Training up Provence

Wow – DELAYED much. Not entirely sure why I’m still keeping this up – but meh!

So I’d forgotten to write about my quick trip on the Train du Pigne (Train of Pines) from Nice towards Digne le Bains in Provence, France. I took this train trip, thinking happily of my father the whole way (who is OBSESSED with trains & pretty train journeys) – purely for the sake of taking a famous scenic train trip!

Tired at the moment and don’t have an amazing amount to say about it, so I’ll let the photos do the talking.

I am writing from cold January London – and have just spent the past few weeks being pursued sneakily by snow and the COLDEST SNAP Europe has seen in like 60 years hahaha – so looking back on these photos in summer sun is making me very jealous…of myself…

Entrevaux, medieval fortress city in the mountains

View from the top of the LONG climb up the fortress in Entrevaux - it was a gorgeous HOT day! haha

Moat surrounding Entrevaux, and a local cooling off in the water!

And of course for my father, the obligatory train related photos :D

The journey usually can take a whole day or even a few – I took a few hours!  It was made in super efficient Angela fashion right before my trip up to Marseille (already blogged about).

The next blog post will FINALLY be about Paris! A few months (half a year in fact) behind. HAH.  Reminiscing :)

xox

Ange

January 13, 2010 at 12:46 am Leave a comment

Two princesses and their fairytale in the Loire Valley

I rocked up to the huge youth hostel in Tours, which was cold and institutional. On a major plus side, I had paid for a dorm room but got a twin room all to myself. Sweet deal – privacy! Skype chats! Being as messy and loud as I wanted! Ahh thank you giant hostel :)

Already on the cab ride there, I could see how gorgeous the town was – even more so than Aix en Provence! The fountains, the old mansions on either side of wide boulevardes lined with towering old trees, the quaint old town with huge squares filled with al fresco seating and the smell of crepes…sigh!

Towering trees, gorgeous old mansions, early morning walks, le sigh!

Towering trees, gorgeous old mansions, early morning walks, le sigh!

Melted goats cheese - makes any salad spectacular!

Melted goats cheese - makes any salad spectacular! (Photo from Jo)

Girl date with Jo - Moules et frites & cider!

Girl date with Jo - Moules et frites & cider! (Photo from Jo)

Originally I had planned to bike around the Loire and see whichever chateaux I wanted – but seeing as I hadn’t ridden a bike in 10 years or so, I opted for the bus that would take me to a select few of the more famous or more grand chateaux.  There are over 30 chateaux in the region, I’d go crazy trying to choose otherwise!

Glad I did, because I found myself sitting next to the gorgeous and delightful Jo, with whom I spent my entire time in the Loire, and then subsequently Paris!  I was dumb enough to accidentally delete almost all my photos from the Loire (sad face!) so many of the photos below are courtesy of Jo – thanks love!

I’m no expert on French aristocracy or art or architecture, so I won’t pose as one.  To follow are simply images that I feel capture our fairytale 2 days amongst turrets, spiral staircases, decadent furnishings, rich fabrics, blue skies, green grass, flowers upon flowers and hedge mazes :)

Chapel at Chateaux Amboise, where Da Vinci is buried

Chapel at Chateaux Amboise, where Da Vinci is buried. Photo from Jo

Mind blowing to be standing there - to think of all the things he's contributed to art, science, architecture...and here he is, and there we were! Photo from Jo

Mind blowing to be standing there - to think of all the things he's contributed to art, science, architecture...and here he is, and there we were! Photo from Jo

Jo at Chateaux Amboise - everything here made me feel like I was in the movie Ever After! Photo from Jo

Jo at Chateaux Amboise - everything here made me feel like I was in the movie Ever After! Photo from Jo

Plush decadence, rich colours and huge fireplaces

Plush decadence, rich colours and huge fireplaces

Jo - happy to be lost in our fairytale hedge maze (though admittedly, not a very challenging...or tall...one, haha)

Jo - happy to be lost in our fairytale hedge maze (though admittedly, not a very challenging...or tall...one, haha)

Gorgeous country farmhouse garden attached to a chateaux

Gorgeous country farmhouse garden attached to a chateaux

Chateaux kitchen - all shiny copper, and reminding me once again of Ever After, or scenes of maids in bonnets and portly cooks chopping heads of chickens for grand feasts from like every movie ever set in that time and place

Chateaux kitchen - all shiny copper, and reminding me once again of Ever After, or scenes of maids in bonnets and portly cooks chopping heads of chickens for grand feasts from like every movie ever set in that time and place

Underground servant dining and deliciously rustic herbs, by the kitchen

Underground servant dining and deliciously rustic herbs, by the kitchen

Bring me a shrubbery! Gardens at Amboise. Photo by Jo

Bring me a shrubbery! Gardens at Amboise. Photo by Jo

...and always twirlgin! Internal tower/dual helix staircase, designed by Da Vinci. Photo by Jo

...and always twirling! Internal tower/dual helix staircase, designed by Da Vinci. Photo by Jo

I should really remember the names of the chateaux - I think it's Cheverney. I could be wrong.  Photo by Jo

I should really remember the names of the chateaux - I think it's Cheverney. I could be wrong. Photo by Jo

The inspiration for Marglespike Hall! Go Tin Tin! Photo by Jo

The inspiration for Marglespike Hall! Go Tin Tin! Photo by Jo

Sigh! How I love natural framing! Photo by Jo

Sigh! How I love natural framing! Photo by Jo

Macaroons - a very important part of our Loire experience. YUM. Photo by Jo

Macaroons - a very important part of our Loire experience. YUM. Photo by Jo

It wasn’t only the chateaux that kept us absorbed in our fairytale, but also the amazing gardens!  Mum & dad, these go out to you :p

Villandry!  Stunning and huge - like a fabulous game board even? Yes, I'm a giant nerd. Photo by Jo

Villandry! Stunning and huge - like a fabulous game board even? Yes, I'm a giant nerd. Photo by Jo

Villandry! This part comprised symbols for varying stages of love and passion. Photo by Jo

Villandry! This part comprised symbols for varying stages of love and passion. Photo by Jo

Me amongst the lavender at Villandry. Photo by Jo

Spot the Angela! Me amongst the lavender at Villandry. Photo by Jo

Villandry - Still loving lavender, and loving Jo for getting this shot :D  Photo by Jo

Villandry - Still loving lavender, and loving Jo for getting this shot :D Photo by Jo

Which chateaux was this? Really should recall...but the artist rendition is gorgeous.  Photo by Jo

Which chateaux was this? Really should recall...but the artist rendition is gorgeous. Photo by Jo

Ahhh so much gorgeousness.  All we needed were the dresses and corsets (and big hair) and we would’ve been set.  That, and to get rid of all the other tourists, hah.

Loving you Jo, glad we had the fairytale together!

Next post – Paris!  Jo + the Aussie gang, picnicing, climbing endless stairs and art coming out of our ears!

xox

Ange

October 2, 2009 at 10:57 pm 2 comments

Marseille & Aix en Provence: could have done this better, or not at all

Oh dear, that doesn’t sound too optimistic does it?

Honestly, it was enjoyable, but I think I could have done it much better with some more foresight.  There were one or two missed opportunities that could have been better taken advantage of!

In Nice, Patrick and Claudio (the Italians who taught me to drink espresso, haha) had almost convinced me to waylay my France plans and simply spend my summer weeks on the Italian coast!  Ohhh I was so tempted, and in hindsight wish I had – regardless, I had a blast in France.

Marseille

Originally, I had no plans to come here.  It was only really a base from which to explore the calanques (gorgeous sea inlets) and Aix en Provence.

Old Port by night - so many boats!

Old Port by night - so many boats!

Turned out to be quite an interesting place in itself!  Similar in architecture, and it had a sprawling old port with hundreds of boats, though definitely not as glistening as the Riviera ports.  The whole place had an air of organic mess. Does that sound bad?  There was much more Arabic than French spoken. In fact, had a great Moroccan meal and good Irish pub banter (one of the only ‘happening’ places we came across).  The hostel owner was totally odd but entertaining, and Aaron the frat boy American played tour guide.

Old cathedral near the Port

Old cathedral near the Port

Chateau D'If - where the Count of Monte Cristo was imprisoned (well, in Dumas' world)

Chateau D'If - where the Count of Monte Cristo was imprisoned (well, in Dumas' world)

Giraffe made from books, on the walk back to the hostel

Giraffe made from books, on the walk back to the hostel

Morning markets and fresh fish

Morning markets and fresh fish

The gorgeous white stone and blue waters of the calanques

The gorgeous white stone and blue waters of the calanques

Aix en Provence

Coined as a beautiful town full of old stately mansion decadence, cafe culture, colourful markets and Cezanne, Aix en Provence was a huge drawcard.  Made the daytrip with the gorgeous young French Canadians Marie-lou and Stephanie.

Soap stone demo at the market stalls

Soap stone demo at the market stalls

Lavender products - the typical Provencal flower & fragrance

Lavender products - the typical Provencal flower & fragrance

We had actually really wanted to get out to lavender and flower fields – the idyllic swaying scenery that Provence is famous for. Unfortunately, the lavender harvest was already over, and local buses just did not work out for us!  My one regret for Provence – but oh well!  Had a great day at the market stalls and learning about the influence Picasso and Cezanne had on eachothers’ work.

Calissons, yum! Bought the lavendar flavoured ones (if I couldn't see the fields, I was going to eat them dammit!)

Calissons, yum! Bought the lavendar flavoured ones (if I couldn't see the fields, I was going to eat them dammit!)

The girls browsing amongst the colours & smells of soaps good enough to eat

The girls browsing amongst the colours & smells of soaps good enough to eat

My nod to art in Provence. Picasso isn't totally my thing, but I do love Cezanne!

My nod to art in Provence. Picasso isn't totally my thing, but I do love Cezanne!

A far cry from Picasso or Cezanne, but I can't help it - colour coordination and good merchandising makes me happy (at Sephora - why don't we have this chain in Australia?)

A far cry from Picasso or Cezanne, but I can't help it - colour coordination and good merchandising makes me happy (at Sephora - why don't we have this chain in Australia?)

As much as I enjoyed this pretty place, the Loire Valley (next post) was in my opinion much more gorgeous!

Enjoyable? Of course, all my travel is!  I wouldn’t call them essential stops though.  It was time better spent as extra days in the Riviera, Loire Valley or Paris I reckon.

Still hugely behind, but more posts on their way!

xox

Ange

September 29, 2009 at 7:37 pm 1 comment

Nice is…you guessed it…

Nice started off in a haze of brain exhaustion and ridiculous hours.

So I admit, I could have found a better way to get there, but the way my trip timing worked out, I was on a bus that would get me to Nice at 2am the day before I originally planned to arrive.

That meant:

- No accommodation booked for that night

- I thought I’d hang out at the bus station from 2am til morning

Problems? What problems?

The only other passenger getting off the bus at Nice at 2am was Suzzanne, another Aussie girl.  Upon seeing the dodgy bus station, there was no way I was staying there on my own til morning!  She had a hostel pick-up, but couldn’t reach them on her phone. No payphones in sight.  After wandering around, we finally got a taxi, and used the driver’s phone to call the hostel.  Eventually we got there, and ended up crashing on their common room couches.  The common room also just so happened to be a 24-hr bar!

Drunken backpackers, a flirtatious chef and broken glass = disturbed sleep for us!

At 4am a guy asked us what we were doing there, and after feeling sorry for these homeless sweet girls, gave us a free private double room! (He turned out to be the owner)  Ended up scoring a whole bunch of free stuff off this hostel, which I didn’t even book a room in!

Such was my start in Nice.

Originally I had only planned on spending 3 nights here.  With every daytrip up and down the coast (previous post) I fell more in love with the Riviera.  With every night, I fell more in love with Nice.  Eventually, I even stayed in town during the day and explored Nice itself.

Easily, Nice ended up being my favourite place of all the Riviera towns I visited.

My original 3 night plan turned into a whole week, and I loved it!

Had many funtimes with so many great people. Photos ensue :)

Nice Beach & Promenade

I lived an easy stroll through pretty cobbled alleyways to blue seas and fair winds

I lived an easy stroll through pretty cobbled alleyways to blue seas and fair winds

Blessed with bright clear days almost the entire time

Blessed with bright clear days almost the entire time

Blue seems to be a common theme throughout my Riviera photos…lucky me :)

Nice beach promenade, with the famous Hotel Negresco (one of the most decadent in the world apparently? I wasn't going to attempt entry in my thongs ^_^)

Nice beach promenade, with the famous Hotel Negresco (one of the most decadent in the world apparently? I wasn't going to attempt entry in my thongs ^_^)

Every night ended up on the beach, and in very different ways! This night was a chilled group ocassion :)

Every night ended up on the beach, and in very different ways! This night was a chilled group ocassion :) Those pebbles are huge and painful!

English boys: "That was Nice, Cannes we do it again?" etc.  The jokes, strangely enough, never got old

English boys: "That was Nice, Cannes we do it again?" etc. The jokes, strangely enough, never got old

The moon, huge and low in the sky. The reflection could mesmerise me for hours.

The moon, huge and low in the sky. The reflection could mesmerise me for hours.

Van cowboy drumming to classic tunes, why the hell not?

Van cowboy drumming to classic tunes, why the hell not?

Latino beats induce swaying hips - just a taste of all the evening beach promenade entertainment

Latino beats induce swaying hips - just a taste of all the evening beach promenade entertainment

Bass brand in white - along the promenade

Bass brand in white - along the promenade

Vieux Nice (Old Town) …mainly by night

…despite the fact that I really did spend some daytimes here too! I did live there after all! I really should have taken more photos of the cobblestone alleyways…

Diana in the main Place (plaza) with the illuminated naked men? Hah

Diana in the main Place (plaza) with the illuminated naked men? Hah

Night pianist, and very impressive too

Night pianist, and very impressive too

Al fresco dining

Al fresco dining

Old town markets

Old town markets

The Italians! These two taught me to drink espresso - I've been drinking it ever since!

The Italians! These two taught me to drink espresso - I've been drinking it ever since! Shot from my table-top position at Wayne's

Table/chair-top dancing at Wayne's with Sylwia!

Table/chair-top dancing at Wayne's with Sylwia!

Old Port side

Nice Vieux Port - rivalled any of the other Riviera towns I'd visited

Nice Vieux Port - rivalled any of the other Riviera towns I'd visited

Blocky surf-breakers and other more practical uses :)

Blocky surf-breakers and other more practical uses :)

Virago by the sea - took this photo with Dad in mind!

Virago by the sea - took this photo with Dad in mind!

Ah Nice – how I love you.

Sitting and staring out at these understated colours, as the sky turned dark, made me so very very happy!  *sigh*

Sitting and staring out at these understated colours, as the sky turned dark, made me so very very happy! *sigh*

Also – go to the Musee d’Art Moderne et d’Art Contemporain (MAMAC) *love* !!!

DSC_0671DSC_0652DSC_0579

xox

Ange

(still ridiculously delayed, but we’re catching up!)

September 19, 2009 at 2:17 am Leave a comment

Riviera tripping

FINALLY!  A new post?!  These are over a month late now, but I will get through them!

 

More on my Nice adventures later :)  First, a quick recap on the various daytrips I did from my base in Nice.

Had found Travis from Cali, Diana from Quebec and Justin from the good ol’ land of OZ – so off we went!

 

Eze

A super pretty medieval village high above the glistening coast. 

Eze village

Eze village

Patriotism and hazy horizons - from Eze hilltop

Patriotism and hazy horizons - from Eze hilltop

Riviera daytrip crew at Eze village

Riviera daytrip crew at Eze village

The precarious walk down to Eze sur Mer was gorgeous, but rocky as! Apparently Bono lives down there, though personally, I think there are much nicer beach towns on the Riviera that one could choose…if one was a well-moneyed rock sensation…

Views on the trek down to Eze beach

Views on the trek down to Eze beach

 

Monaco

I grew up watching a really random movie called “Once upon a Crime” – a classic in my eyes, with James Belushi, Cybill Shepherd and John Candy (RIP) – a murder mystery comedy set in the Monte Carlo casino. Obviously, that meant that Monaco was a must-see on my Riviera trip.

Funnily enough, I can hardly remember what the casino looks like in the movie, but seeing it in real life didn’t convey the same sense of magic and well…murder mystery. Lesson: don’t attach James Belushi to travel expectations.

All pretty all the same :)

Sunny day at Monte Carlo casino

Sunny day at Monte Carlo casino

One of the many flashy cars by the casino

One of the many flashy cars by the casino

Monte Carlo reflected

Monte Carlo reflected

Luxury on the water - one of many. Party here please?

Luxury on the water - one of many. Party here please?

 

Antibes

Another gorgeous (but quiet) Riviera town.  A good half day, but more painful pebble beaching.  The views though, as always, are stunning.

Ah, very French, no? Pity I can't stand the stuff!

Ah, very French, no? Pity I can't stand the stuff!

Antibes enclosed pebble beach - water clear as anything

Antibes enclosed pebble beach - water clear as anything

 

Cannes

Ah, the famous film festival. Anything going on here outside of that? To be honest, I wasn’t expecting too much, but ended up loving it!

The boulevardes are buzzing, the cars and luxury yachts are as plentiful as the designer stores, the hotels are grand, and the beaches are SAND!

Sand beaches! Oh heaven on my feet

Sand beaches! Oh heaven on my feet

Yeah, that one on the right, totally mine

Yeah, that one on the right, totally mine

Diana, Travis and I swim out to a rocky island and wave back at Justin!

Diana, Travis and I swim out to a rocky island and wave back at Justin!

 

Villefranche

Possibly my favourite beach, simply because the sand situation was perfect :)

Tiny pebbles = comfy on the feet + no sand in your bag = perfect!

…and only 5min from Nice!

Villefranche - sunsets, bay beach and pastel village

Villefranche - sunsets, bay beach and pastel village

Enjoying the sun & sand situation at Villefranche

Enjoying the sun & sand situation at Villefranche

 

St. Tropez

Figured I had to pay it a visit from all its fame and hype.

To surmise: it’s pretty, but so is every other town. It is however a bitch to get to from Nice. First, train to St. Raphael (about 50mins), then a ferry to St. Tropez (1 hour) which only runs about 4 times a day. Get your timing right, or else you’ll end up waiting round for hours, or only have a tiny amount of time in St. Tropez! Don’t make my mistake of leaving Nice in the afternoon – go early!

St. Tropez itself was lined with artists, pretty pastel buildings, rich yachts and upmarket alleyway shopping (oh, and yummy bakeries – but then again, they’re everywhere in France!)

Oh the colours!

Oh the colours!

DSC_0511

St Tropez, main drag by the water

St Tropez, main drag by the water

 

Nice itself was magical and full of night revelry, but more on that in the next post.

 

xox

Ange

 

September 14, 2009 at 3:13 am Leave a comment

Barcelona – art, architecture and other antics

My first sunny day in Barca was spent alone, and after a few hours of wandering around, I could safely say

“Pammy, I am so jealous you get to live here for the next 3 months!”

Barcelona introduced itself to me with its bustling main tourist square Plaza Catalunya, and huge boulevard Las Ramblas, which I noticed had very distinct stages:

-        Tourist stands everywhere

-        Poseurs in their garish garb smiling for photos with the hope of coins

-        Bird stalls?!

-        Flower stalls

-        Merkat Boqueria (love!!!)

-        Street sketch artists

-        Street art vendors

Birds?! Turkeys? Sure, buy them off the street...

Birds?! Turkeys? Sure, buy them off the street...

Flowers! Perty :)

Flowers! Perty :)

Jamon! They love their cured MEAT

Jamon! They love their cured MEAT

Oh the amazing Merkat Boqueria! LOVE LOVE LOVE

Oh the amazing Merkat Boqueria! LOVE LOVE LOVE

On either side of the Las Ramblas, cafes had their tables pouring out onto the street in al fresco glory, pharmacies were everywhere (a common trait in France too), grand theatres, huge shiny shops and dodgy tobacconists…and alleyways that piqued my curiosity, branching off into the old mazes of Barri Gotic (to the left) and shabby chic Newtown/Surry Hills-esque streets of El Raval (to the right).

All of this finally led me to the glistening Port Vell, where I happily sat watching the sky darken, writing in my journal amidst the enticing smell of waffles, and the ominous presence of huge gulls and tourist hordes.

Old dude rowing at Barcelona Port - wicked :D

Old dude rowing at Barcelona Port - wicked :D

At first we stayed in a hostel about 15mins away by Metro.  Loving the city centre, I decided we would be happier staying at one of the party hostels near Plaza Catalunya.  Lucky there were spots for our last 2 nights!

Funtimes

Barcelona gave me a variety of nights. From quiet romantic girl-dates with Pammy, over good food and water views…to clubbing by the beach, climbing structures on the sand at ridiculous hours of the morning and getting my all-purpose-moshpit-purse stolen (thank goodness nothing important was in there).

PS. Don’t buy 1 Euro beer from the shady guys selling it on the street – they store them in the sewers. Sewer beer!

New friends and funtimes all round.

Fellow finance chic haha

Fellow finance chic haha

Ibiza girls reunite!

Ibiza girls reunite!

Portugese Japanese American Brit Iranian? Whatever!

Portugese Japanese American Brit Iranian? Whatever!

6 ft 6 is actually quite ridiculous :p

6 ft 6 is actually quite ridiculous :p

Dali theatrics in Figueres

Dali now?!

Dali now?!

Dali could very well have been the crazy old man sitting outside the entrance. The moustache and eccentricity fitted like a glove.  Had Dali not died in 1989, I would have been tempted to pursue my theory further. The museum is a converted theatre, the largest surrealist piece of art in the world.  Dali’s aim was to create an entire surreal experience for the visitor!

Theatrical museum facade

Theatrical museum facade

One thing I didn’t realise was the amazing range and depth of skills Dali had.  He wasn’t just a fantastic painter with intriguing surrealist themes, but he did EVERYTHING!  Loved the pop art installations, the sketches, the sculptures, the squid ink paintings…

Face of Mae West made out of an apartment

Face of Mae West made out of an apartment

Wicked ink scribble, as part of a series about Don Quixote

Wicked ink scribble, as part of a series about Don Quixote

High Holiness in Montserrat

Another daytrip landed us in a cable car up to a bulbous mountain range (that was ridiculously phallic up close, everywhere) and a high-up monastery and cathedral.  A day of fine views and further enlightenment.

See the monastery?

See the monastery?

The "black Mary" - the discovery which triggered to monastery and pilgrimages to touch her hand

The "black Mary" - the discovery which triggered to monastery and pilgrimages to touch her hand

City of Gaudi

I don’t even know what to say about this – but wow.

Gotta say, I wasn’t expecting Barcelona to be so ‘radical’.  Gaudi put these strange buildings up back at the start of the 1900s – can’t even imagine something like this back in the day in Ausor even now!

Of course.  Sagrada Familia

Of course. Sagrada Familia

Sagrada Familia - on the Passion of Christ facade

Sagrada Familia - on the Passion of Christ facade

Sagrada Familia - cavernous insides meant to represent a forest canopy & tree trunks

Sagrada Familia - cavernous insides meant to represent a forest canopy & tree trunks

Gaudi used prolific organic representation - tree trunks much?

Gaudi used prolific organic representation - tree trunks much?

Rainforest canopy insides, with pretty stained glass :)

Rainforest canopy insides, with pretty stained glass :)

To be honest though, don’t know if I’m the biggest fan? They are amazing regardless!

St George dragon themed Casa Bastillo

St George dragon themed Casa Bastillo

Trippy rooftop of La Pedrera

Trippy rooftop of La Pedrera

Overall, Barcelona has a little bit of everything, and I leave it with mixed feelings.  It’s bustling and cosmopolitan, with fantastic culture, an amazing art scene and an abundance of establishments I could easily turn into regular haunts – as well as being one of the dodgiest places I’ve seen – oh what character!

Skateboarders outside the Museum of Contemporary Art

Skateboarders outside the Museum of Contemporary Art

Waiting for a run in the square

Waiting for a run in the square

A special place in my heart :)

Xox

Ange

August 12, 2009 at 11:16 pm 2 comments

Whirlwind Cordoba & Granada

Cordoba

A gorgeous daytrip for the Mezquita.  All-wise town planner Cory was telling us about how Cordoba used to be the most important medieval city at one stage.  I really should remember more about the history – dumb tourist!

Cordoba Alcazar gardens

Cordoba Alcazar gardens

What is amazing though are the candystripe arches in the graaaaand Muslim Mezquita – which was then taken over by Christians – so in the middle of this amazing Muslim architecture is a giant cathedral! A sight to behold.

The Mezquita! Grand stretch of candystripe archways...

The Mezquita! Grand stretch of candystripe archways...

Light filtering in through the archways

Light filtering in through the archways

Amazing vaulted ceilings in the Mezquita

Amazing vaulted ceilings in the Mezquita

The huge vaulted Christian cathedral right in the middle of the Mezquita archways!

The huge vaulted Christian cathedral right in the middle of the Mezquita archways!

This was the day, however, when we were wandering around in 47 degree heat – felt a little woozy for the rest of the night but managed another night at Sevilla’s Feria anyway. Ole!

Granada

The Alhambra – another amazing piece of grand Muslim/Moorish architecture.  History lesson? Won’t find it here.  What I will say though is that the detail on everything is amazingly intricate.  The carvings and mosaics on every wall, the vaulted ceilings that look like those 3D visual illusions, the perspectives you get from walking through the layers of decorated archways – *sigh*!

Typical gorgeousness at the Alhambra - Nasrid Palace

Typical gorgeousness at the Alhambra - Nasrid Palace

Small vaulted ceiling - this amazing '3D' detail was everyhere!

Small vaulted ceiling - this amazing '3D' detail was everyhere!

Loved the light in this room - Pam mentioned the significance of filtered light in religious spaces

Loved the light in this room - Pam mentioned the significance of filtered light in religious spaces

Fantastic detail covering every wall. Loved the Arabic script.

Fantastic detail covering every wall. Loved the Arabic script.

*swoons* so beautiful and soooo intricate! To think all this mathematical perfection was done by hand...

*swoons* so beautiful and soooo intricate! To think all this mathematical perfection was done by hand...

We stayed in the old Moorish quarter Albayzin, which was cool, albeit a little freaky at night.  The alleyways are ridiculously tight. There were some points where there was literally 3 cm on either side of the taxi going up. Eep! (The buses in this part of Granada are all itty bitty minibuses for a reason!)

We did Granada way too quickly – want to come back here and do it all properly, as well as other bits we totally missed.

The Alhambra standing over Granada

The Alhambra standing over Granada

Then I was off on the early plane to Barcelona! Even managed to get my luggage down to 15.5kg! Post coming soon (I’m like 2 wks behind now!) …

xox

Ange

August 9, 2009 at 9:44 pm 1 comment

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