Since today is a break from the AtoZ Challenge I thought I would pick up where I left off on our trip in Spain.
So we left the hustle and bustle of Barcelona and took a trip down the coast to Sitges, we had decided that this would be our base of operations over the next seven days. The exodus from Barcelona was a little stressful so I was really pleased when we got down there and it was glorious weather.
We were staying near a Port and since it was such a nice day we took a stroll from the apartment to have a look, I only have these photos from afar but trust me it was lovely.
I can see why people would want to spend weeks there in the summer; February isn’t the best in terms of things to do since its very quiet however there was one definite draw.
February is carnival time. To mark the beginning of lent, the end of all gluttony for 40 days and 40 nights, they hold lots of carnivals, ones for school children and ones for adults. We had caught a few carnival parades in Barcelona, entirely by accident, but made a point of going to the one in Sitges as it was said to be the most lively and vibrant. It certainly was, they closed off most of the streets in the centre and not just the performers were dressed up, everyone made a bit of an effort.
The parade consisted of lots of different floats, obviously from lots of different groups and organisations, they all had various themes and costumes and they all walked around the set route, doing little routines at different points in the procession.
It was really good fun, I had had a few gin cocktails by the time it started so the pictures are a little blurry but these were some of the amazing costumes.
The nice thing about making Sitges our base was that it was really close to the main area for producing Cava in Catalonia, mainly centred around the area of Sant Sadurní d’Anoia. Some really well known brands come out of this area such as, Codorniu and Freixenet, however we went looking for smaller places with a bit more character and ended up at Cavas Castellroig and Cava Guilera amongst others. These were really nice little wineries, with friendly staff, brilliant tastings and of course amazing bubbles!! We certainly ended up with a few bottles to take home with us.
I think the best thing about looking for these smaller places is what we came across while we were searching for them.
This little church was one of them, we ended up stopping for a picnic here, we climbed up the little staircase and sitting in the sun for a while, it was a little windy but still beautiful. Another place is the Santa Maria de Montserrat Abbey, we came across this on the only drizzly grey day that we had whilst away.
It’s really impressive even in fog, set in the mountains next to some very impressive scenery, again even in the fog.
A sneaky pic of Scorpio in the courtyard.
The inside was quite a stark contrast to the outside; it was really dark and quite oppressive but still magnificent.
We even went on a tour of the back section of the monastery, however they didn’t allow you to take pictures which was a shame as there was some amazing artwork, and stained glass windows.
My favourite day of our time in the Sitges area was our last day there. We woke up to a warm sunny day and decided to take advantage of it, by finding a beach to lie on, so we headed into the Sitges centre to find one. I think the locals thought we were crazy as even though the weather was good they were still in their jackets, whilst I wore a dress and Scorpio wore shorts.
Eventually we decided that the beaches there were too windy and overlooked and Scorpio looked up a beach close by decreeing that that was were we should head. After getting there, parking the car and walking through some woods, I was beginning to think that we weren’t ever going to find a beach or get a lie down while the sun was still out. Eventually we crossed a train line and found two little inlets, with stony beaches and very few people.
This was just before we left, it was a lot brighter and less grey looking earlier.
We pitched our blanket on the smaller of the two inlets and lay in the sun, there was no wind and it soon heated up enough that I could have lay in a bikini. As it happens Scorpio decided that he was too warm to wear his clothes and proceeded to take them off much to my surprise and slight embarrassment; as there was another couple sat a bit further along from us; to which he announced that this was a clothing optional beach and that no one would care. He managed to convince me to take off my dress and get down to my underwear, but that’s as far as I get in February on the beach, even if it’s clothing optional.
When the sun started to disappear and it got too cold to sit out we went back to the apartment had dinner in bed watching True Detective and then gorged on Lindt chocolates. Doesn’t sound like much but sometimes an evening in is the way to go, especially if you’re travelling to a new destination the next day.
The final instalment will be coming soon to a Sunday near you…