Author: Franco

Delayed Sailing

We awoke to our last shitty day in paradise. The sky was a brilliant blue though not, it has to be said, crystal clear in that there were a few wisps of very thin high altitude cloud adding a bit

Posted in 2018-2019 Winter

Teruel and Albarracin

Since making visits to Spain by car, part of our route usually includes a stretch between Zaragoza, Teruel and Sagunto on the Mediterranean coast above Valencia. The road in question is the A-23 known as the Autovia Mudéjar. Now we

Posted in 2018-2019 Winter

Spanish Twins

Almost three months ago, Brittany Ferries’ Cap Finistère had dropped us off in Bilbao harbour for the beginning of our escape from another desperate British Xmas and whatever the British winter might hold. If I said we’d had grey skies

Posted in 2018-2019 Winter

An Early Start

No, not for us this time, this is for the dragonflies. On 2nd March, having checked out the Vall d’Ebo and failed to find any surviving Common Darters (Sympetrum striolatum), we poked our noses into the Marjal de Pego-Oliva. Fairly

Posted in 2018-2019 Winter


[Pronounced “Sha-tee-va”, as near as damn it.] In search of some entertainment on what was billed to be an essentially cloudy day, we decided to take a run up the road to a town called Xàtiva. It’s a 90km run

Posted in 2017-2018 Winter


After being presented with a newspaper cutting suggesting that Giant Orchids (Himantoglossum robertianum) were now in bloom in the Valencia region, we thought we should try to find one, since hitherto we’ve seen only rosettes of leaves on our walks.

Posted in 2018-2019 Winter

Incremental Steps

We popped in to Calpe old town for Francine to have a play with her camera. Calpe old town is very hilly and there are several flights of steps. One of these and the most easily arrived at, has risers

Posted in 2018-2019 Winter

Winter at Hondo

A sunny Saturday seemed like a perfect day to escape Jalon’s rastro [flea market] by visiting the Parque Natural El Hondo just a spit south of Alicante. I was mainly thinking of seeing what birds might be around though, given

Posted in 2018-2019 Winter

Return to Senija

We were looking for another somewhat gentle leg stretcher and chose the hilltop above Senija again. Hopefully this time I wouldn’t get another puncture. Having seen Swallowtails (Papilio machaon) there on our previous walk, I was wondering if my beloved

Posted in 2018-2019 Winter

Garden Surprise

Francine had knowledge of a couple of gardens in the near vicinity that she fancied visiting. She flipped a mental coin and it came up [or is that down?] L’Albarda Jardin Mediterráneo. L’Albarda’s little leaflet says: L’Albarda is a benchmark

Posted in 2018-2019 Winter