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Posted By Dorrit, Coen, Sophie, Marlies & Leonie

heading to Cadiz seemed the best option to escape from the wind and wait for the boat to Morocco. The Costa de la Luz was on our original plan anyway. On the route via a steep first gear road we visited Vejer la Frontera, a beautiful little town high upon a mountain. The whole family strolled through the narrow streets, with oriental Plazas and colourful tiles, stopping here and there for views, drinks, babyfood and other important children needs. Destination Conil de la Frontera. Here we stayed for 3 days on a luxury campsite and enjoyed this pretty windy coastal village.  Spain is such a beautiful country...if you forget the sand between your teeth ;-)

Posted By Dorrit, Coen, Sophie, Marlies & Leonie

it has been a while but I'll write a bit more on how we are doing.
Everything is fine with us. Marlies starts only wanting to eat what we are eating and Sophie still takes her Flamenco dress to bed. Both girls seem to have fun and us parents are enjoying this daily spectacle.
After leaving Cordoba we headed for the next big city, Sevilla.
 Furnished with monuments, fine arts, flamenco singers and orange trees everywhere, Sevilla was a real pleasure to stay a few days. We visited the Alcazar, enjoyed tapas for lunch and we walked through Seville's Medieval Jewish quarter with it's windings little streets and plazas perfumed with orange blossom. 
Marlies enjoyed driving in the local busses; no matter how rough the ride, close to mummy everything is fun.  As a treat for all of us we bought tickets for a flamenco show at night. Sophie was soo much inspired by the show and the music that she couldn't help it anymore and danced during the whole show right next to the stage. It was a very very nice evening. Thanks Ute for all the theater activities in the kindergarten.
From the White Town Olvera, that used to be a bandit refuge and offers a great view when approaching from downhill, we passed on to Ronda. This is hard work for the car as the roads are winding up and down in this fine mountain scenery. The majestic bridge Puente Nuevo connects the two parts of this White Town that are devided by a stunning gorge. The girls are interested in the horse carriages but we wait for this until we get to Morocco. In order to take a few days of rest on the beach, clean and fill up supplies, we directly drove to Tarifa, a relaxed surf-dude town with an old fort and arabic like little streets at the southernmost  point of Spain. From here the ferries bring you to Morocco. A campsite with a perfect playground for Sophie. Unfortunately the exessive winds (8 beaufort) does not allow the ferries to sail out. As the wind literally blew a plate off the table, we decided to escape from the wind and wait somewhere on a warm place for the ferries to sail again.

Posted By Dorrit, Coen, Sophie, Marlies & Leonie
Along the green and blue lakes we left the national park, heading for the City of Cordoba. We spent the night in Santa Helena, passing Navas de Tolosa, a battlefield where a deciding battle between the Christians and the Moors was being fought.
From a campsite near the center of Cordoba, we walked into the city center and had an evening view at the Alcazar, castle of the Christian monarchs. Sophie was dreaming away at the sight of two brides and the corresponding local dresses of the wedding guests. That is what she wants...
Being carried around by Dorrit, Marlies was alright swallowing all the impressions of Cordoba. We went to the Mesquita, Cordoba's gigantic mosk. After the Christians captured Cordoba, the Mezquita was used as a church. The center of the building was torn out to allow construction of a cathedral right in the middle. In one of the tourist shops we gave in to Sophie and made her dream come true: We bought her a pink Flamenco dress...
She wore it with style. At times we were surrounded by tourists making pictures of parading and dancing Sophie.
Following the web of winding streets with  geranium flower boxes and cool intimate patios and Tapas bars, we inmediately loved this city.

this dress 
is even taken to bed
Posted By Dorrit, Coen, Sophie, Marlies & Leonie

hi again .  We stayed one more day in Oliva because a vaccination we needed to get for Sophie was not available i n the local hospital so we had to order it and wait .
The morning after we left for Spains inland. After a beautiful tour through the countryside with blossoming trees and dry and rocky r oadsides, we climbed higher and higher upto the mainland plateau. A big part of central Spain is on this plateau. In Chinchilla de Monte Aragon, a village founded by Moors, we had a nice typical spanish dinner on an old market square surrounded by medieval churches and buil dings. Afterwards we climbed upto the old castle to see the sun go down over the flat plateau, painting the old village orange.

Normally we only drive during "children siesta" but because we had to cover a l arger a mount of kilometers, we drove a few hours in the late evening. The last 120 km we drove a pitch dark road through the middle of nowhere heading for a national park. Th en the engine started to stutter...
After 50 km of real stress we deci ded to stop in the next village to sleep near the Guardia Civil. 
For breakfast we drove a part of the Ruta de Don Quijote to the planned campsite in the national park Lagunas de Ruidera with sever al lakes and colorful rocks. Here we met a Swiss family with three children Sophie could play with on the playground all day while I worked on the car's engine and changed filters. Hope the problem is fixed now.

Posted By Dorrit, Coen, Sophie, Marlies & Leonie

Every morning Sophie wakes up with a proclamation of whi ch dress she wants to wear today. On th e weekly market we bought her a fancy pink jogging suit with elves on i t so that's going to be the one for to da y. As a daily recurring ritual, after waking up, we read th e girls from one of the many reading books we took wi th u s.
W e ar e still at the same beach campsite in Oliva, for all of us a very convenient and relaxing place. T he wea ther is perfect so apart from preparing meals for Marlie s, cha nging dipers, cleaning, dressing, su n crea ming and supporting Sophie in her exploring way of life , we s pend much time on the beach.



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