Thursday, 14 December 2017

Barcares in France to Roses in Spain - Day 11 - 14

Monday 11th - Thursday 14th December 2017

At the end of my last post I told you that we were very undecided weather to stay for another couple of nights in France or to push on into Spain in the hope that we'd finally find some sunshine!  In the end we compromised and stayed one more night on French soil, but with hindsight that was possibly a bit of a mistake because the bad weather never gave up and the place we chose to pitch wasn't one of our greatest choices.

On Monday we moved about 25 miles further along the French coast from Barcares to the town of Argeles sur Mar and pitched up on another Etapes Aire but this one wasn't either picturesque or near anything interesting - and did I mention the rain!  Luckily, as we hadn't had far to travel we got there about 11ish, and because we knew heavy rain was forecast for the afternoon we hurried ourselves out for a stroll along the sea front promenade. It was pretty enough - but it was lonely!   In the end our walk was about 5 miles there and back to the towns marina, and I think in total we didn't see more than about half a dozen people, so with that and the heavy grey skies hanging above us our outing wasn't really anything to write home about.

Argeles Sea Front
And when we did get home (2ish) the rain poured for the rest of the day and most of the night - loudly🥁🥁🥁.  Therefore, by Tuesday morning we were  more than ready to pack up and move on, and this time we were definitely going over the boarder into Spain.  Once again our journey wasn't a long one, but it was  familiar because we took the same route as  the one we'd undertaken on our previous Spanish jaunt back in November 2015.

Therefore, we knew exactly what to expect for our crossing through the Pyrenees and over the border at Le Perthus on the French side and El Pertus on the Spanish before continuing our journey to the brand new Lidl in the town of Roses.  There we restocked and then rolled another mile or so to the  Joncar Mar campsite (where we'd stayed previously) and pitched up to make it our home for the next 3 nights. 

And really we didn't do much more that day except take a stroll along the lovely sea front of Roses where I met the two guys on the right  left 😂- but they weren't very talkative - one of them just needed a light!

On Wednesday we needed to devote some time to chores!  No washing had been done for the last fortnight and the outside of our precious home was filthy.  So while I set about sorting out our washing mountain John scrubbed and polished T4rdis2 until she shone brightly in the watery sunshine, and by then our smalls were fluttering in the breeze on the washing line! 

Then later, when we'd scoffed cheesy beans on toast for lunch we decided to visit La Ciutadella (Roses Citadel) on the recommendation of an English couple we'd chatted to earlier in the day.  They'd told us that senior's entry was free so we thought we might qualify, but apparently in Spain that doesn't start until your 65 and neither of us are quite there yet!  However, although we wouldn't choose to visit places like this on a regular basis we found our time there quite interesting and well worth the 4 euros they charged us to get in because everything was explained in English and the ruins within it's walls demonstrated history from the Greek, Roman and Medieval eras. 

As we wondered we found archaeologists seeking more relics in what had been Roman and Greek villages at different times.

I found someone hiding within the ancient walls that looked as if they may crash down with a good gust of wind!

We viewed the  XVII century infantry barracks that in their time housed 500 soldiers over 3 floors!

And we found the ruins of St Mary's Church and the Benedictine Monastery from the XI century.  However, this had undergone extensive restoration in the 1960s!

There was also loads more to see and if the weather had been a bit warmer I think our visit may have lasted longer, but after a couple of hours we decided to abandon the relics and seek out something which held more interest for John!  And that was the Wine Palace where a whole aisle was devoted to very special temptations from Scotland!

And that just leaves today (Thursday) for me to tell you about - and what a lovely day it turned out to be!  To start it was a bit overcast but by early afternoon it was almost wall to wall 🌞😎🌞 so a perfect day for a walk.  But this once again turned out to be a trip down memory lane as we  retraced our steps along the sea front walkway that we'd first discovered on our previous visit back in November 2015!

In all we pottered about 8 miles along the GR 92, mostly with stunning views and with plenty of coffee and picnic stops.  However, if we'd had the inclination we could have gone much further, because in it's entirety, this Grand Rondonee route stretches for 568 kilometres!

We've really enjoyed our repeat visit to Roses and I'm fairly sure we may find ourselves here again on our return journey homeward in March next year, but for now our time here has come to an end and we'll be moving on Southwards tomorrow - destination yet to be decided!

Click here to see our French and Spanish Campsites