible throughout the complex....a muzzled dog and several armed guards.
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