After celebrating Jessica’s and Mario’s maiden 400nm passage by eating paella, washed down with some local wine; it was up early and off to the train station to catch a train to Barcelona in time to pick Cas up off her plane .
It was a simple matter to get off the train and onto the metro and in no time at all I was at the airport. Don’t you wish Perth could do public transport half as well as the cities in Spain?
It was good to see Cas after quite a period apart. It was a long flight, so we hopped Into a cab and headed for our hotel; where we had a great view looking straight at the Sagrada Familia Basilica.
Then it was time to intoduce Cas to a Tapas bar or two, as thisvwas her first time in Spain. There was no need to stray far from the hotel , and as we were sitting at one of the aforementioned establishments, who should walk along the street but Jess and her flatmate. The funny thing was that I thought Jess was In Valencia and Jess thought we were catching a train back to Valencia straight away as well.
Next day, after a bit of a late start, it was off on an open top bus tour of Barcelona. Given Cas’ jetlag, this was a great way to savour a quick overview of Barcelona. We did manage one stop where we caught an old historic tram followed by a vehicular railway up to the top of a hill/mountain, with strangely enough, a church and an amusement park and great views of the city. Barcelona could do with a much more thorough examination but sailing here is a little bit problematic given that you head north away from the Balearics and into the Bay of Lyon, which lots of people aren’t that thrilled about weather wise. Therefore we made the decision to leave the boat in the cheap, well run marina at Valencia and do Barcelona by train.
The train trip is just on 3 hours and we got back there in the early evening. Once there, we spent a couple of days checking out the sights of Valencia and getting La Mischief organised.
Valencia is the home of Paella and the beach front is jammed packed with restaurants. So it seemed logical to put the two together and celebrate being back on the boat together. Not sure where the cocktails come in but they did anyway.
Valencia was also home to the last America’s Cup (before Larry took it back to San francisco) so there is still heaps of infrastructure about. All the teams’ buildings are still there along with press centres and race centres – all now pretty much a ghost town.
We broke out the fold up bikes that I had bought off stan and judy and off we went exploring. Valencia, like most spanish cities, had great cycleways, including one that dropped you right in the centre of the city, with its marble paved sidewalks and impressive square.
We also rode along the foreshore that goes on for miles, with it lines and lines of beach umbrellas and sand volleyball and soccer pitches. We stopped and had a swim – a bit cold but not too bad.
La Mischief was sadly lacking in toys so we made it our mission to find a blow up stand up board – preferably two. Well we eventually found the only one in valencia. It came in its own bakpack so that was sort of ok to ride with. The paddle also had its own bag and this was a bit more problematical – especially when you passed riders gong the other way – but we eventually made it back to the boat.
With our boat chores sort of complete and the balearic islands beckoning, it was time for an early morning start as we backtracked towards Cabo de Nao, the nearest point to Ibiza, and the now legendary Dom Pepito floating cocktail bar.